Sunday, February 14, 2010
The Sixties was the decade of the monster boom; creatures and ghouls were everywhere the eye could see. Never having been considered before as a subject for kiddie merchandise, toymakers leapt onto a monster craze that started in the Fifties with re-runs of classic Universal films and hit its stride when West Hempstead's Aurora Plastics Corporation produced its first Frankenstein model kit. Colorforms, Pez dispensers, coloring books, boardgames, gum cards, lunchboxes, silly putty, crazy foam: you name it, monsters creeped & crawled about in the Sixties. One of these items was made by the Palmer Plastics Company. Originally included in a set of eight, this Hollywood horror was sold along with Dracula, Frankenstein, King Kong, Creature from the Black Lagoon, IT the Terror from Beyond Space (a '50s alien invader flick), Gorgo (a British Godzilla), and the Cyclops (the one featured in The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, though it doesn't look like him). Gruesome and charming at the same time, these were slightly larger than your average green army man and were made before the age of action figures had come into bloom. Flat versions (they were literally squashed) were made a year or two later and are easier to obtain than their more popular fleshed-out "cousins".
Saturday, February 13, 2010
I love werewolf shit. Not actual werewolf feces, but movies, comics - everything concerning werewolves. Since I was a kid I've always thought werewolves were cool: they look freaky & I've always been fascinated with the concept of transformation. Now, I don't like every lupine endeavor that comes down the pike, but most stuff I think is interesting. That being said, one of my favorite horror movies is John Landis' 1981 film, An American Werewolf in London. Featuring the talents of David Naughton, Griffin Dunne, and brilliant special effects by Rick Baker, this film has what most horror films don't: a sense of humor. I have to confess I don't like a lot of gore in horror films. A little is OK, but I'm not entertained by excessive blood & dismemberment (not usually, anyway). Some people who are familiar with my work are surprised by this because my paintings and drawings can have an aggressive/dark nature about them. I guess when you deal with dark subject matter people think buckets o' blood is the natural follow-up. Anyway, I just wanted to do a quick sketch of what is considered the most memorable scene from this film: David Kessler's transformation into a werewolf. This is the moment that freaks everyone out when they see the film for the first time and is its most disturbing image. I didn't want to spend a lot of time laboring on this piece as most of the drawings I'd completed during this period were fairly elaborate. I referenced an old monster magazine from 1981 and the whole drawing took about ten minutes to complete. It could look more like the lead actor (Naughton), but for a drawing that wasn't sketched out and was done directly with ink to paper, I'm happy with it.
Friday, February 12, 2010
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Twenty five years ago today, Vincent Price passed away. That rhymes. Rightfully considered one of the twentieth century's masters of...