Tuesday, December 06, 2011


The Big Dream of working for Sesame Street Part 1 from The Spiritstorm School on Vimeo.

When I visit the set of Sesame Street, there's the story or interview I came to get and then there's the unexpected story I walk away with. Take, for example, when I went on set to interview long-time cameraman Frank Biando and ended up also meeting Big Bird's performer Carroll Spinney and Justin, the (then) pre-teen who had met Carroll because of the many letters he had written to Mr. Spinney starting at age 5.

Last week, I was on set to watch in action and interview long-time Sesame puppeteer Marty Robinson (stay tuned for the post about him!). A ways into the shoot, I was invited to come sit at the counter in Mr. Hooper's store to get a better view of the puppeteers. Sitting on the stools beside me were a man and a woman. The man was doing sketches of scenes with Sesame characters. Intrigued, I struck up a conversation.

Turns out the man was Louis Henry Mitchell, Sesame's Associate Design Director of Special Projects. He was sitting next to his wife, Jackie. Turns out they just got married!

Here are some of the interesting and amazing things that Louis does and did for Sesame:

* Create storyboards the for production of Sesame Street
* Design video covers for all new titles
* Designed the Planetarium Project for the Museum of Natural History
* Design Sesame Street Google Doodle
* Design and install Brooklyn Library Sesame Street Muppet Exhibit
* Design Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade float and two of the previous balloons, Big Bird and Super Grover
* Create gift portraits including a special gift for Vice President Joe Biden and wife, Dr. Jill Biden with the Sesame Street Muppets.
* Teach and train artists all over the world how to draw the Sesame Street Muppets through the Muppets' personalities

P.S. - There is a series of wonderful interviews with Louis on The Muppet Mindset: Part I * Part II * Part III * Part IV

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