This is a recent project I photographed for Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine called PICKMAN’S MASTERPIECE.

This sequence of images is based on a 1927 short story by H.P. Lovecraft called Pickman’s Model.  I was attracted to this project because of the character of Pickman – who in Lovecraft’s mythology is a brilliant but marginalized artist notorious for his horrifying artwork.  Due to the graphic and disturbing nature of his work, he is shunned by his fellow artists.

Pickman is my patron saint.

I focused on the moment in the story when Pickman brings his last willing patron into his underground studio to show him his Masterpiece – his greatest and worst work – the one that can never be shown in public.

What he reveals is too much for the human mind to bear.

Instead of creating one heroic image, I wanted to create a sequence of images, like shots from a scene in a movie.

The patron was played by Damian Blake.  He provided his own vintage wardrobe and grew a handlebar moustache for the project.  Here you can see Damian standing in for a lighting test while still wearing his coat.  The basement location was very cold.

The character of Pickman was played by Bob Barber.

My regular assistant Demian Vela, as well as my wife Jen Hoffine (who played the lead in LADY BATHORY) acted as crew.  Here you can see Demian running the fog machine and moving the sheet into position using fishing line.

Pickman’s artwork was provided by fellow Horror Photographer Chad Michael Ward.

Thank you to Famous Monsters for inviting me to shoot this project.  See you next time!

23 Responses to “Making PICKMAN’S MASTERPIECE”

  1. Michael Manchester Says:

    Brilliant as always. Keep this up and you’ll be added to the MOMA for a stunning body of work. If they haven’t already done a retrospective it’s a shame.

  2. Pickman’s Masterpiece: Joshua Hoffine Does H.P. Lovecraft… | Cherrybombed Says:

    […] series of photo play out like a vintage horror movie. Check out how it all went down with this series of images from the shoot, and all the behind-the-scenes via Hoffine’s official […]

  3. Patti Says:

    Amazing as always. I grinned at the limited time and budget because one would never know by any of your work.

  4. Loving Lovecraft | HALF LIGHT Magazine Says:

    […] Check it out here: PICKMAN’S MASTERPIECE […]

  5. » Archiv » Pickman’s Modell Says:

    […] Bilder gibt es natürlich auf den dazugehörigen Blogeintrag des ehrenwerten Herrn Hoffine. Kategorie Fundstück | Keine Kommentare […]

  6. Lovecraftsman « TENTACLII :: H.P. Lovecraft blog Says:

    […] hat-tip to Lovecraftsman for pointing out Joshua Hoffine’s new photo series illustrating Pickman’s […]

  7. Third Linkfest Says:

    […] Joshua Hoffine: Pickman’s Masterpiece […]

  8. Kendra Says:

    the test lighting photo was one of my favorites lol

  9. Cady Says:

    Absolutely amazing series as always, that room is amazing.

  10. Pickman’s Masterpiece « luizflamorim Says:

    […] Pickman’s Masterpiece « Joshua Hoffine Horror Blog. […]

  11. airforce united fc Says:

    very nice! i love this article.

  12. Arkham Drive-in Says:

    Just amazing..The lighting is just so incerdible.

  13. Voice from the Pit Says:

    Wow, I can’t remember how I stumbled on your site but I’m so glad I did. So incredibly refreshing to see horror elevated to the status of art, this is wonderful work. Very painterly, very in touch with the source material – I’m hooked..

  14. lilikaofthelake Says:

    Filming a movie? Still doing weddings? I like to think you and Jen killed a man….or taking a technology break. Hope you and yours are well. Can’t wait to see what is next.

  15. Joseph Gilmore Says:

    Wonderful shots.

  16. Jip van Bodegom (@Ravengraphy) Says:

    WOW Awesome! I really like the face expressions. Nice to see some special effect tricks.

  17. thom Says:

    so cool! very reminiscent of old Hammer films! spot on!

    if you dig horror/thrillers, you should watch this short film in the ABC’s of Death competition, hosted by the Alamo Drafthouse!

    feel free to leave a comment, and vote also!

  18. Nikki Says:

    Have you done anything recently? I love your work and miss seeing your monthly posts! Much respect.

  19. Christy Pepper Dawson Says:


  20. Mrs. Horror Boom ( Says:

    Reblogged this on HORROR BOOM and commented:
    Another great piece on a great series by Joshua Hoffine. This time he doesn’t take on Jack the Ripper – he takes on Lovecraft’s Pickman’s Model, and knocks it out of the fucking park. Don’t miss this!

  21. Shalane Jarnagin Says:

    Absolutely stunning. I had thought I was looking at a series of digital stills from a computer game. Only after reading your blog did I realize they were actual photographs. I would love to see you do more tributes to Lovecraft. Bring on the ancient ones!

  22. H. P. Lovecraft’s Deep Ones to be captured by Horror Photographer Joshua Hoffine | Thoughts and Jots: Picking up the pieces Says:

    […] Pickman’s Masterpiece: […]

  23. Mixed Feelings about Love(craft) | SkinnerThinks Says:

    […] really interested in the arts, check out Joshua Hoffine’s horror photography website. This was my favorite series by […]

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