Monday, November 10, 2014

The Wonderful World of Props - Part 1

I've been meaning to update this site with the projects I'm working on, but they are going so well that there are actually non disclosures agreements now involved... so... for now... nothing!

Instead lets look at something sort of related to my writing/film making hobby, and get into the wonderful world of PROPS!!!!

So to start, here's a video of Adam Savage (Mythbusters) talking at a WIRED event about his obsession with collecting props... It's a good watch!

I'm glad they put out this video today, because I've been planning to do a few posts about the world of props for a while now. It's a cool little hobby, and I feel it has actually made me more creative.

I started officially building/collecting props about 2 years ago... but I've been doing it unofficially since I was a kid.

I was the kind of kid who absolutely loved to recreate my favorite shows and movies with my toys. However, the action figures alone were never enough for me - I wanted to hold the same item my toy held. It wasn't fair that HE should get a lightsaber, and not me.

A lot of those early props I would try to recreate out of lego, or I would beg my dad to them one out of plywood for me. He probably cut 2 or 3 different He-man power swords from me during the early 80's.

I gotta make me a new one of these....

I used to steal his RCMP graduation ring from his ring box and pretend it was Hercules ring... Hours of entertainment. My and my brother would take turns putting it on and holding it over our heads, reliving the moments we saw in the cartoon.

My Dad ended up giving me that ring as a graduation gift. As I looked at it all I could think was, "YEAH! Hercules ring!".

Shit... I should make one of these as well!

Now none of this behavior is that unusual for a kid - millions and millions of dollars are made off giving kids the ability to dress up as their favorite superhero. But in my case, I may not have ever grown out of this phase.

Over the years I have admired 1:1 prop replicas from my favorite movies, and enjoyed seeing other people dress in cosplay. I always wanted stormtrooper armor but never bought any (also I never wanted to hear "Aren't you a little fat for a stormtrooper?").

I've been saying since I was in high school that having my own Han in Carbonite from The Empire Strikes Back/Return of the Jedi is on my bucket list.

But still... though I loved looking at these things, they were always really expensive, and it seemed an odd thing to buy (I mean really... they aren't the REAL thing...)

And then I finally bought my first real prop replica.

I was watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer - which was a small obsession of mine - and I saw "Faith's knife" for the first time. Faith was this hot bad-ass character I had a huge TV crush on, and she had this knife that was given to her by the shows main villain - A character called "The Mayor".

 Anyway this knife looked awesome, and for the first time in all my years of movies and TV I not only WANTED a prop from a show, I NEEDED this prop. For a moment I thought, "maybe I could make that?" I figured I could draw it out from pausing the TV, then find a similair knife... cut the blade with some kind of saw...

OR... I could use this thing that was popular with the kids - the internet - and see if I could just buy the knife. After a bit of a search, I found that the knife in the show was actually designed by a guy named Gil Hibben, and it was a knife I could actually buy!

And so $70 later, I had my first prop!

 Awww yeah! STAB!

And that's where the infection started. I had acquired a prop virus, but it hadn't become full-blown collecting yet.

The second time I ended up with a prop was when a licensed version of Buffy's "Slayer Scythe" was being produce. House of Ten's co founder, Kevin Pavlovic, was running a comic shop at the time and he got one in on an order. He ended up just giving it to me, and I still have it to this day.

Many, many people have taken pics with it, and it's been a lot of fun, BUT it's the first time I got a sense of how shitty some props could be...

My lady... as brown Buffy.

I mean this was a LICENSED prop, but it was crazy inaccurate. And that bugged the shit out of me (still does).

However, I think the defining moment that pushed me over the edge, and what started me on the path to where I am now, was when Kevin bought the Delorean.

 Delorean AND Scythe in my wedding photos....

When we first stood in that parking lot looking it over, I was in heaven. I couldn't wipe the smile off my face. A year or so later he would buy a replica of KITT, the car from "Knight Rider".

I now had acquired the taste... It was only a matter of time that something would come along and completely push me over to the point of no return...

And that something happened in January of 2013...


No comments: