Friday, August 21, 2009

Beer Mugs

These beer mugs were used in Marvelous Party. I used actual glass mugs and coated the insides with shellac. When it dried, a translucent, amber beer color was achieved. I added a bit of white paint to suggest suds and coated the outsides with spray frost to indicate condensation.


These halberds were made for Shakespeare (abridged)'s Hamlet sequence and used by the guards. The shapes of the halberds were cut out of lauan and slid into notches cut into the ends of sturdy dowels. The pieces were screwed together and painted to look like weapons.

Puppet Theatre sign

This sign was made for Shakespeare (abridged) and used during the Hamlet sequence when puppets are used to represent "the players".

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)

Florida Studio Theatre's set for "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)", designed by Lauren Feldman. I did all of the scenic painting on the floor, walls, and columns.

Shakespeare bust

I fabricated this Shakespeare bust using a block of styrofoam and a foam mannequin head from the costume shop. After setting them an an upright dowel, I carved out the desired shape and then coated the bust with cheesecloth and glue. I used two different colors of paint to achieve the "bronzed" look of the finished product. This prop could be knocked off the pedestal, hit the floor, and not be harmed.

Floor painting

This floor was used for Florida Studio Theatre's productions of Marvelous Party and Shakespeare abridged. I started out with a black base and a greeen scumble. The final look came from sponge painting.

Wood Graining

The wood graining technique used here starts with a base coat of dark yellow. Then a coat of light brown is painted over it, but immidietely wiped off with cheescloth creating a "wood grain". Another coat of darker, watered-down, brown is applied and again wiped off with cheesecloth.

Wooden Arbor

This arbor was contructed from brand new lumber. The design called for aged timbers found on a Greek beach exposed to the elements. I used a chisel and hammer to distress the lumber and a few different shades of grey paint to give it the color of sun-bleached drift wood.

British dish soap label

Origionally, I wanted to simply print out a copy of a British dish soap label and glue it onto a cheap bottle from a local grocery store. None of the images I found would print clearly enough, so I copied/traced the design in Vectorworks. The resulting image printed very clearly and I decoupaged it onto an American bottle of dish soap which had its label removed.


This rock was designed for FST's production of Shirley Valentine. The designer provided a 1/2" scale model including a little rock made from beaded styrofoam. I decided to build a base out of 1x3's and plywood to make the rock as sturdy as possible. 3" thick beaded styrofoam was attaced to the sides and the shape of the rock was carved out using hand saws and files. Cheesecloth and glue were then used to plaster the rock giving it a hard shell. The coloring was chosen by looking at pictures of rocky shoelines from Greece.

Passport modifications

I uploaded pictures of an actual British passport into Vectorworks. There, I was able to manipulate the images, edit out the existing information, and insert made-up information for the fictional character, Shirley Valentine.

Floor painting

I painted the floor to look like linolium for the first act of Shirley Valentine. It started with a scumble of yellow and light grey. Then a grid of lines was drawn on the floor so I could paint the darker yellow tile edges. The corners of the tiles were done with a rubber stamp with blue paint in a floral pattern. A light grey/blue, watered down spongeing completed the painting and two coats of low gloss polyurethane was used as a sealer.

Shirley Valentine's passport

For this prop, I used a headsot of Susan Greenhill, the actress playing the title role, and covered the origional photo inside the passort. I used sturdy cardstock for the cover and attached the pages inside with spray adhesive. The end result nicely duplicated the look, wieght, and feel of the real passport.

Shirely Valentine set

I did all of the scenic painting on this set except for a few areas that were distressed by the designer. I also did most of the prop shopping for the groceries and set dressings seen.

Martini Glass

A full martini glass was called for during a song and dance number in FST'd production of A Marvelous Party. The director wanted it to look full, but didn't want to use real liquid. An actual martini glass was used and filled with acylic. Rubber grapes, painted to look like olives, were pierced with a toothpick and placed in the glass as the acylic was hardening.


To make prop marguritas, I started out with plastic glasses purchased from a party store. The inside is a mixture of sawdust and paint. I used high gloss polyurethane and a little white paint to make the drink look like it was made from ice. The limes are little lauan cutouts glued to the sides of the glasses and painted to appear real. Straws and little umbrellas provided the finishing touches.

Tropical Sunrise

Another tropical drink. I used an actual Tom Collins glass and painted the inside to appear as if it were filled with liquid. I used spray frost to give the outside of the glass a look of condensation.


I fabricated this harp out from three pieces of wood. The strings are cheap guitar strings from a local music store. To paint the prop gold, I started with a base coat of crimson red. Then I did a heavy dry-brush of gold paint over that.


When Florida Studio Theatre produced ...And L.A. is Burning, we considered using a live goldfish as a prop. To avoid a plethera of problems, we got a fishing lure, painted it orange, and hung it with fish line from the mouth of the bowl. After filling the bowl with water, the fishing lure appeared to be "floating/swimming" to the audience. The fake plant and rocks came from Walmart. I hand painted the name "Sheila" on the side of the bowl with glitter paint.

Black Pearl paper props

These paper props were completed for FST's production of Black Pearl Sings. The telegram was put together in a word document using actual lines from the script. Originally, a font duplicating authentic Western Union telegrams was used, but we switched it to Times New Roman to make it easier for the actress to read on stage. I also created a template for the envelope and then assembled each one by hand. The twenty dollar bill came from a simple google image search. I then edited the image to remove all serial numbers and carefully inserted my own text, PROP MONEY, NOT REAL. I'm not exactly sure if I avoided breaking the law or not. The photos, again, came from a google image search. I glued them to card stock and used dark tea to gently age/stain the photos. The small stack of letters began with contemporary stationary, but I used a vintage stamp and did a lot of distressing. I crumpled, smeared dirt, stained with tea, and tore edges to achieve the final product.

Boleros for the Disenchanted carpentry

I worked as a scenic carpenter for FST's production of Boleros for the Disenchanted. These pictures represent the roof-supporting beams from out two set pieces.

Boleros for the Disenchanted set

This is Florida Studio Theatre's set for Boleros for the Disenchanted. I did a lot of carpentry for this production, including the tile roofs (made from pieces of PVC pipe cut in half) and the curved step unit on the floor in front of the stage.

Pneumatic Trap Door drawings

In my last semester of college, I was on a team that built a pneumatically powered trap door. It used two air pistons that held the door shut and opened it to a fixed position. We used only pnematic equipement that we had in stock, so the challenge was to design the door and platform around the air piston's range of motion. These drawings demonstrate how critical the design phase of a project is and how much effort goes into a project before any physical construction is started.

Arms and the Man scenic model

Theses are images of a scenic model I did for Arms and the Man. It was an interesting project because my school had produced the show a few months before and I had the chance to design the show myself from scratch. I used a half inch scale model of the theatre space that I had fabricated a year before. This project demonstrates my model making skills and attention to fine detail.

Caucasion Chalk Circle drawings

I was the Assistant Technical Director for the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee's production of The Caucasian Chalk Circle. I did these drawings of the "Shinto Gate" in Vectorworks based of off the designer's sketches.