December 09, 2021 2 min read
It’s so amazing how an everyday, throwaway material such as cardboard has shaped our lives. After all, this whole masked adventure culminated from Steve’s recycling bin and many years later, we’re still building worlds, characters and indeed our future with this stuff. As I type this, our town is enjoying our wildly ambitious creative community project, GRUE, which is a winter-themed family adventure built entirely by our local community from cardboard. It’s truly magnificent and is selling out each day that it’s on, but like all big achievements, the general idea for this type of experience started very small… and very weird… just the way we like it.
One of our most popular recent mask sets is our beloved Bonefaced Mystics, which on one level was a natural expansion of our Fleshless Forest/Dead Animal Skulls set from 2017. Referencing early European folklore and history, the Mystics designs we’re filled out with a more headdress-like treatment and adorning the crown of these special skulls are a plume of feathers, or, more specifically and spectacularly, the FEATHERS OF HERAKON (it must be spoken with gravitas so as not to insult our deities).
When Steve recently reconnected with an old friend, not only did they discover that their parallel career paths were complimentary, the fact that Graham ran a 3D scanning company specialising in historic property and listed building archival, led to many sparks in conversation. The surroundings of our North York Moors naturally conjured up images of the Mystics for us, but a tight schedule and the logistics of shooting a woodland tour in Winter inspired some creative thinking. Rather than dragging everyone into the wilderness, dodging rain and high winds, we shot our tour in three cardboard boxes on a table top.
A strong symbol is a great place to start a project from as it burns right into the mind’s eye and a visual branding or mark is such a powerful tool to instantly trigger an association without words. Often, the otherworldly creatures and entities that we create evoke this iconography and we enjoy coming up with shapes that tell, sometimes rather cryptically, a story about the character they represent. As you explore our little cardboard world, the writing is on the wall and beware the gong strikes and plums of deity-birthing smoke that ensue from their trans-dimensional power.
This project is a further exploration of our love of blending digital and real-world realities. Much like the masks, we are taking ordinary things such as a cardboard box turning them into something extraordinary. The 360-degree digital tour technology has been around for a while now and has mostly been employed for mundane utilitarian tasks such as real-estate showcasing in the commercial sector. We believe there’s so much potential for these readily available tools and will continue to explore the vast artistic potential of the medium. So, without further ado, we invite you to click below, shrink and go inside the box to bother some deities. Just remember, it’s only a model.