Looking for a personalized photo-related gag to pull for Halloween this year? Look no further than this head-in-a-jar prank. It’s quite easy to pull off and doesn’t require too much time or money.
This idea is by Mike Warren, who regularly posts crazy project ideas to his Instructables account.
The basic ingredients of the prank are a print of your face, a large glass jar (free of designs on the surface), and some food coloring. There’s one step that will take a bit of know-how: creating the print itself.
You’ll need to photograph your head from three sides: left, head-on, and right. Once you have those photos, hop into Photoshop and merge them into a single flat image of your head. (If you want to skip this step, Warren has made his face photo available for download as a PDF).
Then, print out the resulting image, cut off the borders, and laminate it so it can stay intact when submerged in liquid.
Once you have the photo, the hard part is over. Create a jar of colored liquid by adding some food coloring to water.
Roll the photograph of your face up, and stick it into the jar. The flattened image curved around the perimeter of the jar, coupled with the distortion of the glass and liquid, will give the illusion of a solid decapitated head floating in the “preservative”.
You’re done! Now you have a jar containing your pickled head that you can place in various strategic locations to scare your friends, family, and coworkers with!
You can find a more detailed step-by-step version of this tutorial here. If you do decide to try your hand at this prank, please share photos of your jars with us in the comments below!