The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » A Realistic Rabbit in the Hat Puppet » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3
Chris Capstone
View Profile
Regular user
Tulsa, OK
107 Posts

Profile of Chris Capstone
David,
The idea of the prop fitting the act is so important. I have used a Folkmanis rabbit as well, but I detached the rabbit from the hat and used it in a hat like the one I wear. It's a very nice puppet but I felt it didn't fit with my act because it looks like a contemporary toy and I play an old fashioned magician.

I perform at a number of historical events and sometimes you have to careful about what you wear and the props you use. If the people running the event see something they feel is too modern they will call you on it. I don't try to be a strict period correct reenactor but I do try to keep everything generic old fashioned. They don't hold me to the same standard as the reenactors because I'm a entertainer.

That's one of the reasons we developed our rabbit puppet to look the way it does. Since I am an old time traveling magician I should have a rabbit puppet made from real rabbit fur and it shouldn't look like a modern toy. I even searched for pictures of old stuffed animals and puppets from the late 19th century to get a feel for the look.

I finally decided that if the rabbit just looked realistic, then it would look appropriate for the act. Once we made that decision it became a challenge to make it look as real as possible (for a puppet of course.)
Chris Capstone
Powermagic
View Profile
Inner circle
1418 Posts

Profile of Powermagic
As I said, if you have rabbits, not one move is all that realistic. If he was doing a disney study as they did, a rabbit, in a hat would really not do much at all.
I now understand his goal is not to make a fake rabbit that looks real.

It is the use of the word REALISTIC that will throw some. Maybe that is is a poor choice of words for the movement.

He might be able to call the head "realistic details". The body is far to puppet to call it realistic.

But as far as movement. A rabbit does not turn his head as in his video clip and therefor its movement is not "realistic".

It might be fine to say the performer can have" a greater flexibility in animating the rabbits head". But to call it realistic in movemen,t is not correct. If you have rabbits you know they do not do much on a whole. I fail to see the "realistic aspects" in the movement that you mention.

To me this is pretty straight forward.

But maybe seeing it live would be the key as someone suggested.
I am sure on stage many would believe it is real if you just pop the head up. but the illusion will destroyed once he does a skit.
I am always amazed when magicians fail to see when a good illusion is created. Like when a magician makes a rubber dove appear from a silk. It does not look alive to magicians but I have heard many audiences applaud, especially if they see the head move every so and a feather drop out (less is more) But I am so disappointed in that magician when the then takes the dove, stomps on it or stuffs it in his mouth.
Why? You just pulled off a nice illusion, maybe one of the best ones, to make something fake appear real. Sure the audience laughs but to me that is a low brow.

I could even say the same for a spring animal. I have seen guys do it so well the audience thinks it is real at first. And then if tey suspect it is fake can not see how it is "alive". But since Mr magic yuk yuk has a routine with puns, he will destroy that illusion.

OK but before you reply "that is not what he is doing he made a rabbit puppet with improvements." I get that. I just feel I have given some, something to think about when coming closer to making something realistic.

But then what do I know. I have used an Axtell bird for over 15 years with some of his Axtrax and still have kids ask "was that bird real?" I say "What do YOU think?" and leave it at that. Now maybe because the bird is on my arm not doing more than moving his head doing pretty much what a trained bird might do. OK he talks but one can take the Disney idea and make his head move like a bird will when not talking. There is a level you can take it no matter how silly a puppet looks.
I also use a dog string puppet and monkey puppet and have for a short time, made people think they are real. Just as the Disney study, all good puppeteers will study the form they are trying to mimic. So my Monkey will behave like a monkey, and my dog will do what dogs do from panting to scratching.
If you do these things correctly, you can get them to see past the strings and play along.

I am sure many of you have gotten an AWWW when you bring out the standard rabbit in the hat puppet. It might only last a few seconds but you can fool them if you use it right.

Anyway. I will stand stand by my earlier comments. Realistic movement is based on how the animal moves in real life. That was what my comments were based on.

It is only through discussion do we reconsider or confirm our view points. And if suggestions and comments are pondered on a few days later, one can see if any good filters through.

But I could be wrong. If anyone wants to send me video of a rabbit moving his head to match the "realistic" movement of the puppet head, I will stand corrected. I just know my experience with rabbits have not been as such.

And in case you did not read this all, I said the guy did a nice job on hat and being able to wear it. The head does look closer to a real rabbit than other rabbit in the hat puppets.


Quote:
On 2010-06-27 00:04, JamesinLA wrote:
Powermagic,
I believe you are taking our meaning a bit too literally. I don't believe it was Chris's intention to make it move like a truely real rabbit, but rather to imbue a puppet rabbit with more varied and realistic aspects. This is the type of hyper reality that Disney achieved in its early animated features like Bambi. The animators studied real deer but then they used that as a departure to create their "realistic" cartoon characters. It's a stylised realism and one that is full of communicative potential. I real deer cannot speak and a real rabbit cannot whisper in your ear. But if they could, that's how it would look. It sounds like you on the other hand are working on the production of something that is suposed to be taken for a real creature.

Jim
Mr. Pitts
View Profile
Inner circle
David Pitts
1054 Posts

Profile of Mr. Pitts
I believe Chris clarified his approach when he explained that it was not intended to 'fool' so much as to be more appropriate looking for a late 19th century magician. I get that. Although there probably weren't any magicians of that era using a rabbit-in-the-hat puppet, if there were, it wouldn't have a cartoony, modern look. I do some similar thinking with my victorian ventriloquist character. I built my partner Henry to have a classic look. And although another ventriloquist might know that knee figures of the 19th century didn't look like a mid 20th century Marshall style figure, the general public finds him authentic enough. He helps create an overall consistency with my vintage act. He works particularly well for my 30's style medicine show. However, I make no attempt to fool anyone into thinking he's anything but a puppet. If I convey the character well and with plenty of comedy, the audience will have fun and they actually accept two contradicting realities at the same time.. that he's a puppet and a living character at once.
David Pitts
The Astonishing Mr. Pitts
Comedy Magician and Ventriloquist
http://www.mrpitts.com
Chris Capstone
View Profile
Regular user
Tulsa, OK
107 Posts

Profile of Chris Capstone
Dave,

It's very true what you're saying about precise historical accuracy not being mandatory. The important thing is not whether the rabbit puppet is an exact replica of an old antique puppet. Rather, does the audience accept that the puppet is consistent with my character.

A cartoon style rabbit with big plastic oval eyes and a bright pink plastic nose would never be accepted as consistent with rest of my act or the character I portray. That's not to say that a rabbit puppet of that design is inferior.

I have not stated that I think my puppet is better than others. I've simply said I personally needed a non-cartoon or non-toy style puppet for my act. I couldn't find one, so I made one. I'm not hung up on the precise definition of the word "realistic." It's just the word I used to differentiate my puppet from others of a different style. I wasn't trying to make exaggerated claims about it. I just wanted to share the puppet my daughter and I made together.

It's not a question of who's got the best puppet, but rather which puppet best fits your act. That's why "The Astonishing Mr. Pitts" uses a toy one, it fits his act. I would expect no less from such a artistic fellow.
Chris Capstone
Razamatazz Magic
View Profile
Regular user
United Kingdom
128 Posts

Profile of Razamatazz Magic
Chris - We were given a really good bit of advice from the late, great Ali Bongo when we first set out making our magic props. We were worried what magicians would think about our props. Ali was a very quiet spoken, lovely man and very knowledgeable of all things magic. At the IBM convention he took the time to talk to us at length about our props and said to us:

You will never please all of the people all of the time !!!

He was soooooo right !

Regards

Andy & Sue
zambinimagic
View Profile
New user
Oroville, CA
2 Posts

Profile of zambinimagic
Chris: Way to Go....I commend you on your great worksmanship(along with your daughter's)...I am a Professional Childrens Entertainer and have used a Rabbit/Hat Puppet regularly in my shows for years...The kids love it. I have watched your video and pics and yours is the very best I have seen....I have been searching for quite a few years now for a suitable replacement for my current Rabbit Puppet as he is getting "Old and Ragged" ( A Tannen's Magic: Charles Out of My Hat )....I would be extremely interested in purchasing one from you if you ever make some......Please email me at zambinimagic@comcast.net Thanks again for you work and dedication to the Magic Profession.....Best Regards, Duane Zanon
Chris Capstone
View Profile
Regular user
Tulsa, OK
107 Posts

Profile of Chris Capstone
Andy & Sue,

Thanks for sharing that and for your other encouraging comments.

Chris
Chris Capstone
Chris Capstone
View Profile
Regular user
Tulsa, OK
107 Posts

Profile of Chris Capstone
Duane,

Thanks for your positive comments as well. The other day a good friend of mine was telling me about the "Charles Out of My Hat" he bought back in the 1940s. He paid something like $6.50 which he said was a fortune to him at the time. He wishes he still had it. He wore it out completely. I think that says something about the usefulness of a prop. How many of us have props we bought years ago, and they sit in storage in pristine condition. I think I own 2 kinds of magic stuff: the used condition props that EARN ME MONEY and the mint condition stuff that COST ME MONEY!

You mentioned yours is getting old and ragged. I would like to know:

How long have you had it?

How many performances would you estimate it has seen?

What are some of the things you like about it?

Chris
Chris Capstone
Chris Capstone
View Profile
Regular user
Tulsa, OK
107 Posts

Profile of Chris Capstone
A message for everyone who has been following this thread:

Our rabbit puppet has now become a marketed item. To keep from possibly breaking Café rules about the self-promotion of marketed items I am going to stop posting to this thread. Thanks to all who have made such encouraging comments about our puppet.

I'm planning to start a new thread in the "I'm a real boy" section to ask people to post their original ideas for a rabbit in the hat puppet. I hope some of you who currently use a rabbit in the hat puppet will contribute your original ideas to that new thread. Maybe it will become a resource for people interested in using a rabbit in the hat puppet in their show.

Thanks again for all the encouraging comments.

Chris Capstone
Chris Capstone
magicguyri
View Profile
New user
RI
65 Posts

Profile of magicguyri
Chris,
I commend you on the high quality "Charlie out of my Hat". I bought my first one from Duke Stern, and can appreciate the efforts you must have gone through. I just saw the magic company ad, and it appeared that the puppet was sans hat? Will it be available both ways? Best of luck to you.
Powermagic
View Profile
Inner circle
1418 Posts

Profile of Powermagic
Hmmm I just assumed that was what you were doing all along. It was either that or bragging. To go from not marketing to marketing in just short period lends itself to beleive you were fishing for orders all along.

Quote:
On 2010-07-01 16:38, chriscapstone wrote:
A message for everyone who has been following this thread:

Our rabbit puppet has now become a marketed item. To keep from possibly breaking Café rules about the self-promotion of marketed items I am going to stop posting to this thread. Thanks to all who have made such encouraging comments about our puppet.

I'm planning to start a new thread in the "I'm a real boy" section to ask people to post their original ideas for a rabbit in the hat puppet. I hope some of you who currently use a rabbit in the hat puppet will contribute your original ideas to that new thread. Maybe it will become a resource for people interested in using a rabbit in the hat puppet in their show.

Thanks again for all the encouraging comments.

Chris Capstone
themagiciansapprentice
View Profile
Inner circle
Essex, UK
1381 Posts

Profile of themagiciansapprentice
Ok Chris,

I'll post some ideas there over the week-end. Pity it won't be read by more magicians, using a puppet in your show adds an extra dimension to your show that kids love.
Have wand will travel! Performing children's magic in the UK for Winter 2014 and Spring 2015.
magicguyri
View Profile
New user
RI
65 Posts

Profile of magicguyri
Talking about beating a dead horse. I appreciate when new products are brought to my attention on this forum, and I believe Chris has done this honorably! Still confused by ad – "fits into an actual top hat (not included)". Can anyone help out?
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » A Realistic Rabbit in the Hat Puppet » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.22 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL