Spoiled Illusions 8: Shoot it While U Can!


Sometimes a location for an Earplug Adventure photo-shoot can disappear with little notice or warning; so it’s very important that I grab the opportunity to gather some story material before the opportunity is lost. This was especially so in my former workplace – often because the prop or set was due to be loaded upon a truck and despatched to far away places. Louvres were often a big deal, so if I chanced upon one that stood out a little – that could maybe become something else entirely in the Earplug realm – I’d shoot as many pictures as possible, irrespective of any story line. Just get them in the can, so-to-speak, and worry about the continuity later – often MUCH LATER, like months or even years. Here’s such a louvre…

This looks like two zombies – Clux and Grimnax – from The Time Tamperer

In the absence of the original Main Thoroughfare that featured in so many Museum of Future Technology interior shots, I used this shelf and a perforated louvre as an alternative. A sort of secondary thoroughfare. The following picture features some cardboard packing-out pieces, upon which I stuck some little bits of yellow paper. It was to simulate apartment buildings. The length of grey/green insulation material is a grassy bank. Yeah – honest. Both are hidden beneath a sheet of plastic that served two purposes: One: to mask the area behind from the camera. Two: to hide the set from prying eyes. Even the boss couldn’t mistake the yellow paper for anything other than windows, right?

I can’t count how many times this ‘set’ was used. It’s not that it was a product that would likely disappear; but it could have come in very handy if the Despatch Department had required some packing-out material. So it was never secure. I was lucky to keep it. Here’s a couple of scenes in which it appeared…

I think they call this a scene setter. This time from Return To The Museum of Future Technology

And here is the same set in ‘action’…

Don Quibonki and Panta Lonez arrive at Lemonstone. From the same story

Not in any danger of being carried off in a truck, but certainly likely to be placed where it belonged, this plastic light tube cover was also used extensively. There had been some trouble with the light fitting; so whilst the cover was off, I hid it in plain site on this shelf – and no one seemed to notice it – for three years!

Well what a perfect corridor / tunnel it has made…

Here it appears in the story The Grand Tour

And I was still using it in Haunted Mars

There were other soon-to-disappear props that would…er…disappear for entirely different reasons. This shot from The Missing featured a hole that had been drilled through a concrete floor…

Clearly something has punched clean through the roof of the Museum of Future Technology!

which would soon be filled with concrete. And as regards this next shot from The Grand Tour

Well soon that set would be powder coated in matt black and travelling along at 120mph. Yes, inspiration comes in many shapes: even engine casings of a 1979 Kawasaki Z1000!

2 thoughts on “Spoiled Illusions 8: Shoot it While U Can!”

    1. Thank you. It’s certainly fun making sets out of stuff that was never intended for it. I’m beginning to think that there is nothing that can’t be turned into something else for an Earplug story.

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