Disappearing ink and theater

Meanwhile, back at the ranch… The show I’m working on is in previews and I’m busily doing things like making foam tubes to turn a table into a wrestling ring– that’s hard to explain. I think it makes sense in the context of the show.  Maybe…

The really interesting bit is that I’ve been making disappearing ink for blood. We’ve got this scene where several people get shot and stabbed, spattering blood everywhere, but the next scene happens immediately after that, with no time for cleanup.  I remembered these squirt guns that my brother and I had had as kids, which had disppearing ink in them.  I told the director about this and he got excited.

So, I’ve been doing chemistry at home to adjust the basic disappearing ink recipe into something that a) still disappears b) looks like blood and c) won’t hurt anyone.  The challenge is that one of the ingredients is lye.  Yeah.  Even though the blood doesn’t go near any of the actors, just the walls, there’s only so much I can add before it becomes too caustic.

Right now, we’re trying to darken it because it is actually disappearing too quickly from the walls.  It is utterly fascinating to me and an area I don’t often go with puppetry.

By the way, if any of you happen to know a way to introduce opacity to the mix and still have it disappear, do let me know.

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3 Responses

  1. Kelvin Kao

    I am guessing that the ventilation and temperature of the actual venue might affect how long those blood last before disappearing?

    Also, somehow “making foam tubes to turn a table into a wrestling ring” doesn’t too strange to me. My reaction was “okay, yeah, makes sense” when I read that…