Aug 30, 2012


I've been incredibly busy building props over the last few weeks, and haven't found any time for blogging.
Hopefully I'll get back into it soon.

Aug 16, 2012

The Graveyard of Failed Ideas

I recently re-discovered a plan of my haunt I made back in July 2011 - a scanned drawing that was then coloured and shaded in Photoshop. 
It's surprisingly similar to what the haunt ended up looking like, with the exception of a few minor changes.

When I was planning my 2011 haunt - 'The Second Great Plague' - I had a very strange and creepy design in mind for the Nachzehrer groundbreakers (what on earth does that mean? click here). The 'Nachzehrer' were believed to chew through their burial shrouds in an attempt to satisfy their hunger. When the plague hit Europe and the mass graves started filling up, the gravediggers found that they were running out of cloth for the burial shrouds, and they ended up only covering the faces of the dead. When they dug up old graves to fill them with more bodies (which happened a lot), the gravediggers would often come across corpses that had appeared to have chewed through their shrouds, which led them to believe that they were the Nachzehrer. It was later proven that the 'chewed shroud' was caused by the bacteria in the mouths of rotting corpses, which made the cloth around the mouth decay much more rapidly than the rest.

I decided to apply this nice little piece of history to my groundbreakers. I planned to cover the faces of my groundbreakers with torn gauze, leaving a gaping hole where the mouth was. I'd stain the cloth with brown and black paint, giving it a nasty dripping-with-corpse-juices look. It would have looked cool, but most people wouldn't understand what was going on, and I couldn't bear to cover up the faces that I had worked so hard on. I never went through with it.

But that wasn't all. I tore up Kutsuu and used his body and head to build a groundbreaker (his hands were donated to other groundbreakers). He always had an somewhat agonised pose, his arm bent back behind him, his mouth stretched open in pain... but in the end he got off easy. He was originally going to have a brick jammed down his throat - a reference to the 'Vampire of Venice'. It wasn't until the final stages of the build that I changed my mind. It looked quite odd and I figured I'd be forever explaining to people. 

Pictured below is Groundbreaker II, whom I had planned to make the 'fat groundbreaker'. Obesity lends itself well to zombies, I think, and I'd always wanted to make a nasty bloated groundbreaker. But I couldn't get it to look the way I wanted, and so I laid that idea to rest in the graveyard of failed ideas.

But let's face it, he still looks a little chubby.