Punished Props Frequently Asked Questions

What is Punished Props?
We are a small, two person/two cat prop and costume making company from Seattle Washington. We (Brittany and Bill Doran) have been building professional quality props since 2012. Our company is dedicated to creating detailed tutorial content to help you build to the best of your ability.

How did you get started making props for a living?
We started cosplaying with our friends back in 2009. We all dressed up as Team Fortress characters for PAX Prime out here in Seattle. Brittany and I were bitten by the cosplay bug pretty badly and I especially enjoyed making the guns and props for our costumes. Over the next couple of years I kept making more and more props. Eventually, people online started to recognize my work and asked me to make things for them. I started accepting commissions in early 2012, and by April of that year I had way too many to ever finish, so I quit my corporate day job to focus on building props full time! By 2015, Brittany jumped on board too! I told the full story here.

How it all got started.

How did you learn to make all this stuff?
I spend a lot of time on the internet. Whenever I see something that I didn’t know how to make, I scour YouTube and forums like thepf.com for every tasty nugget of information on how to do it myself. I also learn a lot through trial and error. After honing my craft for several years I have a pretty good idea of what does and doesn’t work, but that doesn’t keep me from experimenting with new tools, materials, and techniques every day!

I love your videos and tutorials! How can I help support them?
Thank you so much! Most of our content is totally free, especially the over 300 videos on our YouTube channel. Here are a couple of ways you can pitch in to help us create more, better tutorial content:

What’s your shop like?
Here’s a video tour of the Punished Props house and shop!

Can I hire you to make something?
In the past couple of years, our company has made a drastic shift away from taking paid commission work and towards creating regular, detailed tutorial content. We want to help usher in a new era of skilled prop and costume makers via our books and videos. Thus, we only take very few paid commissions each year and we’re extremely picky about the projects and people we choose to work with. We simply can’t build something for everyone, but we sure can try to teach everyone how they can build that special something themselves.

You should totally make ______!
I have a wish list of projects that grows at a pace much faster than we will every be able to finish. While I do appreciate your input and suggestions for our tutorial content, please bear in mind that we simply cannot do it all. If you have that one dream project that you want to see made, consider taking the plunge and trying to tackle it yourself using the knowledge we’ve shared. Need help figuring out the build? See below.

How do I make/do ______?
I know you have specific questions about how to tackle that one difficult part of your current prop or costume build and I want to help. We’ve covered tons of great questions in our Prop: Live Q&A videos, so go check those out. You can also do a quick search of our YouTube videos or tutorial books to see if we’ve already covered your technique question. If you still have a specific question, you can submit it for to our Prop: Live Q&A show and we might be able to answer it on the show! Have questions about the tools and materials we use? See below!

What tools and materials do you use?
I’ve put together an extensive list of tools that we use here in our shop. Give it a look and I thank you for using our Amazon Affiliate links if you decide to buy anything on that list. Furthermore, every video we upload includes a detailed list, with links, to all of the tools and materials used for that video. Happy shopping!

Will you come to my local convention?
We absolutely love going to conventions and dressing up in costume. The reality is that we can’t go to them all. It’s just not financially viable. That doesn’t mean we can’t come to your convention, we just need help getting there. Have the people who run your local con shoot us a message and hopefully we can work out an arrangement. Usually we require travel and accommodations and can offer a variety of valuable programming. Hope to see you soon!

Can I come work for Punished Props?
The reality of our situation is that we’re a husband/wife team working out of our basement. At this point employees or interns are simply out of the question, but I appreciate your enthusiasm! If you want to get into making things as a profession, check out how I did it and work towards creating your own path as a creative professional!

Thanks for checking out our work. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us or shoot me a message on Twitter!