Buzz!

 

Mad Monster Party Art Show

 

Just in time for Halloween, the Van Eaton Galleries in Sherman Oaks, CA is having a group show tribute to the Rankin/Bass animated classic “The Mad Monster Party”. Address: 13613 Ventura Blvd, Sherman Oaks, CA 91423. 1-800-599-3693.

 

Amazing paintings, sculptures, handmade dolls and an assortment of mixed media creations pack the two galleries and yes, they are all for sale. For those unable to actually attend the show, artwork can be viewed and purchased online, from their gallery website: http://www.vegalleries.com/monsterparty.html

 

His a sampling of some of the incredible art from one of our favorite animated classics.

 

October Shadows 2012

 

October Shadows is celebrating their fifth year of Halloween in Art. And where could such a show be held, you ask? At the Mountain View Mausoleum (where they filmed PHANTASM!) at 2300 N. Marengo Avenue, Altadena, CA 91001.

 

The top names in the world of fine art, comics, film, tv and animation are showing why they love this time of year in 2d, 3d and mixed media. The show will run each Saturday and Sunday from 10 am – 3 pm through November 3rd.

 

Below is a micro sampling of some of the amazing art featured at this annual exhibit.

 

 

 

 

We would like to welcome our newest member and writer to the Creature Buzz team, Beth, our official UK Correspondent.

 

Since the tender age of 8 when she was permitted to stay up past her bedtime to watch Universal’s “Bride of Frankenstein” with her father – she was hooked on horror films. Fast forward to the present; Beth watches 2 to 3 horror films a night. As our only international member, we look forward to Beth’s unique British perspective as she shares her vast knowledge of vintage horror & sci-fi classics from film, television and the occasional dusty, leather bound tome.

 

You can follow Beth on Twitter and at her own blog: http://magicalhorror.webs.com/

 

 

 

 

Creature Buzz is now on Pinterest

 

For better or for worse, our twisted minds are open to the public. Take a peek of what catches our eye as we comb the web for all things awesome!

 

Click the image to be beamed instantly to our Pinterst page!

 

 

 

I’ve always been a great admirer of Lon Chaney Sr. (April 1, 1883 – August 26, 1930) as not only a character actor but as a make-up genius. His inventive solutions are the stuff of legend. The resources for stage make-up were crude, uncomfortable, toxic and extremely difficult to obtain. Chaney’s focused devotion to bringing grotesque characters to life meant he had to invent his solutions, normally in an unorthodox fashion. His most memorable and certainly, one of my absolute favorite is his version of Erik as The Phantom of the Opera. For a beautiful bio and tribute to Lon Chaney, please visit this site at Magical Horror.

 

Enamored with that design, I set out to create my own version, the same way aspiring artists copy Renaissance masters to improve their own abilities. I watched The Phantom of the Opera repeatedly and studied every known image of his Phantom make-up, form by form, deciphering what was Chaney’s actual face from his prosthetic counterpart.

 

 

And then it hit me. Instead of creating a stylized, non-descript mask that concealed his hideous features like the one he wore to enchant Christine; I would base my mask on the brilliant Chaney “reveal” make-up design.

 

But my design will have backstory. It should show the wear and tear of a ceramic-like mask that has seen too many days in the dark recesses below the Paris Opera House. My Phantom mask will be reproduced as a lightweight, rigid, resin mask designed to fit every contour of my face, perfectly. It would be “comfortable” to wear and easy to put on or remove in an instant.

 

SCULPTURE STAGE:

 

The first image shows the super early rough-in stage. At this point, I was laying down character lines, nothing more but carefully watching how the shadows wrap the forms similar to that in Chaney’s make-up. If you look closely, the forehead in the 1st image is low, in case the mask is worn with a top hat. As indicated in the subsequent shots, I quickly abandoned that idea and sculpted the classic, high arching forehead to be more inline to the original design. All of the textures are created by hand, using custom, hand-made sculpting tools. Working at night (of course!), the entire sculpting process took about 10 days or roughly 30 hours.

 

 

MOLDING & CASTING STAGE:

 

With the sculpture now complete, the next stage was to create the silicone negative. The first images shows the blue colored silicone “brush-up” over the finished sculpture. The brush up process took about 5 hrs to create, taking care to create an even thickness coat and allowed to cure overnight. The next morning, the cured silicone mold was removed and the first layer of resin was “slushed” into the mold, until a desired thickness (about 5 mm) of material was reached. The resin was allowed to cure for a few hours, getting stronger the longer it sat.  With gentle prodding, the raw casting was removed from the mold and its edges cleaned up with a dremel and sandpaper. The eye holes and ribbon slots were also cut out and sanded to a smooth finish.

PAINTING STAGE:

 

The mask was then coated with a light grey primer followed by numerous layers of bruised flesh tones using special model paints. That process was repeated until I was satisfied with the final coloration. The images show the process and the final version of the mask.

 

 

 

In 1898, H. G. Wells releases his first person narrative of an unnamed protagonist facing down an alien invasion on London. It is considered to be one of the earliest stories of a conflict between humans and an alien species. This is epic.

 

Fast forward to October 30, 1938. Orson Wells, a young actor at that time, unleashes a radio drama of the War of the Worlds from a small studio at the Mercury Theater over the Columbia Broadcasting Network. In this 60 minute version, the first two thirds of the broadcast are presented as a series of eye witness news bulletins, interrupting the Ramon Raquello Orchestra. The first reports were from “Richard Pierson,” a famed astronomer, reporting explosions seen coming from the surface of Mars. As the interruption frequency intensifies, we learn of a large, cylindrical meteor impacting on a farm in Grovers Mill, New Jersey. It is from this location that the large Martian Tripod emerges from its crater, incinerating all that were present – the radio transmission goes silent.

 

From the actual broadcast:

 

“Good heavens, something’s wriggling out of the shadow like a gray snake. Now it’s another one, and another. They look like tentacles to me. There, I can see the thing’s body. It’s large, large as a bear and it glistens like wet leather. But that face, it . . . Ladies and gentlemen, it’s indescribable. I can hardly force myself to keep looking at it. The eyes are black and gleam like a serpent. The mouth is V-shaped with saliva dripping from its rimless lips that seem to quiver and pulsate. The monster or whatever it is can hardly move. It seems weighed down by . . . possibly gravity or something. The thing’s raising up. The crowd falls back now. They’ve seen plenty. This is the most extraordinary experience. I can’t find words . . . I’ll pull this microphone with me as I talk. I’ll have to stop the description until I can take a new position. Hold on, will you please, I’ll be right back in a minute.”

 

Believing that this radio broadcast was real, genuine wide spread panic ensued, especially around Grovers Mill, NJ. Residents from neighboring towns grabbed their guns and headed into the epicenter of the alien invasion. Just behind a farm house and silhouetted against the darkened sky, stood a 60′ tall Martian Machine. The residents took aim and blasted away at it – but… it was simply a water tower.

 

Even though Martian Machines did not descend on the sleepy town of Grovers Mill, NJ in 1938 – the remains of the water tower, now on private property are still present. Across the street from the water tower is Van Nest Park at 222 Cranbury Rd, Princeton Junction, NJ 08550. In that park you will find the War of the Worlds monument, commemorating the 50 year anniversary of the attack that never happened.

 

For a complete transcript of the 1938 broadcast that sent millions into a frenzy is found here: http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/orsonwellswaroftheworlds.htm

 

And to keep with Halloween Eve tradition, you can listen to the actual broadcast by Orson Well here: http://sounds.mercurytheatre.info/mercury/381030.mp3

 


 

Once a week, a group of Hollywood Visual Effects Artists and Designers would meet at a local restaurant for an hour long HORROR, SCI-FI and FANTASY “show and tell while discussing the latest “buzz.”

 

Famous movie props, rare collections, collector art, special guests and book/movie reviews all made a weekly appearance, adding dimension to the discussion. This blog chronicles that obsession.  This is CREATURE BUZZ

 

This site hasn’t been updated in a long time but we hope you enjoy it just the same.