PUPPET MASTERY WITH BERND OGRODNIK
ACADEMY OF THE WOODEN PUPPET

The ONLY 12-month online experience, where you'll learn step-by-step how to make advanced and highly functional marionettes

The Academy of the Wooden Puppet is closed for enrollment. If you sign up for the waiting list, we will send you a message and you will have the opportunity to register as soon as possible.

Start carving figures and characters you never imagined you could make

Have you loved puppetry since childhood? Was it on your list of dream skill sets but you were always putting it into a box tagged as "someday"?


Or maybe you have been fascinated by handmade crafts that move and tell stories…


Or you've been performing live puppet shows, but you've never thought you could build your own creations…


Whether you're just starting out your journey with puppetry or you've been creating, woodcarving, and performing for years, here's the truth:

There's never been a better time to nurture your inner artist than now.

But

Many people think that art is just decoration. (And sadly, art is usually one of the first things to go in times of scarcity.) However, art is what keeps us going. It keeps the spirits up and offers inspiration when everything else seems bleak.


It provides beauty when the world seems to be focused on the negative.

The world needs your creative urges to flourish! The world needs you to create more magic and joy around you.

That's why we've created the Academy of the Wooden Puppet, and it's now open for enrollment.


The Academy is a one-of-a-kind, 12-month program created for beginners and professional puppeteers alike.


It will teach you many things beyond what you can find in any other program or book.

The creation of the Academy of the Wooden Puppets is built on Bernd Ogrodnik's successes and trials of a 36-year illustrious career exploring and enhancing the art of puppetry.

Hundreds of interns and students he had the privilege of working with have taught him valuable insights about their needs and longings and how to best nurture their individual paths.

You will not just find out how to make puppets and how to carve them. You will also learn a different way of looking at life. You will start to observe the world around you in a new way. You will learn how to connect with your audience on a different level so hopefully… you can change your and their lives for the better.

From the bottom of our hearts and the intimacy of Bernd's studio here in Iceland straight to your living room/workshop, Bernd invites you to join him for this one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore the magical world of the wooden puppet.

Sign Up for the Waiting List

"It was a self-journey for me to realize that I have abilities that I didn't really believe I had."

Yael Kandelman

"This course has given me confidence and the tools to be able to make things. And I never thought I would be able to do that."

Belinda May

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN

Academy of the Wooden Puppet Is a Full-Year Experience Where You'll Completely Immerse Yourself in the Fine Art of Wooden Puppet Making.

Inside the Academy, you'll not only learn to make beautiful wooden puppets from scratch. You'll also find grounding for your body, mind, and spirit by creating things with your hands.


You'll enhance your performance and storytelling skills, learn a ton and have fun in the process. All of that is in the wonderful companionship of puppet enthusiasts from around the world.

Step by step you'll:

  • Learn the full spectrum of Bernd's teaching while building puppets according to your availability and skill level
  • Understand what kind of wood is best for your puppet so you can choose from the wood available in your region
  • Find out how to make advanced and highly functional marionettes, table-top, rod- and hand puppets
  • Discover the secrets behind Bernd's innovative control mechanisms like the ones featured in the ground-breaking movie epic "Strings" or his famed "one-hand" controls
  • Learn what you need to start creating expressive heads
  • Learn how to create expressive hands and feet
  • Learn how to make the most efficient and beautiful wood joints including the elbow, knee, and ball hip-joints
  • Find out the history of the various puppet styles
  • Understand the principles that various systems and techniques are grounded in
  • Apply all the knowledge gained to your own performances and puppet creation
  • Receive an Academy Certification upon completion of the program
  • Engage with a wonderful and supportive community of fellow students you will cherish for a long time

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN

Academy of the Wooden Puppet Is a Full-Year Experience Where You'll Completely Immerse Yourself in the Fine Art of Wooden Puppet Making.

Inside the Academy, you'll not only learn to make beautiful wooden puppets from scratch. You'll also find grounding for your body, mind, and spirit by creating things with your hands.


You'll enhance your performance and storytelling skills, learn a ton and have fun in the process. All of that is in the wonderful companionship of puppet enthusiasts from around the world.

Step by step you'll:

  • Learn the full spectrum of Bernd's teaching while building puppets according to your availability and skill level
  • Understand what kind of wood is best for your puppet so you can choose from the wood available in your region
  • Find out how to make advanced and highly functional marionettes, table-top, rod- and hand puppets
  • Discover the secrets behind Bernd's innovative control mechanisms like the ones featured in the ground-breaking movie epic "Strings" or his famed "one-hand" controls
  • Learn what you need to start creating expressive heads
  • Learn how to create expressive hands and feet
  • Learn how to make the most efficient and beautiful wood joints including the elbow, knee, and ball hip-joints
  • Find out the history of the various puppet styles
  • Understand the principles that various systems and techniques are grounded in
  • Apply all the knowledge gained to your own performances and puppet creation
  • Receive an Academy Certification upon completion of the program
  • Engage with a wonderful and supportive community of fellow students you will cherish for a long time

Meet Our Team

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

Your Instructor — Bernd Ogrodnik

Bernd has been in the world of puppetry since 1986. He is the artistic director and co-founder of "Worlds of Puppets" and has served as the Master Puppeteer for the National Theater of Iceland.


Throughout the 36+ years of his career, he has developed numerous groundbreaking designs for constructing puppets and their control mechanisms.

You won't find these gems in any books out there!

Puppetry has become his medium for fulfilling his purpose on earth. His mission is to elevate this medium and show how powerful puppets can be in everyday life.

After over 7000 live performances and touring all over Europe, Canada, the USA, Africa, and Asia as a performer, director, teacher, and lecturer, he now teaches in the online classroom of the Academy of the Wooden Puppet.


Mastery is a journey, not a destination, and he is dedicated to making this challenging journey meaningful and joyful.


Your explorations in the Academy will not only leave you full of knowledge and enthusiasm for the art of puppetry but also enrich your life way beyond the realms of the puppets.


Bernd and his team are here to support you on this journey of becoming a great puppet builder so you can serve the world around you.


Join our colorful community that brings unity and healing to a chaotic world.

Assistant Instructor – Mark Blashford

During the course, Mark will assist you and encourage you on this journey. You will see him a lot as he posts new lesson updates and hosts some of the Q&A sessions.


Mark is a professional puppeteer and builder specializing in traditional puppet performance forms, including marionette, shadow, rod, and hand puppetry. As a trained puppet builder, he received his Master of Fine Arts in Puppet Arts from the University of Connecticut in 2017.

He has also studied in Germany, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, and Iceland with one-on-one instruction from Bernd Ogrodnik.


Mark has worked with many theaters in addition to The Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival as an associate artist and Chicago Puppet Studio Coordinator. He now lives in Iceland and works full time with Bernd in the studios of Worlds of Puppets.

He also manages and performs with his own company, Rootstock Puppet Works.


His mission is to craft and perform puppet theater rooted in stories that promote mutual kindness and ecological awareness for the good of people and their environment.

Meet Our Team

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

Your Instructor —
Bernd Ogrodnik

Bernd has been in the world of puppetry since 1986. He is the artistic director and co-founder of "Worlds of Puppets" and has served as the Master Puppeteer for the National Theater of Iceland.


Throughout the 36+ years of his career, he has developed numerous groundbreaking designs for constructing puppets and their control mechanisms.

You won't find these gems in any books out there!

Puppetry has become his medium for fulfilling his purpose on earth. His mission is to elevate this medium and show how powerful puppets can be in everyday life.

After over 7000 live performances and touring all over Europe, Canada, the USA, Africa, and Asia as a performer, director, teacher, and lecturer, he now teaches in the online classroom of the Academy of the Wooden Puppet.


Mastery is a journey, not a destination, and he is dedicated to making this challenging journey meaningful and joyful.


Your explorations in the Academy will not only leave you full of knowledge and enthusiasm for the art of puppetry but also enrich your life way beyond the realms of the puppets.


Bernd and his team are here to support you on this journey of becoming a great puppet builder so you can serve the world around you.


Join our colorful community that brings unity and healing to a chaotic world.

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

JIM JER SEY

Assistant Instructor –
Mark Blashford

During the course, Mark will assist you and encourage you on this journey. You will see him a lot as he posts new lesson updates and hosts some of the Q&A sessions.


Mark is a professional puppeteer and builder specializing in traditional puppet performance forms, including marionette, shadow, rod, and hand puppetry. As a trained puppet builder, he received his Master of Fine Arts in Puppet Arts from the University of Connecticut in 2017.

He has also studied in Germany, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, and Iceland with one-on-one instruction from Bernd Ogrodnik.


Mark has worked with many theaters in addition to The Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival as an associate artist and Chicago Puppet Studio Coordinator. He now lives in Iceland and works full time with Bernd in the studios of Worlds of Puppets.

He also manages and performs with his own company, Rootstock Puppet Works.


His mission is to craft and perform puppet theater rooted in stories that promote mutual kindness and ecological awareness for the good of people and their environment.

"When I started this class, I considered myself an amateur woodcarver, but through this last year, Bernd has taught me to be able to say that I am a budding artist. I've created all of these puppets and they are mine. They are wooden puppets and they're going to be here long after my journey has ended."

Listen to Charles Hoffman explaining how the Academy of the Wooden Puppet works:

How the Academy of the Wooden Puppet Works

  • The program runs over a whole year.
  • Once you join you'll start with the Foundation Course.
  • After the Foundation Course ends, you'll start advanced classes at the Academy.
  • The Academy features six separate 4-weeks of teaching modules with 8 classes each.
  • Lessons are released twice a week.
  • There is a weekly Q&A session so that you can ask your most pressing questions.
  • Additionally, you can interact with Bernd once a month during a live Zoom meeting where you can show your work and Bernd can give you feedback.
  • A 4-week instruction period is followed by four weeks of "time to catch up", vacation time, etc. So you have time to catch up if you fall behind.
  • During the "catch-up" period (every other month) the weekly Q&A session and monthly Zoom meetings continue.
  • Learn at your own pace. You'll have an additional full year of access to all the course material after the Academy ends.
  • You'll also have access to all the recordings of the Zoom and Q&A sessions.
  • Honoring different skill levels and time schedules, you have the choice of how many puppets you'll build. Many of the techniques apply to various puppet styles. You don't always have to create a complete puppet to learn a new style.

Love from our students:

"The Academy has transformed my wooden puppetry dreams into reality."

From setting up an efficient workplace to learning how to make numerous styles of puppets, I am now filled with solid knowledge and as many tools and ideas to explore further. Bernd's professionalism and dedication offer more than a puppet class: a certain way to look at the world, a community of puppet lovers around the globe, and a true sense of the importance to share this art form further.


Maïté Agopian, Puppeteer

"This Academy changed my life."

When I signed up, I did it because it seemed so special to me that I could not pass it by, but I was sure I am not going to do anything with it afterward. I was sure it was not for me. But - I found out I was wrong - I found that this is what I want to do in my life (for now anyway :-) ) to serve the world with loving puppetry.

The projects were not easy for me (The Foundation Course was my first wood experience ever.) I learned that I can do things I did not believe I could. Learning to believe in my ability to do challenging things is a great lesson by itself.


Yael, now a Puppeteer

"I have always been intimidated by the mechanics of puppet building and have learned techniques and methods that will serve me in all my work for years to come."

Bernd Ogrodnik has created one of the most comprehensive courses ever given on the centuries-old craft of carving and creating wooden puppets. This is the class I have been searching for all my life.

This course covers everything one needs to know in order to create a variety of styles of puppets.

A Master teacher, Bernd freely shares his 35 years of knowledge of puppet-making with the next generation of artists interested in the ancient art of puppetry.

Anyone interested in the art of puppet building of all kinds would be wise to take this course, as Bernd shows you step-by-step how to create the character you want.

I cannot recommend this course strongly enough. If you want to elevate your work to new levels of excellence, let Bernd guide you and mentor your growth as an artist.

His generosity with his knowledge of puppet building can and will change your life.


Robert Beuth, Actor, and Artist

"Bernd encourages you to follow what calls you, what is yours, giving you so many possibilities to build and manipulate puppets."

When I decided to follow the Academy course I thought it was too much for me because I was in a hurry to become an art therapist as soon as possible.

Now I am so happy to be here because Bernd is a wonderful teacher and at first I thought "I can learn to make wonderful creatures", but the Academy is so much more! His teaching approach cares about our body, mind, and spirit. We share our puppets, ideas, errors, insights, and processes with a loving community of artists from all over the world.

Bernd encourages you to follow what calls you, what is yours, giving you so many possibilities to build and manipulate puppets. It is a deep, fun, complete, encouraging way to learn puppet mastery from a great master!


Silvia Caglio

Love from our students:

"The Academy has transformed my wooden puppetry dreams into reality."

From setting up an efficient workplace to learning how to make numerous styles of puppets, I am now filled with solid knowledge and as many tools and ideas to explore further. Bernd's professionalism and dedication offer more than a puppet class: a certain way to look at the world, a community of puppet lovers around the globe, and a true sense of the importance to share this art form further.


Maïté Agopian, Puppeteer

"This Academy changed my life."

When I signed up, I did it because it seemed so special to me that I could not pass it by, but I was sure I am not going to do anything with it afterward. I was sure it was not for me. But - I found out I was wrong - I found that this is what I want to do in my life (for now anyway :-) ) to serve the world with loving puppetry.

The projects were not easy for me (The Foundation Course was my first wood experience ever.) I learned that I can do things I did not believe I could. Learning to believe in my ability to do challenging things is a great lesson by itself.


Yael, now a Puppeteer

"I have always been intimidated by the mechanics of puppet building and have learned techniques and methods that will serve me in all my work for years to come."

Bernd Ogrodnik has created one of the most comprehensive courses ever given on the centuries-old craft of carving and creating wooden puppets. This is the class I have been searching for all my life.

This course covers everything one needs to know in order to create a variety of styles of puppets.

A Master teacher, Bernd freely shares his 35 years of knowledge of puppet-making with the next generation of artists interested in the ancient art of puppetry.

Anyone interested in the art of puppet building of all kinds would be wise to take this course, as Bernd shows you step-by-step how to create the character you want.

I cannot recommend this course strongly enough. If you want to elevate your work to new levels of excellence, let Bernd guide you and mentor your growth as an artist.

His generosity with his knowledge of puppet building can and will change your life.


Robert Beuth, Actor, and Artist

"Bernd encourages you to follow what calls you, what is yours, giving you so many possibilities to build and manipulate puppets."

When I decided to follow the Academy course I thought it was too much for me because I was in a hurry to become an art therapist as soon as possible.

Now I am so happy to be here because Bernd is a wonderful teacher and at first I thought "I can learn to make wonderful creatures", but the Academy is so much more! His teaching approach cares about our body, mind, and spirit. We share our puppets, ideas, errors, insights, and processes with a loving community of artists from all over the world.

Bernd encourages you to follow what calls you, what is yours, giving you so many possibilities to build and manipulate puppets. It is a deep, fun, complete, encouraging way to learn puppet mastery from a great master!


Silvia Caglio

The Academy of the Wooden Puppet Curriculum

Module 1: Hand-Puppets – Rooted in Folklore, Destined to Entertain

Find out which puppet styles you will be exploring during this year.

  • Learn how to make simple generic heads to help you save time
  • Learn how to make simple and advanced hand puppets

Module 2: Rod-Puppets – From Ancient Sacred Roots to Modern Innovations

Make three very different and unique rod-puppets

  • Find out the principle of "three-point attachment"
  • Create simple wood/leather joints
  • Create expressive hands

Module 3: Tabletop-Puppets – Master Tools for the Storyteller

Make an advanced tabletop-puppet

  • Learn how to create beautiful and highly functional wooden joints
  • Learn how to create a "ball-joint"
  • Learn how to make the "one-hand tabletop control"

Module 4: Marionettes Part 1 – Discovering the Dance With Gravity

Gain a basic understanding of creating highly functional marionettes.

  • Learn how to make a scarf marionette
  • Learn how to make simple human and animal marionettes
  • Learn how to make "stationary" marionettes

Module 5: Marionettes Part 2 – Further Insights to Constructions and Control Techniques

Deepen your understanding of the noble marionette.

  • Learn how to make a "geodesic puppet"
  • Learn how to make an advanced one-hand controlled marionette

Module 6: Marionettes Part 3 – Mastering the Mighty Queen of Puppetry

In this module, everything you have learned so far will assist you in making a fully jointed advanced marionette as featured in the movie "Strings".

  • Learn about various advanced joints and control systems
  • Find out how to correctly weigh and balance your puppet
  • Explore advanced eye mechanisms
  • Apply all your new knowledge on your ongoing journey

You're ready to continue the journey into the wonderland of wooden puppets if:

➡️ You want to find more artistry in your life, nurture your creativity and create magic and joy in the world around you

➡️ You are looking for safe and encouraging guidance to start your puppet-building adventure

➡️ You want to deepen your experience and knowledge

➡️ You are eager to become more proficient with your tools and learn more efficient ways to sculpt wood

➡️ You want to learn how you can build more intricate types of puppets

➡️ You want to experience more of the learnings in the nurturing and soothing environment of Bernd's workshop and in the closed Facebook group of trusted travel companions from around the world

If you said "yes" to any of the above, then you're ready to become a member of the Academy of the Wooden Puppet.

What you'll get with the Academy of the Wooden Puppet

  • 60 pre-recorded classes (classes are released twice a week)
  • 52 weekly Q&A sessions to get answers to your most pressing questions
  • 12 Live Group Meetings on Zoom with Bernd Ogrodnik
  • Continuous, uninterrupted access to Bernd and our team in a closed Facebook group
  • Support from fellow Academy students in a closed Facebook group where you can encourage, help and inspire each other
  • Access to all the teaching material of the Academy for a full year after it ends. So you can do the course at your own pace
  • Academy Certification upon completion of the program

BONUS COURSES

Bonus 1: Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery

Once you join the Academy you'll start Bernd's flagship workshop: "Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery" for FREE!

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced puppet builder, this course will serve as a foundation for what you'll be doing for the whole year in the Academy.

All Academy students are required to first complete the "Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery", and for this time only, it is included for free.

In this 4-week course, you'll build a solid understanding and base to master the "Art of the Wooden Puppet".

In this course you'll learn:

  • All the basic carving techniques
  • How to make a character drawing and how to transform it into a functional technical drawing
  • About the many tools of the trade and how to use them safely
  • About wood and its qualities
  • How to create a strong puppet character

You will also get a sample pattern for your first puppet, free!

As you start the cutting and carving process, you will gradually transform a wood block into your first tabletop puppet.

In completing these carefully designed steps, you will then be able to approach more advanced styles of puppets.

The Foundation Course consists of:

  • Designing and making your first wooden tabletop puppet
  • 8 pre-recorded classes (released twice a week)
  • Two extra weeks to catch up before the advanced classes in the Academy will start in November
  • Weekly Q&A sessions
  • Detailed diagram ready to print out

Bonus 2: Sharpening Course

You get instant access once you join the Academy!

It's crucial for the successful woodcarver to learn the art of sharpening tools.

Lack of this skill is the major reason why we find so few puppet artists working in wood.

This is the reason why you will get immediate access to this detailed lesson on how to sharpen your knives and chisels properly.

This bonus course will be waiting for you on the teaching platform immediately when you sign up for the Academy.

We hope you will appreciate the pleasure of cutting your wood with a razor-sharp blade!

Bonus 3: DREMEL BOX

You get access after the first eight lessons in the Academy.

This brilliant system will save you many hours of tedious hand-carving time in a safe and dust-free environment.

In this bonus, you'll get video instructions on how to make Bernd's famous "Dremel-Box" – complete with plans and advice on special bits and applications.

You'll also get an in-depth description of the use of High-Speed Rotating Tools. Including the best choice of bits and burrs to ease the life of any aspiring woodworker.

If you have physical challenges in your hands and wrists, these tools will allow you to pursue your carving passion!

Bonus 4: TREASURE BOX PROGRAM

You get instant access once you enroll.

12 supplementary video sessions with Bernd's feedback on puppetry books and specific tools supporting your puppet mastery path.

These 18 hours of extra lessons will give you the confidence to tackle more carving projects!

You'll learn everything about knives, chisels, saws, strings, tapes, glues to the important connection between the puppet builder, the puppet, and the respected audience.

This inspiring series is immediately accessible on the teaching platform once you join the Academy, to support you in every step of this incredible journey.

BONUS COURSES

Bonus 1: Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery

Once you join the Academy you'll start Bernd's flagship workshop: "Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery" for FREE!

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced puppet builder, this course will serve as a foundation for what you'll be doing for the whole year in the Academy.

All Academy students are required to first complete the "Foundation Course to Puppet Mastery", and for this time only, it is included for free.

In this 4-week course, you'll build a solid understanding and base to master the "Art of the Wooden Puppet".

In this course you'll learn:

  • All the basic carving techniques
  • How to make a character drawing and how to transform it into a functional technical drawing
  • About the many tools of the trade and how to use them safely
  • About wood and its qualities
  • How to create a strong puppet character

You will also get a sample pattern for your first puppet, free!

As you start the cutting and carving process, you will gradually transform a wood block into your first tabletop puppet.

In completing these carefully designed steps, you will then be able to approach more advanced styles of puppets.

The Foundation Course consists of:

  • Designing and making your first wooden tabletop puppet
  • 8 pre-recorded classes (released twice a week)
  • Two extra weeks to catch up before the advanced classes in the Academy will start in November
  • Weekly Q&A sessions
  • Detailed diagram ready to print out

Bonus 2: Sharpening Course

You get instant access once you join the Academy!

It's crucial for the successful woodcarver to learn the art of sharpening tools.

Lack of this skill is the major reason why we find so few puppet artists working in wood.

This is the reason why you will get immediate access to this detailed lesson on how to sharpen your knives and chisels properly.

This bonus course will be waiting for you on the teaching platform immediately when you sign up for the Academy.

We hope you will appreciate the pleasure of cutting your wood with a razor-sharp blade!

Bonus 3: DREMEL BOX

You get access after the first eight lessons in the Academy.

This brilliant system will save you many hours of tedious hand-carving time in a safe and dust-free environment.

In this bonus, you'll get video instructions on how to make Bernd's famous "Dremel-Box" – complete with plans and advice on special bits and applications.

You'll also get an in-depth description of the use of High-Speed Rotating Tools. Including the best choice of bits and burrs to ease the life of any aspiring woodworker.

If you have physical challenges in your hands and wrists, these tools will allow you to pursue your carving passion!

Bonus 4: TREASURE BOX PROGRAM

You get instant access once you enroll.

12 supplementary video sessions with Bernd's feedback on puppetry books and specific tools supporting your puppet mastery path.

These 18 hours of extra lessons will give you the confidence to tackle more carving projects!

You'll learn everything about knives, chisels, saws, strings, tapes, glues to the important connection between the puppet builder, the puppet, and the respected audience.

This inspiring series is immediately accessible on the teaching platform once you join the Academy, to support you in every step of this incredible journey.

"By far the best professional development you could ever hope to access online as a puppet maker."

This course will open your eyes far more than you could ever imagine. I was already recommending it to everyone, and I will keep doing so for as long as there are courses. When's the next one? Count us in! :)


Clare McCarthy, Creative Director/Producer at Broken Puppet Theater Company, England

"The whole process has this wonderful support from the other students."

You have a Facebook group where you're all on, with Mark, and Bernd, so you can share things that you've made, things you have problems with and you'll get responses from other students from around the world. They're my virtual friends now! You can feel really close to people when you share.


Belinda May

"With what I've learned, I feel confident to tackle more carved projects and have a few more puppets in mind that are calling out to me to be made."

As someone who had never carved wood before, I was somewhat nervous about undertaking the challenge of creating a carved wood puppet. Bernd's lessons and encouragement kept me going and gave me the tools/methods and inspiration required to complete my first carved piece. With what I've learned, I feel confident to tackle more carved projects and have a few more puppets in mind that are calling out to me to be made.


Anna-Maria Lawrie, Artist, Art Educator

"At the age of 60, this education gave me the possibility to play."

Lejla Mulic

"The way the classes are presented and taught has made it all doable, fun, challenging and rewarding."

Jennifer Sage

Ken Flett

Questions Your Fellow Creative Souls, Puppeteers, Storytellers, and Artists Asked Before Saying "Yes" to the Academy of the Wooden Puppet:

When does the course begin?

The Academy of the Wooden Puppet is closed for enrollment. If you sign up for the waiting list, we will send you a message and you will have the opportunity to register as soon as possible.

 

What if I don't have any woodworking or carving experience before taking this course?

We're so glad you asked that!

Guess what: we have students like you, who joined the Academy of the Wooden Puppet and have never held a carving knife before. For example, Yael from Israel, whose life completely changed during the year in the Academy. She has not only learned how to carve but also has started creating professional puppet shows!

Carving is like any other skill — you just need to start and practice, practice, practice. So you can absolutely join even if you have no woodworking or carving experience.

What if I'm not fluent in English?

Don't worry! We're not native English speakers either :) In the pre-recorded classes, Bernd explains everything slowly so anyone can understand. However, if you don't understand something, you can always pause the video, rewind, and watch it again. Plus, you'll have a community of fellow students who will be eager to help you if you have any questions.

 

Will I benefit from the course if I have already built wooden puppets?

Definitely! The Academy not only teaches the making of one of Bernd's most treasured puppet designs, but it also offers a tremendous wealth of tips and trade secrets that even advanced builders will benefit from. 

Bernd will share what he has carefully studied and discovered in his 36-year journey as a successful puppeteer! 

What if I fall behind?

The motto of our course is: working through the material at your own pace!

Classes are pre-recorded, and you can watch them at your own pace on your own time. Plus, each 4-week instruction period is followed by four weeks of "time to catch up" and accommodates vacation time, etc.

 

I'm worried that I don't have any tools. How can I start?

We have had people like you with us that have made amazing puppets with an absolute minimum of tools.

We want to make it possible for EVERYONE to take part in this course with an absolute minimum of readily available tools.

Although you will learn about basic and advanced tools, all you need to start is a utility knife, coping saw, fine handsaw, and a drill.

Maneesh from India built his first puppet with just a utility knife and a coping saw.

So you don't need to buy many tools in the beginning. Start only with the utility knife, which you can buy at the gas station. And build your toolkit at your own pace.

I have physical challenges — I have arthritis — is it still possible for me to take the course?

We have many participants struggling with health challenges.

The use of various tool handles, constant reminders of correct posture, etc., are just a small part of this process.

Bernd will also introduce you to specialty tools and special rigs and devices that support participants with physical challenges.

Once you join the Academy, you will receive an exceptional bonus:

A two-part series where you'll get instructions on Bernd's famous Dremel Box, with an in-depth description of the use of high-speed rotating tools. Including the best choice of bits and burrs to ease the life of any aspiring woodworker.

These tools will allow you to pursue your carving passion when you have physical challenges in your hands and wrists.

If you have any other questions concerning our course, please send our team an email at info@worldsofpuppets.com and we will answer as quickly as possible.

Step Into the Next Chapter on Your Creative Path

A year from now, you will be full of knowledge and enthusiasm for the art of puppetry. This journey will enrich your life beyond the realms of the puppet!

Step Into the Next Chapter on Your Creative Path

A year from now, you will be full of knowledge and enthusiasm for the art of puppetry. This journey will enrich your life beyond the realms of the puppet!