In the world of the entertainment industry, the artisans that usually gain the most attention are the ones that are always in your face: actors and actresses, directors, lead vocalists, strippers…(well, yeah, it fits.)
Behind the show, however, are the artisans that make sure the attention-getters look and sound good: soundboard mixers, cinematographers, set designers, costume designers, and make-up and special FX artists. Without these individuals, we would be forced to submit to one-frame, monophonic sound film where you can see the zippers on the backs of monsters and actors are sprayed with watered-down ketchup while the best gut-wretching shot is a splice of medical footage that is jumped to instead of a close-up.
I’m not saying low-budget ironic films are necessarily bad, I’m just saying we’re in a place that we don’t have to be that way.
It is with this respect for the artists behind the scenes that a recent web-series, Art Creature, has take its cue from. Through interviews with the artists, those that they work with, and their hard-at-work shots, Art Creature creator Michael Fodera showcases what these people do in short, but encompassing, 10 minute shorts.
The choice for their first special FX artist couldn’t have been better, as they tapped Monster in My Closet creator Jeremy Selenfriend, to find out how one gets into the field of special FX, as well as how he switches gears from independent horror films to such mainstream shows as Boardwalk Empire.
There was never any question here that Jeremy wouldn’t have some great soundbites. We were gifted by his anecdotes ourselves when interviewing both him and director Frank Sabatella. However, what made Art Creature‘s installment move so well was that they were able to overlay Jeremy’s explanations, as well as points by directors he has worked with, with active shots of Jeremy at work, from latex applications on an actress to the creation of a giant alien prop.
But in the words of the great LeVar Burton, you don’t have to take my word for it.
Or watch it here directly at Vimeo.