Halloween has always been my passion. For the past eleven years, I have been building and designing props for my yard display, which attracts about 600 trick-or-treaters each year. Several years ago, I was featured on the front pages of both local papers – The Dearborn Press and Guide and The Dearborn Times Herald, which drew the attention of another neighbor and haunt professional – Rob Johnson of Bodybag Entertainment. Rob introduced me to other haunters and events such as Great Lakes Fright Fest, The Motor City Haunt Club, HauntCon, and Transworld. During my first visit to Transworld in Chicago, I proposed to my wife, Trisha, at the costume ball hosted by Leonard Pickel of Haunted Attraction Magazine. After attending several Transworld conventions, I knew that I wanted to become a vendor. I made my first debut at HauntCon in Dearborn, MI in May of 2007. More significantly, Beyond the Grave Productions made its first Transworld appearance at The 14th National Haunt & Attractions Show located in St. Louis, Missouri on March 27th–29th of 2009. I thank all of the supporters who visited booth #604, especially the patrons who made this event a great success.
While developing my business, I have and still work with other artists within the industry. In the summer of 2006, I commissioned Chris Russell of Twisted Toy Box to sculpt several pieces and demonstrate the basics of mold making and latex casting. Two years later, I met Jeff Wehenkel at a Motor City Haunt Club garage sale, where he approached me to work on a prop together. I have always admired his work and talent. In fact, the very first mask I purchased from Death Studios was sculpted by him. Jeff mentored me for nearly eight months prior to moving to his new home in San Francisco, CA. Jeff is my primary sculptor and continues to create new characters for my lineup. Finally, I am always researching new methods and materials in order to improve the quality and aesthetics of my products. Jon Shroyer of DreadWorks has assisted me with various molding resources, which has significantly improved my body forms. Overall, the continued collaboration of both Jon Shroyer and Jeff Wehenkel has greatly facilitated the growth and expansion of Beyond the Grave Productions. I look forward to working on future projects with both gentlemen as my business evolves.
I am very fortunate that I get to do what I absolutely love – creating Halloween props. I take great pride in my work, and appreciate all of the positive feedback from my fans, which fuels my creativity and drives my production. I am honored to be a part of the haunt industry, which has introduced me to many wonderful people, especially: Karen and Brian Taylor of Great Lakes Fright Fest, Mac Kelly (aka Wolfman Mac) who featured my work on his T.V. show called Nightmare Sinema, Chris Ainsworth of Thornhill Woods Haunted House in Ontario, Canada, and Chris Brielmaier from Rogues Hollow Productions, who has done a wonderful job designing this website. Again, thank you to all of you who support Beyond the Grave Productions.