Sunday, July 24, 2011

Peel-and-Stick Blood Splatters on a Dollar Store Budget

The wife showing off the peel-and-stick blood prop
For those who have been following my other blog, you may know that I have been experimenting with a way of creating a peel-and-stick static blood splatter prop.  The same kind that would be utilized on the show DEXTER.  The reason being is that sometimes you may find yourself on a film set or a haunted house attraction location in which no fake blood is allowed because of fears of stains, etc.  That is why this prop is ideal for such a case.

The current challenge of finding a really good blood splatter prop is the cost.  For those who, like me, who work with almost zero budgeted films finding a cost effective way of making or buying this prop is nearly impossible-til now.

After several batches and many failed attempts I have found a possible solution and it involves Elmer's Clear School Glue.  A item which is incredibly cheap at the moment due to all of the current back to school sales at places like Walmart and Target.

 Now let me share what I have learned so you too can make your own.

Supplies you will need:

  • Elmer's Clear Washable Clear Glue
  • Food Coloring of the primary colors, red, green, blue, yellow.
  • Grafix Clear Sheeting, or a roll of any acetate sheeting such as the kind used for projectors.  In most art supply stores you can find a roll of it in the drafting/architecture aisle next to the myriad of rulers.
  • Masking tape
  • A sheet of foamcore board or a large sheet of cardboard
  • A disposable clear plastic cup
  • A disposable plastic spoon
  • Patience.  Lots of patience.


1.  The first thing you will need is to roll out a large piece of acetate sheeting on a the foamcore board on a very flat surface and tape it down with the masking tape.

2. Pour the entire bottle of glue into the cup.  Then add a few drops of red, about six to seven drops.  You can add more if need be.  After the red add around one to two drops of green and one drop of blue.  You may have to experiment with the mixture to get it to the right kind of red you desire.

3.  On the acetate sheet, pour the mixture to make a large pool.  You can at this point tilt the board so it creates a realistic blood puddle.  The puddle will be a good size one.  However, if you need a large puddle you can double or triple the formula.  If doing such a thing it would be best to find a larger bottle of the glue online.

4.  To create drips, I made smaller puddles and tilted it and let it drip downward.  I also used the spoon to add lines of drips to craft it to the way I wanted.

5.  Wait around 24 hours for the mixture to fully dry.

6.  Here comes the tricky part.  The thicker the puddle the easier it will be to peel it off.  Yet, the thinner the puddle or splatter is the more challenging it is to peel it off, but it can be done.

7.  After the prop is used it can be reapplied back to its acetate sheet.  At this point I have no idea as to how many times it can be used.  But be sure to store in a cool and clean place in between usage.

Mistakes I have made and will correct next time:

The blood came out a decent red.  However, I might use a drop of black acrylic paint to darken the blood to add a bit more realism.  It was too see through for my taste.

Also because of the nature of the glue there were too many bubbles.  Using a toothpick to pop the bubbles helped a bit but I would like to find a better way of ridding them from the prop.


Katie said...

I wonder if you could vibrate the board, like you need to do with plaster or concrete? Something like setting a sandpaper-less sander on the board? But, I also wonder if that would mess up the characteristics of the drips and runs.

Tim Shrum said...

I thought of the same thing. I have yet to try it out.

However, I was watching a tutorial on pouring silicone molds and it was suggested to pour farther away from the surface and slower in a thin and steady drip. In theory the distance causes the smaller bubbles to pop.

I'm going to try it out and see what happens.