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Author Topic: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -  (Read 19045 times)

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Unknown Delight

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- * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« on: August 01, 2009, 04:51:40 PM »

Hello Everyone!

Longtime reader of this Forum, but this is my first posting.  I decided today was as good a day as any to join up, as i have something neat i would like to share with ALL of George's fans.

I am a fairly new 'George Fan' and for over a year now have been having a wonderful time exploring his work and personal philosiphy.  I absolutely love his material, and felt extremely inspired to create something to express that joy of discovery.  I have been working on a massive project for the past 6 months to bring his music to life in a extraordinary way, through the form of a LIFESIZE puppet creation.  Having had a lot of experience building and operating string puppets, i decided to create my own 'George' so he could perform many of the later compositions the man himself.

So here he is, 'George Harrison' performing 'Any Road' on banjolele!

Enjoy!

George Harrison Marionette performing "Any Road"




This puppet creation i made over a 6 month period, starting in January of 09'.  He was quite a challange to get together but it was a joy none the less.  Here are some more photographs of him with some additonal comments to provide further insight.

Enjoy!



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Here is a closeup of George's ukulele.  It is entirely made out of paper, posterbord, and foamcore with a few small peices of wood and metal used in the smaller details. Nylon strings were added for a realistic touch.   It is a exact reproduction of George's own favourite Banjolele, the only difference being i added a custom headstock logo.  This is a wry spoof of the originals' actual logo...and a nod to the namesakes original owner.

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Here is a closeup of the Uke itself.  The silver areas look like metal, but it is actually just painted posterboard.  Despite the somewhat fragile building materials, this 'instrument' is quite durable.  George plays it by a connecting string that runs thru the body of the Uke.  Without this addition, he would not be able to correctly 'strum' it.
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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2009, 04:52:46 PM »



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Two photos i used for reference showing George with his real Banjolele.

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These are just two of the MANY reference photos i used to try to capture the right 'look' for George from this particular time period ( late 80's /early 90s's period).  I chose this era as it opened up the chance for him to perform not only his solo material, but any Wilbury era material.   

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These two photos give you a better sense of how HUGE George is.  Lifesize indeed!  He is so tall, the only way he can properly perform is by being seated in a chair. 

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A closer view of that famous smile of his....

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This photo shows a alternative angle, showing a nice view of his hands.  There were created to correct scale by using the famous 'handprint' image from the cover of George's album 'Living in the Material World'.  They were soft-sculpted out of nylon fabric with a styrofoam base.  Hard bendable wire was used to insure his fingers could be posed for correct playing positions.
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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2009, 04:54:24 PM »

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Here is a closeup view of George's hand.  Details such as hand palm lines, mounds, knuckles, and fingernails were added for a sense of realisim.  The ring was made out of painted posterboard and molding dough.  The black 'stone' is a rounded peice of aquarium glass.  This ring is a recreation of the one George wore during the time period ( late 80's/ early 90's) and several photos were used for reference.  I call it the 'Scarab' Ring as the sun motifs and Egyptian Scarab beetle motives are clearly visable of both the real ring, and this recreation.

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I hope you enjoyed this introduction to 'George'.  In the future i will be producing more videos of his performances, as he also does a lovely version of 'Picses Fish' and 'Devil in the Deep Blue Sea'.

I will update here when that time comes.

IN the meantime...ENJOY the 1st video! 

 - * - * - PLEASE FEEL FREE TO SHARE THIS LINK and these PHOTOS with other George related websites.  - * - * -

SPREAD THE LOVE of GEORGE and his WONDERFUL MUSIC!

 This project was done to give some joy and fun to George's many admirers, and the more of them out there that see this the better!   This project was not done for my benefit, it was done solely as a interesting and entertaining way to introduce, re-introduce, and enchance in a creative way George's wonderful persona and musical messages.

 
 I am also accepting any song requests you would like to see him perform in future video performances.  Feel free to post them here, or PM in private.



 :D
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BlueMeanie

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2009, 06:14:17 PM »

Absolutely amazing work. I was going to make some witty comment - as is my wont - until I scrolled down and saw all the work, and the size of him! What dedication!
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JimmyMcCullochFan

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2009, 06:55:44 PM »

Agreed. Stunning and quite impressive. The man himself would be quite proud of your efforts. Are you on myspace? You should message thenewno2 so Dhani can know about it. I am sure he'd be thrilled.  :)
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adamzero

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2009, 02:32:24 AM »

First response: This is freaky. 

Second response: Nice work.  Not only on George, but that banjo-uke (made with posterboard!). 

Third response: Maybe a Hoagy Carmichael song for an encore?
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Octie

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2009, 01:22:04 PM »

Wow, this is really amazing, Unknown Delight - both the marionette and the video! You are so talented! 8)

I hope you enjoyed this introduction to 'George'.  In the future i will be producing more videos of his performances, as he also does a lovely version of 'Picses Fish' and 'Devil in the Deep Blue Sea'.

That's awesome! I love Pisces Fish, and I like Devil and the Deep Blue Sea too, so definitely looking forward to these videos :)
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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2009, 03:33:29 AM »

Thanks for the kind replies ...i am glad to hear you all seem to like this!

I am on both MySpace and Facebook, and i have posted the link to 'George's' first video there. I will admit that for about 20 seconds i thought i sending it to thenewno2, but pulled back as i have my doubts as to if it would be appropriate.

I mean, how would i feel if someone i did'nt even know sent me a link to a video on the internet of a puppet someone made of my Dad?   

I would probably feel very very spooked.

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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2009, 03:36:18 AM »

First response: This is freaky. 

Second response: Nice work.  Not only on George, but that banjo-uke (made with posterboard!). 

Third response: Maybe a Hoagy Carmichael song for an encore?

Nice...the choice for a encore would be rather fitting.

Next song will more then likely be 'Picses Fish', as 'George' performs a rather nice version of it.  I just have to make up my mind as to if he should continue to play his Uke, or switch to a acoustic for this one.  I hear some Uke in 'PF'...or is this just my imagination?
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JimmyMcCullochFan

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2009, 06:04:01 AM »

Thanks for the kind replies ...i am glad to hear you all seem to like this!

I am on both MySpace and Facebook, and i have posted the link to 'George's' first video there. I will admit that for about 20 seconds i thought i sending it to thenewno2, but pulled back as i have my doubts as to if it would be appropriate.

I mean, how would i feel if someone i did'nt even know sent me a link to a video on the internet of a puppet someone made of my Dad?   

I would probably feel very very spooked.



Being into technology and all I am sure Dhani would be quite impressed with how much work went into it.
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Unknown Delight

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« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2009, 10:27:30 PM »

Hmmm, you think so?

Well there is not much 'technology' involved in this project, as there is nothing electronic or mechanical .  All the movements are done by hand by pulling one of fourteen strings from a pair of wooden crossbar controls from above the figure.  Even the eye movements are all 'hand done'.....so ....

....but ....maybe THAT fact alone would make it interesting to him?  The fact that it IS so 'tech-free' and 'old school'?

I am not sure if i should....i mean, i don't want to frighten to poor man since he is trying hard to get on with his own life.  Naturally there is a part of me that would like to share this with him, but it would need to be for the right reasons.

It is hard to know what to do.....but i appreciate your encouragement JimmyMcCullochFan.  I do.

 :)
« Last Edit: August 04, 2009, 10:29:27 PM by Unknown Delight »
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DaveRam

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2009, 06:48:40 AM »

I want him for Christmas  ;D

Great work really love it , it is a bit strange though looking at George Marionette Moptop, he just looks like he could come to life ?
Love the video , would like to hear him sing Brainwashed  8)

Have you thought about doing John Paul & Ringo ?
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Unknown Delight

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« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2009, 09:07:55 PM »

Thanks for your compliments !

I have not seriously thought about making John, Ringo, or Mr. McCartney.  I am more a 'Harrison' admirer then a general 'Beatle Boys' fan to be honest so i am not overly interested in making the 'others'.  I will admit i have had a lot of inquiries!

Besides, i think 'George' is enjoying all the attention he gets from me when we practice new upcoming songs.....

At some point i plan on building a foamcore replica of his small 'Lotus' 6-string acoustic guitar so 'George' will be able to perform a wider selection of his music.  For now he is a bit limited, with only Uke-related tunes to play...but there are SO many excellent Harrisongs he could do beautifully if he had a standard guitar.



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Mairi

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2009, 03:46:48 AM »

Kind of freaky, but great work. You obviously have a lot of talent. It's interesting that you chose to model your george marionette after what he looked like in your later years. What made you decide to do that?
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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2009, 03:31:20 PM »

A excellent question...

George to me has always been 'just George' and never a 'Beatle'.  I became aware of him in 1987 when his 'Cloud Nine' lead single and album was released. I became interested in his work and it increased with the release of the Wilbury era albums.  So i have always known him as a solo artist and never really attached him to his Beatle persona.  When i became much more aware of his solo work last year, i completey saw him as a totally different entity.  Naturally i went and researched the Beatles history and explored their music to learn all i could about his past, but George really stood out on his own and seemed sadly repressed.  Having been able to glimpse the 'real George' through my discoveries and through his own words, i have a even clearer view of him being SO MUCH MORE then just a band member.

So...when i decided to make this figure, it was a obvious choice for me to have him appear as he did in his later years.  I was adament about him not appearing too 'Beatly' and i argued with myself over his clothing choice.  I wanted this figure to portray the 'real' man and not the overly merchandised 'image' version so closely associated with The Beatles Era he tried so hard to escape.  It seemed a more fitting choice considering i was more interested in his music and persona, and George himself probably would have enjoyed the choice himself.   

Originally i planned and having 'George' look like he did in his late 80's period- 'Cloud Nine' era with the semi- shaven look.  It was changed while under construction as i was concerned people would confuse his appearence with Eric Clapton ( also a famous semi-shaven guitarist!). I wanted to avoid this, so i changed it to his clean shaven appearence from the 90's.  Also it turned out i did'nt need his 'beard' to hide the mouth gaps/mechanics after all.  The design came out much better then expected, so their was no need to use the 'beard' look to cover any gaps.   

Feel free to ask more questions!

 :)
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JimmyMcCullochFan

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #15 on: August 16, 2009, 08:00:43 PM »

A excellent question...

George to me has always been 'just George' and never a 'Beatle'.  I became aware of him in 1987 when his 'Cloud Nine' lead single and album was released. I became interested in his work and it increased with the release of the Wilbury era albums.  So i have always known him as a solo artist and never really attached him to his Beatle persona.  When i became much more aware of his solo work last year, i completey saw him as a totally different entity.  Naturally i went and researched the Beatles history and explored their music to learn all i could about his past, but George really stood out on his own and seemed sadly repressed.  Having been able to glimpse the 'real George' through my discoveries and through his own words, i have a even clearer view of him being SO MUCH MORE then just a band member.

So...when i decided to make this figure, it was a obvious choice for me to have him appear as he did in his later years.  I was adament about him not appearing too 'Beatly' and i argued with myself over his clothing choice.  I wanted this figure to portray the 'real' man and not the overly merchandised 'image' version so closely associated with The Beatles Era he tried so hard to escape.  It seemed a more fitting choice considering i was more interested in his music and persona, and George himself probably would have enjoyed the choice himself.   

Originally i planned and having 'George' look like he did in his late 80's period- 'Cloud Nine' era with the semi- shaven look.  It was changed while under construction as i was concerned people would confuse his appearence with Eric Clapton ( also a famous semi-shaven guitarist!). I wanted to avoid this, so i changed it to his clean shaven appearence from the 90's.  Also it turned out i did'nt need his 'beard' to hide the mouth gaps/mechanics after all.  The design came out much better then expected, so their was no need to use the 'beard' look to cover any gaps.   

Feel free to ask more questions!

 :)

That is certainly interesting that you became aware of George in '87 and didn't even know he was a Beatle! Reminds me of the 70's when some Wings fans didn't even know McCartney had been in a band prior to Wings.
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Unknown Delight

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« Reply #16 on: August 18, 2009, 12:56:03 AM »

I can relate to that - in high school, i was into Paul's solo stuff from 'Flowers in the Dirt' and 'Off The Ground'....and did'nt connect him completely with his Beatle past.

In George's case i have always seen him as his own entity.   It was not until much later ( last year really..) that i became more aware of his past.  Having learned some thing up to this point, i have a strong enough feeling to safely say he was well and above his Beatle character.  It is as if they are two COMPLETELY different people all together in my mind...and the 'true' George came to fruitation with the end of his previous incarnation as a pop icon.

God bless him for being graced to shine on his own.  The world would indeed be a sadder more miserable place without his uplifting contributions to the world.
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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #17 on: August 18, 2009, 03:27:45 PM »

That's really cool. It's always interesting to see people approach the Beatles member with a different perspective. Personally, I think George's solo output stands up better than *most* of his Beatles tunes.
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Unknown Delight

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« Reply #18 on: August 18, 2009, 08:10:27 PM »

And i totally agree.  He was just taking his 'baby steps' back then....and grew wings once he was free from the shackles of Beatledom.
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Unknown Delight

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Re: - * - George Harrison lifesize Marionette creation - * -
« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2009, 03:37:41 PM »

Some good happenings lately -


Over the past 3 days i have been filming NEW VIDEO PERFORMANCES of my George Harrison marionette. SIX new videos of 'George' in action were made, and the first of the new series will be up on YouTube sometime next week. I will of course post all links here as soon as they are live and ready for sharing. I think a couple of them are a step up from 'Any Road' which is currently up to 900+ views in a months time. THANK YOU to everyone who watched and shared! MORE are coming next week!

I may not release all of these at once...at this point i am not entirely sure. When i rewatch them i will decide then when the time to upload comes. There is one i am still on the fence about releasing ( due to a performance standpoint) so i may re-film it at a later date.

The other big news related to all of this is that i have discovered while experimenting around with 'George' during filming is that he can play REAL guitars! This was a wonderful surprise, for now i do not have to make special 'foamboard' models for him to use. This ALSO is a great discovery as it opens up George's ENTIRE catalog of songs now for play. I cannot express in mere words how stunning a realisation this all was. So in the forthcoming videos, you will see 'George' play REAL guitars..both acoustic AND electric. I have to say he looked mighty proper holding a old 50's Gibson model...It was a surreal 'Harrison Experience' moment. One neat thing is that if his hand is operated correctly, 'George' can actually strike the strings and create notes. Now THAT was rather surreal. I suppose i should not be so surprised, i mean, it's George Harrison for cryin' out loud..of COURSE he can play 'real guitars'!!

So a very exciting week on my end.


The new performance videos are:

* - "Pisces Fish" - My new fave...the song lends itself extremely well to 'George's' movements, plus some cool lighting is used.

* - "The Devil and The Deep Blue Sea' - 'George' is in fine form as he plays his Uke along to this favored tune.

* - 'If Not For You" - I filmed this just for fun, as i love the song and i was so amazed that 'George' could now play my real acoustic.

* - "Jai Sri Krishna' - Something i filmed exspecially for the spriritually enclined, 'George' blisses out in the garden.

* - 'That's The Way It Goes' - Another video i shot just for the fun of it, as 'George' plays a old Gibson. I may reshoot this at a later date, so i am not entirely sure if this will be released at this point.

* - I also had a friend film me performing 'George' so folks that are curious can see how i operate him. 'Devil and The Deep Blue Sea' was reshot in this form, so viewers can get a 'Behind the Scenes' ( or in this case 'Strings'!) look at what i do to bring 'George' to life.
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