I've been searching everywhere for an answer, or some sort of body / articulating figure that comes close to the size of a child , as well as how I would go about making a kids head. Exactly for the same purpose as you would see on Robot Chicken Any help would be greatly appreciated as I just can't find anything using google or anything else without getting toys r us or similar results
There are some Japanese Ball-Joint Dolls in child as well as adult sizes. Search for BJDs. 60cm dolls are more common, clothing sits better in a larger scale and they are all about dressing up, but I believe a few 1:6 scale ones do exist in male, female, and child sizes. Not easy to track down though. Sometimes you find a 10" or 12" doll, but it represents a smaller child so it's not really 1:6 scale. But maybe you can work at a slightly bigger scale.
Here's an example of 8" tall little girl dolls: http://www.denverdoll.com/rubyredstrawberina.php
I did know of a site that sold seamless silicone girl bodies, in 27cm adult and smaller 25cm child types, with wire inside to pose them. But when I last checked, they had stopped doing them and gone over to full sized silicone sex dolls. Come to think of it, their doll bodies were already just that little bit creepy...
The more common type have bodies made from a hard plastic with visible joints, but they look fine if the clothing covers the joints. I don't know how good they would be to animate though - no doll is really made for this. I always make puppets from scratch.
I had to sculpt a few kid bodies in 1:6 scale for a stopmo film at the start of this year - set at a swimming pool so a lot of the body was visible. The director made the moulds and cast them in silicone. Each body took about 2 1/2 days to finish. I did only one head, and another sculptor did several more - they had realistic proportions and I had trouble sculpting a head that small in plasticine that could hold up to close shots.
Oh ok. Thanks for the reply. For those little girls you linked would I be able to swap the heads with something I made or would I have to totally start from scratch for that, those kid heads look kinda creepy. I'm not exactly the best with creating the whole body and whatnot, just wanted to start somewhere using kids for an idea and work my way up but just can't seem to find any bodies in a smaller size.
I don't exactly know where I'd start for the whole sculpting thing, I bet there's some good info on that around this message board though.
Thanks once again.
A lot of those things are made in-house by the fabrication department. Maybe you could ask someone on the production.
With the Robot Chicken characters - Yes, I think that even though they look like stock action figures, they are probably re-built with metal ball joints, or possibly armature wire, to make them better for animating.
A puppet usually needs to support itself with one foot bolted down, and have a full range of movement with the ability to hold any position. Dolls aren't generally made for that. Some animators who use action figures support the doll at all times with a flying rig ( a wire you can erase later) to get around that. Search "Patrick Boivin" at Youtube to get an idea of this.
You can attach different heads, so I guess you could make and attach your own head too. If it's a rigid head it could be made from epoxy putty and polymer clay.
As for making your own bodies -
To start with - how much is covered up by the clothing? If it's long trousers or skirts with tights, and long sleeves, I usually do a simple body with upholstery foam over soft aluminium armature wire. I build up the hands with liquid latex over the wire. I have some tutorials to show how at Youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbF6m3BeGUQ
If there is less clothing, this buildup method doesn't usually look so good, so you may need to sculpt the body in clay, make a mould, and cast in foam latex or silicone. That's how I usually do the heads. (A tutorial for that too.) A full body mould and cast is a bit more advanced.
making kids is all about proportions.
bigger head compared to the body the younger the person will appear- and cuter. smaller arms etc. you can look them up and just google little kids (creepy but true statement).
jst make it man. go for it.
They look like they use "Fisher Price Loving Family" dolls as a base:
My daughter had about 50 million of those when she was younger
Thanks for all the help, sorry I was on vacation. What's the best way to go about all the clay things , i haven't really had any experience with that sort of stuff those tutorials are very helpful , i've just never been a crafty person with the tools like a drill and whatnot, never had any laying around to be honest lol wouldn't even know where to start if i was to purchase those kinds of things like a vice and whatnot.
Also for those loving family toys for example would you take them apart to make them move more freely somehow and that's kind of what you meant with the armatures and cover up the parts that expose wire with additional clothing
I did some puppetmaking classes with kids once, in a classroom with no power tools. It is possible to make figures that can be animated, using only a few simple hand tools. Like a pair of pliers to cut the armature wire, and some scissors. I made up a couple of A4 pages showing the tools and materials, and the step by step process.
Here's the second page:
The hair drier is optional - it was needed for the classes because everything had to be done in 3 hours, but normally you would let the latex dry in it's own time, and do it over several days.
My Youtube video on making the buildup puppet body is essentially the same method, except I made metal foot blocks and wooden body blocks for that. Here, I just used putty to hold the wire together at hip and chest, and nuts in the feet, so there was no metal/wood cutting or drilling required.