By MIKE CHAIKEN
At the upcoming YourMiniCon event in Meriden, if it’s like most cons, there will be an array of fans engaging in cosplay depicting their favorite comic book, television, and movie characters.
But there also will be classes at the event, which will be held on Jan. 9 and 10. Litchfield’s Tyler Green will be one of those on hand demonstrating how to transform into a favorite alien of monster.
Green, who will lead his class on Saturday at 3 p.m., is a special effects artist. He also was a finalist on SyFy’s reality series competition “Face Off.”
“Face Off,” which pitted aspiring special effects artists against each other for a top prize, had a definite impact on his creativity, explained Green in an interview via Facebook.
“Personally, I have not only grown as an artist, but my confidence in the type of creator I am becoming has gotten stronger. Thanks to the show, new doors have opened for me, and opportunities come daily,” said Green
“I was recently on ‘The Meredith Vieira Show,’ where I got to showcase my FX work. I not only turned a guest into a zombie, I also assisted in Meredith’s transformation into a demon.”
“At Halloween time,” said Green, “I gave lessons and shared my techniques with the makeup team at the Haunted Graveyard at Lake Compounce (in Bristol). I heard their turnout was record breaking, and the quality of work the makeup team pulled off and the sets were top notch. I can’t wait to see what next year brings.
“I also appear regularly on WTNH’s ‘Connecticut Style’ with my best friend and costume designer Ebony Amber (of Torrington) to discuss and demonstrate our talents,” said Green. (Amber will be Green’s subject at YourMiniCon.)
“I enjoy sharing my techniques,” said Green of appearances such as the one at YourMiniCon. “When it comes to showcasing my work, I love inspiring others and getting the crowd excited to see what I can do in a short period of time.”
Since his “Face Off” appearance, Green has made scads of appearances.
“The fans enjoy seeing a character come to life in front of them, and the session usually ends with many asking personal or general questions about where I got started, where I went to school, or what my go-to products are,” said Green.
The appeal of con events such as the MiniConn in Meriden, Green said is, “Simply put, the fans. I also enjoy the creative environment and seeing all the happy people in their element, doing what they love. I like meeting new people and building relationships, and cons are a good place to network and make new contacts.”
Green also is a fan of cons. “I love to see how people put together their costumes and I am always impressed with the stand out cosplayers who raise the bar at every con I go to… (I) love seeing the other special guests. These are people in the film, TV and the comic book world that I grew up with, so I get very excited when I go to cons.
At this con, Green said when he arrives for his demo he prefers to be prepared rather than improvise.
“Usually time is against you and you have to take into consideration that people don’t want to sit for too long,” said Green. “I keep my demos under two hours, which gives me enough time to interact with the audience, usually ending with a photo shoot and questions at the end. A simple brow or face piece is usually my demo. I may even pre-paint the prosthetic to save time, too.”
In addition to the special effects demo, Green also is going to be demonstrating his newly released creation, the Wonderband.
Green explained, “The Wonderband Systems Organizer keeps your brushes and tools organized and at hand so you can focus on creating. It’s easy to use and clean, and it’s a great tool for artists, whether they’re makeup artists, fine artists or sculptors. It’s very versatile.”
“The idea came to me during a sculpting project,” said Green of the origin of his invention. “I was constantly losing and dropping my tools, and I’m the type of artist that likes to move around while I’m working, so I needed to think of something to keep my tools on me while I worked. This sparked the idea to create something mobile, which lead to the thought, ‘What else can I do with this idea?’ So I expanded on the idea and created a series of tests and prototypes.”
“Wearing the prototype at various makeup conventions, people would literally grab my arm, twist it and ask ‘Where did you get this?’ ‘I want one!’ After maybe the 50th person begged me for one, I thought to myself that I may have something here.”
“After so much research and testing, it’s finally ready to be introduced into the world, and I cannot be any happier,” said Green.
In addition to his work in special effects and the Wonderband, Green said he has expanded into the world of fashion.
“Ebony Amber’s CHUNK is a jewelry company dedicated to creating unusual and funky designs. We pride ourselves on making pieces that represent a work of art around your neck. All of the items we carry are hand crafted and made in the USA. Each design goes through a unique process which consists of sculpting a shape out of clay, molding the clay, and then finally casting. Stay tuned because we come out with new designs all of the time and love to create limited editions.”
YourMiniCon will be held on Saturday, Jan. 9 from 10 a.m. to Sunday, Jan. 10 to 5 p.m. at 275 Research Parkway, Meriden. Tickets are $20 for Saturday and $15 for Sunday. For a schedule of classes and a list of vendors and guests, go to yourminicon.com/events/Connecticut.
For more information on the Wonderband Systems Organizer, go to www.wonderbandsystems.com
For more information on CHUNK, got www.etsy.com/shop/EbonyAmber or www.facebook.com/EbonyAmbersChunk.
Also keep an eye out for Green’s at SFX classes at Tyler Green FX Studio in Litchfield. Classes and registration can be found at www.tylergreenfx.com
By MIKE CHAIKEN