Who: Jason Mayoh
What: Artist, filmmaker, horror enthusiast
When: 3pm, Saturday March 3
Where: His house, XXX Street, Providence
Why: The man shares my love for the late Rocky Point Park
Jason drew this entire comic book in 24 hours
The darkened room smells of incense and creativity. Jason and his friend Christian White are holed up inside on a sunny Saturday afternoon, drinking beer and working away on various endeavors. A jack of many trades, Jason is constantly juggling projects. Luckily, he’s very organized. And he’s got the labeled file folders to prove it.
Jason created this comic book in elementary school
“There’s a 24-hour comic draw tonight,” he says. “You literally draw for 24 hours straight.” He’s tired, though, and so he debates over whether or not to go. It’s no wonder he’s exhausted. Jason has been shuttling himself back and forth to Boston, where he’s storyboarding an ABC pilot. He storyboarded Ben Affleck’s The Town, and has worked on several other film sets, too.
Those movie sets were the perfect place for him to show his artwork around. Jason also busied himself back then by collecting and amassing Rocky Point memorabilia. “Online urban exploration sites showed what the park had turned into. I couldn’t believe it,” he says. “So, I tried to come up with Tales of the Crypt type comics… history meets urban legend.”
I first held a copy of Tales of Rocky Point Park – Issue 1 in my hot little hands back in 2007, while eating breakfast at the Liberty Elm Diner. It was the first in Jason’s trio of horror comic books, which chronicled the history of and rumors surrounding the now-defunct (and supposedly haunted) amusement park.
Apparently, not all rides buried in the “ride graveyard” remained six feet under like they were supposed to. By the time the three individual issues were bound together as Volume 1, the artist had amassed fans. 5,000 copies were printed; most sold.
Have you always loved horror?
“Yep. I’ve always loved drawing too. I grew up with parents who were artists. They let me watch scary movies. I took it upon myself to rent Texas Chainsaw Massacre when I was probably eight years old.”
Tell me about the dead head thing.
“I was down in South Carolina when I saw this small town newspaper filled with local mugshots. I decided to replicate the mugshots in zombie form; I called it One Hundred and One Undead Heads. Most of them weren’t too far off.”
What’s next for you?
“Christian and I pitched an idea to PBS regarding all the places in Rhode Island that are rumored to be haunted. They liked the idea and so we did a pilot episode of Haunted RI, which they want to make into a series.”
So… does that mean you believe in ghosts?
Let’s just say that I saw something in those woods that I can’t explain.
Jason with friend and fellow artist, Christian White
Jason hands me a DVD of the pilot, in which they visit the Exeter gravesite of Mercy Brown, Rhode Island’s “last vampire.” Christian looks up from his seat on the floor and smiles. Jason smiles too. “I was so isolated after working on the Rocky Point comic books,” he says, “so collaborating like this is a lot of fun.”
Jason is also working on what was a top secret project, unannounced to press until now. Keep an eye out for his creepy look into the abandoned Rocky Point Cottages, coming “soon” to a screen near you.