Floating Skulls Treasure Chest Hologram (Updated)

Picture of Floating Skulls Treasure Chest Hologram (Updated)
Update: I have figured out a way to practical way to produce the Pepper's Ghost Effect in an outdoor situation, so I have updated this instructable with the results, jump to the last step for if you want to see the result.

I wanted to add a personal stamp to our Pirate Ship decor for Halloween, and also to get my girls involved in the whole process. This effect is very easy, and could be used to project skulls or other face paintings on your walls to give your guests a spooky welcome. If you want to get a little more fancy you could also combine the floating skull with a "Pepper's ghost holographic effect" to scare the pants off any unsuspecting trick-or treaters.

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Step 1: ITEMS

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The black light is likely the key item you don't have lying around...
  1. Black light 10-50$ at amazon.com
  2. Fluorescent face paint 20$ at amazon.com
  3. Black face paint 10$ at amazon.com
  4. Camera
If you are trying for the Pepper's Ghost Hologram effect, you also need:
  1. A projector or monitor
  2. A piece of glass or clear plastic in your choice of size (if using a monitor, then 50% longer than the monitor in one dimension)
  3. Brackets to hold your projector/monitor and sheet of glass/plastic (fishing line, lumber, brackets...)

Step 2: Test Paints

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It is always a good idea to test any body paints on a small area to test for a skin reaction, and also to see what is the best order to apply the paints. In this case, the glow paint was practically transparent after application, and the black paint was easy to apply over top, masking the glow extremely well.

Step 3: Apply Base Coat

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The glow paint goes on first. As you can see it dries clear, so to test whether you have missed any spots, view it under the black light. Make sure to let this coat dry before applying the black. 
lwvtutor1 year ago
wow, well made!
Renard_Bleu (author)  lwvtutor1 year ago
Thanks, check back after halloween, I have new plans for Pepper's ghost.
Oh I like this idea so much :D
Renard_Bleu (author)  Przeproprzem1 year ago
Dawidoyaki1 year ago
Well, cool yakima if you ask me :D
deltafour1 year ago
I have tons of ideas running through my head after watching this.

What's the make of your projector?

Renard_Bleu (author)  deltafour1 year ago
The closest thing I found to the model I have is below, it is more expensive than I remember and looks like it got a bump in specs. You should also consider Pico Projectors which usually come with a battery and a basic player that is integrated for 200-400$ (smaller, dimmer, quieter). I also have a bigger projector for my other projects that are more Lumens sensitive (Optoma HD25)