He spends his life dedicated to the design and manufacture of puppets – specifically spacecraft, used in children’s television during the science fiction boom of the sixties.
Audiences cannot get enough of his space travel and combat scenes, and over time he becomes an authority figure, designing spaceship puppets to move in a believable fashion, forever building new craft with multiple moving parts, mastering the strings to produce a smoother flight, eventually culminating in techniques to represent light speed, gravitational pulls, and so on.
During the early seventies the networks cancel these shows. Animation now dominates the schedules, with illustrators seamlessly transitioning between multiple scenes and angles, the plotting more action orientated and without constraint. For a while he works with the animators, advising how to give physicality to their creations, but it soon became apparent that the viewing audience is wanting the unreal, the fantastical.
For some years he tours local venues with his puppets, but finds audiences more occupied with mobile phones and mathematically created CGI. After his final tour ends prematurely he takes his own life, his body found hanging in his apartment, strings that suspend him from the ceiling attached to every limb, his final creation of the physical.
A story based on the photo prompt for Sunday Photo Fiction
Photo © Al Forbes at Mixed Bag