Video Projects
Ahoy, Captain Sid!” is the children’s show (pilot), which won a regional Emmy in 2003, as well as was nominated for art direction and animation.  It tells of gruff Captain Sid and his misfit band of hamster pirates, ogre cooks and gutsy mermaid mechanic, who sail the seas in search of discovery.  They learn valuable life lessons as they go about unearthing treasure and having a great time along the way.  With the motto of “The ship doesn’t go unless we all row!”, Capt. Sid guides his motley band in working together despite their differences.  
Click on Quicktime symbol to view movie, or if the download is slow, click the title link (where available) to see the YouTube version.  
 
Here is a trailer to “Yamasong”, my live-action/puppet directorial debut with tabletop puppets shot on green screen.  (I will post the full video later in the year after film festivals are through.)
“Trickster” is a series inspired by Norse mythology (and written originally for a writing workshop for Muppet headwriter Jerry Juhl).  In this “teaser” version, we follow the adventures of Loki and Thor, two Viking brothers who find themselves in all sorts of hot spots in frigid northern lands.  Loki is the worst Viking ever and relies on his wits, charm and a touch of magic.  Thor is his brother and uber-Viking, toughest and strongest in the land.  This project was co-written by myself and Victor Yerrid, with voices by Victor, Brad Abrell, Ron Yavnieli and Lauren McKey Hale.  Music by Bill Wandel.  Characters scuplted and animated in After Effects by yours truly.
“If You Asked Me” is a whimsical music video sung by Sire Records’ (Warner Music) artist Meaghan Smith.  It was directed by Adam Egypt Mortimer and produced by Lodger Films.  It includes among its characters a dancing mop, guitar-playing coat on a coat rack, a cool, smooth bass playing mannequin and a frenetic TV guy.  I fabricated the puppets and assembled our puppet team, including myself as puppet captain, Eli Presser, Sonya Palencia, Jonathan Alvarez and Leslie K. Gray.  Matthew Rudenberg was Director of Photography and it was all shot on the RED camera, with VFX added in post by yours truly.    
Desert Gold is a look in to a futuristic world of hopes and dashed dreams.  It was directed by Rob Saunders for the Norwegian indie rock band Maika.  I got the chance to work closely with Rob on storyboards, designed the characters and props and sculpted the heads for both puppets.   Rob assembled an amazing team of builders and puppeteers to make his vision a reality.  Among the talented people he tapped included Greg Ballora (builder, lead puppeteer), BJ Guyer (builder, puppeteer), Carol Binion (costumer, puppeteer), Greg Manion (puppeteer), Eli Presser (puppeteer), Christine Papalexis (builder) and Jeanette Baity (puppet costume designer).  He also brought in Oden Roberts as his Director of Photography and shot on location at the famed Vasquez Rocks.
Fish Out of Water is a the creation of writer-director Ben Barnes and Joel Huggins.  It’s a quirky comedy of a fish raised by humans and lives with his two buddies in Pittsburg, PA.  Fish is an aspiring novelist, and coincidentally, a puppet.  I fabricated Fish, and had the pleasure of assisting with hands on four different “Fish” projects.  In this one, “Movie Night”, I’m the guy beneath the blazing bowl of popcorn (wearing fleece-covered latex gloves -- yes, not the flame-proofed kind of fleece!).  “Fish: Movie Night” was also an official selection to the 2008 South By Southwest Film Festival.  For more on “Fish” visit www.benbarnes.net or www.lodgerfilms.com.  Or www.fishoutofwater.tv .