Introduction to puppet animation

Course Dates: 18/01/20 - 22/02/20
Time: 10:00 - 13:00
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Stephanie Griffiths

Learn how to make your own traditional 3D puppet and the principals of how best to animate, film and edit your own stop-frame puppet animated sequence.


What is the course about?

On this hands-on practical course you will learn how to create an engaging 3D puppet using a range of materials and bring it to life in an effective stop motion animation sequence. You will learn the principals of animation focusing on pre-planning, timing and movement and how to film your animation using iStopMotion. Using the accessible editing software iMovie you will learn how to edit your animated sequence adding sound effects and music. At the end you will have an exported quick time movie of your animation to take away.

What previous students liked about the course:
“The instructor was very good and helpful. A tremendous amount of work was achieved in 3 days. Learned about the power of stop motion animations. Studios are very well equipped.”
“The variation in creative approaches from each student.”
“Being able to create the puppet and sue software I don’t own at home.”
“The teacher was enthusiastic and a good communicator. Every session was different.”
“The course was structured well and there was enough room for creativity.”
“It was great fun and although the project was simple I learnt a lot. Stephanie was really encouraging and gave tons of useful advice.”


What will we cover?

- Pre-planning and timing
- Characterisation
- Puppet making
- Animating and acting out your puppet using iStopMotion
- Importing clips into iMovie
- Adding sound and music
- Exporting clip as a QuickTime movie.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Produce a short sequence
- Build a simple puppet using armatures
- Animate and understand timing and movement
- Film your animation using iStopMotion
- Import clips into iMovie and add sound and music
- Export your final clip as a QuickTime movie.

What students have achieved on their course:
“How to convey emotion through gestures, timing using the iStopmotion software. In future I can create animations for enjoyment and experiment with longer video.” JC
“Learning how to use the technical equipment and make the puppets come to life. Use of timing.” SR
“It has given me the fundamental knowledge to create my own animation.” SG


What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

TThis is for beginners who have had no experience in animation or for those who might want to polish up their animation and model making skills. The course is also invaluable for those who have done digital animation but would like to try a hands-on approach and explore new skills in actually making a puppet and physically animating.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

These practical workshops will be taught by an experienced animator, puppet maker and director of 20 years in the business. You will be taught with guidance throughout, demonstrations, practical exercises, group and individual assistance and hand-outs. You will be introduced to professional sample clips and actual professional TV Stop-Frame Puppets. . Please note the Build uses Apple Mac computers in Digital arts, Film, Animation, Graphics, Illustration, Photography and Web design.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

It would be useful to bring a memory stick (or portable hard drive – please note PC formatted hard drives can be read by Apple mac computers, but not written to.)

If you would like to buy art materials for your personal use outside of the course, Build students receive 10% discount off everything* from Cass Art, the UK's leading art supplies retailer. Your tutor will advise you on what you should buy. You will need to show your enrolment receipt in-store to receive your discount. Visit the Charing Cross shop at 13 Charing Cross Road WC2H 0EP or find your local shop at *Terms and conditions apply, visit

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

You may now wish to develop your digital animation skills with VK345 Animation with Adobe After Effects so you can learn how to composite and apply effects to your puppet animation. Build offer a range of courses in 2D and 3D Animation, Adobe Animate, Adobe After Effects, Character animation, editing, sound, illustration, cartooning, storyboarding and adobe Photoshop to enhance your animation practice.

General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details

Tutor Biographies
We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.

Book your place

Course Code: VK477

Sat, day, 18 Jan - 22 Feb '20

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Full fee: £239.00
Senior fee: £239.00
Concession: £146.00

Or call to enrol: 222-66-889-99

Download form & post

Any questions? [email protected]
or call 020 7492 2700/2703

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.