Oddities and Peculiaria – Sideshow Shenanigans in the Big Easy Workshop

January 26 – January 31, 2015

The Workshop

Astounding, Bizarre, Spectacular, Horrifying, and Death Defying, are but a few of the words you could use to describe your creations in the Oddities and Peculiaria workshop.


In this class you’ll be creating a sideshow stage featuring unusual character of your own invention. It all starts with discarded toys, dolls, figurines and other found objects of your choosing. Using the process of assemblage, painting and collage, you’ll bring your fantastic freaks to life. Of course, these extraordinary performers will need a place to show off their unusual talents, so you will also construct a stage or shrine to house your little oddity.

Every sideshow performer needs a beguiling name and an equaling enticing tagline, to lure customers from the midway. Here are a few examples:

  • SEE Toady Todd, the tongue snapping, fly catching, amphibian man.
  • SEE Tri-focal Fanny, the three eyed granny. She look you in the eyes, while her third eye reads your mind.
  • SEE Spider Simpson, the six armed one-man-band! He’s got the chops to pound on the drums, slap the bass, and tickle the ivories…all while he plays that funky music.
  • SEE Sir Frederick Fuzzybitz, part lion, part man. Fierce as the dickens yet gentrified enough to raise his pinky claw while drinking tea!
  • SEE Little Princess Pearl, the worlds tiniest water-breathing woman…so small, in fact, that she lives at the bottom of an aquarium inside a newly remodeled oyster shell!

There is no better city than New Orleans for sideshow performers.  Bring along your alter-ego sideshow performer and prepare yourself to participate in our own 2nd Line Parade.   We will be marching with the Panorama Brass Band throughout the French Quarter.  YES… that’s right!

On the last day of our workshop, we will close with our own private street car party.   Then off to the Krewe du Vieux Parade, the first parade leading up to Mardi Gras.   Bring your freaky fantasies to life (as long as they are legal), dress up and join the party.

Workshop Gallery

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Instructor Supplies

Michael will be supplying ALL the paint and the Two Part Clay. A material fee of $25.00 will provide each student with golden paints and clay. The material fee will be collected on the first day of the workshop.

  • Smooth On Free Form Sculpt (Two Part Clay)
  • Acrylic Paint
  • Dremels, Drills and Tools
  • Acrylic Latex Caulking

Student Supplies

  • A stage…this could be a box, or a frame, or a hollowed out clock…just about anything really. It could be something that hangs on the wall or is free standing.
  • Old figurines, dolls, or doll parts- these will be the base of your sideshow character
  • Doodads that will adorn your chosen character. (For instance if you are creating Octavia the Octopus Lady, you would probably want to bring some fake tentacles, as well as some aquarium props to adorn her.)
  • Variety of other found objects that might be interesting symbolic additions to myths. Items like watch parts, gears, typewriter parts – just about anything, really. Look for things that are interesting shapes or designs, but also things that might have symbolic significance.
  • You may want some canvas or some slats of wood if you choose to create a banner or placard for you Oddity.
  • Paint Brushes (a couple small detail brushes, and some cheap brushes (1/2 inch to 1 inch in size)
  • Wire a couple of different gauges
  • DAP KWIK SEAL Tub & Tile Adhesive Caulk (White) – small tube (this can be found in hardware stores.
  • E6000 adhesive
  • Optional Things to bring if you want your own tools
    • Heat gun
    • Dremel with cut off wheel
  • Downloadable Supply List