Posts Tagged ‘joshua hoffine’

Making MONSTER PROM

May 12, 2014

Hi kiddies!  This is my new project MONSTER PROM.

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This project was a commission from Sony UK utilizing their new full-frame Sony A7 camera.  I re-imagined iconic monsters Dracula, Frankenstein, and Wolfman as teenagers posing for their Prom photos.

Virtually all Americans are familiar with the classic Prom photo.  We’ve all seen them, and most of us have even posed for them.  I love Prom photos.  Nothing captures the quintessential awkwardness of adolescence like the Prom photo.  It is the final game of dress-up before entering the adult world.

Monsters are the perennial outsider.  Did any of us ever feel more like monsters than we did as teenagers?  Bodies changing beyond our control, sprouting hair, developing acne, braces, bad haircuts.  The self-consciousness of adolescence comes with the realization that the villagers could turn on you at any moment.

There is a long-standing tradition of teenage monsters in the Horror genre, starting with I Was A Teenage Werewolf and I Was A Teenage Frankenstein, both from 1957.  Modern variations on the teenage monster movie include Carrie, Teen Wolf, The Craft, even Twilight.  Wes Craven’s Scream could easily have been titled I Was A Teenage Slasher.

A lot of wonderful people helped me with my teenage monster project.

My eldest daughter Arinna (from my photograph BABYSITTER) played the part of Frankenstein’s girlfriend.  She also did a wonderful job helping me cast my project, and recruited several of her friends to be models.

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All of the girls’ hairstyles were done by my friend Nikki Moreno.  Nikki specializes in retro Pin-Up portraits with her company Vixen Pin-Up Photography.  Not only did she do everybody’s hair, but Nikki was also a crucial photography assistant.  She provided set elements, like the silver tinsel backdrop, as well as lighting equipment.  I could not have done this shoot without her.

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Candy Cunningham – Nikki’s partner in Vixen Pin-Up Photography – did wonderful make-up for all the girls.

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Rod Zirkle, a graduate of Tom Savini’s school of make-up, did a great job airbrushing monster hands for the boys.

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I staged the photo-shoot in my own home.  Here you can see Rod airbrushing Frankenstein’s hands in the middle of my living room, surrounded by teenagers.

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The real star of this project is my friend J. Anthony Kosar, and his special-effects team at Kosart Effects – Neil Viola, Scott Mitchell, Stevie Calabrese, and Matt Kapolczynski.  This was my 3rd collaboration with Anthony.  He also created the make-up effects for my zombie photo LAST STAND and my upcoming film BLACK LULLABY.

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I met Kosar in a parking lot in St. Louis, roughly half way between Kansas City and Chicago to collect his fragile monster sculptures.

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You might ask, “Why make sculptures?  Why not use make-up appliances on the models?”  This was so that Kosar would not be limited to the proportions and facial structure of a real person.  This way the eyes could be set further apart than a real person’s face would allow, a neck could be thinner than a real person’s neck, a mouth shape could be extended beyond the physical limits of make-up.  I encouraged him to create stylized character designs, knowing that they would be fleshed out with amazing realistic detail for my camera.

I photographed the kids in full costume on my set, complete with hand make-up.  Kosar even provided fake feet for teenage Wolfman, played by Wyatt Zirkle, Rod’s 12 year old son.  His plaid suit was made by my friend Celine Collins (the victim in my JACK THE RIPPER project) at her store MonkeyWrench Clothing in downtown KC.  Wolfman’s date was played by Fee Pauwels.

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I photographed Kosar’s sculptures on the same set, under the same lighting, to ensure that both parts would fit together seamlessly when combined in Photoshop.

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My daughter Arinna and her friend Andrew Gleason, who played the part of Frankenstein.

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Dracula was played by my 12 year old nephew Nate.  His date was played by Mary Burke.

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A special thank you to my sister Sarah who made all of the flower corsages.  And a big thank you to Kevin Kinkead at Boomerang in Westport, KC’s best vintage clothing store, for giving me such a great deal on all of the retro clothes!  And lastly, thank you to Margaret of London for inviting me to be part of this project.

See you next time!

 

Oddities

November 14, 2013

Yes, that was me on the television show Oddities.  My wife Jen and I stopped by the store Obscura Antiques while we were in NYC – we love the show! – and ended up on-camera for Episode 16 of Season 4 – ‘No Guts, No Glory’ – which aired on the Discovery Channel just before Halloween on October 29th!

Oddities

3 Days Left For BLACK LULLABY!

November 7, 2013

Only 3 Days left for the Kickstarter campaign for my first short film BLACK LULLABY!  Pledges of $25 not only receive a signed DVD but a credit in the film as well.  Don’t miss your chance to be a part of this unique Horror project!

Here you can see me and FACE/OFF Champion J. Anthony Kosar making a final pitch for our awesome film:

 

Paris National Opera

May 1, 2013

The Opera National de Paris licensed two of my images, WOLF and BED, to use in the programs for their production of HANSEL AND GRETEL, which is running currently until May 6th.

In a curious twist of fate, my daughter Chloe – who was featured in my photograph CANDY, my own take on Hansel and Gretel – will be in Paris the same month the images are being used.

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Thank you to Mariame Clement, the production designer, for being a fan!

Making LAST STAND

March 14, 2013

Hi kiddies!  While I am saving the debut of my big zombie photograph LAST STAND until the Last Rites Gallery opening in NYC on Memorial Day Weekend, here are some fun making-of pics from last week’s photo-shoot.

We built our set at the 3rd St. Asylum Haunted House in Bonner Springs, Kansas.  My cousins Jerry and Steve Hoffine did all of the carpentry and construction.

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Bill Rose and his girlfriend Michelle stayed up late one night to wallpaper my set for me.

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Here you can see Steve and Bill measuring the shag carpet.

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I filled the set with my gathered props.  Jerry Hoffine and Mike Clouse destroyed the door by jumping on it.

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Here you can see me talking with J. Anthony Kosar, who drove in from Chicago to lead the make-up team.  Beside me is my regular assistant Demian Vela, and behind us is Colin, one of my drafted zombie models.

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Kosar’s sculpted appliances were marvelous.

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Meagan Hester from FACE/OFF Season 4 flew in from NYC to help Kosar with the make-up effects.

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Kansas City make-up artist Jeff Sisson also came down to help.  Here you can see him working on my regular assistant Demian Vela, who was excited to finally be on the other side of the camera.

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My lovely bride Jen Hoffine, who played the title role in LADY BATHORY, also played a zombie.

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My favorite model Bob Barber is feeling better and came in to be a zombie as well.

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Brian Wendling, the man walking the tightrope in my early photograph DEATH, played one of the zombies attacking my daughter Sadie.  Here you can really see how good Kosar is with his make-up.

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Brenna and her mom Rita work for 3rd St. Asylum and also helped with the make-up.

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Demian with Kosar and Meagan, loving it.

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My producer Justin Gardner.

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My star A. Michael Baldwin on set, having fun.

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Me with Brian and my daughter Sadie on set.

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My brother-in-law Felix helping run camera.

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My friend Erica Kauffman played the Mother character.  Here you can see Davis biting her arm as she reaches for her pistol.  And yes, that is a dinosaur.

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A special thank you to  Mehron Make-up, who generously provided make-up and blood for our art project.

LAST STAND coming soon!

Photos courtesy of Anna Perry.

Kickstarting My New Zombie Project!

January 17, 2013

Hi kiddies!  I have officially started my first Kickstarter Project!

From May 25th through June 29th 2013, the great Travis Louie will be curating a show at the Last Rites Gallery in NYC entitled “ZOMBIE.” He has been kind enough to invite me to be a part of this show, so I am raising funds to help with the costs of creating my most ambitious photograph ever, “LAST STAND.”

This photograph will feature a family in their last moments right before they are completely consumed by a horde of zombies! The central figure will be the Father, who is blasting a zombie in the head with a shotgun.  My camera will freeze every detail of this explosive moment. The Father does not realize that right behind him his wife and children are already being taken down and eaten by the zombies pouring in through the broken barricades of the front door. This image will include over a dozen characters in full zombie make-up interacting all at once, on a set that will be destroyed by gunfire and fake blood.

Please check out my Kickstarter Page. There are wonderful incentives, and all pledges will receive a signed print of the final image. Tell all of your friends, help spread the word by sharing my link on Facebook, and let everybody know.  This image will be amazing!

I have already cast the role of the Father, and I am thrilled to announce that he will be played by none other than PHANTASM’s A. Michael Baldwin!

The special effects will be led by my friend J. Anthony Kosar, who recently exhibited my work in his Chicago gallery, and made his television debut this past week on Season 4 of Face/Off!  He is monstrously talented and a sweetheart and we are very proud of him! He won both events on the first episode – can you believe that? I am super-excited about our upcoming collaboration.

All prints will be signed by me, Kosar, and my star Baldwin.

Please help spread the word.  I will keep you updated on progress!

Making JACK THE RIPPER

September 4, 2012

Hey kiddies!  This is the first part of my new project JACK THE RIPPER.

Conceived as a 2-panel diptych, JACK THE RIPPER depicts the moments “just before” and “just after” a grisly alleyway murder.  What makes Jack the Ripper so compelling to me is that nothing is known about him.  Because he was never caught, we have no actual information about who he was or why he committed his gruesome crimes.  What we have is not a historical or biographical portrait, but a communally imagined idea of Jack the Ripper as an aristocratic predator.  As a boogeyman, he graphically symbolizes the idea of the wealthy and powerful preying on the poor.

Unable to find an appropriate alleyway in Kansas City, I decided to build a set.  The walls were made from large sheets of styrofoam that we carved and sculpted to look like brick using a hot-knife and heat gun.

My cousins Steve Hoffine and his brother Jerry Hoffine help run a Haunted House called 3rd Street Asylum in Bonner Springs, a small town just outside of Kansas City.  They were kind enough to allow me to build my set inside an unused hallway in their Haunted House.

The part of Jack the Ripper was played by my friend Chad Hawks.  With his heavy brow and swarthy good looks, I thought he would be the perfect model.  And despite what he looks like in my photograph, Chad is one of the kindest, sweetest people you will ever meet.  He grew out his own muttonchops for the role, and flew himself in from Chicago to help me with my project.

The part of Jack’s victim was played by Celine Collins.  Celine is, in many ways, the real hero of this project.  She owns Monkey Wrench Clothing, and I originally drafted her to help make the elaborate costumes that I needed. She was already doing all of this costume work for free when I asked her if she would be willing to play the part of the victim as well.  Despite her shyness, Celine agreed, and gave me an absolutely marvelous performance.   Monkey Wrench Clothing specializes in corsets and steam-punk attire and shares storefront space with Retro Vixen on 39th Street in Kansas City.  You should definitely check her out.

Celine’s wig was styled by Ruby Von Blush.  Her make-up, for good or ill, was done by me.

My regular assistant Demian Vela was back to help me with this photo-shoot, as was my beautiful and talented wife Jen Hoffine.  She helped Celine add wire to Jack’s coat so that it would hold it’s position without the use of a windmachine.

Steve and Jerry Hoffine, as well as their friend Mike Clouse, came down on the night of the shoot to help run fog machines and spray atmospheric mist over my set.  The rats were plastic toys that I repainted.  I added whiskers made out of fishing line.  And lastly, the all-important top hat was loaned to us by my super-talented friend Damian Blake, who had previously played the part of Thurber the patron in last year’s project PICKMAN’S MASTERPIECE.

On October 1st I will release the second half of my project: JACK THE RIPPER 2.  It is by far the goriest image I have ever made.  I hope you can check it out!

See you next time!


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