If you need a cloudy background for a photo or video, you can always turn an old aquarium into a DIY cloud tank. But, if you want something more fun and less creepy, these fluffy cloud props by Serena Thompson might be more what you're looking for. It'd even make a good Halloween costume if you tweak it a little. All you need is some balloons, tape, flour, newspaper, and a bunch of pillow stuffing. Serena made them by taping balloons together and applying a mixture of water and flour, then co...
Check out this Halloween tutorial video to learn how to make a flying crank ghost. This is essentially like making a big Marionette ghost puppet. All you need is the following easy to find materials: a styrofoam skull, 7 wire coat hangers, black spary paint, pliers, cheese cloth, tacky glue, and laundry detergent. This flying crank ghost promises to be a delightful scare on Halloween trick or treaters!
Yes, a smashable board of wood. Just what the propmaster called for. A long 2x4 piece of wood prop is perfect for smashing overtop somebody's head during an action scene. The smashable board is easy to make, too. But not as easy as breaking it. Watch this video tutorial to learn how to make a breakable 2x4 wood plank prop.
Check out this video tutorial on how to make cheap dragon wings, controlled by body posture. You can do this project for $18 if you use plastic garbage bags and Scotch tape for the membranes. You'll see how to make very light and strong costume wings. How strong? That strong.
If you want high action in your film, that probably means a gunfight. But how you can you really 'sell' the exchange of gunfire to your audience? Here are a few tricks you can use in Photoshop and Premiere to replicate guns and bullets.
This week on BFX we teach you how to build break-away furniture, because if you break one more real chair over your friend's head, he's never going to act in your movies again!
Tom Skowronski teaches the secrets of using an outdoor green screen. An excellent summary is given below. First check the advantages of using green screen outdoor like a lot of space, sufficient light. In the same way check some disadvantages like noises from birds, children. For the screen materials you can use paper which is cheaper but it cannot be controlled if wind blow. You can also use a board or even paint a wall green which will be better. Now to set up the screen use the screen rods...
Everybody has that destructive feeling sometimes, when you just want to smash your computer to bits due to a glitch or virus or freeze up. If you're making a film, it's a little more plausible that the computer would actually get smashed, considering it would be a fake prop computer. Watch this video tutorial to learn how to make a breakable prop computer.
Some film makers fall into a few pitfalls when working with a green screen. This video lists a few common problems, such as having your talent wear costumes in similar color keys or using uneven lighting, and how to avoid them completely.
This video will show you how to make fake FX sperm out of some household materials.
Are you in need of some kind of mold or cast for your next feature film, but need to save a few bucks? As an alternative to casting (making a shape from a mold) one can carve foam into a desired shape and then coat the foam with liquid latex. This will not create a perfectly smooth surface, but is much less expensive than casting as it requires fewer steps and less resources. So, with this video tutorial, you can learn what you need to know about making a latex skin over carved form.
Skulls. We all love 'em. I'm gonna show you how to make a copy of a plastic skull using Hardware store expanding foam. Watch this video prop and special effects-making tutorial and learn how to build a cheap and easy skull for Halloween or a movie set.
If you're a LARP maniac, or just a fan of LSD-themed (Latter-day Saint) games and activities, then you can't miss out on this. Check this video out to learn how to make a foam-padded sword that is easy and inexpensive. This level three boffer sword will take care of your LARPing opponents like Chuck Norris. If you're a fan of live action role-playing, then this boffer sword is the best of the best for kicking serious ass.
The human body is full of different kinds of fluids, most of which are either gross or dangerous to remove from a person for use in one of your films. Fortunately, most of them are pretty easy to replicate using household materials. This video will show you how to make edible prop fake blood, feces, vomit, and snot. They all look great, are safe, and will make you movie much more realistic.
If you're a filmmaker on a budget and you've got some farce up your sleeve, this video is for you. Watch Indy Mogul's Backyard FX explain how to build a really realistic looking latex pregnancy belly, so that your romantic comedy can grow!
Need some creepy visual effects for your alien flick, but don't want to spend a bunch of money? With some pretty basic materials, you can turn an empty aquarium into a "cloud tank," which can be used to create several different atmospheric effects. Before Hollywood started using CGI, cloud tanks were used for scenes in a lot of famous movies. Remember this one? Besides Raiders of the Lost Ark, cloud tanks also helped make some wonderful non-CGI effects in Independence Day, Close Encounters of...
In this tutorial, we learn how to make a fake cast. You will need: thin cardboard, old sock, duct tape, white toilet paper, and paint. First, place the sock over your arm and then cut two holes on the front of the hand and the thumb. Then duct tape the cardboard around your hand and arm and fold the bottom of the sock on. Now make paste on the cardboard and start to layer on the toilet paper to the paste and cardboard. Next, use scissors to make a cut in the cast. Then make paste on the edges...
It's time for Halloween, maybe it's time for your ultimate independent horror movie you've been dying to make, whatever the case may be, you're going to need some blood, you're going to need some weapons... you're going to need a bloody knife wound.
In this video you learn how to make your own green screen for less than $15 in under an hour. The material for the screen is a green felt-like fabric that can be easily found at a local fabric store or Wal-Mart. The fabric itself is just over 1 yard in width and you will need to buy 2 sheets 3 yards in length for a total of 6 yards at a price of about $2.00 per yard. You will also need a way to join the sheets together. For this, the video recommends a tube of Heat'n'Bond fabric joiner which ...
Boils are the most visible symptoms of many nasty plagues. They make a person look pretty monestrous and will pretty reliably keep other people at arm's reach. This video will show you how to make a latex appliance of a skin boil, paint it to make it even more boilish, then apply it to the skin of a fried or actor. It looks so real, you might get sent to a plague colony.
Jason Voorhees single-handedly terrified millions of American children away from ever going to summer camp, and his iconic mask can still send people running to this day. This video will show you how to can quickly and easily make your own Friday the 13th Jason Voorhees mask out of papier mache and other materials. It looks good, and should be quite comfortable by mask standards.
This week, Indy Mogul, Erik shows how to recreate the effect of someone crawling out of a TV. Just like in that scary movie The Ring. It's actually not expensive, just about $30. You will need scrap wood, poster board, tape, and flat bright green paint. Watch this video film special effects tutorial and learn how to make the effect of someone crawling through a television.
Making fake scars, abrasions, lacerations, and other wounds is one of the most entertaining parts of special effects and makeup work. This video help you get started, teaching you how to make a really gross, festering, fresh-looking fake arm wound that will scare the pants off of your audience (if you use it for a movie) or your fellow revelers (for Halloween or another costumed occasion).
Do you want thicker, more realistic fog from your fog machine? Indy Mogul teaches you how to make realistic, creepy fog special fx for your films for under $30
This video from Backyard FX and Indy Mogul shows you how to make a fake brain. Making a brain is not hard but it does take time and creativity. You can make cauliflower brains, gelatin brains or the one I am going to show you out of bread and glue.
Looking to create the look of a blockbuster Sci-Fi epic, for the price of a student film? This Indy Mogul Backyard FX video will show you how to build incredible looking science fiction armor out of foam for about eighty dollars. Be sure to follow these instructions carefully and be patient.
Halo. The all time best Xbox game. Everybody knows of it. So when you want to make a Halo gun, most will know exactly what it is. This Halo Magnum weapon is sure to be a hit on your movie set. Sure, making a Halo weapon would be good for a Halo movie, but you can use it as any futuristic weapon for your indie space flick. Watch this video tutorial to learn how to build a Halo Magnum movie prop weapon. Get the blueprints.
In this tutorial, we learn how to create floating objects and razorblade props. First off, take your object and some double sided tape. Then, place the tape on the object to make it look invisible. After this, tape it to the middle of the plexi-glass. Have someone else help you move this, and then when you record it on video it will look like the object is moving around in the air without anything holding it. This is a great effect that looks even better on video! To create the razorblade pro...
This video gives incredibly detailed visuals and instructions on how to cast hard molds for creating fake wounds and scars. Great for movie special effects!
In this tutorial, we learn how to knife someone in the face with film effects & tricks. This effect is mostly done in the camera and not in computer software. First, get two identical knives and a hat you don't mind ruining. Then, remove the blade from one of the knives and fix it to the hat. Once you have the knife set up, put your actors in place. When you do this part, use caution to make sure you don't throw the knife at anyone. Throw this into the air, then take the shot to the person wi...
Unfortunately, no one seems to have, or willing to share, the science of making a real teleportation chamber. That doesn't mean you can't make a prop one though. Parker put together this video to show us how. You will need foam core poster board, a hot glue gun, duct tape, a pane of glass or plastic, silver spray paint, black paint, and cardboard. Watch this video prop-making tutorial and learn how to build a teleportation chamber.
A short video on how to make things disappear by using a simple editing trick.
The assault rifle form the Halo series is probably the most recognizable gun in the history of gaming. Many people choose to make machinima using Halo, but wouldn't it be cool to make a little live-action Halo film? Or maybe dress up as Master Chief for Halloween? Either way, having a replica of the assault rifle would behoove you. This video will show you how to make a replica of the assault rifle from the game using this toy gun as a base. It looks really cool, and will be an excellent talk...
Are you into Gaara? If so, why not make one of his gourds? Materials you will need:
The FN P90. Everybody wants one, but more than likely, you can't get your hands on one, especially if it's illegal in your area. Designed by FN Herstal back in the 80's, the P90 personal defense weapon is the cream of the crop. It's full name, Project 90, specifies a weapon system of the 1990's. If you want this firearm for a weapon prop or just to have, you can easily build one yourself with household materials, mostly cardboard. Watch this video tutorial to learn how to build a P-90 prop ca...
Adam shows you how to make a spaceship for filmmakers on a low budget. You'll need a bunch of thermos bottles, paper cups, and a bunch of other stuff. Just watch, will ya?
There are a lot of different kinds of lighsabers in the Star Wars films. Almost every character who has one has a different one. Thus, there are many different ways to make a replica lightsaber for Halloween or as a prop. Watch this video to learn how to use two different designs to make your own lightsaber prop out of hardware store materials for about $15.
This fun video shows you how to make an inexpensive Bigfoot costume for Halloween. You will need an old pair of shoes, an old wig, a bald cap, brown makeup, crepe hair, old newspaper, a foam head, a few spray paint lids, a bottle of spirit gum, liquid latex, and modeling clay. This should cost you less than $30. First build up the shape of the face on the styrofoam head with clay. Make sure to add ugly details to your face like a large nose and brow ridge. Next, add seven to ten even layers o...
The Predator might be the most badass alien ever depicted on film. If you want to embody these formidable lone hunters on Halloween or in a film, watch this video to learn how to make a really sweet DIY predator costume that requires only three costume pieces, with the rest filled in by you/
Real iPods are as quite common, but still so expensive that there are times, especially for films and pranks, where you may want to do something to one that will break it and necessitate buying another. You can't afford that can you? This video will teach you how to make a prop iPod out of common DIY materials.