Prop making for film, TV, theatre and display

Course Dates: 17/02/24 - 23/03/24
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: Keeley Street
A good prop maker requires skills in model making, carving, fabrication, mould making and casting, and an ability to communicate, problem solve and work at speed both in the studio and on set. Practice makes perfect and this course is designed for you to practise and hone skills already learnt, build confidence in making and to discover new materials and techniques. This course is a continuation from ‘Introduction to Prop Making’ and offers the opportunity to develop skills previously learned on these introductory courses, and also learn new ones. However, this course is also accessible to total beginners.

Examples of employment where prop making skills can be applied:
• Film blockbusters: Such as Harry Potter, Star Wars and Aardman Animation.
• West End musicals: Lion King, War Horse and Hair Spray etc.
• Festivals: Glastonbury, Latitude, Noisily etc.
• Fringe Theatre in Edinburgh; Street Theatre at Royale de Luxe etc.
• Events: Notting Hill Carnival and many others.
• Puppetry at Blind Summit and others.
• Window displays: Such as Harvey Nichols, Selfridges, Harrods, Vivienne Westwood.
• Music videos/independent theatre companies etc.
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Full fee £449.00 Senior fee £359.00 Concession £292.00

This course has now started

Prop making for film, TV, theatre and display
This course is full
  • Course Code: VU560
  • Dates: 17/02/24 - 23/03/24
  • Time: 10:30 - 16:30
  • Taught: Sat, Daytime
  • Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)
  • Location: Keeley Street
  • Tutor: Wendy Chandler

Course Code: VU560

Full Sat, day, 17 Feb - 23 Mar '24

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Call us to check if you can still join the course 020 3880 2415 (depart num)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

This is a practical course about prop making and working in the prop making industry, suitable for beginners and those with experience.

On this course you will explore a range of materials and techniques used by professionals. You will produce effective props, and get hands-on experience of sculpting, fabricating, mould making, casting, and using paint effects. There are many possibilities in fabrication; gain technical confidence and develop skill, that only comes with practise. This course will add to your bank of knowledge.

You will learn about the demands of the industry from a specialist tutor and have a go at translating your own ideas into 3D. You will be encouraged to develop your personal interpretation and interests throughout the course. It is very accessible, hands-on, and friendly!

If you are an absolute beginner, tasks will be tailored for you, and we promise you will have fun. If you have experienced previous prop making courses, we will help you develop and improve your skills and knowledge of materials, and modelling and sculpting techniques.

What will we cover?

• Model making and sculpting in water and oil-based clays.
• Sculpting exercises - fast (20 minutes) to longer (2-6 hours).
• One and two piece mould making in silicon and plaster.
• Casting in Jesmonite, plaster, latex and foam.
• Experimenting with silicon stamps and textures.
• Working with thermal plastics.
• Paint finishes/ textured finishes.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

• Be familiar with the difference of using water and oil-based clays.
• Have practised making clay models in short and longer time frames.
• Understand the procedure for one and two piece mould making.
• Understand the making of one and two piece silicon moulds, and one piece plaster moulds.
• Have practised casting in Jesmonite, plaster, latex and foam.
• Have experimented with silicon stamps and textures.
• Have worked with thermal plastics.
• Have experimented with paint and textured finishes.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This course is suited to those with previous experience. But complete beginners are very welcome.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

• You will be taught through demonstrations, presentations, peer group discussions and one-to-one tutorials.
• Some independent research will be helpful, but do speak to your tutor about this.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

• Bring enthusiasm and a love for making.
• All essential materials and equipment will be provided and are included in the course fee.
• You must wear flat sturdy shoes with a closed toe. Please also wear old working clothes that you do not mind getting messy or bring overalls.
• A camera / camera phone to record work.
• We also recommend that you bring a sketchbook/notebook and pencils to sketch and make notes.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

After this course you may wish to continue on to the course in term 3 - VU962 Introduction to prop making for film, TV, theatre and display to develop your skills further.

The City Lit sculpture department offers a wide range of exciting courses that will allow you to progress from beginner to advanced and learn a range of techniques. We offer courses in prop making, metal, clay, wax, carving in stone and wood, mould making and casting in Jesmonite, or pewter and much more! Alternatively, you may wish to progress onto the year-long City Lit Sculpture course VU841, which helps you to build your own individual sculpture practice.

We are constantly adding new courses. Please ask your tutor for advice or browse the City Lit website for inspiration. It is also possible to contact our visual arts team by emailing, or calling 0203 880 2415 Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm.

We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.