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Ruby Black - Puppet & Prop Maker

The first guest in our new interview section on the SAND visuals blog is Ruby Black! Ruby is a Bristol-based stop motion puppet and set maker. Over to you Ruby!

stop motion animation puppet

What do you do for work?

At the moment I make puppets, props and sets, freelance for short films and smaller stop motion companies, but also produce animations.

How did you get into the industry?

I wouldn't say I'm in the industry, I'm always making my own stuff and do love working on projects with smaller companies and commissions. But as work comes and goes I do rely on having a job at the UWE, where I'm fortunate to work with the stop motion department.

What skills are essential for your job? I think being passionate and caring about what you make is super important, other than that I think there are millions of transferable skills that help out when making. For instance, if you're the sort of person that loves taking things apart and seeing how they work, you can learn loads about mechanisms and how to make things in different ways. Very handy in the world of stop motion animations.

What sort of projects do you work on? I prefer working on shorter stuff compared to big productions/series, as it allows you to get more involved with multiple parts of the production, from storytelling to making to animation, all the way to the edit.

How does an average day in the life look like for you? At the moment I don’t really have an average day, which I feel fortunate about. I love the variation whether I have a film on the go, making a puppet show, teaching animation workshops or working on a production. So my days are always varied.

stop motion animation

Favourite thing about your job?

I just love making art and being able to develop.

Least favourite thing about your job?

The stress can creep up on you!

What is one thing you really like about yourself?

I like that I'm enthusiastic about what I do.

When was the last time you tried something new?

Yesterday I tried to develop a pottery glaze made from honey.

Favourite ways to unwind after a long day on set?

I think a big tea does wonders.

What advise would you give to your younger self?

Just to keep making stuff as much as possible and to keep it playful.

stop motion animation puppets


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