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Eyeball for Elmo

Discussion in 'Puppet Building and Performing' started by FUZZYRED, Nov 6, 2011.


    FUZZYRED Active Member

    Hey guys, I'm nearly finish Elmo puppet and you see, I have buch of chirstmas balls for his eyes but, is there a way to make his eyes into white? (Such as spray or paint) Cause I have different colours. Also where I can buy it in Austraila?
  2. Gonzo's Hobbit

    Gonzo's Hobbit Well-Known Member

    I'm no expert but I would guess spray paint would be good as you can get an even coat that way. Is there any way you can buy Christmas balls that are white?
  3. The Shoe Fairy

    The Shoe Fairy Well-Known Member

    Spray paint. If you're 18 in NSW (darn laws) hardware shops/variety stores sell spray paint that will do fine, whether you want gloss or matte paint is dependent on whether the puppet is for theatre or for screen. You could also find paint at specialist paint stores, art and graffiti supply stores; but art brand paint (Montana, Ironlak) is too expensive to be painting eyeballs with. Australian Export quality brand should do fine. You'll want to do several light coats and hang the balls carefully to dry, as dripping will leave an obvious and unwanted mark (not to mention extending the drying time).

    FUZZYRED Active Member

    Thank The Shoe Fairy and I will try this weekend!
  5. Melonpool

    Melonpool Well-Known Member

    I usually use a couple of PVC pipe couplings to hold the eyes while painting. That way, they won't roll around. Once one side is dry, you can reposition them to paint any areas that weren't painted. Use thin, light passes with the spray paint to keep it from running. Also, I've had better luck using flat paint instead of gloss. You also can use a spray flat clear coat to keep it from chipping.
    callmemilo likes this.
  6. One thing my prop-building boyfriend has drilled into my head is always ALWAYS put a couple of light primer coats down first on anything you paint. It makes the paint cover more smoothly, especially if you wet-sand each layer with a fine grit sandpaper. Then do several light layers of the paint, letting each layer dry at least 5-6 hours to cure completely (even if it looks dry to the touch soon after painting, it is still not completely dry), and don't paint in high humidity as the paint won't cure correctly and will always be slightly sticky. If you have to paint outdoors in humidity, do it very quickly (light layers) before the condensation sets in (especially if your piece just came out of an air conditioned house) and then quickly take it back inside to dry. Then, like Melonpool suggested, clear-coat the final layer. You wouldn't think taking all those extra steps would make that much of a difference, but it really does. The color primer you use depends on the color of the top coat. He just painted some vac-formed styrene white (which, ironically was white to being with, just not white enough) and I think he used that rust-colored primer under the white. Hope that helps.
  7. Oops, forgot....you also sand the under-layers of color.

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