Sven Bonnichsen


by Sven Bonnichsen

contact: sven (AT)


This page collects my most useful tutorials and behind-the-scenes essays about making animated stop-motion puppetfilms. New writing and photos appear first on the Scarlet Letters blog.

puppets films essays


wire armature
A demonstration of how to make a simple wire armature.
A tutorial showing how to make K&S plug-ins. These are used if you want your puppet to have a detachable head or limbs. They're also used for rigging points, if you are going to have your puppet run, jump, or fly.
brass armature 1 (March 2006)
The "Ambassature" was my first jointed armature.
brass armature 2 (June 2006)
For the "Diplomat" armature, I refined my design and wrote an in-depth tutorial. It's intended as a stepping stone for people who aren't ready to build steel armatures yet. It requires only handtools (not benchtools), materials that can easily be found locally, and costs less than $20 in materials.
steel armature 1 (Sept 2006)
The "Man of Steel" was my first steel armature, and my first made using a mill and lathe.
steel armature 2 (April 2007)
The "Drifter" was my second armature made of steel, and my first using true ball-and-socket joints. Feeling more comfortable with machining practices, I wrote step-by-step instructions for this model's construction.


Jimmy & Dad (Nov 2006)
Two build-up puppets that I made for my film, "The Great Escape."
Professor Ichbonnsen (Nov 2007)
A build-up puppet that I made for my film, "A Word from Professor Ichbonnsen."


The Great Escape (Dec 2006)
Dad and Jimmy have very different ideas about the best way to spend a Saturday afternoon... My first stop-motion puppetfilm.
A Word From Professor Ichbonnsen (Dec 2007)
An animated advertisement for an actual book that I illustrated, "Monster Month." My first film with real lip-synch.


contact: sven (AT)

updated: 06.01.08