Our Construction Diary

Page 81

 

Ping Pong's Puppet Workshop

 

May - August, 2005

A major soft drink company has been running an ad campaign featuring a Jack Russell Terrier Dog with a soft drink can for a head, for some time now. The examples that we have seen are print ads (posters) used in busses and when you go into a supermarket and there's one of those mountains of 12 packs of soft drinks.

The original ads, which apparently came out of Canada, featured a stumpy little dog, who seems to have had his brown stripe added by computer generation in what is called "post production". Since the dog's head is a soft drink can, this too was obviously added in "post".

A new series of ads was ordered by the major soft drink company through an ad agency here in Portland, Oregon. They contacted us to see if we would build a new headless Jack Russell Terrier dog out of plush fur, that they could use in a new series of ads. Oh, and could we also cut several blank aluminum cans to serve as the dog's "head". These cans would later have the soft drink logo digitally applied in the exact position that they wanted.

They wanted the new dog to be more lifelike, but not SO lifelike that it would look like they used a real dog carcass, minus its head.

Let's see how it went...

Empty 6 pack

Here's something you've probably never seen before: a six pack of full, unprinted aluminum cans. These were prepared, lovingly packed, and sent to us cross country (at great expense, no doubt) to be cut for the dog's head.

Cut Can

Here's one of the many cans I cut, (using the top-secret Dremel cutoff wheel cutting tool) ready for delivery.
There was much discussion as to how many teeth the dog should have
and how "agressive" they should look.

OK, let's get to building the dog. Here's the cardboard pattern, that would later be transferred to muslin, and later still to fake fur. As you can see, the leg detail looks much more like a real dog.

Muslin Mockup

Here's the muslin mockup.

The doggie interior

Here's a shot of the interior. Made of wooden balls, 12-guage copper wire and lots of corks, the "poseability" possibilities are most endless. The corks are to allow a sharp object to pierce through the fake fur and stuffing to provide a means of holding the dog up (from the back side) while being photographed.

Fake Fur Starts

Here we go with the fake fur. Dinner (ours) can be seen in the background.

The dog as originally finished

Here's the finished first dog. The Powers-That-Be decided that it looked TOO realistic, and hired us to redo it to look more like the original dog

.

The final dog with a model of the original version on its back.
The second version of the dog has the same inner structure as the first, so it is still poseable, as well as a bit fatter.

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