We are half way to Halloween, group! And tonight (April 30th) also marks the European festival of Walpurgisnacht.
From Wikipedia: Walpurgis Night is the English translation of Walpurgisnacht, one of the German names for the night of 30 April, so called because it is the eve of the feast day of Saint Walpurga, an 8th-century abbess in Germany. In German folklore Walpurgisnacht, also called Hexennacht (literally "Witches' Night"), is believed to be the night of a witches' meeting on the Brocken, the highest peak in the Harz Mountains,
a range of wooded hills in central Germany between the rivers Weser and
Elbe. The first known written occurrence of the English translation
'Walpurgis Night' is from the 19th century. Local variants of Walpurgis Night are observed across Europe in the Netherlands, Germany, the Czech Republic, Sweden, Lithuania, Latvia, Finland and Estonia.
Walpurgis Night (in German folklore) "the night of 30 April (May Day's eve), when witches meet on the Brocken mountain and hold revels with their gods..."
The current festival is, in most countries that celebrate it, named after the English missionary Saint Walpurga (ca. 710–777/9). As Walpurga's feast was held on 1 May (ca. 870), she became associated with May Day, especially in the Finnish and Swedish calendars. The eve of May Day, traditionally celebrated with dancing, came to be known as Walpurgisnacht ("Walpurga's night"). The name of the holiday is Walpurgisnacht or Hexennacht ("Witches' Night") in German, Valborgsmässoafton in Swedish, "Vappen" in Finland Swedish, Vappu in Finnish, Volbriöö, (Walpurgi night) in Estonian, Valpurgijos naktis in Lithuanian, Valpurģu nakts or Valpurģi in Latvian, čarodějnice and Valpuržina noc in Czech.
Last October, fellow Akron haunter and friend Jack "ActionJax" Herman passed away, leaving a tone of sadness to the Halloween season. He had always complimented me on my tombstones, so I decided to pay tribute to him in a way that he might have wanted: make him a part of the display that he liked so much!
Jack was a huge fan of the Gothic stylings of the classic Universal Monster movies, so I decided to create a small, simple gothic-inspired tombstone. I also decided to do a stark, nearly total black and white color palette to mimic the films themselves.
In researching elements for the stone, I found two symbols that would work perfectly on this epitaph: ivy, which symbolizes friendship and the butterfly, which symbolizes a shortened life.
Once the epitaph had been designed and engraved, and the foam tombstone shaped and painted, the final piece was ready to go! I brought the stone outside at dusk for some rather atmospheric shots in my back yard.
As the light faded, I pulled out the LED spotlight for a few dramatic shots.
I'm really happy with the way this stone turned out. It is going to look great in my yard haunt display and will serve as a nice little reminder of a friend who left us way too soon. Rest in peace, Jack!
A big thanks to Jimmy T. for introducing me to M.F. Jorg! I had never heard of "horror ambient" before this, but this is definitely going into rotation during my propmaking sessions in the garage. Fantastic dark ambient with "horror" elements from 2007. Another release that would make an excellent soundtrack in a haunt display.
I couldn't find much info on the artist or his releases, so it looks like I've got some digging to do.
Retro Promenade, the group behind the fantastic The Next Peak
trilogy, have curated yet another themed retrosynth album that should
be something you immediately download. This time they’ve gathered a ton
of different artists together to pay homage to the master of horror
himself, John Carpenter!
Simply titled Carpenter, the 20 track album features original tracks from amazing artists such as Lazerhawk (if you haven’t gotten Skull & Shark yet, what’s wrong with you?), Gunship (the group behind this incredible music video), VHS Glitch, and a whole lot more.
These artists have written original songs based off of multiple John Carpenter films, including Halloween, Big Trouble In Little China, They Live, Christine, The Thing, and more.
A cold, weathered hand pierces the rust-laden earth of a late autumn night. Reanimated decay becomes the evening's guide. Masked faces bask in the fiery glow of a jack-o-lantern's illumination. A lifeless finger points the direction toward the next porch-lit house. For this is the night of ghouls and goblins and tricks and treats. This is the night of Hallowe'en...