Shadow Theater




Introduction: Shadow Theater

This instructable show you how to do CNC-cutted puppets and a theater box.

I made this theater as an example for a teacher working with 8-9 years old children. The project is that I will lend her my MiniCut2d CNC and that she will make 4 or 5 differents tales with her schoolboys. Artistic and digital education together !

Step 1: Draw Your Characters

Use a pencil and a black felt. Make the correction with Tipp-Ex. The drawings must be externally closed for vectorization.

Step 2: Vectorization

Take pictures at different distances then use the free MiniCut2d Software (v2.6.3) to vectorise the characters, and save them as .dxf files.

Be carefull, the vectorization works good with pictures of under 1200 pixels side. If the picture is too big, it will not be good. 700-800 pixels side is enough for one caracter.

You can find here the files of this Little Red Riding Hood tale.

Step 3: Cut the Characters

I cuted the characters with my MiniCut2d cnc hot wire cutter in Depron foam. But it's also possible to use a laser cutter with paper characters.

Step 4: Glue the Sticks

I used skewer sticks, with hot glue (glue gun).

You can also glue the stick behind the characters (perpendicular).

Step 5: Paint in Black

The black painting gives a better shadow, because it stops totally the light.

Step 6: Make the Theater Box

The theater is a cardbox with a window and a tracing-paper taped in it. You must think about the position of the storyteller and of the light. You have to do some tests.

Step 7: And Now, It's Time for the Tale

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    7 years ago on Introduction

    Nice work, I love shadow puppets!

    I recently had a shadow puppet woodworking project idea: a shadow puppet stage that could fold away into a functional child-sized bench, with storage for the puppets when it's folded up. Could be a nice little piece of furniture for a child's room.

    One suggestion for your Instructable: maybe include a bit about why you decided to make this shadow theater, and who is going to use it. I love hearing the back story behind a project. :)

    Renaud Iltis
    Renaud Iltis

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you Laura, for your comment and for your suggestion. The story of the project is at the beginning of the page now.