Culture Insider: Chinese shadow puppetry

Updated: 2014-08-13 07:00


Culture Insider: Chinese shadow puppetry

An artist shows how to make a shadow puppet. [Photo/IC]

2. How to make a shadow puppet?

Different places have different ways of making a shadow puppet, but in general it has to go through several processes, including selecting a skin, making the skin, drawing a sketch, carving, coloring, ironing and embellishing.

First, remove the hair on the animal skin, clean it and using special techniques, make the skin thinner and semitransparent. Then coat the skin with tung oil and draw images of different opera characters on the skin. Next, cut out the figures on the skin with knives of different sizes, and then paint them in different colors.

Female figures are always carved with flower, cloud and phoenix patterns, and hair accessories are specially and elaborately designed. Male figures usually dragon and tiger patterns. Shadow figures will range in height from 10 cm to 55 cm.


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