Tag: gaff

Making A “Thing In A Bottle”: Addendum

Based on a few experiments I carried out over the weekend I’m going to add one more step to the Making A “Thing In A Bottle” project from back in March. As you can imagine, that tutorial has been getting an increasing amount of traffic as Halloween approaches. In the vast majority of cases it …

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Making A “Thing In A Bottle”

There are a couple of tutorials for creating “Things in a bottle” floating around, but this is my approach. It’s a relatively simple process that’s designed to produce a high-quality prop from cheap, readily-available materials. First off, you’re going to need a “thing” to bottle. For this example I’ll be using a tissue sample from …

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The Worm Turns

Surprisingly enough, I do a lot of decorating for Halloween. I used to be involved with a number of haunted house attractions and loved the kind of big, flashy props that those environments require. Electric chairs with flashing strobe lights and maniacs wielding roaring chainsaws are certainly effective, but as I’ve grown older I’ve developed …

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The Ponape Scriptures: My Edition

With all this discussion of tomecraft I thought it would be appropriate to share some of my own efforts. All of these pictures are from a small run of about a dozen copies of the “Ponape Scriptures” that I did around ten years ago. I thought I’d lost all the pictures I’d taken of them, …

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Wooden Cthulhu Fetish

From the Miskatonic University Special Collections, a native artifact recovered from an archeological dig in the summer of 1926. Traditionally, Dr. Francis Morgan would use first and second year students to explore interesting historical sites across the state to give them some experience with actual field conditions. That year he decided to excavate the area …

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Quick And Dirty Alien Artifact

A friend of mine is having an “Area 51” themed Halloween party and asked if I would be willing to come up with some decorations. He already had an awesome prop of a grey alien in a cryochamber from last year (created from a cylindrical Coca-Cola ice cooler he salvaged from a local convenience store) …

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The Finger of Nephren-Ka

I’ve been working on this particular project for a while, which is a bit embarrassing. In theory this is a trivially easy prop- a mummified finger. What made it so time consuming is that I wanted to do it with old school gaff techniques while making it realistic enough to meet modern presentation standards. Part …

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Unknown Specimen

This is a followup to the Mongolian Death Worm gaff back in May. The basic idea behind this series of projects is to create a sideshow-style gaff using techniques and materials that would have been available in the early 20th century. For this one I used the same materials as before- paper, flour, glue, and …

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Mongolian Death Worm Gaff

This “Mongolian Death Worm” was the result of an experiment using vintage gaff making techniques. I wanted to recreate the process of crafting a sideshow display using materials available in the early 20th century. Except for cheating on the teeth, which were made from epoxy putty, I used traditional paper mache for the entire specimen. …

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Defrosting The Minnesota Iceman

For the uninitiated, the Minnesota Iceman was sideshow exhibit featuring a hairy, manlike creature encased in a block of ice owned by a mister Frank Hansen. Hansen originally claimed to have bought the iceman in Hong Kong, which had been brought there by sailors who fished it out of cold Russian waters. Other tellings gave …

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