Posts Tagged ‘horror photography’

Interview with SUPER VILLAINS NETWORK

May 15, 2015

Here is an excerpt from my wonderful interview with SUPER VILLAINS NETWORK.  Thank you Linda Covello!

Hoffine’s entire photographic oeuvre is a bullet list of our most terrifying and horrific fairytales, fantasies, and true crimes of history, all created with the same level of artistry and execution of a big-budget horror film. His sometimes-controversial subject matter ranges from the Big, Bad Wolf as werewolf pedophile, to Jack The Ripper. Hoffine has parlayed his fascination and skill for recreating the most horrific phantasms of the subconscious into a commercial enterprise, but the Lovecraft homage is being underwritten by a successful Kickstarter campaign. The photographer has a philosophical and, at times, academic outlook on the psychology of the horror genre, and can be very eloquent and informative about what haunts us and why when discussing his art and inspiration.

Hoffine explained, “I think you see a lot of people all at once warming up to horror because they’re being exposed to it more, and it’s not so shocking after a while. You start to see, in a weird way, the fun in it. It’s like drinking beer, the first one tastes awful, but you keep sipping and after a while you are enjoying it.”

This may partly explain the success of The Talking Dead, a talk show follow up to The Walking Dead, wherein celebrity guests and at-home viewers riff at times comically on the night’s episode, and bond in a sort of group therapy session.

Continuing with the analogy, Hoffine says, “The more you do it, the less it upsets you – and you are getting more enjoyment out of it. And the desensitization to violence in the media definitely is part of what is making horror more acceptable now, and more popular than it’s ever been. Maybe we’ve hit a certain peak point of saturation with violence in media where now we can handle a Bates or a Hannibal, or something like that, as a protagonist in a mainstream show … The movie monster focuses your real world concerns into something tight and manageable. In that sense, it’s a comfort. Unlike other genres, horror fulfills a genuine sociological function.”

Hoffine maintains that the horror genre pre-dates the horror genre as we now know it, and that these themes were extant in the silent film era, and they were staples in gothic literature and in the myths of all cultures, particularly Greek mythology, as well as in the Bible. He says, “You have these stories throughout history, so it’s definitely something that we’re hardwired for. Those are stories that we understand at our core.” Hoffine recognizes that we are born with an inherent sense of danger, a built-in fear response. “That’s why we’re afraid of the dark; we’re afraid something might come that our senses can’t pick up on … We’re afraid of losing our parents, of pain, of our own mortality. And so these fears are embedded in our very systems, and as we grow older those fears change to reflect more the things that we are actually dealing with.

“Regarding a monster hiding under the bed, my mind recognizes the fact that I’ve slept in this bed so many times and nothing has happened – that the fear eventually gets filed away in the subconscious, but then new, more practical fears start to take over –  fears about real things – like losing a girlfriend, or a job, is that mole turning into cancer, could something happen to my kids, injury, getting mugged, your house getting robbed: those fears are valid fears and they can become a preoccupation. But no matter what you do, unless you’re some Buddhist monk who has trained to deal with these kinds of concerns, you’re going to have to grapple with them, on some level, every day.”

Hoffine explains that a lot of those fears are pushed off to the side, or pushed down into the subconscious, but they don’t go away. “You don’t think about nuclear holocaust while you’re trying to do your job every day. But if something comes along that reminds you of nuclear holocaust, you start thinking and worrying about nuclear holocaust. You start thinking about your own mortality. I’m afraid we are the only species on the planet that has to contend with our mortality on a conscious level; it hangs over us.”

Hoffine sees the horror genre as a stand-in for these daily fears, a sort of scapegoat to handle the brunt of the existential crisis of mortality. “With the horror genre, we have some concrete monster, we have a face for our fear; it might have horns, or a hockey mask, it might have pins in its head, it might be the living dead, but always that monster represents the force of chaos that’s going to come in and wreck your life, hurt your body, or end your existence … The movie or the horror story gives you a moment to sort of walk through those fears in a very pointed, albeit artificial, way that helps you grapple with the deeper underlying fears. And those underlying fears are always there.  Because you are going to die.” Hoffine makes this last statement with serious emphasis.

“The horror film is sort of like boot camp for the psyche. It’s a rehearsal for your own death. We gravitate to these stories over and over because those concerns are universal. They transcend culture, they transcend age, they simply are there. It’s part of the human condition.  So, suddenly, people realize that if you put a story around it on TV, and you don’t really pull back your punches too much on what people need to see to get rattled, then you have something that can really be marketed.” Hoffine adds, “And like all horror fans, the more you spend time with it, the less frightening it is, the more enjoyable it becomes.”

You can find the article in it’s entirety here:

http://supervillainnetwork.com/the-horror-genre-as-shadow-of-pop-culture-psyche/

1 Week Left for INNSMOUTH on Kickstarter!

May 10, 2015

Only 1 Week remains to contribute and become a part of our new INNSMOUTH project on Kickstarter!

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This project is based on H.P. Lovecraft’s classic story The Shadow Over Innsmouth and stars the great Doug Jones (HELLBOY, PAN’S LABYRINTH)!

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The photo will also feature Special Creature Effects by FACE/OFF Champion J. Anthony Kosar!

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Earn amazing rewards like signed prints, unique prop collectibles, and original masks and maquettes!

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With your help, this will be my biggest photo ever!  Can’t afford to contribute?  You can still help by telling everyone your know.  Every gesture, no matter how small, is deeply appreciated!  This photo is going to be great!

What is INNSMOUTH?

April 22, 2015

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WHAT IS INNSMOUTH?

My new Horror photo called INNSMOUTH is based on H.P. Lovecraft’s story The Shadow Over Innsmouth. This image will feature the human victim of the story being pursued and surrounded by a terrifying mob of amphibious people called The Deep Ones, as he tries to escape from the decrepit seaside town of INNSMOUTH.

TV’s FACE/OFF Champion J. Anthony Kosar is creating all of the monster effects, and the human role is going to be played by famous actor Doug Jones, who was Abe Sapien in the HELLBOY movies, as well as The Faun and The Pale Man in PAN’S LABYRINTH (among many others)!

Check out our cool video here:

http://tinyurl.com/innsmouthphoto

WHY LOVECRAFT?

I discovered Lovecraft a few years ago when Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine commissioned me to shoot a project based on Lovecraft’s story Pickman’s Model. I’ve since become smitten with his writings. He deserves his title as the inventor of modern Horror. Part of what makes him intriguing is the long-standing tradition of other artists contributing to his ‘mythos’. ‘Mythos’ refers to the way his stories are all loosely connected and exist in the same world, like Tarantino films. Other writers, beginning in his own lifetime, began writing homage stories that riffed off of his mythos, making it even grander. This tradition includes contemporary writers like Neil Gaiman and Stephen King. This year marks the 125th anniversary of his birth, so I thought this would be a wonderful time to do another Lovecraft project.

WHY INNSMOUTH?

In the 1931 story The Shadow Over Innsmouth, the human victim is being chased through the streets by an entire city full of monsters out to get him. The imagery is similar to Invasion of The Body Snatchers, I Am Legend, or any modern zombie movie, but exists first in The Shadow Over Innsmouth. As with our zombie project LAST STAND, I am excited INNSMOUTH will be populated by a horde of monsters, not just one!

I’m trying to find every secret Lovecraft fan on the planet. If you could, please help by sharing info about this project with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, or any other place else you can think of!

Here is an easy link you can cut & paste:

http://tinyurl.com/innsmouthphoto

Thank you my friends! Hail Cthulhu!

INNSMOUTH on Kickstarter!

April 15, 2015

I just launched a Kickstarter campaign for my next ambitious photo project!  This image will be based on H.P. Lovecraft’s story The Shadow Over Innsmouth and stars the great Doug Jones (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth, Silver Surfer) as well as movie-worthy creature effects by FACE/OFF Champion J. Anthony Kosar!

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This is my most ambitious project to date and we have thrown together an amazing array of rewards that include signed prints, unique collectibles, and original masks!  Check it out and tell all your friends!

BLACK LULLABY Released Online BLACK FRIDAY!

November 28, 2014

My short film BLACK LULLABY is being released online for Black Friday!  Anyone, anywhere can now watch it on my new ProVimeo site – BlackLullaby.com – where you can ‘rent’ a viewing or even download a copy to own.  Check it out and tell your friends!

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Scream Magazine UK

November 27, 2014

There is a nice article about my work in this month’s issue of Scream Magazine, the UK’s number one Horror magazine!

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Horrible Imaginings Film Festival, San Diego Oct. 10-12

October 9, 2014

My short film BLACK LULLABY will be screening at the Horrible Imaginings Film Festival in San Diego this coming Saturday night!

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This is a great festival – check it out if you can!

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!

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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!


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