Archives for the month of: November, 2015


The pop-up kitchen for the launch of the Artist’s Surviva Cookbook was a full success. The time went by so fast and there were plenty of people of all ages who wanted to have a go. There weren’t many kids, which was a bit sad, but you can tell that those who were there really enjoyed it. I heard someone saying: “This is how kid’s birthday parties should be.”



The photos were taken by Erwin Loosekot

yeast plait

Today is baking day. We are making a couple of items so we have something to offer before the first bread will come out of the oven tomorrow. Early this morning we started off with a yeast plait, and would you believe it, it got slightly burned around the edges. Cash Cow was very unhappy and her initial thought was, she will have to do it again, we can’t take that thing to our event. Alien, who has a very sunny disposition tries to talk her out of it. In his opinion nobody will notice once it is cut up. I don’t know. I leave them to sort it out :)

I use my oven all the time and it really should not have happend. This of course makes me wonder how the two ovens a the church will behave. I never used them before. We might head towards disaster.

And while I am writing this in a disgruntled mood, can anybody tell me where the spellcheck function in WordPress is hiding now? I can’t find the button, or am I the only one who needs a spell-checker?

packing up

Now I am getting nervous. The book launch is on Saturday and I have made plenty of lists: What I have to take, what I have to buy, what I have to ask others to help me with and so on.

Yesterday I had to swing by the venue again because all of a sudden I realised I don’t even know where the toilets are and then I was told the fridge is broken. So I will have to organise a chilly bin for the milk and the butter. I don’t have one of those.

Today I went to the shops to buy flour. Surprisingly, the 1.5 kg bags were more economical, because they were on special this week. So I bought 8 packets of white flour and 4 packets of whole meal. The lady at checkout was so curious, she couldn’t resist asking me what I was doing :). I knew that will happen. Honestly who would buy 12 packets of flour in one go. It wasn’t really that cheap that it justified hording. So I gave her an invitation to the launch.

The worst thing is, I have absolutely no idea how many people will show up. I have had some replies to my emails and a lot of people said it is a great idea. I didn’t ask for RSVP as it would make it too official and I really would like for people to just drop by.

Dietlind Wagner dedepuppet and bun

Doesn’t the saying go: “Necessity is the mother of all inventions”. When the puppets got really desperate, they came up with the idea to make a book full of recipes with flour and water: The Artist’s Survival  Cookbook. The book is now available on CreateSpace and this Saturday we are celebrating the launch with a pop-up kitchen at the Methodist Church in Birkenhead. It is an interactive launch and the visitors can try their hand at a recipe from the book. I still have a lot to prepare and I have no idea how it will go, but that is the fun of it :)

devil sunglasses

Loosing your job is a very unsettling event and you will go through a serious grieving phase. It would be strange if you wouldn’t. When it happened, my favourite puppet Devil (the first puppet I ever made) wore dark sunglasses a lot.

I so wanted my puppets to get a bit more bite and be more negative and scathing on the blog. But they ignored me. Negativity is not in their make-up. It doesn’t come naturally to them. Instead they got quieter and quieter.


In the beginning the Dedes and I had a care free life. I did workshops and wrote every morning between 7 and 9, before I trundled off to work.

Looking back at the early days with the puppets, they clearly express my attitude: “There are no real dramas! So, get over it.”

And then I lost two major contracts in my design business, and my part-time teaching job – all at the same time. Tja and everything new I touched seemed to turn to custard straight away. This was a new experience for me!


The next step up from just telling stories on the blog was the puppet films. Puppets are performers and they want to move. One weekend, when I was home alone, I created the film “Life of an Artist”. It describes the plight of an artist creating work that nobody gives a toss about. Most of us can relate to that, eh.

This lead to me running workshops where a small group of people get together to create impromptu stop motion films. It’s similar to “theatre sports” or “who’s line is it anyway”. I’m sure you get the picture. It’s hillareous. I only facilitate and observe and I put the film together in the end. This picture though, is from a different workshop. This one is called “My friend the Dede.” Here I work with older people to elicit stories. I love that particular picture. The elephant and the lady display such a wonderful rapport.

pig performance

In the third week the candidates had to perform a skills. You know by now Pig can’t do anything but drink. Surprisingly he turned his perceived weakness, the stage fright, into a strength. He performed a modern show called “the unveiling” together with his mate Professor.

Hackled by another Dede he came close to a heart attack. Pigs are prone to that when they are scared. If you want to know what happened you have to read the blog.

pig stage fright

The puppets are an amazing tool to foster understanding. For example Pig. In the first week of the superdede competition Pig froze on stage and it became clear he is an alcoholic, but for no fault of his own. In the competition he told the blog readers is because the farmer fed beer to the mother sow to make farrowing easier. So he basically suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome. It also became clear, that Professor and Pig are co-depended. A very common trait in alcoholics.