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Gallery Submission Guidelines

The Project Puppet Gallery is the perfect place to showcase your puppet characters and to share your puppet building experience with others. Keep in mind that the only way others will be able to see and relate to your puppet character is through the photographs and descriptions you submit to the gallery. Please use these types of media to their full potential. Below you will find some requirements for submission to the Project Puppet Gallery as well as some tips on taking photos of your puppet and writing character descriptions.

The Requirements

Submissions to the gallery must be original puppet characters based on patterns available at Project Puppet.

The Photos

You may submit 4 to 6 digital photos of your character.

Each digital photo should be sized to one of the following dimensions:

  • For a horizontal (or landscape) layout, resize your digital photos to 340 pixels X 255 pixels (l X h) with at least a screen resolution (72 dpi).
  • For a vertical (or portrait) layout, resize your digital photos to 255 pixels X 340 pixels (l X h) with at least a screen resolution (72 dpi).

Please size all your submitted photos to one of the above layouts. The orientation of all photos submitted must be either horizontal or vertical. Please do not submit a set of pictures that includes both layouts.

The Descriptions

One brief character description that tells about the personality of the character. A good description should be one to two paragraphs in length. Tell enough to let us get to know your puppet character.

One brief write-up of any technical information you may like to share. Please share your puppet building experience. What did you find helpful? Did you use any unique materials? Did you try new methods not outlined in the Project Puppet patterns? We encourage you to share any information that may be helpful to other puppet builders now and in the future.


Puppet Photography Tips

Horizontal or Vertical Layout

Before you begin to take photographs for the gallery, decide whether your photos will follow a horizontal or vertical layout. To help decide this, consider the potential content of your photos. If you plan to take pictures of your character in portrait fashion, then a vertical layout will probably be best. If you plan to show your character in action (playing a board game, climbing a tree, etc.) then a horizontal layout is the way to go. Choosing a layout will determine which way you hold the camera.

Ask a Friend to Help

It is always best to have some help when taking photos of your puppet character. Puppets depend on the puppeteer to give them "life". Photos of a puppet on the puppeteer's hand will turn out much better than photos of a puppet on a stand or lying on a table. By puppeteering the puppet during the photo session, you will be able to capture the character, the personality, the expressions of your puppet.

No Flash

One thing that makes puppet characters so unique is their three-dimensional qualities. Using a flash when taking pictures of your puppets has the tendency to "flatten" the characters. A flash will also reflect off of certain types of fleece and/or foam and make it hard to distinguish features and colors of the puppet. For the best results, turn the flash off.

Good Lighting

With the flash off, you'll need good lighting. Choose the best lit room in the house to take pictures of your puppet. Even then, the room is probably not bright enough. Pull table lamps, floor lamps, desk lamps, etc. from other parts of the house for your photo shoot. In general, it's a good idea to have the puppet well lit all around, with a concentrated light source to the upper right or left of the puppet and slightly in front. Having the puppet well lit from all angles will eliminate harsh shadows or dark areas in the photos. Having a concentrated light source near the puppet will cast shadows that will accentuate the puppet's features, capturing the three-dimensional quality mentioned earlier.

Sounds like too much work? Then go outside. Take pictures of your puppet outside on a sunny day. That'll do the trick almost every time.

Good Composition

Good composition is closely related to choosing your layout or the orientation of your photos. The basic principle to keep in mind is that the puppet character is the star of the photo shoot. Portrait shots should be up close and personal. Action shots (horizontal layouts) should focus attention on the puppet, not necessarily the action. A simple way to ensure this is to make sure the puppet takes up the most space in the photo. Composition can be an exhaustive subject, but keeping this basic principle in mind should help you compose shots that focus on the character.

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