If you're anything like us, you've probably found yourself wondering if in this great, big world there exists a man with the courage, talent and vision to create an entire Iron Man costume from balloons.
The answer is yes. His name is Jeff Wright.
Blinkbox recently posted a time-lapse video of Wright creating an Iron Man costume from scratch using about 400 red, yellow and gray balloons. And while the finished product wouldn't provide much protection in a tussle, it is undeniably and instantly recognizable as the wise-cracking Avenger.
"I got into balloons in college," said Wright, who volunteers with orphaned children in Bolivia.
"It was fun making people smile, and as a man who can't even draw a straight line with a ruler, it was nice to have an artistic outlet," he told Yahoo News. "After I graduated about a year later, I transitioned my new passion into a career."
Wright started making generic monsters and creatures from balloons, but he switched to more recognizable characters like Buzz Lightyear and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
"While I'd like to say that I'm only limited by my imagination, I'm also somewhat limited by the bulky nature of balloons," he said. "It'd be very tough to make a balloon Spider-Man costume, unless he goes on a doughnut diet in his next film."
The process of creating these elaborate costumes is exhausting, he said.
"People always ask if my hands hurt," Wright says. "Almost never. It's always my shoulders (and knees if I'm standing a lot)." He does take short breaks, but he says he's mostly in "mad scientist mode" while on a project and his brain can't rest until he's done.
Of course, balloon costumes don't last forever. If sharp points don't get them, the slow leakage of air will. Sometimes Wright lets the balloons fade on their own. "I keep the deflated balloons in a bag in my closet. It'd be a horrific discovery for a balloon police detective," he jokes.
Wright says his creation process is mostly a case of trial and error. "I'm much less of an artist and much more of an engineer that can understand how the balloons go together. To be honest, there are times in every build where I doubt if it will come together at the end, but it always does."
- Society & Culture