Thursday, March 27, 2008

Confessions of a Failed Balloon Sculptor

Jeff Koons "Balloon Dog (Magenta)"
Photo: Santi Caleca

Awhile back I attempted to learn how to make balloon animals for my daughter’s birthday party. Even though I was only able get as far as a dog and a bunny I was really excited to create them for the kids and especially for my daughter.

The day of the party I got started twisting the balloons into shapes, unfortunately I was unable to get the kids excited about the balloon animals I was making. Maybe it was the way I was making them or maybe I appeared to be clumsy and the children sensed my inexperience. After some time of failing to get any one’s attention I decided to give it up, even though I had been practicing and learning balloon sculpture for the previous 3 weeks. All of the sudden my friend came up and without saying a word grabbed a balloon and quickly blew it up and started twisting the thing like a maniac and created a complex bear. The kids went crazy for it and wanted him to make that bear over and over. I was humiliated and just stood there and stared.

X-Wing Balloon Sculpture

photo: David Grist

To blow up those long balloons manually is next to impossible unless you have runner’s lungs. I had to use a hand pump and felt like a complete loser.

The concept to making balloon sculpture is simple but the application is not. Balloon sculpture isn’t limited to simple dog and bunny shapes but can be almost infinite in its complexity if one has the imagination to push the limits.

Balloon Sculpture History

It is said that the first known balloon sculpture dates back to the Aztecs. I will spare you the ugly details of what they were made of and how they were aquired. The early balloons were twisted into the shape of a dog or a donkey and ceremoniously taken to the top of the Aztec pyramid and burned in honor of the sun.

For a more detailed account of all things balloon:

An incredible balloon environment

Balloon art slide show


Saturday, March 15, 2008

Nessie Mini Sculpture

I love this little sculpture that Adam made so much. I convinced him to start making them to sell.

The photography for his sculptures are a little hard, especially since I am not a photographer. They really look so much better in person.

We did a two person show a quite a few years ago called "Seamonsters See Monsters" which was probably the start of my obsession with mythical sea creatures.


Friday, March 14, 2008

Custom Cryptid

Well, if you are at all familiar with our Etsy shop, you'll know that Adam has a bit of an obsession with all things cryptid. And since Etsy just rolled out the long awaited Alchemy feature where you can request custom work from artists, I wanted to show everyone what I gave Adam for Valentines Day this year.

photo courtesy of missbehaven

It's a custom made papier mache Bigfoot Figurine made by missbeahaven.
Isn't it great!?! We hope to collect more artist made cryptids soon.


I recently rediscovered Mold-A-Ramas. I haven’t thought about them since the age of 9. They’re plastic figurines molded right before your eyes by a vending machine that looks like it could be right of a 1950’s sci-fi movie. Mold-A-Rama machines were usually located in zoos, museums, and theme parks. They produced all types of figurines, most were animals and dinosaurs but there were various mechanical themes as well, which included a steam locomotive, a submarine, a battleship and the space shuttle. These injection molding machines were developed in the mid 1950’s. Some Mold-A-Rama’s are still in use today, kept alive by inventive technicians creating parts by hand and hardware store acquisitions.


Here's a video of a Mold-A-Rama in action:

For more photos of Mold-A-Rama figurines check out this flicker group:

About Me

My photo
PearsonMaron is a collaboration between artists Quincy Pearson and Adam Maron. We specialize in monster magnets, unique knobs made from recycled metal, and lots of other interesting kitschy stuff. We are married and live in Southern California with our daughter and three mean cats.