Uno's Halloween workshop.

1,688 posts in this topic

Yes. Halloween.



Some of my projects going currently:




School carnival, where I can't use the 'normal' pneumatics to cause a skeleton to sit up and scream at the kids.


Bob is my solution. Bungie powered, but needed to be lighter, and cheaper, than your standard skellies. So, I'm making my own.


In progress, it's not perfect, but that will all get covered up when we add some skin later. (the smilie face is there so he grins at the neighbors across the street who hate me working on this stuff)


"from scratch"






Year of the Charr project.


I'm sick of silly photoshops and costumes winning the Guild Wars Halloween Art Contest.


So, I figured I'ld make my own version of these.




Currently on hold due to weather :( ...(I just HAVE to make the thing huge...)... but the 'feet' are done.




Flaming skull of doom.


Actually for 2010. Hand skulpted, then created a mold, and am now able to cast at will.






That's just a prototype. The 'real' ones will have much better coloring.



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I love the Char, many experiences with them grubby fellas thanks to Con and a few others, I survived -minus Leroy showing up:nonono::scarednod:

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I am so glad that you will have a new thread to this. I've been following your Halloween projects for years. As much of a tradition to you, it is my tradition to see what awesomeness you are creating each year. :)

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Your work is the most is beyond words. I wish time,money and talent to do that.

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Your work is the most is beyond words. I wish time,money and talent to do that.


Time, I can't help you with. But, it's not a lot of time I really spend. Couple hours a week. Less than most people spend on games, golf, etc.


As for Money, I've spent under $50 so far this year. Less than most people spend on games, golf, etc. Paper mache is CHEAP.


(though my budget's about to explode as I'm making a high voltage prop or two...transformers are NOT cheap)


Talent, I can point you at any number of resources to help you figure out how to do any of this, and more. Several I wrote myself, even. But, practice makes perfect.

Edited by Unorthodox

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Hey UnO, I see you've found your way over here too; and BigDork, too. Been a while since I've hung around the civ sites.


Cool stuff, as always. :) The Guild Wars entry looks like it's going to be huge when it's done.

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I like when I stumble across your Halloween threads Uno, maybe we could see some hauntings past?

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I like when I stumble across your Halloween threads Uno, maybe we could see some hauntings past?


hmmm....does html work on this site?


edit: Hmmm, apparantly not...give me a sec to convert those...


So...A brief history of the current house



Year one (2004): "WTF?!"


Me, a handfull of torches, and the biggest bowl of candy any kid had ever seen.




We were told to expect ~70 Trick or Treaters. I received 120ish that first year. Cars started to show up late to see the wierdo dancing around the giant Altar of Greed ™ by the firelight.


"The Great Mistake" 2005:


Watching "Temple of Doom" one too many times, I figured to make something similar to Mula Ram, then stumbled on an actual Mayan headdress mid-construction, and copied that.










We dummified the old mask, as well, and set it up with a strobe light on him so it looked like it moved as the kids approached.




More Altar of Greed ™.




Couple animal skulls up on posts, more torches, and real fur added to the costume.




The Great Mistake:


1. That headdress felt perfectly fine whenever I'ld try it on. Didn't feel too heavy or anything. About an hour into the night, though...:scarednod:by the end of the 4 hours....:wall:


2. This was the year I met Jamie. She's a little girl in the neighborhood who has epilepsy. As such, she couldn't go near the strobe. I heard her comment as they came up "here's another house I can't go to". I offered to turn it off, but she 'didn't want to ruin it for her brothers and sister'. I promised here right there that the yard would be MUCH better in '06, and I would make it SAFE for her.


175ish Trick or Treaters came this year. We were unprepared for quite that jump in numbers...

Edited by Unorthodox

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2006: "The great photo op."


2006 marked the first big prop I made with my own money. (previously working professionally, it was always someone else's money...whole different mindset there...)


And, making it CHEAP was the theme. I still love it's smoldering visage towering over the kiddies.




Kyle decided to be a smartass this year, and ask to be Darth Maul "with the spikes and everything", actually thinking I COULDN'T do it...

I made a hat. (he thinks he's looking scary)






Look, I can't carve. It was a bad idea...I scuplt, not least it wasn't heavy.




And, the intro of the scarecrows that house my former masks. (this won a photo contest)









And, Everyone and their damn dog wanted me to pose for a picture here...




This was also the most altering year for me on a personal level.


I heard Jamie from down the street, as only a child can get that pitch in their voice... "No, lets hurry over to that house!" Then her mom would say something, "But, he said he'ld FIX IT!"


I met them out front, She asked if it was safe. Yep!


250 kids went through that night. None enjoyed it quite as much, though. her mom told me Jamie was depressed that October, until they drove by and saw my countdown sign. She remembered I had promised to make it better for her. They were worried I wouldn't remember...


2007: Year of the Tzompotli.


Step 1: Procure Human Skull

Step 2: Mold Human Skull

Step 3: Cast hundreds of them

Step 4: Pound them on stakes.


The Tzompotli have become an icon of my yard, really.




And 2007 was ALL about them.




It was the first year we set up early, too. With alternative lighting.






But, FIRE is a MUST for Samhain.






Officials at Jamies school got word of my safe haunt. And, we made arrangements. At 8PM that Halloween, we closed off the yard, with the help of some neighbors, as 3 special needs busses pulled up and 50 kids got to go through a haunt for the first time in their lives. Many Trick or Treating for the first time.


We jumped to 500 trick or Treaters that year, NOT counting the school....


It's also the year we got a camera capable of doing video. (note I do NOT say video camera)


[ame=]YouTube - 2007[/ame]

Edited by Unorthodox

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2008: Year of many projects.


1: The Lab.


My mother-in-law asked me (sept 21st) to help with their school's fund-raiser. Do "A little spook alley. You know, we could do the bag with grapes, and spaghetti, and stuff."


I managed to resist mocking the idea of even elementary school kids being interested in feeling the grape eyeballs...and said I'ld come up with something.


In actuality, I already had. My first haunt, from when I was 8. I had this script, I had a 'skeleton' for a lab experiment...(cardboard cutout poseable thing you hung on your front door in the 70's/80's), and I had a tesla coil ball. EVERYTHING went wrong. My friend ditched me, the 'blacklight' I had saved up and bought was one of those purple lightbulb things they rip you off with...:rant:


Anyway, I figured I now had the tools to do it proper. BUT, under 30 days to prepare was NOT a lot of time. Corners were cut, details were missing, and mistakes were covered with duct tape.


But, the basics were there. (not the best group, or video, but you can get the idea.)


[ame=]YouTube - Laboratory[/ame]


THAT is where bob is going to improve things, along with an upcoming 5ft tall jacob's ladder, and a couple other additions.


I gotta go down the hole, will get more tomorrow.

Edited by Unorthodox

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These pics are great UnO, thanks for sharing. Can't wait to see 2009!

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Uno, did people complain about human skulls? They are very realistic and I imagine some parent might have been worried for their kid.

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Uno, did people complain about human skulls? They are very realistic and I imagine some parent might have been worried for their kid.


Why thank you. They should be realistic, as they are 1st generation copies of a 22 year old chinese female skull...procured legally, I assure... :innocent:


The police were called to the house when I was working on those in Aprilish...



At the time, I was using a 'red mahogony' stain to color that was most bloodlike while wet. Gorgeous...though, the digital photos of those wet skulls are lost on MZO, and I'm not venturing to that virus plagued wasteland to recover them.


2008 #2: Project Nightfall.


In 2007, Alec REALLY started bugging me to do a graveyard. "Halloween stones" as he put it.


In case you hadn't noticed, I REALLY don't get into the 'ordinary' stuff.


However, Guild Wars Nightfall was released in '07 as well, and it featured some interesting burials.




So, I got the boys, they made their graves, and we put them out 2 weeks early to enter the GW Halloween Art Contest.






The boys ran around like it was Christmas morning setting up that graveyard...:welldone:




Only thing I did was the banner in the back.








Unfortunately, we were disqualified due to the kids being too young to compete in the contest. :ban:


Eh, more important they had fun.


The Frat Boys living next door (seriously, there's a frat house next door) said it was the coolest thing they had ever seen. We had traffic backed up on the street every night for the 8 days this was out.

Edited by Unorthodox
damn typos...

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2008 #3: The Year of Fred.


While 2007 featured 106 skulls up on stakes...2008 was going to feature well over 250. What's more, they were FREE, as Kyle made some 400 skulls, and we sold them to pay for what we kept, and purchase the needed stakes (plus Kyle made a tidy profit on top of that) :bb:


I'm about sick of skulls, btw...


(Kyle's production line)




I branched out into other areas.


First with the shrunken heads...




Then with Crystal Skulls




Finally, with Fred.







Unfortunately, 2 days before Halloween, my Digital SLR camera broke...So, all we had was the auto-focus point and shoots...and they DO NOT LIKE FOG!


So, everything was out of focus. :no:


We had the school come over on the 30th this year, and made it into a little party. Which, made things easier halloween night.


Kyle also got his first taste of a REAL costume, as he stayed behind to help, though he didn't leave his appliances alone, so they started to come off about 3 hours into the night. :trouble: I'll get some serious appliance glue this year...




New necklace for me, made of a CivREV Xbox faceplate from the contest on poly :1st: , and a couple other little trinkets. Very tiki inspired mask this year.




It started raining 2 hours into the night with periodic dry spells. I was rushing around to save sound equipment half the night. :relief: (Concert grade sound equipment. I have connections)


Still, with the rain, we got 500 Trick or Treaters. We have NO clue what kind of crowd to expect with it being on a Saturday this year. :help:


Kind of noisy video, with loud folks coming through (9:30 at night, the frat boy neighbors coming to trick or beer)


[ame=]YouTube - Halloween 2008 part1[/ame]


Right before shutting down:


[ame=]YouTube - Halloween 2008 part 2[/ame]

Edited by Unorthodox

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We DO now have a right and proper VIDEO CAMERA!


So, the quality of video for 2009 will be excellent!


(A video of a 'dark ride' at the local amusement park. Camera works great in the dark! We'll be 'well lit' comparitively)


[ame=]YouTube - Dracula's Castle[/ame]

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I do a lot of work with masks from time to time. If I can dig up some pictures, should I post here, or should I get my own thread for that?

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Here is fine with me.


What kinds of masks, though? I'm curious now.


I used to do a ton of work with latex, (though "mask" is relative term with them getting glued in place) but have needed something easy on/off for the wee frightened ones. Hence the current trend toward more odd ones.

Edited by Unorthodox

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Mostly simple paper mache', with a protective coat of latex painted on. It makes for a much more flexible mask that way, too.


I'll see what I have on my hard drive. Not much spooky stuff, though. My niece is five, and my sister is an accademic who stages a lot of minmalist theater- those are my two main targets.

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Not my best work, by any stretch, just the first thing I found.


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How fun!


Sooo...what's your recipe, then? (paper mache)

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Very cool. You obviously love Halloween. I could never get into the holiday that much, but this is some great work. Good luck this year.

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Bob's coming along.


Forearms, hands, and a solid start on the skull.



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Just so I can be the first to say it here:



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