EBAY treat a Spooktacular Halloween
This month you will find some really
creepy and spooky buys up for
auction to celebrate Halloween. Once again this cross-section of items will be for the avid Collector and Hobbyist as well
the Professional Puppeteer. Read the ad copy to determine
which type of Neoprene is being featured: Flexible, Semi-rigid or our Rigid
formulas. Our blue and lavender skinned Witches will be Flying into your view
just in time for the holiday. Skulls, Crossbones, Medallions and maybe a few
surprises. So cast your net and make a bid. You might find you walk away with he
buy of the decade.
August 14, 2014
EBAY Debuts our silver screen
Beginning this month you will find some really unique and wonderful buys up for
auction. This cross-section of items for the avid Collector and Hobbyist as well
the Professional Puppeteer. In August we are start off with
our custom design
hand puppet of Jay Leno; a near life-size puppet head from
our Hollywood Celebrity series of the great comedian, W. C. Fields and on a
smaller scale the Beast puppet head and hands from our Beauty and the Beast
June 1, 2014
Marilyn Monroe: radiated glamour on the silver screen
I would create several versions of Marilyn over the course of my career, staring
with the early Hollywood Bergdorf Goodman Collection. Dressed in her pink satin,
black lined ensemble from 'Gentleman Prefer Blondes' she became iconic before
the song was over. Here in a more delicate repose I wanted to capture the
vulnerable innocence beneath the surface. Skin so luminescent and lips aflame,
she is dressed here in a delicate champagne lace and white faux fur,
Accessorized with diamond necklace and earrings and long sleeve satin gloves. A
pinnacle among the stars...
May 20, 2014
Cher: from our Hollywood DivA Collection
Celebrates her birthday today. What could be more fitting than to feature her in
a New Gallery Spotlight? Her enduring performance style continues to transcend
the spotlight and inspire… Talent, Perseverance, and Dedication to be the very
best you can be. From her early start with Sonny Bono to her larger-than-life
persona on the Vegas Strip. The Icon shines among the stars...
February 27, 2014
The Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat:
Carmen Miranda, known as the
Brazilian Bombshell was
one of the most popular entertainers and of her time. The combination of her
vibrant dancing, singing and costumes made her the
perfect choice for many successful Marionette Acts of the 20th century, most
notably Frank Paris, circa 1940. Ironically very few
puppeteers have Carmen in their lineup today, and even
fewer collectors have this newly designed bust until
Chica Chica Boom, Chica Chica Boom Click >
THE HOLLYWOOD COLLECTION: Mr. CLARK GABLE,
One of Hollywood’s Finest, was voted the King of Hollywood in 1937.
Seen here with his masculine wavy black hair and smoldering demeanor, circa 1938:
He is dressed in a custom designed vintage charcoal black tuxedo with champagne
beige shirt and white satin vest. His striking appearance is seen here propped
against a movie set and posing for his Hollywood Glamour shot. These dolls are
created one-of-a-kind, per request and sold ‘as signature pieces’ for the
serious collector who understands that style and beautyis
worth the time it takes to get there or just a click away >>>
December 27, 2013
STAR PORTRAIT STUDIES: With only a few
days before the New Year the portfolio opens yet again to
shift our focus on the past. These particular airbrush studies were created in
1990. An experiment with masking and photo realism and based on the wonderful
portrait shots of Hollywood Glamour Photographer George Hurrell. I remember when
I was began these exercises my expectations were to create an illusion. After all,
I was painting with air. The final touches were achieve with conventional dry
December 5, 2013
COLOR PHOTOS OF THE LITTLE MERMAID: With only a
few weeks left before the holiday rush we were able to
complete and fill a New Puppet Parts
Order for an upcoming production of Hans Christian
Andersen's Tale coming in 2014, along with a number of
newly colorized character models, and
illustrations, now on view in
The Little Mermaid Collection. Based on Mythology,
the Sea Witch in our tale is a half-woman, half
scorpion, crablike creature determined to stop
our Little Mermaid from ever
finding true love and happiness among mortal men.
October 16, 2013
A COURTESY ANNOUNCEMENT: I am the process of blocking in the final productions
weeks of 2013. All pending contracts and purchase order agreements that have not
been received by October of this year will have to wait until the spring 2014.
Requests however, that do not require materials affected by seasonal weather
conditions will be accepted on a project to project, first-come first-served
basis. Please email me if you have any questions. Thank you, for your patronage.
Check out our Halloween Witches,
now on Etsy
August 26, 2013
THE HOLLYWOOD COLLECTION IS
over three years
of development and research went into selecting thirty
stars spanning the Classic Golden
Age of Hollywood. JEAN HARLOW,
Hollywood's first Blonde Bombshell graces our Gallery
Pages...Platinum hair, sultry lips. She is dressed in
satin halter gown with accented marabou gauntlets and
ivory trimmed shawl. This doll is striking in her appearance and ready for her
close-up. Seated on a rattan chair and posing for a Hollywood Glamour shot.
These dolls are created for the budget conscious collector who understands that
lasting beauty is in the eye of the beholder... Will that be you?
July 31, 2013
THE CIRCUS OF MARIONETTE...harkens
in the moonlit hours. Something has stirred and the
marionettes become restless. The music begins, the
lights come up, and the curtain gives way.
The designer has long left the arena. The scenery is hung,
the props are in place. Is it a strain of the music we
hear or an unrequited
love? In these hollow eyes, we see a glimmer of life,
a wicked smile and the dance begins. The strings play in harmony as the motion
unfolds. We are caught now in a web of seduction. Do
we go or do we stay? The Drama needs
to be told.
THE MAGIC OF MARIONETTE THEATRE...begins
with a Vision. It is a collaborative art form encompassing Scenic and Lighting
Design, Costume, and Performance Art. It is not a solo piece or concerto. It is
a symphony Designed and Orchestrated under the skilled baton of the Artistic
Director, and a feast for the eyes, ears, and the imagination.
WELCOME TO THE AGE OF WIRELESS...keeping
up with the changing marketplace is as important to us as surpassing the
competition. We do this by offering you the type of Quality and Workmanship you
have come to recognize; Superior products and the most innovative methods helping
to make your consumer experience the best it can be. This encompasses changing
technologies and e-commerce. As consumer needs and preferred payment methods
evolve Paypal has eliminated our need for a PO Box number and Skype the
anonymous and sterile phone call. Let’s keep these new and exciting technologies
going. Working together they spell
THE AESOP FABLES... age-old stories that hold a moral of
fascination. The Lion and The Mouse and The Town Mouse and the Country
Mouse are two examples of stories with a small cast of characters that will
deliver a wallop of Fun and Entertainment to your seasonal line-up even
when you are on a budget, and that just for starters. There is an array of
characters, vividly drawn, to engage even the most jaded and finicky among us.
Sour Grapes anyone? ...
INSIDE ONE OF OUR NEWEST PAGES... you will find our
current list of Fairytales and Fables located on our Show Book Catalog page.
Sorted by Storybook Title, this Quick Reference Guide will provide
you with number of direct links to your favorites Fairytale Themes and
Puppet Characters. Of course these are only suggestions as you can freely choose
to mix and match character designs to create you own unique look and
A NEW BEGINNING...like all things a fresh start, a few new ideas, a few changes.
There will be some pages that will be undergoing revamping and stream lining.
Some pages will be expanded, new services will be added, and some will
disappear. Much like life is our ever changing world. I do hope you check back
to see our updates and progress now as we begin to grow and evolve to our
full potential. Thank you for your continued patience and support. I have missed
SCREAMING RELAXES ME SO...
words that sent shivers down the spines of every groupie and ghoulie lucky
enough to catch a glimpse of the Vampira Show back in the 1950's. Now,
immortalized as one of our Viva Las Vegas caricature puppets, Vampira enters our
Gallery of Stars along with making her debut in our latest Youtube puppet
animation marks a transition period, awaiting the release of the next generation
software that will allow me to move my puppets through 3D environments combining
facial animation and song, using full-scale figures, sets, and props right from
my very own PC. All very exciting!
Vampira and a host of cemetery ghosts enjoy a Halloween romp singing the parody
They Ain’t Alive based on the Bee Gees, Staying Alive. Click the link to the
right if you dare. >>>
June 9, 2010
baby goo talks... My
third puppet animation test featuring Baby Goo singing the parody Cheese Wiz,
has now posted to my Youtube Channel .
growing up on the east coast of the United States during the early 1960's, like
I did, this Cheese Wiz parody, sung to the tune of Gee Whiz, by Carla Thomas,
should be an instantly recognizable classic...bringing back memories of the RCA
Victrola, American Bandstand, and 45rpms. Those are like oversized CD's with a
big hole in them kids. J
to the vocals, and parody lyrics you will notice a number of new props I needed
for this production. The baby food jars added just the right amount of fun I was
button link to the right to view this clip >>>
My Newest Puppet animation - a Hairspray Parody debuts
on our YOuTube Channel... The second of my puppet animation
tests has posted to my Youtube Channel starring that 'Double-D of Diva's'
Lena Cuisine singing the parody
Big-Boned and Beautiful, sung to the tune of Big Blonde and Beautiful
from Hairspray. (Original Puppet Caricature, Parody Lyrics, and Vocals by moi...
those friends and fans who aren't quite familiar with my talents. This is
my own voice characterization that you hear for Lena, lamenting the pangs of
diets, desserts, and contentment.
even more exciting about all this global web access, is to be finally able to
move my dream of celebrity and puppet caricature parodies into the digital age.
click the button to the right... and enjoy the show. >>>
COLOR ENHANCEMENT and puppet Animation…
just two areas of design and study that are helping me move my puppets forward
in the 21st century. Balancing color harmony and line, and then
taking those designs to the next level by blending emotion and pathos with
puppet caricature and manipulation in order to create a new living breathing
form of art.
It has taken
me just over half-a-century to achieve this effect but will take you only a few
seconds to view the results. J >>>
Hey, I'm Talking here! What d' Ya say to that?
Well, I'd probably say it's about time. And then, most likely add how excited it
makes me to finally be able to combine the latest computer technology with my
artistic vision in order to bring my puppet art to life.
future looks very bright indeed. Wouldn't you agree? You know in 1983, I wrote
in my journal I believed the future puppeteer would be a computer operator. Some
dreams do come true.
the button to your right to see our first Puppet Animation Test on YouTube. >>
Again!! and birds on the wing again... Arriving
this weekend, along with the current Puppetry Journal -Winter 2009 - issue, featuring
an inside full-color page of several of our puppet
in the Gallery section: The bold and brassy Big Momma, the outrageous La Mae
Sisters, and the swingingly sublime Louis Armstrong.
I'd like to thank
Managing Editor of the
Journal, for another great layout
design. The page looks great.
Stay tuned...we are about to move to
a bigger location.
In the immortal words of Mae West…It’s not the men in
my life; it’s the life in my men.
To illustrate this point here’s a look at one of the puppet caricature faces I
created last year for Mae’s Las Vegas revue. And a glimpse of things to
come…This prototype sculpture is a
look at what this finished marionette will look like.
Standing about 32 inches tall and almost as wide this chorus of body builders
will become the supporting cast for Miss West in homage to her own Las Vegas Act
that debuted in 1957....ooh, la, la! What a Gal!
Of course I can't show you the
completed figure yet, you've got to leave some things to the imagination.
December 18, 2009
making a list and checking it twice …Gonna
find out who's naughty or nice.
Who are they you ask? The fabulous and
flamboyant La Mae Sisters and they just entered our
Gallery spotlight for the month of December, Wishing you a Joyous Holiday Season
and a Prosperous New Year! …So get out those dancing shoes
and get ready to party your way into 2010, by clicking on the Gallery
link to the right. >>
all my fans, colleagues and friends. We couldn't do it without you. ...
Have a safe and wonderful new year...
tuned for an exciting year of innovation and fun, the sequin, the glitz, and
glamour and a few surprises.
Sincerely, Michael Baroto
November 6th, 2009
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol …More
than a dozen of your favorite characters from Charles Dickens immortal classic
make their way into my Puppet Parts Catalog, for 2010, featuring thirteen new
There's Tiny Tim,
Jacob Marley, Old Ebenezer, and the Ghost of Christmas Past.
behind-the-scenes look at this magical world of greed, redemption, and spirits
from beyond. Click on the button to your right. >> God Bless Us, Everyone!
September 1, 2009
hello dolly. this is Louis, dolly. It’s so nice to see you back
where you belong … Undeniably one the
most influential jazz musicians of the 20th century ‘Satchmo’
Louis Armstrong enters our Gallery spotlight for the month September.
Dazzling with the grace and style that made him one of the world’s most beloved
entertainers. This marionette makes his long awaited debut as
part of my Viva Lost Vegas collection.
Click the button to the right.
I feel the room swaying. J
August 1, 2009
a Journey of a Thousand Miles …Begins
with one step.
As the maxim goes, the same can be said
about the Art of the Puppet. Here is a behind-the-scenes look at my latest project.
The Music Box Doll is a Bunraku styled rod
puppet created for green-screen for
an Indy film. Although I can’t talk about the specifics of the project, I can
share part of the backstage
For a glimpse into my Art, click on the
button to your right. >>
July 19, 2009
C – E – L – L – O! Cell
… Let me take a moment to talk about cell
phones. We all seem to have them for one reason or another. I picked mine up
about 7 years ago for traveling, and for clients who need to stay in touch like
two days ago I received two calls on my line before I could
reach the phone. Great News!!
The technology is working except when you call with an 'unlisted'
or ‘withheld’ number then I can’t return
If you call me and don’t leave a message,
and or your name or number is unlisted…well, it’s like
you never called at all. Now, doesn’t all this make
email seem a whole lot easier?
June 22, 2009
the bil baird pages …
For those of you
interested in the history of puppets as well as their entertainment value I
recently updated the Bil Baird pages on my website featuring several new
never before seen photos from Bil Baird's Marionette Productions:
Pinocchio and Alice in
In addition, a third tribute page was added
this week featuring backstage information, photos, and tidbits about
one of Bil's last original musical productions produced for his theater:
Going to the POA
Summer Festival? Have a MOO-velous time.
May 11, 2009
the Rat Pack: Dean, Frank, and Sammy! …
Making their five-star debut, for the month of May, our Gallery Spotlight falls
on three of the biggest, hottest, and most dynamic Vegas Superstars to join our
Viva Lost Vegas puppet collection.
These three legendary
performers first teamed up to light Las Vegas on fire when they appeared onstage
together at the famous Copa Room, at the Sands Hotel and Casino in 1960.
Smooth, cool, and
debonair these entertainers wrote the book on class that left Vegas and the
world spellbound for generations.
It has been a pleasure
recreating these latest caricatures for my collection. I hope they bring you as
much joy and inspiration as they have to me in pursuit of your dreams and goals
Coming soon I hope to
expand my Puppet Parts studio and catalog to include fantasy masks, and
characters that continue to challenge the boundaries of puppet art and look
forward to sharing those new designs with you ASAP.
Click the button to your
right. The show’s about to begin. J >>>
March 27, 2009
Everything old is New again! …It may be the title of a song but it's true. Take Mr. Grumps for
example. He first sprung to life in the early 1970's as a disgruntled forlorn
king and then was later refined in 1979, as the mild-mannered Gramps, when I was
experimenting with flexible foam rubber painting. This latest incarnation shows
him sporting a professional flocked skin surface and a set of baby blues
stylistic of my
Baby Goo character.
In addition to his peepers, Mr. Grumps,
has a pair of legs rarely found on generic rod puppets which allows him to
operate very much like Topo Gigio, the famous Italian
mouse using traditional black-art
and Bunraku techniques.
March 09, 2009
My birthday Today! …There is so much to
be grateful for in my life but no greater joy then to have the family and
friends who have stood by me, believed in me, supported me,
and encouraged me to reach a little higher, to achieve my dreams, obtain
my goals and who have applauded me when I surpassed them. This is my birthday
wish to you. That you never lose sight of the your inner
truth and that you build a foundation that reflects the love you have
been given along the way. MB
February 25, 2009
start spreading the News! …I
just flew back from my stay at the New York, New York hotel in Las Vegas
after being invited to attend the Red Carpet presentation by Cirque Du Soleil.
Their creative energy was high, and an enormous
inspiration for me to listen to a company dedicated to the finest quality
entertainment of its kind. If you ever get a chance …Go!
Looking forward and
excited to embrace the new and innovative possibilities to provide you with the
Special Costumes and
Puppets you need to expand both Arts and my Puppet
Parts catalog. Thank You, NYNY
February 18, 2009
You Can’t Hurry Love…no
truer words were spoken. And when Diana Ross, Florence Ballard, and Mary
Wilson sang those words, living the dream became pure magic. The Supremes
not only skyrocketed to fame but also soared into the hearts of millions. I know,
I was one of them. That spark is alive today.
2009 marks the 10-Year Anniversary of my
Puppet Parts website. 'You've
got to trust, give it time'. The journey begins
with one step.
January 08, 2009
Elvis – The King of Rock and Roll –IS IN THE HOUSE
the scene for 2009. Hip shaking, Earth quaking, and
quivering his way into our Gallery Spotlight.
Standing 33 inches tall this marionette
depicts Elvis at the start of his career - circa 1956,
complete with his
replica trademark guitar
and baggy pants with fully animated eyes and mouth.
To view this latest puppet caricature to join our Viva Lost
Vegas collection click the link to your right. >
December 14, 2008
unparalleled, hypnotic and fascinating they captivate with a clarity, beauty and
mystery. These words can aptly
describe Dame Shirley Bassey, the latest star to enter my Gallery Spotlight in
my Viva Las Vegas series. Sparkling effervescent with a fascinating allure
...she luster’s on.
Have A Safe and Wonderful Holiday Season.
The best is yet to come.
November 14, 2008
your troubles and just get HAPPY!
…Judy Garland takes her rightful place in our Gallery Spotlight this
month, the latest puppet caricature in my Viva Lost Vegas series, reminding us
to ‘Chase All Those Cares Away.’
Let’s all find something and someone in our lives to be thankful for
this coming holiday season. In the meantime, please feel free to view this dynamic
concert and screen legend by clicking the icon to the right. Aren’t you
glad it’s not me this time? J
October 19, 2008
IT’S All IN THE GAME AND THE WAY YOU PLAY IT…As Workroom
Supervisor of the NBC Wardrobe department in Burbank, I along with my
talented staff of 11,
were able to ship 16
additional costumes pieces to Crystal Cruise Lines making that a grand
total of 83
finished items based of 47
original designs by Gretchen Goertz, for their new Broadway Revue Show ‘SRO’
in 6 weeks
time. Whew! What a Way To Go!
a bad way to celebrate my one-year anniversary.J
on September 26th...
They finally released
the film SMOTHER starring
Diane Keaton and Dax Shepard. This was the small independent
feature I worked on a couple of years ago. I created the pumpkin costume you see
to the right for Diane, and the over-sized Sultan Head featured in the film. If
you blinked you probably missed the movie all together. It opened here in
limited release and I must confess with my schedule I didn’t get to see the
film. However, you can either scroll down to see the Sultan, or click on the
button to the right. Both pieces can be seen in the current movie trailer clip
from Yahoo's Movie site. Enjoy!
September 7, 2008
than anything else it's the life-spark of my creativity. I was inspired a while
back to create a piece of wardrobe for myself. A jacket, in fact, for no
other reason than I could not find one to my liking in the retail marketplace.
With some down time at work I was able to utilize my resources and
talent and gather together my thoughts
to design, drape, and tailor this
garment. Now, all I have to do is wait for the cooler weather to kick in to wear
things in time...
TO PAINT OR NOT TO PAINT?...That
is the question. J
June 1, 2008
definition; A passage from one state, stage, subject or place to another, a
musical passage or modulation from a section of music to another. An abrupt change
or state of energy accompanied by loss or gain of a single quantum of energy. I
AM IN TRANSITION... to what will be a freer more creative place after the
state takes effect. I know it to be for good.
March 9th, 2008
IS MY LIFE!...
and I don't give a damn for lost
emotion. And so the song goes. A song that frames one of the most prolific
careers of the last century: Dame Shirley Bassey. I was lucky enough to
catch this Diva in concert during the 1970's, in NYC. The energy, power,
and vibrancy of her performances has never faded, nor has the lasting impression
she made on me as a young artist. In tribute, SB is taking her place among my
Puppet Stars Collection as the latest entry into my Viva Lost Vegas series. Here
is a sneak peak at the work in progress. >>
February 23, 2008
IN A DAY’S WORK...
I thought many of my family, friends, and fans would like to see what has been keeping me
occupied over the last few months so I’ve included this behind the scenes look
at the evolution of one of the many designs I supervised this past fall over at NBC
Studios here in Burbank.
Using one of the costume designs by Gretchen Goertz,
I have added some informative text to show you how I take a designer’s sketch
from concept to completion. Enjoy! J
February 2, 2008
A WONDERFUL LIFE...
filled with simple wants, needs,
and hidden treasures. The rest seems to take care of itself.
Boy With A Penny’ is a symbolic piece I created for The Children’s
Miracle Network Charity Auction, in 1998. With nothing more than a penny
in his pocket its theme is about giving and doing the best you can even when you
think it’s never enough.
So in celebration of this unique 10th
Old Is New Again. J
December- November, 2007
Angel Vs The NYC
Mets Baseball star...
competed back-to-back, to close out another
successful year of non-stop Special Costume, Puppet, and Doll Projects to round
out my portfolio collection for 2007. The first of these was a 36-inch tall
commissioned marionette of Moises Alou, (seen in the lower right-hand corner.)
...complete with special stringing, moveable mouth, and detailed sculpted
accessories. My final creation however, was the Golden Angel figurine you see to
the right. Approximately 30 inches tall, this Angel was created as a gift for a
long-term PLA survivor, I met this past World Aids Day. The piece utilizes
several of my Puppet Parts
Catalog molds, and features golden Mylar wings and a floating Crystal star.
Amidst these commissions was my 'surprise'
return to work for NBC again. Tracy
Turnblad eat your heart out...J
In October, I received a call from my ex-boss
who asked if I would consider coming in to Supervise the costume production
staff of the Wardrobe Department, here in Burbank replacing someone who decided
to take an early retirement.
During this time I was able to
successfully produce 51 costumes based on 25 designs for a Cruise Line Revue
Show in November, and subsequently, an additional 21 made-to-order costume items
for one of their new featured dancers in December.
October 11, 2007
impossible things are
happening everyday… Our
YOU CAN DO IT page has added a new alumni to it's list with the debut of
Theodore's Dawson's production of Cinderella. Click the button to the
right for a preview. I wonder who finds the glass slipper this
Well, don't mention Halloween, or Trick
or Treat, or Autumn in New York without first checking out our latest
Gallery Spotlight on ...who else?
The Divine Miss M -
September 14, 2007
GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN…
it struck me recently as I looked around at a number of websites and then at my
own, how few people credit their heritage. So, I took stock in this and saw that
I had thanked numerous people along the way who, in part, helped me become who I
am today but in so doing realized that there were two people, who more than any
others deserved this recognition the most. They are my parents. Born in United
States, circa 1920, of Italian ancestry; they provided me with a safe, strong
and loving environment to build my stage on.
You are forever in my heart. MB
September 7, 2007
W.C. Fields: Vaudevillian
and Hollywood STAR enters the Gallery Spotlight this month. Our
latest commissioned work stands approximately 40 inches tall. Weighing less than
4 pounds, this Vent Rod-Puppet features an animated mouth. Dressed in a period
green frockcoat, vest, and checkered pants W.C. is accessorized with stovepipe
hat and trademark spats.
“Why, It ain’t a fit
night out for man nor beast.” J
August 14, 2007
Big Things Do Come
In Small Packages... it's
true! Engineered to fit into the two shipping boxes you see to the
right, here is a look at the final and complete Dragon
Eight weeks in production from design to
fabrication, the total weight of this Dragon costume comes in at just under 12
pounds meeting Express Mail requirements and assembles in about 15 minutes. The
control rod to the head attaches to a flexible neck shaft that allows you to
focus the Dragon, right to left. The wings swivel and are mounted to
respond to the body movement of the puppeteer. Who is that puppeteer?... Ssssh!
It's me, take a look. >
BEFORE THE PARADE PASSES
BY... I thought I would give everyone another behind-the- scenes
glimpse at the giant Dragon-Parade Costume I
was working on that wrapped for me this past week. This is an extended look at
the Foil Mache process I utilized during week-6 in order to create the faux gold
speaking of parades I want to wish everyone currently attending the National
Puppetry Festival, in St. Paul, MN an equally thrilling experience.
July 4, 2007
Happy Forth of July...LA
VIE EN ROSE!!!
In honor of our national holiday and one of the hottest days of the year I
decided to take a trip into Hollywood to see a wonderful bio-pic about the
legendary chanteuse Edith Piaf. What a wonderful film
tribute and powerhouse performance by French actress Marion Cotillard. In
keeping with that homage I am posting my doll design of Edith, in celebration.
The film and its stars are deserving of the accolades that come their way. Sadly
to say, my Edith Piaf was part of the 30 original doll figures and prototypes
stolen from my locked security unit in the mid 90's, that I told you about this
past April. Justice will be done. This kind of conduct in our community
must not be condoned. I am reaching out to the many friends for their support
and information. Peace, Light, and Continued Blessings...
Let the Fireworks begin!
ALL THAT GLITTERS…IS IT
REALLY GOLD? Well, just to keep everyone happy and updated I’ll
give you a clue. I have been busy creating a ten-foot tall Dragon
- Parade Costume that has successfully completed its 5th week of production.
Based on an earlier design this creature has both riveted and fascinated my
imagination in that I am combining some of my latest techniques to bring this
character to life. The work just seems to be getting BIGGER and BRIGHTER all the
time... or is it just me? J
Birthday! To my buddy, Scott… Hope this inspires you and all of my fellow
puppeteers and dreamers out there.
May 27, 2007
'wICKED' COME my WAY! And
what a surprise is was last week when I finally got to see the Los Angeles
Production of 'WICKED' here at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood. Just
before the show, I stopped by a newsstand to inquire if they carried DOLLREADER
magazine. The clerk there said, Yes, he did. And when I flipped through the
current issue featuring a couple of 'WICKED' dolls on the cover I found my name
and my Liberace
featured on page ten. Some things in life are just plain wicked, aren't
Don't miss this show or this issue.
May 1, 2007
THERE'S A WHOLE LOTta SHAKING GOIN ON! And it has nothing to do with Elvis Presley's
hips or the San Andreas fault. J
It's the premiere and launch of our
newly designed Bobble-Stars site. WOW!
This has been a long time coming but I
know many of you were waiting for this one. I am hoping to eventually add all
your exciting suggestions to the collection as the site grows. Right now, take a
look around. I am still tweaking things so if you run into a glitch let me know.
In the meantime Mae says, "Why don't you come up and see me sometime?"
Just click the button to your right.....Ahoooh! >
April 27, 2007
LAND OF THE GIANTS
Puppet Parts takes a giant leap forward today debuting one of our latest
and most innovative techniques and procedures. After
waiting years for a product to come along that I could adapt to my
Larger-Than-Life Walk Around Foam Puppets... I found it in a product called
Fosshape 300. It looks like felt and when heat-set creates a hard shell-like
covering that shrinks and contours around my foam structures like a glove.
Not only is it light-weight and durable but it can be animated, painted and dyed and as
they say.. A picture is worth a thousand words... So, Take a look! J
egg in the picture is about 2 and a half inches long and shows scale ratio.)
And while you are here be
sure to check out the latest additions to our 'You Can Do It Page' to see some
of the fantastic work being done by our customers including our next preview
April 12, 2007
caricatures on parade ...Judy
Garland, W.C Fields, Elvis Presley and don't be surprised if you see Laurel
and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin and the Marx Brothers bringing up
Also be on the lookout for the next
upcoming Red Carpet issue of DollReader, featuring our Hollywood Celebrity
Caricatures, due on newsstands this July. The BIGGEST surprise is yet to
come...more on that later. J
April 9, 2007
ENTER THE DRAGONS…
Chinese and European Mythology, Legend, and
Folklore their power and beauty has both inspired and personified the fantastic
in our lives. From the tales of St. George and the Dragon, to the Imperial
Dynasty, these otherworldly creatures have left a mystical mark on almost
every culture around the globe. To the right is a Dragon model I designed and
created in 1989, and the shape of things to come. Enjoy ...Michael Baroto
April 1, 2007
AND THE PERSON WHO STOLE
MY ARTWORK IS…In 1995, I discovered that a double-locked
security unit of mine in LA, was broken into. Stolen from my possession were 30
original signed Dolls, Puppets and Prototypes filed under copyright with the Library
of Congress, in Washington, DC, along with several boxes of related
supplies. Last year, a number of fortuitous events lead me to the person
responsible for selling one of these stolen pieces to a high profile collector
for thousands of dollars. After a two hour meeting with this person probing into
this mystery the information and the name I was seeking was revealed to me.
Though questioned whom that was I never let on…until now. Now after great
forethought the winner is…
March 30, 2007
marches on! With the month of
March drawing to a close let me say a word about time as we know it. Time
is finite yet it seems to go on forever. To my pending and future clients who
are undecided and may be sitting on the fence, my advice to you is: PLEASE
direct your attention to
your Production Schedule.
Waiting until the last possibly moment
does not make your project less expensive to produce but puts the quality of
that work in jeopardy. And I will more often than not refuse your assignment if
this happens. Experience has brought me great success in my ability to manage
time efficiently. Click on my
button for more information on Custom
Order requests. Thank you. MB
March 27, 2007
From my las VEGAS BIRTHDAY Retreat!!! Nothing feels better than a
week's worth of peace, rest, relaxation and a little bit of pampered
self-indulgence. And what better place than our nations biggest playground this
side of the Mississippi, Sin City, Nevada. J I thoroughly enjoyed my stay, the wonderful room accommodations, sunning
by the pool and Jacuzzi. I even got to tour some of my favorite spots too like
the Bellagio Gardens and that effervescent fountain display directly
across from the Paris Casino. Oo-la-la! Then it was off to the Wynn,
to tour the couture shops of Chanel, Dior and Gaultier. Did I mention I got a bit
of research in for my Viva
Lost Vegas revue too?
March 15, 2007
she a flash or is she a flash! Mae
West, the original Hollywood
Diva of the 1930’s, struts her stuff into our Gallery Spotlight this
coming spring. For a sneak peek at this Sultry Sexy Siren of the Silver Screen
click on the button to your right.
remember...Goodness had nothing to do with it.... J
Pumpkins, Puppets, and Props Oh
My latest film project wraps today. Yeah!!! For this assignment I was
given a little over 3 weeks to create two oversized Costume pieces for a small
independent feature shooting here in LA, called Smother. The first item
was the large Sultan mascot head you see to the right complete with prop
…Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!... J
specs for this character were fairly simple: Keep it simple, worn about the collar
and light in weight. All of the detail work you see around the broach and
feather is painted illusion. And an extra bit of fun was added to this character
to make his eyes and mustache wiggle.
The second item needed for this production was the biggest Pumpkin Costume you ever
saw this side of Oz, complete with a little stem hat. The great part was I got to work with my good friend Emma, who I have dubbed my
Aunt Em. (Scroll down to the Hotdog Costume.) Everyone should have an Aunt Em,
looking out for him or her in Hollywood. She’s the best.
in the week I responded to yet another
email request for the Elephant-Bird Puppet I created for a production of Seussical,
and received a reply stating the Producer did not allot enough money in his
‘prop budget’ to cover the cost of creating this puppet.
studied and worked alongside Bil Baird, the man who
wrote The Art of the Puppet (circa 1965). He was one of our country's premier master puppeteers of the last century. In Europe, Puppetry is still
considered an Art form. The Elephant-Bird from Seussical is no more a prop than
Audrey II is from Little Shop. This publication should be required reading for
all producers before they decide to finalize budgets for productions that
require puppets and special characters.
Everyone Peace, Happiness and Continued Success.
underestimate the Power of Kindness
Both my parents taught me to be kind and for that I am rich in their legacy.
Major changes will be taking place this year both on a business and artistic
level. Some as early as the next week as I wrap up my current film assignment
and debut the cast for Amahl and the Night Visitors. One of these changes
will be a full color Puppet Parts catalog. For a sneak peek at what that
might look like, click on the button to your right to see my newly released
Wishes for A Prosperous New Year
Puppet Parts will be on vacation for the Holiday Season, from December
23, until January 2nd. All deposits for pending orders not received by
close of business day Monday, December 18th, will be processed in the New
Year. I look forward to serving ALL your needs in the New Year. Have a safe and
wonderful Holiday Season.
BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL BIG
MOMMA, is the first and newest in our series of Vaudevillian Caricature
Puppets to enter our Gallery Spotlight. Standing over four feet tall, Momma
features 5 separate facial animations, and two elbow rods controlling rotating
wrist movements. Her body is constructed of state-of the-art industry grade
sheet foam with cast neoprene head, hands, and feet.
costume design encompasses a sheer red metallic Austrian pleated sequin gown and
matching jewelry over a nylon Lycra skin covering. Eight weeks in production,
Momma weighs in at only an amazing 11.5 pounds. If you don't believe me click
the button to your right and check it out yourself. Happy Holidays! J
Venting Voting and Vindication As
things go: You win some; and some you want to lose. To my young colleagues out
there just starting out on this journey it’s imperative that you stay focused
on the task at hand and follow your goals to completion. Don’t waste time with
self-pity or time wasters. Victory is at hand to those who take action.
Persistence and Determination are the keys. Don’t Ask Me Why. J
October 23, 2006
INTERVENTION continues to guide my work.
While exchanging emails with a prospective new client I discovered a long-time
Divine fan. Suddenly I remembered a Divine doll I had created in 2004, when I
was testing the market on Ebay, and another sale was made. Truly
Inspirational, Divine stands 22” tall. She is wearing an original crushed
velour zebra-print dress with neon pink ruff. The ruff is accented with hand
painted glitter motif and black sequin appliqué. The dress is accessorized with
custom design jewelry, matching lingerie, gold trim and a pair of hot pink and
gold lace and lame pumps. You can view this doll by clicking the button to your
October 14, 2006
Bobbles Bangles and me late last month I was asked if I would consent to
an interview to talk a bit about my latest line of Hollywood
Bobble-Stars. The interview was for a new site called Bobbles
I found one night while making a random search on Google. As a result, I not only found a wonderful and informative website
about the bobble-head collector's market but made a new friend. Thank you, Sandi
Postscript: Do to current health problems
Sandi Kilpatrick had to retire her Bobbles and More website. However, you
can read this article by clicking on the button to
your right. My prayers and Well Wishes are with you Sandi.
September 23, 2006
Amahl and the Night Visitors by Gian Carlo Menotti goes into
production beginning October 1st, as our Nativity story entry into our Puppet
Parts Catalog. This new cast of 15 puppets will include both human and animal characters. Schools, Theaters,
Display directors and producers looking to place
orders for this coming holiday season will need to do so ASAP.
To help offset the cost of bringing this
production to life I have set up a special Paypal Donation page for those
of you who would like to assist me in the project. Click on the Amahl and the
Night Visitors button to the right to find out more.
Or, contact me using the email link
below and place 'Amahl' in the subject line. Thank you MB
September 4, 2006
HAPPY LABOR DAY! I
know you will join me in celebration as I announce my most recent achievements and
success: The Cover, and feature article on Sculpting, in the latest issue of The
Puppetry Journal, published by the Puppeteers America. I want to thank
Paul Eide, managing editor, for the exceptional layout and cover design. I am
really quite moved by the honor and can't wait to get my issue.
Special Tribute to the puppeteers who inspired my career such as: Bil
Baird, Paul Ashley, Gerry Anderson, and Michael Myerberg, my
Bobble-Stars Collection is expanding. Click on the button of Madame, to the
right to find out more...>>
July 29, 2006
HOTTER THAN JULY!!! Hope you are managing to as stay as cool as
I am in this heat. I wanted to post a quick note to let readers know -
Doll Reader Magazine - August 2006- is now out on newsstands and features a special
focus issue on celebrity doll artists, like myself. The cover is reproduced to
your right and may be difficult to find in some areas but keep looking. I want
to take the time here to thank Kathryn A. Peck, Managing Editor of Doll
Reader for including me in this wonderful line up. Enjoy. J
June 21, 2006
Its MID YEAR ALREADY!
Whoever said time flies, wasn't kidding.
To date, I've completed over 19 celebrity caricatures for my
Lost Vegas' revue. The last two stars to join the line-up are
Fitzgerald and Nat King Cole. You will want to keep posted for their
gallery pics. Until then I've added a new page I am sure you will enjoy.
Can Do It! is a new page showcasing some of the many wonderful and creative
puppets that customers and clients have made using my standard
Parts Catalog items. You can view this page and some of their unique work by
clicking the Bard's Photo to your right. That should give you a clue. And as an
added bonus I have posted a sneak peek at my Beast
Mask design for my upcoming Beauty and
the Beast I promised you at the beginning of the year.
You will also be happy to hear this mask
will accompany a How-To article discussing my thoughts about life, love and
sculpting... Okay mostly sculpting but I do hope you enjoy that.
There will also be another summer
publication due out in August, featuring some of my Celebrity Caricatures for
all you doll collectors. I haven't forgotten you.
Jan 04, 2006
Happy New Year! And what a great
New Year this plans to be. Last year we wrapped up the holidays with several new
additions to our site and managed to finish both trimming the tree and a
number of bids on some promising new and exciting commissions. There is a new FAQ's
page for frequently asked questions to help you clarify your thoughts before
making that all important decision to buy a piece of commissioned art.
Streisand entered our Gallery Spotlight for the month of January, wearing an
original dress design based on the famous sailor dress she wore in her 1965, special 'My Name Is Barbra'.
Babs... She's just like butta.
Many new highlights are planned
for this coming year so here is a preview of what to expect: Several new
articles are slated for the Puppetry
Journal following my last years series on Papier Mache techniques that
will follow my thought process on sculpting the head in clay. And, two new additions
to our Puppet Parts Catalog, that
will include the long awaited Beauty and
the Beast and the Nativity
just in time for Christmas 2006. There are a few more surprises. More to come
October turned out to be a very busy month. First I completed the
refurbishing on the Hot Dog costume you see to the right for
Universal. There was no opening in the back of the Hot Dog so I
had to insert an internal Velcro lap one. Unfortunately, I
couldn't do more to stop the bun from crumbling but the job
completed successfully and they were able to get this girl out for
the holidays. lol
Next, it was on to the
Squirrel puppet for an Indy short film shooting in Louisiana.
Using my wire frame armature technique I was able to pull a muslin
draft which fit nicely over the black hand puppet sleeve you see
in the pictures below. This is the very same technique I use on my
Special Costume characters and it works like a charm. After the
foam muscle-structure was secured I was able to cover the form
with Faux Fur and add the final details.
this was a call to create the elephant-bird for the Dr.
Seuss stage musical Seussical. The
hand puppet had a moving mouth and flapping wings. The surface of
the face was Flocked and then airbrushed to achieve the electric
I also wrote Deborah N. Landis,
at the Costume Designer's Guild, which was suggested by costume designer
Pete Menefee after he saw some of my illustration
work during a meeting I had with him earlier in the month. The
initiation fees are still a little steep for me at the moment. I
am saving for a car, a Scion XA,
and I like to pay cash for them. Right now that is much more a
priority for me.
This past week I just
completed two 8 inch tall Wedding Toppers for the upcoming
Comedy's Central's, Last Laugh - of Tom Cruise and his soon to be
but very pregnant bride Katie. Everything was sculpted, tuxedo,
bridal gown and hairstyles. Oh and I had to animate Tom so he
could jump up and down on a sofa like he did on the Oprah show. J
Last Laugh 05 - Premiers 9pm
Sunday, December 11th.
All in a day's work I guess. I am
looking forward to a quiet Thanksgiving. I
will keep you posted. And
Yes, I am still scouting opportunities in Vegas and a possible
studio relocation there.
And speaking of opportunities
a long-time dear friend alerted me to the fact that... A Q-uirky
Broadway show was giving a contest. The winner to receive a all
expense paid trip to NYC, to see the show and meet the cast. All you
had to do was create a puppet and have the puppet submit a profile.
Well, it was a real dash but I completed Baby
Goo, and we made the
deadline. We didn't make the cut. Nothing ventured, nothing gained
they say. On behalf of Baby Goo and myself I do want to take the
time to congratulate the lucky finalists. Baby Goo adds," Make sure
to wear a hat. It will keep the pigeons in NYC, from shitting on your
And last, but not least, I did
not forget everyone's favorite October holiday.
Witches took to the skies on Oct. 31st.