Of the three monster cereals, Frankenberry was always my favorite as a kid. But I had to wonder, now that I’m all grown up, what Frankenberry would be like today? So I went out to create a larger-than-life-size, pink, reanimated, mechanized corpse that’s all hopped up on his own sugary sweet breakfast cereal.
I started with the mask. I wanted it to be big, so I sculpted it on top of a baseball helmet I got at Goodwill. The jaw was so big, it became a completely separate sculpture. When I was happy with how that looked, I cast them in plaster, then poured several coats of liquid latex, then popped it out of the mould and painted with spray paint. The chest piece was constructed the same way.
For feet, I flipped two milk crates upside-down and attached a pair of sneakers. Then I built the giant black shoes out of thick black cardboard. I have found that plastic and paper is almost always lighter than wood and metal (lesson learned).
To put a wiggle in Frankenberry’s step, I found a chest harness and an old stereo with detachable speakers. I bolted the tuner to the back of the harness, and mounted each speaker above my shoulders. Chicken wire provided the right shoulder shape. And an iPod shuffle loaded with some custom edited music tracks gave me plenty of dance music and sound effects.
I then routed electro-luminescent wire around the mask and throughout the torso and added an audio sensor so that when I played an mp3 of a heartbeat, the wire would pulse on and off. The fists were made of PVC pipe, chicken wire and .25-inch thick craft foam, hot glued together and spraypainted.
Overall, this Homemade Frankenberry Costume was indeed heavy, but still nimble enough for me to break into some smooth dance moves now and then.
Video of it in action can be found here: