Sunday, October 31, 2010


Friday, October 29, 2010


Dan Willinger and Steve Hurst of Ventriloquist Central took notice of my blog series "How To Be A Ventriloquist".  Fortunately they liked it. Dan and Steve asked if they could reprint it in the Ventriloquist Central Articles of Interest section on their website.  Of course, I was honored to have it included. 

So rather than sift through my blog to gather all 10 lessons, Dan and Steve have reprinted them all in one place for easy access.    CLICK HERE TO GET TO IT.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

In control

The photo on the left shows the brass rod emerging from the slot in the PVC pipe controller at a 90-degree angle.   Notice the Magic-Sculpt just inside the slot securing the brass tube. A jigger handle will be attached to the brass rod.

The photo on the right shows the top of the PVC pipe controller.  The brass tube and rod emerging from the pipe runs down the length of the PVC pipe.  Again, Magic-Sculpt secures the pipe at the top of the controller.  Eventually, the top part of the rod will attach to the eye mechanism inside the head to control the side-to-side eye movement.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The hole thing

I really like the PVC pipe controllers from Braylu Creations.  From photos left to right, here's a description of what I do to prep them for my figures.
  • Front: I cut a 3/4" slot.  A brass rod, bent at a 90-degree angle, will protrude from that slot. The rod will control the self-centering eyes.
  • Side: I drill a hole on the side, from which will emerge one of the cords controlling the jaw or eyebrows.
  • Side: I drill another hole on the side, from which will emerge one of the cords controlling the jaw or eyebrows.
  • Back: I drill a large hole near the top from which will emerge the cord that controls the crossing eyes.  The three smaller holes in the middle area accept the screws and washers that mount the triggers. The larger hole at the bottom is where I loop an elastic band that will attach to an eyehook at the bottom of the body to secure the head.
  • Top:  I run a brass tube and rod down the length of the PVC pipe to control the self-centering eyes.  The rod, as I menbtioned, will protrude at a 90-degree angle from the slot.  I use Magic-Sculpt to cement the brass tube and rod contrller to the top of the PVC pipe.  The small holes drilled in the top and side act as anchor holes for the Magic-Sculpt.   One of the tiny holes located farther out will accomodate a small brass eye hook to which a spring will be connected.  The other end of the spring will attach to the jaw.   (Note: I also apply Magic-Sculpt to the inside of the PVC pipe just above the slot to secure the lower portion of the brass tube and rod eye control). 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The pain in Spain

Clifton, a consistently cantankerous old codger, is on his way to Spain.  He's sure to be a pain in the neck when discussing most subjects with his new partner.  If I get photos of the two, I'll post them.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The evil eye

So, I'm painting eyeballs.  I use 1-1/4" wood knobs. I'm manufacturing 5 pair.  I'm no math genius, but I think that makes 10 eyeballs.    So I drilled holes for the axle and the spring.  Then I painted a coat of primer.  I let them dry.  Next day I painted my first coat of white acrylic paint.  Lookin' good.  After the first coat dried for 24 hours, I painted the second coat of white acrylic paint.  Now they just have to dry.

Wait a minute... what's that on the floor next to the drill press work bench?  It's a wood knob.  It's an unpainted wood knob.  It's an UNDRILLED WOOD KNOB! 

I count the number of drilled, primered and painted wood knobs.



Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The jaw bone's connected

Well, only temporarily connected. Still more work to be done.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Put some teeth in it

For the first time, I put some buck teeth in my Cheeky Boy head. I think it will make him look even cuter. I used a little Magic-Sculpt to make the teeth. But first I ground away some of the underside of his upper lip area to make sure the jaw will close behind the teeth.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Complaining Codger

"Clifton" would like to find a nice comfortable home for his golden years.  Not that he'll express any gratitude to you.  He was born to complain, confound and carry on without mercy.  To get a better look at this obstinate octogenarian, swing on over to Ebay.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A friend indeed

I always love getting photos of ventriloquists with their Kenny Croes figures.  In this case, Carter (the ventriloquist) received my Stanley conversion figure as a gift from his family.

If you own a Kenny Croes figure, please send along a photo of yourself with your knee pal.  I'd be honored to share your story.

Sunday, October 03, 2010


I've written before about the young man in the photo at left. His name is Kevin Barnett.  I made his little friend Kyle.  Kevin performs with Kyle, attends the Venthaven Convention, and sees shows by famous ventriloquists whenever he can.  He caught Terry Fator's wonderful show recently and went backstage to meet him.

Someday in the future, some aspiring young ventriloquist may be posing backstage with another famous ventriloquist... a grown up Kevin Barnett.