HorrorBid Goes Behind the Mask with Casey Carty from The Prop ShopHow did you get started in the business of mask making?
I’ve been artistic my whole life. I went to college for visual/graphic design. As far as getting into this specific genre, I remember searching eBay a while back and stumbling across some Freddy glove replicas. This was back in the day before everyone started making them and a single glove would go easily sell for $500+. I wanted one but couldn’t�ford one at the time so I decided to try and make one on my own. With the help of my dad and his tools, I whipped out a glove that looked pretty good. Eventually I started selling them and made enough money to quit my part time job delivering pizzas during college.
I was doing something artistic that I really liked doing. This drove me to start new projects. Eventually making masks.Please describe in detail what led to your passion for the horror genre and or the Halloween holiday?
As a child Halloween was my favorite time of the year. I have such great memories and feelings when I think back to my childhood Halloween experiences. Carving a pumpkin and looking at it for the first time lit up, baking the seeds, trick or treating with my Dad, decorating the house, counting my candy, dressing up, smell of the fall leaves… I �ld honestly go on and on about why I love Halloween. No doubt this lead to my passion for the horror genre.
I hope to give my son the same positive Halloween experiences that I had. Is it just me or has Halloween taken a turn for the worse? Kids can’t eve�ear a Halloween mask to school anymore!
Who or whom was the biggest influence in your life and how did that effect who you are today?
My parents are my two biggest influences that made me who I am today. Horror/spfx related influences include Dick Smith, Tom Savini, Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, and Michael Myers!What do you do in your spare time when you are not making masks or doing something work related.
Spending time with my family/friends and watching my son grow up are top on my list now. I also like to go out and have a few drinks, play the guitar, listen to music, and play a video game now and then.What was your first sculpt and or mask making experience? Were you a natural or did it take time to hone your skills? How much have you learned since then?
I’ve been�aying with clay since I was a kid. Honestly I think my first sculpt was a California Raisin when I was 6! lol
My first mask sculpt was an attempt at Freddy Krueger.
The mask didn’t look ve�great but I’m still ver�roud of it. I learned so much from making that mask start to finish.What projects have you accomplished in your career that you feel really cemented your legacy in the business. Was there a point where you took a step back and said, "Wow, how am I going to get all these orders filled"?
Legacy is a pretty powerfully word. Don Post has cemented his legacy in the business.
I’m still worki�on that.
I plan to continue making my customers happy, offering quality items, and slowly expanding each year.What project have you worked on in the past that you would consider your favorite thus far?
Don’t really have a�vorite. Each successful project is rewarding in its own way.How has being a husband, father, or being in a relationship affected your work and are they supportive of what you do?
Being a Father has greatly affected my work. Its given me a drive to be even more successful with what I do. For a while I was a full time dad when my wife was working. I’m the only guy yo�ill ever meet that can sculpt, paint, and change a shitty diaper at the same time!
My family is very supportive of what I do.What were some low points in your career (if any) when you had to take time to reflect and ask yourself if this business isn’t right for you?[/b�I’ve never had to refle�and ask myself that. Each year has gotten bigger and better for The Prop Shop since I started this. I plan to keep that trend rolling.
Was there a point where you took a step back and said, "Wow, how am I going to get all these orders filled"?
I’ve said that a few time�I think I added a four letter word or two in there somewhere but along the same lines…
Actually the last two ye� I’ve been very good about hav� items in stock with no wait on shipping. Customers are much happier waiting a week for something rather than 6-9.What upcoming project can you share with us? Any surprises on the horizon?
Lots of stuff! Look for a clean Psychopath, Psychopath clown costume, and Psychopath V3. More items will be announced later in the year.Thanks for a great interview Casey, Justin & Joel