Farmhouse Research - Ed Gein and Signs

Posted by Sam Hayes On Sunday, December 13, 2009
I really like the idea of my scene being set in a rural American farmhouse. Yesterday I re-watched the film 'Signs', directed by M.Night Shymalan and starring Mel Gibson it is based around a family living on a rural farm in America and their struggle against an alien invasion. As I watched the film I took screenshots of every frame that I thought could be useful when creating a scene.

Instead of an Alien-invasion, I would like my scene to portray an eery isolation feel, similar to that of The Hills Have Eyes and Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Before all the violence kicks off) This is where I've been looking through the images of Ed Gein, which I've also posted below.



Ed Gein

Ed Gein was a 'serial killer' who operated in the 1950's living in Wisconsin. He was only convicted of killing one person, but hewas also a grave-robber who stole at least 10 newly-buried bodies from local graveyards to use in his own way (Which turned out to be making necklaces out of the lips, soup-bowls out of the skulls and keeping the genitals in a box, he also kept organs in the refrigerator). A report stated:

A shirt of human skin, complete with breasts, had been fashioned from the tanned torso of a middle-aged woman. Gein would later confess that he often put the shirt on at night and pretended to be his mother.

He committed all of this after the death of his mother, and admitted after his arrest, that he was making a human-suit out of the skin of the victims to become a woman. Below are some photos of the house that Ed Gein operated in, his story influenced a lot of horror films, and he was a genre-creating icon, especially Psycho, which was based on Gein, with the motherly-loved killer.

1 Response to 'Farmhouse Research - Ed Gein and Signs'

  1. tutorphil said...'> 13 December 2009 at 19:14

    The interesting thing about Gein was, for some, he represented the 'death' of the American Dream - that idea of the 'family' as being a synonym for 'health' and stability and social sanity, and the 'home' as being wholesome and a microcosm of the community - very 'unheimlich'!

    While we're on the subject of infamous serial killers, check out John Wayne Gacy - and you'll see another inversion that haunts culture - even today...


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I'm a student studying CG Arts and Animation at the University for the Creative Arts, I'm living in Kent.

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