Style After a quick search on the internet for marionette style puppets I found this great little website. To brothers Jan and Martin Ruzicka based in Czech Republic still make traditional wood carved marionettes and have a vast collection of different puppet characters you can buy. http://www.marionetisti.cz/marrionettes/mar_1_en.html
I love how these marionettes are not sanded down to a fine smooth finish like most of the others i've looked at and you can still see nearly all of the tool marks made in the wood. I prefer this finish to the sanded because it gives the puppet a nice texture and retains all the original cuts and marks you've made.
For example on the marionette above the tool marks on the knight work perfectly to represent the hammer marks just like on a real piece of armour that's been hammered into shape. On the monkey tool marks work well to show skin textures or muscle tone. I think if something is sanded to a perfect finish then its expected to be accurate and in proportion like the real thing. With a more ruff cut the eye fills in and smooths over the form.
I like this puppet because it shows that you can carve a modern character but still retain the traditional style. I think what's intriguing about this puppet is that they could have sanded back the head to make it look more realistic but the risk is it can become too doll like. The more hand crafted style brings together a greater mix of modern and traditional in its character and the way its carved. Hopefully my marionette will turn out in a similar style as I want to sculpt myself.