Barry Purves book Barry Purves book

New Stop Motion Book by Barry Purves

Barry Purves book

Highly regarded stop motion animator Barry Purves has wrapped up a new book called Stop Motion: Passion, Process and Performance which is due in December. The book will be available for pre-order in a few weeks on Amazon and the publisher’s site

Here is Purves’s description of the book:

Above all, this book is about the very personal experience, not just mine but others, of being an animator, working laboriously with puppets, and why so many of us still get so much from, as the late Paul Berry described it, ‘dolly waggling’. Just what is satisfying about bringing puppets to life that, for all the hard work, the tedium, and the back aches, keeps us doing it and keeps so many people watching it? It’s not the most prolific of jobs. Other directors make many hours of film in the time it takes us to do a short film. Actors perform the same role several hundred times in the months it takes us to perform our role just once, but even so, there is something deeply satisfying about bringing a lump of latex, metal and cloth to life. At every level, it is a performance, and for those who have never delicately held a puppet, squeezing it gently and sensually into life, that can be a strange concept.

The fully illustrated book also offers advice and insights from various stop motion animators including Tom Brierton, Adam Elliot, Mark Hall, Peter Lord, Ken Priebe and David Sproxton, among others.

  • I was luck enough to speak to Barry briefly about this book and found it very exciting that the personal side of an artist’s motivation was being so thourougly explored.

    Not enough animators take time to record their thoughts personally for future generations – they are often the most inspiring accounts of all the books/texts in the animation theory section as they get beyond the superficial technicalities and numbercrunching that bog down many books about the medium. You can also be sure that such personal accounts avoid falling foul of reading *too* much into the intentions behind the final product. (The new John Libbey Tex Avery book, anyone?) This book seems like a must buy, and I can’t wait to pick up a copy!

  • Thanks for posting Amid! Nice to see the beautiful cover. Barry’s been working on this for a long time so I’m glad to finally see it.

  • I’ve been looking forward to this, I’ll definitely be pre-ordering it. There are a couple of decent how-to books on stopmotion now (like Ken Priebe’s), but this is a different approach. Thank you Barry!

  • Hi Barry, Just seen your diary of TURN OF THE SCREW in my adaptation and it sounds exciting. Could you kindly get in touch at [email protected]? I have recently turned a Chekhov story into a play and it might interest you.

  • Hallo guys, and thanks so much for the support in advance, for the book. It is certainly going to be a good looking book, as animators from around the world have done some splendid and sometimes gloriously quirky illustrations. This will be a different book from most animation books, as it is very personal, and draws in different topics from ventriloquist puppets to tango dancing and folly sticks. I’ll keep you posted about it’s progress.
    Thanks again
    barry P

  • Hello there!
    It is a pleasure to know that one of my all time idols (steady on, lady!) is publishing a book. I will definitely buy it!

  • hallo Sandra….thanks for that mail that made me smile (or blush!). I hope it proves an intersting and challenging and provoking read.
    I hope all is well with you….where are you? Do come and chat on our website – – all’s welcome

  • the book is out there now, so I hope you all enjoy it. Thanks to those who have contributed illustrations it is a mighty fine looking book at least.