Posts Tagged ‘j. anthony kosar’

MALEFICIUM Dark Art Show Exhibit 5

November 10, 2015

A full-scale print of my new INNSMOUTH image will be on display as part of the 5th Annual Maleficium Dark Art Exhibit at the Kosart Gallery in Chicago! The show opens this Saturday Nov. 14th

This fantastic art show is curated by frequent collaborator and FACE/OFF Champion J. Anthony Kosar.  Anthony and his team – many of whom are now FACE/OFF veterans and champions in their own right – created the monsters for my INNSMOUTH project.  Jen and I will be at the opening, as well as my friend and producer Vampire Chad Hawks (star of my previous JACK THE RIPPER project).  Come join us if you can and meet the artists in person – this will be a great show!



October 1, 2015

Hi kiddies!

This is my new photograph called INNSMOUTH.  This image is based on the story Shadow Over Innsmouth by legendary Horror author H.P. Lovecraft. This photograph stars actor Doug Jones (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth) as the victim and features Special FX from frequent collaborator and Face/Off champion J. Anthony Kosar and his talented team at Kosart Studios.





In the 1931 story Shadow Over Innsmouth, the human victim is chased through the streets of the seaside town of Innsmouth by a teeming mob of monstrous fish people called the Deep Ones. The imagery of a sole individual being pursued by a city full of monsters is similar to Invasion of The Body Snatchers, I Am Legend, or any modern zombie movie, but exists first in Shadow Over Innsmouth.  As with my previous zombie photograph LAST STAND, INNSMOUTH is populated by a horde of monsters, not just one!

Staging the scene in deep focus with extreme foreground elements was inspired by my love for Citizen Kane.  Giving the monsters daggers was inspired by the assassination scene in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar.  There are no daggers in the original story, but Lovecraft does make a point of describing the strange gold jewelry worn by the Deep Ones.  I changed the gold jewelry into golden knives, so that my swarm of monsters could fish-gut their cornered victim.

We ran a successful Kickstarter campaign for this ambitious tribute to H.P. Lovecraft to help celebrate the 125th anniversary of his birth. Many talented people came together for this grand collaboration.

My cousins Steve and Jerry Hoffine and Mike Clouse from the haunted house 3rd St. Asylum in Bonner Springs, Kansas built the walls in Jerry’s carpentry shop.  They are all big men and accustomed to wearing masks for extended periods of time, so they also flew to Chicago to play the lead monsters in the photo-shoot.


Our friend Kyle Stanley helped paint the styrofoam brick walls.  Kyle is a professional artist and has a booming business making custom illustrated shoes.  He drove up to Chicago to play a monster as well. Kyle is the monster on the far right with the bowler hat and bugging eyes.




My faithful assistant Demian Vela transported me, all of my photo equipment, and the brick wall we created in a rented U-Haul trailer from Kansas City to J. Anthony Kosar’s studio in Chicago.  He also plays one of the monsters in the photo!


Kosar and his talented team spent weeks creating the crowd of Deep Ones. Kosar acted as Concept Designer, FX Supervisor, and Lead Artist, with Jamie Leodones and Stevie Calabrese leading the charge as key artists, and Dina Cimarusti, Matt Kapolczynski, and Neil Viola jumping in as additional sculptors.  Joseph Kosar, as always, helped every step of the way.



The great Celine Collins at MonkeyWrench Clothing hand-made the costume for my star Doug Jones.  I wanted him dressed as a white collar city slicker – an outsider – to contrast the blue collar mob of Innsmouth locals.  He was forced to abandon his coat and tie and hat in his hasty retreat.


Doug Jones is famous to Horror fans for his roles in HellBoy, Pan’s Labyrinth, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Crimson Peak, and countless other movies. Here you can see my wife and savior Jen Hoffine adjusting Doug’s sleeve on set at Kosar’s studio.  Everyone was giddy to spend time with Doug.


Kosar created a virtual army of monsters as pull-over masks and gloves. With my encouragement, he mixed elements of piranha and the Creature from the Black Lagoon into his designs.  His collection of Deep Ones is truly amazing!



Here you can see Kosar giving Doug possibly the easiest make-up application of his illustrious career as film actor and suit performer.


In addition to Demian, Kyle, and the Cousins, several other friends suited up to play monsters, including Justin Gardner, Mark Lancaster, Coye Vega, and Dan Dudych.  Costumes and prop knives were loaned to us by Jerry Vest at my favorite prop house Have Guns Will Rent in Kansas City.


I used several strobe lights to ensure my  whole scene would be in focus at F/22, including a special battery-powered strobe inside the lantern.  Thank you to photographer Barrett McGivney for the additional equipment, tech support, and behind-the-scenes photos.




Spending time with Doug Jones is too awesome to convey in words.






Careful framing and the liberal use of fog completed the illusion of an outdoor night scene.


The brick building in the distant background of the final shot is actually 3rd St. Asylum, the haunted house run by my Cousins.  I photographed their brick building one evening at dusk and composited that detail into the background behind my original staged scene with the costumed models and fog.  If I’d had more money, I might’ve built the entire city as a set.  As it is, the illusion is seamless and I enjoy the secret nod to my Cousins.


A huge thank you to my MasterMind/Producer on this project Chad Hawks – pictured here in red on the far left – who worked harder than anybody to make this project a reality!


A special thank you to my chief collaborators on this project – the magical Doug Jones, and the brilliant Special FX artists J. Anthony Kosar, Jamie Leodones, and Stevie Calabrese!  Such fantastic work!


And lastly a tremendous heartfelt thank you to all of our Kickstarter supporters, especially our mega-backers Matthew & Dawn Cheek and family, and Alan Harris!  And a big thank you to the leaders of the H.P. Lovecraft community who helped spread the word about our project – including Aaron Vanek and James Knouse at the HPLFF in Los Angeles, Neils Hobbs at NecronomiCon in Rhode Island, Brian & Gwen Callahan at CthulhuCon and the Arkham Bazaar and HPLFF in Portland, Tom Jenkins, Mike Davis at the HPL-Ezine, Chad & Chris at the HPL Literary Podcast, and Sean Branney & Andrew Leman at the HPL Historical Society. We could never have done this without you! Hail Cthulhu!

To own a signed print of this photograph visit my Online Store.  Signed 13×19 Archival Prints are On Sale with FREE SHIPPING.

More Innsmouth goodies coming soon!

Rue Morgue Interview

July 20, 2015

My interview with artist Gary Pullin about the new INNSMOUTH project is featured in this month’s issue of Rue Morgue Magazine – on stands now!



The INNSMOUTH project is really coming together.  I am getting excited to share the finished work!



Sinister Seven Q&A with RUE MORGUE

May 15, 2015

My Sinister Seven Q&A with Rue Morgue Magazine!


We managed to snag photographer JOSHUA HOFFINE fresh from his cinematic debut, the stunning short film BLACK LULLABY, for this week’s Sinister Seven Q&A. Hoffine has been hard at work on INNSMOUTH, a “Lovecraft photograph” inspired by the master’s classic tale The Shadow Over Innsmouth, and starring DOUG JONES and featuring creature design by J. ANTHONY KOSAR.

1. What is the difference between telling a story with a photograph and telling a story with a movie?

The power of a photograph comes from its perceived limitations – it is a fixed moment in time.  This inherent feature of the photograph can be used to great effect for Suspense and Horror.  Unlike a movie, there is no before and there is no after.  There is only the single moment – frozen and unresolvable. And because the image is fixed, and does not fleet across the screen like a movie, the metaphoric aspects of the image can be highlighted as details in the background. This added layer of ‘depth’ engages the viewer in a way that is different than cinema. The photograph becomes more reflective due to its static nature.

2. Tell us about the worst nightmare you’ve ever had.

I once had a terrible nightmare where somebody was hiding in the backseat of my car and slit my throat with a knife. It was the only dream I ever had that made me sit bolt upright in bed with a gasp – just like in the movies.

3. What makes a monster scary?

The absence of humanity, I think. That could be a lack of empathy, or a relish for violence and brutality. Or it can be expressed more symbolically as a non-humanoid monster, or even a distorted human form (like a clown, zombie, or vampire) where obvious humanity has been diminished.

4. What was your inspiration behind making BLACK LULLABY?

BLACK LULLABY was intended to be the climax to my photo series dealing with childhood fears.  The inspiration for the film was simply an earnest desire to see one of my photographs move, while preserving the same ‘look’. It is an exercise in building tension, as much as it is about style. More and more, my new ideas are about moving pictures.

5. What inspired you to pursue a photo project based on Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth?

The project began as a suggestion from the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival in San Pedro, California. I read the story and loved it. Part of what made it exciting to me visually, was that the story featured a single person being chased through the city streets at night by hordes of monsters. The imagery is similar to I Am Legend, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, or any modern zombie movie, but exists first in this story. I like the potential grandeur of this image, it’s spectacle – but I also like the core idea of being hunted down by an entire society.

6. What is the scariest story you have ever read?

Mabye, The Big Toe in Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark.

7. What’s next for Joshua Hoffine?

Next year I hope to publish a limited edition book of my photographs and then start work on a full-length Horror movie.

Thank you Rue Morgue!

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!


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)!





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


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





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!


April 22, 2015



My new Horror photo called INNSMOUTH is based on H.P. Lovecraft’s story 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)!


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. Other writers, beginning in his own lifetime, began writing homage stories that incorporated and expanded 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.


In the 1931 story 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 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!

Thank you my friends! Hail Cthulhu!


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 – – where you can ‘rent’ a viewing or even download a copy to own.  Check it out and tell your friends!





MALEFICIUM Dark Art Exhibition 4

November 13, 2014

My short film BLACK LULLABY will be screening Saturday night at the opening of the 4th Annual MALEFICIUM Dark Art Exhibit at the Kosart Gallery in Chicago.

This fantastic art show is curated by FACE/OFF champion and frequent collaborator J. Anthony Kosar – who created the incredible Boogeyman for my film!



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.


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.


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


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


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.






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.







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


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!



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.



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



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


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



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.



Kosar’s sculpted appliances were marvelous.




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




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.


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


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



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.




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


Demian with Kosar and Meagan, loving it.


My producer Justin Gardner.


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


Me with Brian and my daughter Sadie on set.


My brother-in-law Felix helping run camera.


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.



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.


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