Archive for the ‘Film’ Category

13 Drawings

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

happy birthday to me

I finished my Body Count Drawings, featuring slasher films, and the images are up! This detail is from Happy Birthday to Me (1981) – I saw the film in the mid-80s and this image freaked me out.

Channeling all things “Zombie”

Monday, May 10th, 2010


May, according to the Zombie Research Society, is zombie awareness month. It’s already the 10th, so if you’re behind I recommend sleeping with one eye open – starting now. Wear your grey ribbon (perhaps you have one you can recycle from other awarenesses such as Diabetes, Brain Cancer, and others).

Secondly, there is a band from Paris called Zombie Zombie – it’s trance music – get it?

And visit the blog for an upcoming DIY (as yet untitled) apocalyptic zombie film combining narrative fiction and contextual zombie-expert interviews… by Michael Frank of Rochester, NY. I met Michael in January in frozen Buffalo, NY and look forward to his feature.

And last but not least, this Studio 360 clip on zombies was sent to me from Sam Zimmerman in NYC:

Weird and Wonderful

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010


Last night I watched Basketcase (1982) courtesy of a friend’s video collection, and was reminded of both Jan Å vankmajer’s Little Otik (2000) – which has higher production values but is just as strange a story, and Jeffrey Sconce’s article “Trashing the Academy: Taste, Excess, and an Emerging Politics of Cinematic Style”. I highly recommend all three.

The “monster” in the basket is not very scary, although he’s terribly violent, and his stop motion rampage is pretty wonderful. Check out the terrible lighting – including telephone wire shadows cast across faces, the bad hair pieces, and the non-stellar acting.

Body Count Drawings

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

Now that spring has sprung, my mind has turned to new tricks and slasher films: there are new signs of life (such as pollen) bursting out everywhere and most slashers strike in warm weather. For these reasons I don’t plan to set foot outdoors until late fall, so I’ve plenty of time to teach myself new skillz including drawing! Though not exactly new, drawing is a skill I’ve forgotten to exercise for approximately 15 years. It’s probably like riding a bicycle, but the last time I tried that I fell flat on my face, scared the crap out of myself, and left the bike equipment where it lay.

Here is a sneak peek of details from the first of my drawings, in progress, titled Body Count, Friday the 13th.

body count drawing 1

body count drawing 1

body count drawing 1

body count drawing 1

body count drawing 1

body count drawing 1

For those who are curious there are 11 deaths (athough 3 took place in the past and it is revealed that 1 of the “dead” may in fact be “undead”).

Vampire Faceoff

Thursday, November 5th, 2009

Here is a taste of the vampires spotted last night in the Tempe area – be careful out there, they’re mean!




Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

Here’s a sneak peek into makeup sessions last week at ASU Art Museum for my upcoming Vampires vs Zombies video, featuring 55 local zombies and vampires, not to mention the talents of local make-up artists. Our vampires will be red-eyed and thirsty, with bloodstained lips.

Carlos Vampire makeup

Carlos (above) and Ginger (below) create vampire looks!

Ginger Vampire makeup

Greg Vampire Makeup Before

Vampire look, created by Sandra (above), modeled by Greg (below)

Greg Vampire Makeup After


Vampire eyes (above) and mouth (below), created by Greg; modeled by Paul


Join us!


Wanted: Desert Zombies, Vampires, Make-up Artists. No Experience Necessary.

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

I’m in residence at ASU Art Museum in Tempe, AZ. I’ll be working on a few different projects, the first of which starts next week. Details on how you can participate, below:

vampire huntingzombie loop

“Jillian Mcdonald, artist-in-residence at ASU Art Museum seeks participants in a video installation for her November exhibit at ASU.”

Interested parties will attend an information session and audition on October 15th at 11 a.m.; attend a rehearsal on Oct 22nd starting at 11 a.m.; and be videotaped together on the afternoon of Oct 31st in the desert. The information session, audition and rehearsal will be held in the project’s gallery at ASU Art Museum. No acting experience or knowledge of vampires and zombies necessary, however feel free to do some research online.

zombies vampires

Zombies may also, if interested, participate in a further performance on the Light in early November. Contact Jillian Mcdonald, info below, to receive notifications.

Also seeking enthusiastic makeup artists – with or without experience. Make-up artists will come to an information meeting on Oct 15th at 2p.m., and a workshop Oct 16th or 23rd at 11a.m.. These meetings will also be held in the project’s gallery in ASU Art Museum. Make-up for the video will be done at the museum on the late morning of Oct 31st. There is no cost to participate, make-up will be provided.

Please sign up with me directly if you are interested in participating in the project (phone 917.443.8107, email jmcdonald[at]jillianmcdonald[dot]net). Feel free to send questions or concerns. Interested parties who cannot make the scheduled dates, please inquire about alternative times.

*images from Vampire Hunting, Zombie Loop, and Undead in the Night

Zombieland Coming Soon (to a theatre near you)…

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

Although I haven’t seen it, I predict the best thing about the upcoming Zombieland is Woody Harrelson, reprising his redneck uber violent role from Natural Born Killers. The zombie film has come a long way, and finally gets what it deserves – a superstar! The film features a group of young vigilantes, led by a very buff Harrelson, who survived Zombieland so far by “being very careful”. Case in point: they wash their hands with Purell, in the age of swine flu and Zombie breakouts. Those smart cookies are the other leading male, Jesse Eisenberg, who looks and sounds an awful lot like that nice naive Canadian Michael Cera, and a pair of cute girls who wield a mean chain saw.

Note in the trailer a customary reference to another horror film moment: the banjo duel in Deliverance:

And if you’re not into zombie comedies set in the desert, how about a zombie film set on a Norwegian ski slope? Dead Snow is not funny.

Lend your Buffalo kitchens & bathrooms!

Saturday, August 8th, 2009


In mid-September I’ll be in Buffalo filming Red Rum (working title), a new video for exhibition at Hallwalls in January 2010. I will film in kitchens and bathrooms around Buffalo, NY, so if you have some and are willing to participate, please contact me or John Massier (info on poster, above) for details.

Red Rum, its title a reference to The Shining where a young boy predicts “redrum” (backwards, murder) before a hotel elevator bursts with blood and all hell breaks loose, is a video with a haunted horror theme. The scenes take us through a cavernous home where blood – a predominant prop in horror films—drips from faucets, runs down mirrors, pools on stairs, and seeps from cupboards. This blood appears disembodied until the camera slowly reveals its haunted source. Meanwhile the camera visits many neighbouring houses that also drip with blood, suggesting a murderous streak. Red Rum, filmed on location in Buffalo during the artist’s residency in September 2009, features local actors, students, a choir, musicians, and homes.

Zombies in Condoland documentation!

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

At long last, the documentation is completed! It’s also on Youtube…
Note: the sound doesn’t start right away.