Monday, December 10, 2012

Decided to go see Hellraiser on the big screen ...

Frank Cotton the real main badguy in Hellraiser.
The Bell TIFF Lightbox in Toronto is showing a series of films under the title Birth of the Villain for the past few weeks. The series is showing the first flick in different horror franchises.
Anyway I decided to gather up a few of my pals and take in Hellraiser, a movie none of us had seen in around 20 years and none of us remembered what we thought of it. One of us was pretty sure she didn't like it and two of us had recently watched Hellraiser: Bloodlines, independently and thought it was terrible.
Anyway, if you haven't been to the Lightbox, it seems kinda classy inside so it really felt like a weird venue to see Hellraiser. And it was. The audience, for the most part, seemed to be treating the flick more like it was some kind of important film then a movie about a reanimated pervert trying to score with his brothers unfaithful wife, having her lore people to his attic hideout so he can kill them to use their blood to grow a new body and hiding from sado-masochistic puzzlebox mascots. It was a much more entertaining movie than I remembered it being.
My pals and I were all surprised by how little screen time was devoted to Pinhead and his pals. The flick's really about the pervert Frank Cotton.The makeup and puppet effects for Frank were really great. Real slimy, and gross looking. There's also a hilarious scorpion tailed thing from another dimension and the best surprise a skeleton dragon! That's right, you may not remember it but there is a skeleton dragon in Hellraiser. With all those things in this movie why did they bother with the cenobites? Especially Butterball. I want more movies featuring Frank and the other monsters.
This trailer really makes it look like a different movie:

Contrary to this trailer Hellraiser's really, really goofy. It tries really hard to be deep and artistic, and it succeeds in that way high school art and drama kids do. The scene where the husband is trying to move a mattress up stairs while his wife remembers an indiscretion with is brother or the scene where something terrible is about to happen to a character and they cut to a screaming monkey or the nurse watching flowers bloom on a TV while a character recovers from a black out are a few of the highlights. But by far the best thing about Hellraiser is the final scene. We discussed what happened the entire trip home. I won't spoil it here if you haven't seen it yet. Wow! what an ending.
Also the Cenobites seem pretty easy to get rid of, either close the puzzlebox (gets rid of scorpion tailed transdimensional things too) or hit them with big chunks of wood (Butterball the least frightening of the four Cenobites in this one). Also how come the girl Cenobite doesn't get a "cool" name? Pinhead, Chatterer, Butterball and Female Cenobite, lazy.

Next week they're showing Phantasm, I need to see that on the big screen. Phantasm's one of my favorite horror franchises.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Walking Dead: the Stopped Dead

Here's a few of the 347 zombies killed so far during the 2.5 seasons of the walking dead. They're from a GIANT, super detailed graphic about the number of walkers killed onscreen  Richard Johnson (if you don't know his stuff check it out, beautiful pencil drawings) and I (if you don't know my stuff then what have you been looking at on this blog?) built for the National Post. Since the show's on a break right now you can at least get your zombie killing fix by pouring over that graphic. It also features numbers and types of weapons used and the top 10 still living zombie killers from the show. DIG IT!

UPDATE: First cast member to tweet the graphic was Melissa McBride who plays Carol. she's now officially my favorite character.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Descent: Commissioned piece

I was commissioned recently to do a drawing of one of the albino bat people from the movie the Descent. Being as the monsters are basically nekkid freek people it was hard to figure out a pose that didn't require the creature's junk to be on display. I think it turned out pretty good and the client was happy with it. If you're interested in getting an original piece of art like this from me check out my previous post regarding commissions. 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Art Sale! Art Sale! Commissions for November!

Hi Guys and Gals,
I had a bunch of fun doing those Monsters all through October so I figured it might be fun to do some more of that style art. Therefore for the foreseeable future I'll be offering some quick commissions.

What am I charging for these commissions?
 • $25 (payable through Paypal) for a high resolution .jpg (or if you want .tif) emailed to you. Perfect for printing on your own! This is the quickest way to get the art to you!
 • If you want the actual physical piece of art it'll cost $50 to cover shipping. Not sure how long it will take to get to you, it'll be shipped flat through Canada Post.
 • $5 per additional character.

What kind of art am I doing?
 • Single character images with minimal background also known as a big blob. Similar to the monsters   I'd been doing through out October.

 • The physical image will be Black ink and one other color ink on smooth 150 lb bristol board 9"x 12"
 • If you have something more complex in mind we can discuss.
 • Fan art and original characters are fine, not really sure what else you'd be commissioning me to do otherwise.
 • Art is intended for private collections.

If you're interested send me an e-mail at abarr at

Thursday, November 1, 2012

HALLOWEEN: The Aftermath

So this year for Halloween I decided to watch the Halloween franchise back to back and live tweet what I was watching. You'll notice in the image above that you do not see the two Rob Zombie Halloween flicks, that's because they're remakes so they're technically a new franchise. Also technically they're called "ROB ZOMBIE'S HALLOWEEN" and "ROB ZOMBIE'S HALLOWEEN 2" so they'd more appropriately be called the Rob Zombie's Halloween franchise. I know I'm being picky, I didn't want to include 'em in this viewing because that would have been 10 movies in one day and that is 2 movies too damn many. Why did I decide to do this? I thought it would be fun. I've always wanted to do a horror movie marathon for Halloween and since Shout Factory released Halloween III this year and another company re-released 4 and 5 I figured why not go with a marathon viewing of the Halloween franchise.
This is what I learned while watching:

• Haddonfield Illinois gets dark pretty early in October.
• Haddonfield's Memorial Hospital closes up shop around 11 p.m.
• the HMH runs with very minimal staff, probably because the emergency department closes up around 11 p.m.
• Not whole lot of patients end up at the hospital.
• The most used security company is also the most incompetent.
• Irish druids have a really weird idea of what makes "a great prank." Especially if said prank is played on kids
• They should have stopped making Halloween movies once Donald Pleasence died.
• Rob Zombie's Halloweens aren't the worst Halloween movies (thanks H20 and Ressurection)
• The Mark of Thorne plotline (Halloween 4, 5, 6) while goofy and unnecessarily complicated was actually really fun and didn't deserve to be retconned out.
• H20 was the beginning of the end of Halloween.
• It's harder than you think it would be to replicate how scary the William Shatner mask was.
• It's harder than you think to be a really frightening Michael Myers.
• There is such a thing as eating way too much candy. This has nothing to do with the movies but everything to do with what I decided to eat while watching these movies.
• Franchises that are 6 movies long are probably the maximum single sitting marathons (I really enjoyed my Planet of the Apesathon in April last year and Star Wars is always a good marathon, if you cut out credits the three Evil Deads can be watched in about 4 hours, less if you can skip the recaps) the 8 Halloween flicks took almost until midnight, including bathroom breaks and preparing lunch and dinner. I started at 8:30 a.m.

And now that they're all fresh in my mind it got me wondering: why don't fans of the Halloween movies call Michael Myers "the Boogeyman?" I know he's listed in the credits as "the Shape" and his name is Michael Myers, but EVERYONE in the movies call him "The Boogeyman" if they aren't calling him Michael Myers. I'm pretty sure he's referred to as "The Boogeyman" more often than he's called "Michael Myers." "Fans" of the Alien movies refer to the aliens as Xenomorphs even though only ONE guy ever refers to the aliens as xenomorphs ONCE in ONE movie. He's not even referring to those specific aliens as xenomorphs, he's just warning his squad that they might be dealing with a xenomorph. He's using big words to impress his troops. The only person in the room that knows what the aliens are is Ripley. In the rest of the series the Aliens are called either "the aliens" or "AAAAAAARRRRRRGGGGHHHH, NOOOOO, PLEASE DON'T KILL ME!" So why over the course of seven movies, a character who is called "The Boogeyman" by EVERYONE ALL the time is not generally known as "The Boogeyman?" I'm not saying I'm going start calling him "the Boogeyman," I just think its weird how Fandom works.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Here's a look at Leigh and my Halloween costumes this year. We were a pair of scientist being attacked by the giant spiders we were creating. This is the first time in a while we had the opportunity to get halloweened up. We went to a friend's party. it was decorated all Twin Peaks themed but Scientists fighting spiders is 100 times cooler than small town folk who really love coffee and pie and donuts. Also I had only ever seen 5 episodes of Twin Peaks before that party. Hey, at least we came in costume.
What's that on my shoulder?

Good Lord the Spiders are loose! And they're armed!

We're doomed! Also they've got a corrosive bite!

Halloween Fiends: 31, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Happy Hallowe'en everyone! 
I hope you've enjoyed these creepy visitors, I know I've had fun drawing them.
This is the 31st and final Halloween fiend to appear here in 2012, but not the
last piece of art, nor the last monster! I'll be taking a break from drawing
today to watch ALL the Halloween movies (that aren't directed by Rob Zombie) to
celebrate this most holy of holidays! Make sure you kids eat all your candy or the
Pumpkin Mummy may pay you a visit! Beware the Pumpkin Mummy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Halloween Fiends: 30

The day before Halloween is my little sister's birthday. She chose the monster for today, which is awesome because he's one of my favorite monsters too. So if you know my sis, wish her a happy birthday today. Happy Birthday sis!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

E-Bike Spotters guide: Didn't make the cut.

If you happen to pick up the National Post this weekend there's an article about the different types of people you'll see riding e-scooters. Richard Johnson, Mike Faille and I designed a bunch of different characters for the graphic unfortunately not every character made the final image. Below find my favorites of the guys I drew who didn't end up in the final:
It happens sometimes. They were fun to draw and it was a nice change of pace from the usual stuff we do.

I really wish Lord Humongous ended up in the paper, would have been funny.

Halloween Fiends: 27

Monday, October 22, 2012

Art for sale!

Swing by my Etsy shop where you'll find the first four Halloween fiends available for purchase. I'm selling the original artwork, not prints. These are the real thing, real ink on real paper, if you look close you can see the pencil work under the ink. Each one is a one of a kind piece of art. If you buy one you'll be the only one who owns that particular piece of art.
Below you'll be reminded which four monsters are available for sale so far on the etsy store. But if you're interested every fiend drawn for the Countdown to Halloween: Halloween Fiends is for sale. If there's one on the blog that's not at the Etsy store and you want to buy it. Let me know.

Halloween Fiend: 22

Friday, October 12, 2012

Who doesn't love art books full of zombie art?

I didn't draw this.

 Ok its now available! There's an artbook out dedicated to zombie art! I have art in it. There's a lot of great artists in it. Guys like, Gary Pullen, Bryan Baugh, Eric Pigors, David Hartman, Allan Graves and me.
Its full of stuff that looks like this!

I didn't do these either.
Here's a look at what I did for it. (It's bigger in the book.)

I went for an EC comic's kind of vibe with this.
Anyway its available at a whole bunch of different places like amazon and stuff like that.

Halloween Fiends: 12

Based on the Metaluna Mutant from This Island Earth, the Universal picture. The next couple of fiends will probably also be inspired by the Universal Monsters, just 'cus I dig 'em.
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