It’s probably no surprise that here at Tom Spina Designs, we wait all year for Halloween and live for projects like this! For the last few years we have had the pleasure of helping one of our clients build up an incredible Halloween prop display for his home like no other! We’ve brought the same work we’ve done for theme parks into his home display by creating dozens of custom Tombstones, and even a lifesize mausoleum for him!
We start these yearly displays in late Spring, to give us the necessary time to work with our client on concepts and then create these foam theme-park-style props. Every year we discuss a basic budget and then dream up options for props with the client, sketching out several ideas until we land on the perfect design.
This year’s feature prop is a 12’ round Time Portal that was “on the blink” – the story would be that this time portal is open, but glitching its way through history and the future. This one element will now free us and the client up to bring just about anything into future displays! We can’t wait till next year.
This giant foam prop required a lot of engineering to create something durable enough to remain outdoor for the Halloween season but also be able to break down for delivery and storage. Further, it’s got a functional video element to give it a real wow factor! As an added benefit, the video can be updated year-to-year to expand on the story or to tie in to a future companion piece.
To create the Time Portal prop, our lead foam artist Richard Riley started with a similar process to the one used for creating the custom tombstones, just on a much larger scale! The basic geometric forms in a dense EPS foam, then he then added layers of decorative elements. Once the foam prop sculpture was finished we added a hard polyurea resin coating which will help the piece to be durable enough to remain outdoors. An additional benefit to the hard coating is that when it is applied it adds some addition stone like texture to the large foam props.
The design is an original. Something that wouldn’t look too much like Stargate but would be instantly recognizable as a portal. Symbols and markings around the perimeter give it a sense of history and the beautifully hand carved rock work on the base ground it in reality. Brown tones were chosen over a more traditional gray to help give it a unique look. Blacklight UV paint was added to the perimeter and the symbols so that they could glow when blacklight is projected onto the foam prop.
The cherry on top for this time portal is that a short-throw projector is hidden within the base. The technology is capable of projecting the giant image from just inches away. A custom created video cycles through eras in time, to tell the story of this time portal run amok and give it a really show stopping feature!
Do you need one of a kind custom foam props for your next event or party? Email or call today and let’s discuss your project!