Thursday, July 26, 2012

Where the Wild Things were once

Recently I finished working at a community centre where I was the Arts Coordinator. This title incorporated many things, art and not so art related. It came with a lot of self-teaching, guessing and improvising...and of course, grant writing! One of the grants we received was to put on a children's performance of Where the Wild Things Are. My boss, the child care manager at the centre, was the director of this play and also took it upon himself to figure out how to stretch out a minimal text without adding dialouge. He also threw in a couple of songs he wrote himself. You would think he had spare time on his hands, he does not, but he knows what he's passionate about.

I was forunate enough that I could flee to my workroom to cut and glue and sew all day, while getting paid! If I could find a full time position letting me do this, I would have it made...and a lot of other things made too for that matter. Zing! Sorry.

This is the crew of the first performance! We had an afternoon and evening show in one day. Both were really well attended and by the end of it we had raised a nice little sum for our theatre troupe's future endeavors. So, it was worth all the whisper yelling at children behind the stage, the red face make-up on lovey white costumes and frustration in trying to find the hole in a shirt to get over a child's head in under one minute during a costume change.

A friend of mine was kind enough to lend me her children for a proper photo session with the costumes! They were enthusiastic models who come in really convenient sizes.

This is the first guy I made...I know they have proper names, but I forget them. So, I'll use the names that were in my head while making them. This is Big Horns. I love this laid back pose.

This is the Girl. She was the second one I made and it took quite awhile because of all that yarn hair. It moves nicely though and was pretty fun to trim once I had it all attached. I also like her wittle puffy tail and pointy teeth.

Man, I love this pose! It really makes Bullhead come to life, in a nervous and anxious way.

Bird! Yep, the names aren't getting any better. Nor will they. The bird is a favorite. It looks so great with a five year old running around in it!

Greyhead I call this guy. Really got into forming the cheek bones on this one. It works in a lot of ways but adds to the overall weight which isn't always good. Something I didn't really consider when making these was the weight. Those poor kids and their weak necks.

The king is last. The mischievious look on the child below comes with the suit I believe, because so far every kid that has played Max really seems to own it. The last time I saw it performed there was a little girl playing the role and man, she was great!

These costumes were surprisingly easy and affordable to make. Each one took a couple of days work, and despite letting out crotches in onsies because an older kid got switched into the role last minute, I didn't run into any real problems. I found out how to make the basic structure on the internet and took it from there!

The costumes are still at the centre but I hope to someday own them once they've run their course. I have an irresistable urge to try them on when they're around and I'm sure more than once I was caught sneaking down the hall in the centre to see myself wearing one in the bathroom mirror. So, if like me you have child sized head, maybe you can sport a wild thing mask for your next semi-formal monster occasion.

Bonus backstage fun shots!

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