Monster maker, Mark Shostrom on letting your creative soul shine

Hola, friends! This is a special Halloween edition of “Teaspoon of Happy,” in honor of having passion for all that you do. Whether it’s dressing up for Halloween or following your heart’s true passion, it’s always worth it to go for it and honor your voice as an individual.

This is a podcast interview with one of my heroes, special effects and creature effects artist/innovator, Mark Shostrom. He’s influenced so much of what you see today in makeup and special effects on TV and and in film, with an incredible legacy of work. His resume includes 30 years of scary movies–everything from Nightmare on Elm Street 2 to Videodrome. We talk about inspiration, creativity, and going for your dreams and not your obligations—not to mention, the best way to make an open flesh-wound for your Halloween costume this year. There are also a few super creepy Hollywood ghost stories about the Hart Building at Paramount Studios.

This is for all creators, makers, and passionate thinkers out there. It’s a challenge to commit to your own bar of excellence and go for it. Decide to do whatever you want, do it awesomely, and foster your voice as a creative thinker, because life is too short to do something you hate, or can simply tolerate. Plus, when you decide to follow your passions, what you leave in your wake is a legacy: something you are proud of that others will learn from for generations to come.

To be different is a gift: you should celebrate all that makes you that way, all that is unique and atypical. That treasure is from you, and who you are–and it is something no one else in the world has. So in honor of celebrating who you are as a creative person–and building your own voice, I invite everyone to go for it, especially on Halloween. Make a stamp on this world with who you are and let your legacy begin!

To get your super epic costume started this Halloween, here’s a great recipe for a realistic flesh wound on a minimal budget. For example, the decapitated and reattached head on my Halloween costume this year, from Evil Dead 2.

No latex! No colodian! (It burns your skin and when it pops off you can’t reaffix it. It’s totally a stage material from the 1920s.)

You’ll need:

Duo eyelash adhesive: great for cuts, bruises and blistered skin.

Third Degree! A two-part silicon, available at Nigel’s and Frends. Put some foundation color in it and it will look like a flesh-colored wound.

Have some 99% alcohol to mix them together–looks like bathroom caulk. Perfect for burns, scars, wounds.  Apply it directly to the skin. You have to keep the finger or your tool soaked in alcohol to use it. Also, you can’t use a latex sponge to fashion it, otherwise it won’t cure.

Because it’s silicon, you can’t apply makeup on top of it, otherwise it will wash off. You have to use Krylon Makeup fixture spray. OR you can apply a tiny bit of foundation to one of the materials.

I hope this was fun and inspiring to listen to and if you’re interested in seeing the Michael Myers house, here tiz.

Happy Halloween lovely friends!!! This year, go for it!!!!!


Sarah May B.

Featured image © Mark Shostrum

p.s. If you prefer iTunes, you can find the podcast there as well under “Help Me Be Me.”

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