View Full Version : Half Human/Half Vulture Monster Illusion

09-26-2007, 02:41 PM
I need to build a scene that has a "harpy" in it – preferable with the Harpy on the branch of an old dead tree. A harpy is a half-human (top) and half-vulture (bottom). I was hoping to use a mirror illusion to hide the bottom half of the actor, and then build some kind of fake bird half that the actor would rest against.

Does anyone have any resources, ideas or links they would recommend on how to pull this off? The actor needs to talk to the patrons, but does not need to move. I would love to freak people out, and I thought this would be a good spot to start my design.

I remember the bamboo-stand display with the hanging body (with bottom half missing) and I thought I could use this design idea to pull off the illusion. Anyone know specifically how that was done? I have made some mirrored tables before, but nothing too elaborate.

Any help would be appreciated!

09-26-2007, 09:53 PM
Here’s a link which shows how the mirror Illusion works. All you need to do is mount your bird body to the front edge where the mirrors come together.


Jeff Londos
Innovators in Haunt Technologies

09-27-2007, 11:56 AM
Thanks for the link. I appreciate your help.

I have actually made something like that , but I am worried about how the mirror refelcting part of the bird body since it will be up against the point of the corner of the mirror. I thought about mounting a single mirror at a 45 degree angle whose bottom goes away from the viewer. That would show the viewer the floor as the background -- so you could put some image on the floor and have it viewed as the background.

Seems kind of tricky but it would allow for "monster parts" to hang down in front of the mirror with nary a care. The mirrow would have to be backed with a piece of plywood so the actor could rest against the incline with their arms, shoulders and head visible.

I was hoping to see some plans for this idea somewhere -- and I suspect that is how the bamboo stand is done. My carpentery skills may be somewhat lacking to build it well...

09-27-2007, 02:29 PM

this is kind of what you just discribed. Hope it helps!


09-27-2007, 03:11 PM
Thanks...that is what I had in mind.

Now I just have to figure out how to make it work so the monster appears to be sitting on a branch -- and keeping a good restriction on line of sight so the illusion is not ruined by seeing it from the side.

Also...somehow I have to make a large prop that is the bottom half of the bird-monster. If anyone knows were I can get a LARGE bird of prey please let me know. I will cut it in half and have the actor lay so it appears their upper half is the upper half of the monster.

Jim Warfield
09-27-2007, 06:48 PM
"Half Human, half Vulture"?
Sounds like you want to build a divorce lawyer?
Build a fancy desk instead of a perch but don't forget the pile of smouldering rancid guts infront of him, look there's a wallet in the guts, he sure ripped a large chunk out of his victim just to harvest the wallet!
Messy! Messy!