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Friday, November 11, 2011

My Breathing Grave

This year I built a breathing grave. It was a huge hit on Halloween. the moment is very subtle, depending on when you looked at it you knew something was odd, and then you really saw the "breathing" movement. Here's a daytime video:

I'm not sure if I have a night time video, but I will lokk and see if I do...

Happy Haunting!!!!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

2011 pictures...

So now that Halloween has past this year, I figured i should post the few pictures that I have from the "big" night...

Jen's new Spider victim

the kids & me

Jen & I

I've already started planning next year. We doubled the number of ToT's this year. It's a lot like it was in Salt Lake City... each year seems to grow as people find us.. I hope you enjoy the pics, and that your Halloween was amazing:)
Happy Haunting!!!
~ Bill

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Here's the work in progress...

22 days!?!?!? I can't believe that we're down to 22 day's already!!!! So last night my lovely wife Jen was outside taking some pictures of the yard. I have been adding the finishing touches to my reaper statue... added some spanish moss and changed the lantern mostly.
I hacked the wal-mart hurricane lantern so that it actually has a flicker candle in it, and I "aged" the glass globe. I haven't put the fog machines out or anything like that yet.
Here's two of the pictures that she took last night:

So this coming weekend, I have two projects to build/complete and some fine tuning of the lighting etc. At Viv's suggestion, I am going to make a gibbet and hang it and my Wal-greens corpse from a tree. And I almost have all the parts for my breathing grave. so I still have a ton to do :)
I hope everyone is having an awesome October, and I'll keep you posted on my progress!!
~ Happy Haunting!!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

So with only 33 days …

Until Halloween, I have started another prop. Well, actually I started it this past weekend. One of the things I've always liked that other home haunts have (or have variations of) is the Monster Mud reapers. Before I had discovered the haunts that have became my inspiration and idols (of sorts) I had seen a picture of something called "the Watchman". It was a hooded figure holding a lantern much in the style of the Pleurant (Weeper) statues. (For a great blog post on these go to this post. I just recently started following Midnight in the Garden of Evil's blog, and I think all of you should as well J ) I believe I first saw it around 2007 or 2008. In fact I saved the pictures to my computer and told Jen that one day I would build one of my own. So finally I did …
First, I apologize for the poor quality of the picture. (I am the first to admit that I suck at taking pictures.) I haven't completely finished him yet. I still need to slap another coat of Monster mud on him, then do some painting/highlighting, and accessorize him.
Here's some of the build pictures …
The frame was made from PVC and "chicken-wire".
This is with the main body covered and MM'd. I tried to stay out of the picture but Kate decided to force me to be in it…lol
Here I am fitting the hood before MM-ing it.

And here it is at night....
So this is my project for this week. I hope to have him completely finished by Thursday; Friday by the latest. Weather permitting I also plan on setting up the yard this week. After this I am hoping to make a "breathing grave" and maybe a FCG (Flying Crank Ghost). I purchased a few motors so those projects will hopefully not take long.
Well, back to workJ
Happy Haunting!!!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A new prop...

has been made. So finally I made a new prop. This year has been extremely trying on me in regards to life just not wanting to co-operate with my plans. So finally in the middle of September I made a new prop. As I've stated before, I tend not to go towards the gore but I've wanted to do this one for a while now. So here's the story:

Last Friday while taking Viv to school, we (Jen, Viv, and I) snuck off to waffle house for breakfast. Then after we had to stop by Wal-greens. Well, I found 2 of these guys hanging out:

So it's a "life-size" at 5 ft. (yes it is bigger than Kate) and it only cost me $30 a piece. I bought the only two that they had. Over on the Halloween Forum they posted a thread on these guys and someone shared a link to this guy's tutorial on using plastic to corpse a skeleton . So I decided to give it a try. Like this guy I am way too lazy for the method that uses liquid latex and
So here it starts:

So I started with wrapping the body, arms and legs with the .7 mil plastic drop cloth. then I used the brand new heat gun I purchased just for this occaision and started to form it to the skeleton.

Then I painted it with Walnut colored stain. I used Minnwax Gel stain just like the tutorial said (except he used Hickory). Then I dry brushed it with some tan paint, just to bring out the highlights. Next I worked on the neck and head.

I added some hair, and my corpse is hanging out drying upstairs with the kids. I may do a few more details and touch ups but I am not sure what they might be at this time... maybe some decayed clothes or something, but who knows.
Prior to corpsing this one, Kate got to pose with him...

Yes, in case you were wondering, he is dressed as Gavin. In fact, Gavin wanted to send him to school tomorrow instead of him having to
So there's my first prop of the season...Hope you all like it!!!
Happy Haunting!!!!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

60 days until…..

Halloween!!! I know; I know… I have so neglected my blog this year, but I have a good excuse. So I was still working away on Halloween props after the New Year.  So come February I decided to take a short break from Halloween. I had planned on starting back up in April but then April came along and I was like…no I’ll start at the end of May or beginning of June. Well then the unfortunate occurrence of being unemployed happened. That meant I could not spend money on Halloween at all. It took me about a month and a half to find a job (and my wife has even went back to work at the hospital). So now that school has started back up, and we’re both working, I can finally start on some projects. On my list for this year are a mausoleum and maybe a few more tombstones. I know…it’s not that ambitious but hopefully next year will be much, much better…. Last year I had seen where someone had made a creepy cradle tombstone for a baby, and I wanted to “copy” that but I think I have found a better one. I saw this picture on a cemetery photography site and said to myself “this one I must make.”
I know it is a lil creepy...but I love it for some reason... So that is what I plan on doing for my birthday weekend (next week J) I'll post pics as I'm working on it :)
Happy Haunting all!!!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

No...I'm not....

dead. I'm taking a break from my Halloween obsession until April. unlike most haunters I kept going after Halloween. (Usually we tend to take a break through November and December.) This is to prevent burnout ect. I will be back with progress on this year's haunt in April. Until then I think I will continue practicing my new hobby of Magic tricks...I am such a

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Another ghost picture

taken from Ft. Barrancas. Some of you may remember that back in August, Gavin took a picture while walking around Ft. Barrancas and it had what appears to be a person standing down a hallway. (For that post go here.) Well last Saturday we took Jen's mom and brother out to the fort. While we were there walking around Jen kept saying that she felt like we were being followed and watched. (We were actually the only people at the fort because they were getting ready to lock up for the day.) She was taking pictures (like she always does) and she spun around real quick and took a shot from the way we were coming. (In fact if you compare the picture from august to this one it is the same corrider.) A few days later she was going through the pictures and she saw something. Note: the only thing she did to these pictures was adjust the lighting and contrast. (She also zoomed in a bit on one)....
In this one she saw someting down the corrider. If you look at the upper right of the corrider you see some "discoloration" in the picture.
In this one she adjusted the contrast and the lighting. If you look closely it appears to be a face of some kind.

This is the picture zoomed in. I have no doubt that that is a face looking back at us. We've taken the picture and zoomed in even more and it appears to be wearing a robe or a dress. We have briefly mentioned the original picture to the park rangers there and they told us that many people "feel" that there is something in that part of the fort, specifically in that corrider. I'll let you decide if you think that is a spirit looking back... I know that's exactly what I think it is.
Tonight we're taking a candle lit tour of the fort. It is the anniversary of the Fort joining the civil war. Maybe we'll see this spirit again....
Happy Haunting!!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

DVD Review - Make Your Own Scratch Built Corpse by Christian Hanson

I got this DVD right before Halloween. Corpse making has been something I have wanted to try, but I have never really had the time to do it.
I was browsing on the Halloween Forum and I came across this post. I then went to The Monster Closet and saw that the DVD was only $14.95 plus shipping (for a total of $19.90) I thought "well, for under $20 even if it sucks I can take the risk." I am so glad I did.
Here is Christian Hanson's bio (taken from his website):

Christian Hanson has had an interest in makeup effects since childhood, and became a serious student of the craft in the late '90s. He is the creator, designer and administrator of The Monster Lab, a popular online forum for FX artists (no longer online). He is currently working in the art/fabrication department of museum outfitter and design firm, sculpting animals and creating realistic environmental and educational displays. Over 2007, he invented a new process for creating corpse props and teamed up with filmmaker Sam Thompson to produce "Make Your Own Scratch Built Corpse" DVD. Make sure to check the "News" section for current work and updates. With each project, he aspires to the highest quality of realism, design and craftsmanship. Christian lives in his hometown of Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The DVD is of professional quality. It appears to be an actual DVD not pressed from a home publisher. The film quality is excellant. I had a question after I ordered it and within hours my e-mail was answered. So a thumbs up on customer service. The techniques that are discussed are ones that I have not seen before (and believe me I have scoured the internet and forums looking) and they are very clearly described and demonstrated. The dialogue between the cast on the movie is a bit cheesy, but for the information you get from the DVD it is easily over looked.
Here is the preview video that they have:

Ok, so here's the bottom line: This DVD is awesome. Even if you don't plan on making a corpse from it, the information given can easily go into other projetcs. I believe this is one of the must haves for haunters and for the price you really can't go wrong. Go get you a copy while you can.
Happy Haunting!!!!