Media Coverage

Funny Face to the Facebook rescue

Turn those uncomfortably unflattering snapshots into a rip-roaring good time.
 
Published Nov. 22, 2010 at 1:46 p.m.

We’ve all have had that feeling of dread as a notice pops up informing us we were “tagged” in an unknown Facebook photo. Oh crap. When was that taken? Was I showing my good side? How drunk was I?

Then you see the photo and realize you can’t actually remember when it was taken. It’s been years since you even saw that horrible angle of yourself and you are making your infamous “I’m drunker than a skunk” face. What to do? Untag! But, of course. Untag the crap out of that photo.

Instead of getting carpal tunnel from clicking the “untag” button, you can spend a mere $8.99 on Funny Face Magnets. Turn those uncomfortably unflattering snapshots into a rip-roaring good time by slapping a clown face, a chimp face or a donkey head on top of your infamous drunk pose. Besides saving you from complete and utter embarrassment, the makers of this ingenious product are right in our backyard; Riverwest, to be exact.

I talked to Steve Mathison, one of the founders of Funny Face Magnets to find out what makes his social networking superhero brain tick.

OnMilwaukee.com: Funny Face Magnets is a product that inspires an instantaneous face palm, as I wish I would’ve thought of it myself. What’s the story behind the conception of your hilarious product?

Steve Mathison: Several months ago, I was paging through a trade magazine and stopped on an article where the author’s picture was featured at the top of the page. His photo was one of those: “Oh-my-gosh-how-did-this-author-ever-approve-this-photo?” His face was beet red, he was sweaty and he looked terribly uncomfortable, like he just swallowed an Indian Ghost Chili. I cut out his picture and taped it over my girlfriend’s face in a photo she kept on the refrigerator door. Later that week we were hosting a dinner party and out of the blue, she burst out laughing when she finally noticed the funny face on her body in this photo. We all started moving the face around from photo to photo, and soon we’d realized that we’d spent a significant amount of time entertaining ourselves with this one photo. After that, I just started cutting out more funny faces and the magnet idea (the face palm smack) just happened.

OMC: Who are the actual funny faces behind your business?

SM: There’s me: I handle the funny business, and there’s Charlie: he handles the graphic design.

OMC: Where can we buy Funny Face Magnets? Are you selling in any local shops?

SM: Locally, you can find Funny Face Magnets at Art Smart’s Dart Mart on the East Side and at Fischberger’s Variety in Riverwest. We also sell through our Web site (funnyfacemagnets.com) and, I usually have a few packs in my pockets if you see me around town, but I only accept cash.

OMC: How did you decide on what funny faces to use for your magnets?

SM: I’d like to say we held hundreds of focus groups and logged thousands of hours of product evaluations based on consumers’ reactions to these humorous images … but, we didn’t do any of that. We clicked through some stock photos, found the ones that made us laugh, then picked them based on variety.

OMC: Which faces are your customer’s favorites?

SM: That’s tough to say. We tend to think the funny face is relative to the photo, but based on the heartiness of most people’s laughs — we think the chimp face is a always a winner.

OMC: The holiday season is fast approaching … besides my ex-husband, who should I buy a set of Funny Faces for?

SM: Anyone who likes to have a chuckle from time to time. Or, you could buy a set for your boss or your favorite politician. We have a donkey head that looks great on some of those guys. But, seriously, kids: they have so much creativity — we gave some Funny Face Magnets to some pre-schoolers who instantly starting drawing their own cartoons on paper and then put the funny faces on top of their drawings, so their refrigerator door became a hilarious story that was better than any photo we could ever create.

OMC: Would you recommend mixing Funny Face Magnets with a night filled with Four Loko?

SM: Sure. Whatever you do with Funny Face Magnets can be easily undone. Not so sure the other aftereffects of Four Loko.

OMC: What’s next in the world of Funny Face Magnets? Any plans to add more faces?

SM: We’re adding new faces, new themes and we’ve thought about a scratch-n-sniff feature.

OMC: Do you have any other products in the pipeline?

SM: Yes. The funny business is booming. We’re planning Funny Face Popsicle Sticks, Funny Face Wine Bottle Stoppers and Funny Face Window Clings, so you can put a funny face on the window of your car, to cheer up those angry drivers in the lane next to you.

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