Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Build your own coffins the DARK SHADOWS way!

It's not every day that I regret my career as a journalist. While it's provided me with the kinds of opportunities money can't buy, it hasn't done my bank account any favors. For the first few years of my newspaper career I was a master connoisseur of gas station hot dogs and budget snack crackers (the Doritos-flavored crackers from Frito Lay were among my favorite).

While life has gotten better since then, I'm still broke as hell. Which is why I felt a mixture of joy, rage, curiosity and sadness when a reader let me know about an amazing series of DARK SHADOWS auctions currently taking place on Ebay. Someone is selling a ton of blueprints from the original show and these items are gloriously intricate. They involve props and sets from throughout the run of the series, from the breakfast nook occasionally seen during the show's first year, to secret passages, Josette's bedroom, coffins, mausoleums and ... well, you get the idea.

Naturally, these items were released into the wild by DARK SHADOWS' set designer, Sy Tomashoff. Here's the backstory from the Ebay seller:
In 1971 my wife was able to meet, in his office, Sy Tomashoff, the Master Architect and Set Designer for  the ABC Television Series "Dark Shadows."  Besides being a fan of the show, my wife was, at the time, a college Fine Arts Major in New York City, and had an abiding interest in set design.

Mr. Sy Tomashoff gave her a tour, saw her enthusiasm, and eventually gave her a set of 41 full size Blue Prints of the designs he had created for the sets of Dark Shadows. Most of the sheets are signed by Sy Tomashoff, some with his full signature, some with just "Sy," some with initials, and a few with no signature at all. All the sheets carry the ABC Television logo.
If you're interested in browsing these auctions, here's a link to get you started. If you decide to bid, I wish you luck. Any pain/discomfort you might feel in the coming weeks are a coincidence, and not the product of voodoo, curses or any other magical rites originating from my household.

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