Prop Maker

Construct life-like props for use on film sets and stages.

Quick Stats


Outlook
Good

Salary Range
$25,000 – $72,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Prop Makers do?

A Prop Maker creates and modifies objects that a film set needs for production. Prop Makers work underneath a Prop Master, the head of the props department, creating anything used in a scene that can’t be bought or rented.

You start the process of prop making by chatting with the Prop Master about what you’ll need to make. The directions you get may be either very detailed or general and you should be prepared to work creatively to meet the prop needs of a production.

This means that your job often starts with little or no concrete instruction, and you’ll be required to turn a vague idea into a great object. So the ability to think outside the box is a great attribute.

Then you get to work, altering old props, or creating new objects to fit the needs of the production. For this you should know a lot about different tools and materials, since each day your job covers a lot of ground; one day you’ll recreate a cereal box from the 1950’s, and the next find a way to make a knife seem real, but not be painful.

As a Prop Maker, an eye for detail, creativity, the ability to work quickly and some serious flexibility will all serve you well in this role. Also be prepared to repeat your work; Prop Makers always make at least two of a prop in the case something happens to the first one.


Should I be a Prop Maker?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Mast Maker, Sparmaker

    How to become a Prop Maker

    Most Prop Makers have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9zaaaa&chl=no+college+%2871%25%29|certificate+%2829%25%29||||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,71,71
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