The Monster of Piedras Blancas was a big shocker for me as a kid. It featured a creepy looking monster, at least one onscreen severed head and a dead child. I’d seen other movies with creepy looking monsters but I’m pretty sure this was the first I’d seen with a severed head and a kid killing monster. In the past if monsters killed kids it was accidental i.e. the kid got stepped on while the monster trashed the city. Usually children survived monster attacks.
This is the pre-Photoshopped version of my revision of the creature. The final version can be found in my Epilogue.net gallery.
Here is another of the original illustrations I did to build up my gallery at Epilogue.net. This one is a new interpretation of the alien from The Thing from Another World. Since the creature is a mobile sentient vegetable I wanted him (it) to look, well, look like a sentient mobile vegetable. As I wrote elsewhere at the time –
My reworking here was fairly easy. The original monster looks a lot like the Universal Frankenstein monster and it’s supposed to be a kind of ambulatory plant. The biggest thing I had to think about was why a plant would wear clothes. And what would they be made of?
Alien spider silk. With the spiders still in residence. They even repair the outfit when it tears – take a look at the group working on The Thing’s right arm.
And it wears the silk to retain moisture during its travels.
I’m a fan of both versions of The Thing. I don’t really consider the 1980s version a remake. It’s actually a more faithful adaptation of John Campbell’s original story Who Goes There?. Both films use the story’s idea of a thawed alien menacing an isolated base but the 1950’s version chances the nature of the alien and therefore the nature of the story. The final illustration can be found here.
In 2003 I set up a gallery at Epilogue.net. Of course, a gallery isn’t much good unless it’s got art in it so I got to work creating new illustrations to post. At the time I didn’t have much work that I thought would fit. I had a lot of sketchbooks but most of my finished work was either comics or Labor of Love designs or so old that I didn’t want to post it.
This is a scan of the original art for A Hot Dry Hunger, one of the illustrations in my B-Movie Re-Imagination Project series. BRIP is my occasional foray into redesigning the monsters of old, usually low budget, movies. I try to retain as much of the original design of the creature as possible while letting the design evolve in ways it couldn’t originally because the original costume had to be created cheaply and fit on a human actor.
The figure at the bottom right is a version of the mutant from The Day the World Ended. I don’t remember what, if anything, the other characters are.
Let’s see. We’ll just be specific about the more finished sketches, the ones with the confident lines –
At the top – two takes of The Monster of Piedras Blancas.
Directly under that – The Thing from Another World.
Under that – The She-Creature and Teenage Frankenstein.
And finally – the Ymir from 20 Million Miles to Earth.
Short on time this morning. Can only post and run. My apologies!
Across the top of the page – a variation on Teenage Frankenstein, a reworking of The Thing and a Teenage Werewolf.
On the right side of the page, a character from the Miracle Max stories.
At the bottom is either an attempt at a serpent man or maybe the Lizard from Spider-Man comics.
The Horror of Party Beach combines two of my favorite monster themes – fishmen and the reanimated dead – with its radioactive fishman zombies. Unfortunately, as with most low budget horror movies, the idea of the monster is more interesting than the execution. So my imagination constantly cycles back to this film to re-design the creatures. This is an early attempt. Here I was trying to incorporate the ridiculous sausage “teeth” into something more intimidating – tooth tipped mouth tentacles.
There’s a tiny Lili Veracruz in the upper right of this page.
And a partial sketch of Junkamungo, my revamp of the Milpitas Monster.
Across the top of the page: a variation on the Monster of Piedras Blancas, K.Z. O’Neil and someone unfinished.
Across the middle of the page: a variation on an exposed brain alien and Buffy Crawfield.
Across the bottom of the page: a little person, Cherice Unomuro, Zebragirl and an unfinished something.