Being a Stop-Motion Animation Costume Designer Is All About The Details

Anna Green

Designing costumes for stop-motion animated movies comes with its own unique challenges. Like live-action costume designers, stop-motion designers create outfits and accessories that express elements of each character’s personality. But stop-motion costume designers also have to create realistic-looking outfits for “actors” the size of a doll, working with thin, lightweight fabrics that allow their tiny characters to walk, run, or dance like real people.

In the short video profile above, Academy Originals goes behind the scenes with professional stop-motion costume designer Deborah Cook, who worked on The Boxtrolls (2014), ParaNorman (2012), and Coraline (2009). Cook discusses her creative process and explains how she comes up with her costume ideas. “With stop-frame you have to try a lot of new things all the time to keep it fresh,” she explains. “Even if it sounds outlandish and not right, you have to be kind of daring and a bit risk-taking. It’s not a place for the meek and mild to be involved in costume design.”

Banner Image Credit: Academy Originals, YouTube