David Love brings our favourite horror icons to life
David Love has been a graphic designer for over ten years, but has always loved photography. He began with a point and shoot camera, working up to a DSLR. He started with landscape and animals as a way to learn, and now photographs people, including fashion, glamour, commercial and lifestyle. For about a year, David has been shooting cosplay images with Callie Cosplay, a cosplay enthusiast, musician, writer and model. They began by re-creating superheroes, but David had been wanting to work on a project with a little more freedom. Callie called him one night with an idea for a shoot based on Carrie, but David explains “by the time she had arrived at my house / studio I wanted to do every awesome scary movie ever in time for Halloween in 3 days. So we ran out to a costume shop and bought tons of props and raced back to get started.” He wanted the images to have the atmosphere of 1980s horror films he grew up with, and include bad guys with style. He decided to attempt one image per movie, and used items he found around his house to create the scenes. He loves the idea of paying tribute to pop culture and introducing younger people to things they may not have seen. As per Popcorn Horror tradition, we asked David about his zombie survival plans. They involve lots of running with his camera.
Halloween: This was David’s first image in the series. He explains “I just wanted that moment when she thinks she’s lost him and then lighting hits the dark hallway and there he is. The hardest part is not having Hollywood locations to play in but the magic of photography is you only see what the lens sees.”
Friday the 13th: David lives off a lake, so he took a boat onto the grass outside. He opted to have the model topless to pay tribute to the traditions of the classic slasher movies. Callie’s husband was kneeling behind the boat wearing a Jason mask, but David opted to digitally replace the clothes, mask and machete. He also added some water splashes and fog to capture the feeling of the dark lake.
Scream: David wanted to capture the scene from the film by implying that the model was running through the yard getting stabbed. He set up 3 speed lights around them with gels to help bring out the dark costume against the night.
Psycho: David had wanted to pay tribute to Psycho for a long time. Callie has many wigs and contacts, and a big part of his work with her is changing up her appearance. He had the remove the window in his shower, and describes this one as “a nice mix of sexy and horror tribute”
Nightmare on Elm Street: David placed the glove on a cup in the bath and used a wide angle lens to get as far back as possible.
Carrie: For the last shot of the evening, David had the model stand in a kids pool before dumping fake blood on her. He did a few shots of the blood drop moment, and fire against a grey backdrop then he added everything else in Photoshop.
The Ring: David has also worked with makeup artist Elia Lizcano on some of the shoots. She came up with this idea based on The Ring, and made herself up as Sadako/Samara.
Dexter: David explains “Horror isn’t just about stabbing and blood but watching things that make us cringe. Dexter being one of my favorite shows had to be done. A naked girl wrapped in plastic with Dexter putting the knife in just has the right mixture of sexiness and drama. Callie did a great job with the expressions and I was happy with the lighting. For me I never try to light the model but the environment around them or that will be around them when the image is done.”
X Files: This is one of David’s favourite shots. He was concerned whether the image would work because Dana Skully has a distinct look, but after seeing Elia cut and style the wig and add the makeup he was convinced. He dded the alien head, FBI badge and lighting after but loved the overall look of this piece as it resembles a video game paused mid-action.
King Kong: David arrived at this idea after seeing a gorilla mask and gloves in a costume shop. He shot the hand separately and then had the model pose on the floor after and then added the location in Photoshop.
The Walking Dead: Elia wanted to do zombie makeup pics for her portfolio, so David suggested The Walking Dead. He lit the shot and added a background.
American Mary: Veron contacted David about doing an American Mary shoot. She created the outfit, but they were lacking fake blood. All they had was green food color and remembering the Psycho chocolate trick for blood, he put the food color intoto a spray bottle and sprayed her down. Because she was wearing nothing green, David was able to change the green to red in Photoshop.
Find out more about David’s work at his official website.