Nothing seems to escape the zombie epidemic sweeping the planet; not even fluffy teddy-bears. English artist Phillip Blackman uses zombie-flick special effects makeup to turn the lovable toys into creepy undead that will keep you awake at night.
45-year-old Phillip Blackman, from Suffolk, England, says the idea for his zombified teddy-bears was born from a silly joke between him and his partner. “She had a terrible cold at the time and we’d been talking about a gift for a friend’s baby. With a very stuffy nose ‘teddy-bear’ kept coming out as ‘deady-bear’, and we joked about zombie teddies that creep from under your bed at night to feast on your brains while you sleep,” the artist remembers. He eventually became quite intrigued by the idea of making undead toys, so he bought a bunch of teddy-bears from eBay. But it was during that time that his girlfriend became pregnant, and in the chaos of moving to a new house and starting a family, Phillip forgot all about his creepy projects. Years later, while sorting his son’s soft toys, he came across the teddy-bears he had bought, and decided to put the his old idea into practice. And that’s how the wonderfully-creepy Undead Teds came to be.
But who would actually spend money to own a disturbing zombie teddy-bear, right? You’d be surprised! “The demand is astonishing – as soon as I make them, they’re gone,” Blackman told the Mail Online. “I put up three new bears on my website this week and they were all sold within 90 seconds.” Apparently most of his clients are men and women in their 20s looking for unique gifts. This past Valentine’s Day has been a very busy time for Phillip, but the zombie creator says his favorite undead teddy-bears are those created specially for the romantic holiday, with their torn-out hearts as a present for the receiver of this grisly gift.
To transform the kids’ toys into Undead Teds, Blackman uses film-standard special effects makeup. He sculpts the bones, teeth and other organs by hand, from polymer clay or latex, then opens the bear’s carcass, takes out some of the stuffing and fixes the gory details in place with glue. Finally, he paints on the blood and adds a layer of varnish for a wet effect. ‘Each UndeadTed takes in excess of eight hours to make, not including the time it takes for glue, paint and varnish to dry, and I price them individually depending on size, complexity, materials used and time taken”, the artist says.
Photos © Phillip Blackman/UndeadTeds.com