Photographer Amanda Chapman is a Christmas baby, but her favorite holiday has always been Halloween. In fact, the enthusiasm for this season has helped her and her family get through a rough period in their lives–in August 2012, Chapman's husband, Greg, was diagnosed with cancer. As a mother of two teenagers, Chapman knew she needed to remain a beacon of positivity and strength, despite feeling very scared inside.
On September 30, 2012, Chapman decided that the family needed something to take their minds off of Greg's illness. She pledged that for every day in October, she would transform herself into a character from stories that she loved, and then snap a photograph. The next day, her series 31 Days of Halloween was born.
Chapman's Halloween transformations are impressive, especially considering that she has never had any formal makeup training. “I watched a lot of YouTube tutorials,” she explained to Weekly Flickr. “And I also studied a lot of behind-the-scenes photos of the actual films that the characters are in, and seeing what techniques they used.” Chapman isn't alone in this artistic adventure though. Her 14-year-old daughter Amberlyn is an artist who provides assistance on the creative shoots.
The 31 Days of Halloween has taken place every year since 2012, and looking at Chapman's portfolio, you get a sense of what she likes to read and watch. Her instantly-recognizable characters are modeled after a variety of pop culture inspiration including Tim Burton films, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, and Harry Potter. For 2015, she's also paid homage to Pixar's Inside Out and The Babadook.
Greg is still battling his cancer diagnosis. This year, he endured both chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant, but he's now in recovery. Chapman sees this as a cause for celebration this Halloween. “He has come through this with flying colors,” she reported to Weekly Flickr. “This guy is my hero, and he is doing great.”
Above: Mad Hatter
Sadness (Inside Out)
Two Face (Batman)
White Walker (Game of Thrones)
Maurice (Little Monsters)
Blue Girl with Wine
Skull Self Portrait
The White Rabbit
My Modern Met granted permission to use photos by Esther Hallmeyer.