Sunday, August 17, 2014

Ghost Popper

Hi everyone.  Latest take on Ghosts is a ghost tombstone popper.  In the video below I show the ghost popper under black light and in action, and I detail how I made the popper.  The main features of the popper are:

  1. The popper goes up and down, instead of the circular motion you find in a lot of online examples.
  2. I added animation to the head so it turns sideways, and opens its mouth.
  3. And it is a ghost, black armature covered with RIT treated cheese cloth.
Hope you like it!





Friday, July 25, 2014

First Tombstone Rocker

Hi everyone, I FINALLY got some time to work on props.  This blog will show the rest of the Murdniwg tombstone.  Next project will complete the ghost tombstone popper I was not able to complete for the HauntForum contest.  First, some pictures of the tombstone, followed by a video of how the rocker works.  Sorry to be brief, I have lots to do at the moment :)




Monday, February 17, 2014

Recreating the Haunted Mansion's Nine Old Men

I have recently started visiting Disney World and the Haunted Mansion as much as I can (season passes are great), call it my way of decompressing from life and work. This past Halloween I introduced the Haunted Mansion into my yard haunt by using various versions of Grim Grinning Ghost (as done in the ride), and decided that I wanted to pay tribute to the Mansion graveyard scene (in the ride, not outside) in my haunt. First step was to recreate elements of the graveyard, so I showed up early so I could 'document' the graveyard, and I was really surprised when I studied the pictures and found out that there were only a few tombstones used over and over throughout the graveyard. A little research starting with some links from the Haunted Mansion thread at HalloweenForum, and I found out that the tombstones have been referred to as the nine old men, a tribute to Disney's original animators. I built my own collage using pictures I took:
Flash really flattens the depth of the tombstones, the best I have found to show the depth, and some of the movement are a couple of youtube videos taken when they had to turn the lights on: The first stone I will recreate is the Murdniwg stone:
I used one of the pictures in Gimp, performed an edge detect, skewed, and overlaid a graph to build a template:
Once this was done, I scaled it to be 36" tall, then printed it out using Microsoft Paint. Paint is good because it allows you to print to scale on multiple sheets, which you can tape together to make a scale template. 2 inch foam will be used for the form, and papier-mâché for shell. More to come!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Tres Fantasmas

No video of the Halloween setup this year. This year I was dealing with a bad cold the entire week prior to Halloween, and Halloween day itself turn too windy for the cloaked FCG, and the phantom shadow and cloaked ghost went out at the last minute but were not worth filming in the wind. I managed to get set up, and as always Halloween itself was great, but I was too exhausted to bother with pictures afterwards. I did take the video below the night before Halloween while testing the 3 ghosts. Next year will see a different layout, a crypt for the FCG so I can display it regardless of the wind, and an effort to recreate parts of the graveyard scene from the Haunted Mansion.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Phantom Shadow is Done!

Without further ado, or Scooby doo, I present the Phantom Shadow. Now give me a Scooby Snack! I am so happy to finally get this done. The cam system has been very reliable, and the highlighter ink does a great job providing a yellowish green UV glow. I will probably add a chain, and touch up the green, but for the most part it is done and ready to display. Enjoy!

The following video shows it in action.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Hi everyone. I have not been a good blogger, and I have not had much time to work on the latest ghost, but I finally had some time today to work on the Phantom Shadow. I wanted to post some pictures that show the forms and the black cloth application. All that is left is the cheesecloth. I soaked some yellow highlighter cores in water for the cheesecloth for the initial color. Once the cheesecloth is dyed with the yellow, I going to soak some green cores and add highlights to the cheesecloth (the yellow glows much brighter then the green).

Monday, September 9, 2013

I have the phantom shadow armature done, as you can see in the following video.



The cam setup should be usable in a wide variety of motion applications.  The next steps include building small enclosures for the eyes and mouth that will hold red or orange LEDs, covering the face in black cloth, and building the forms.  The ghost will be covered first with black cloth similar to the previous ghosts.  Instead of using RIT treated cheese cloth, I will be using ink from green and yellow highlighters.  The result will hopefully be a good representation of the Phantom Shadow from Scooby Do.  More to come, thanks for watching.