Ashley Bilke made a big impact last weekend at Maker Faire Kansas City. Her griffin puppet was quite a hit. I heard people talking about it all over. They were right to do so, it was really cool.
The griffon is part costume, part puppet. A person stands inside, operating all the functions from within, while their legs act as the front legs. They have a handle for the mouth, another for the eyes, and a pulley for the ears.
I asked Ashley what the toughest part of the griffon was and it turns out that it may not be what you expect. She explained that making the quadruped movement for a single operator was quite difficult. She started trying to use a bicycle wheel for the rear legs, but ultimately that failed. Her final solution was to use a baby stroller that was heavily modified to hold up the rear end. The rear legs are wired to move opposite of the front.