The Art of Darkness

Le Link Dump d’Arthur

June 28th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Bottom Feeders – Lovely, delicate ceramics encrusted with tentacles and other seagoing critters. The artist sells a few pieces on Etsy.

The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits – Useful reference book. The same author has written a number of similar tomes, including The Encyclopedia of Demons and Demonology, The Encyclopedia of Witches, Witchcraft, and Wicca, and The Encyclopedia of Vampires and Werewolves.

The Emotionary – “Words that don’t exist for feelings that do.”

My Backyard Monsters – Weird little crocheted things, many with free patterns. Who doesn’t need a miniature Kodama or a taxidermy deer butt?

Russian Tampon Commercial – Now that’s an effective ad campaign.

Light-up Anglerfish Embroidery – Simple project which features a light-up “lure.” The same technique could be used to, say, give an embroidered bat glowing eyes.

Haunted Mansion Wallpaper – DoomBuggies claims that this print is from the same graphic used by Disney for the “official” attraction wallpaper. They also have the print in fabric.

Halloween Nail Art – Some of these are just ridiculously detailed.

Goth Swim Suits – A roundup.

Kathie Olivas – Artist who specializes in cutely creepy children in surreal surroundings. I quite like this little girl and her pet.

Posted in Link Dump | 5 Comments »

Love the Night? Find a (Poison) Pen Pal

June 27th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Intrepid commenter Kaitlin Michelle recently emailed me with an interesting proposal:

So I had this idea about a gothic-y pen pal service thing, because traditional letters are awesome…and the closest thing I found so far was geek girl international pen pal, which I did sign up for, but it isn’t the same type of people. I was wondering if I could scrounge up some rules/make a flyer/blog post or something if you would be interested in it, and if you would want to put something on your blog about it.

This struck me as a splendid idea, because traditional letters are awesome. Be honest: When was the last time you took the time to sit down and physically write a letter to somebody? When was the last time you found something in your mailbox besides bills and junk mail? Far too long, right? Time to change that!

Kaitlin’s idea of matching gothy people is especially great, not only because it’ll be fun to make new like-minded friends, but also because we’re just the sort to come over all Edgar Allan Poe with the handwritten missives and the thoughtful prose and, for all I know, the quill pen and sealing wax.

I told her I’d be happy to help spread the word, so she sent me the copy below. Note that I am not involved in this venture other than as a messenger, so questions and comments should be directed to her address. (I expect she’d probably answer questions in this post’s comment section as well.)

Love the night? Into The Cure, or Joy Division? Can’t stop re-reading Edgar Allen Poe or Dracula? Wish everyday was Halloween? Wish you had more friends that felt like you? Then it’s time to dust off those quills and bottles of ink, because we are going back to the lost art of letter writing (snail mail!), and we would like you to join in. All people of the night (13+) who love to send and receive letters in the old fashioned mail box are welcome to participate in our pen pal program.

All you need to do to sign up is email with the subject header Pen Pal and a small description of yourself (including age & gender) and a small list of your Goth-y loves, and you will be paired with a pen pal match. We will then send you an email letting you know who your match is, and where you can write to them.

Only a letter or postcard is required, but want to do more than just write? Why not! Add some Goth flair to your mail, and throw in some bat doodles, provide a playlist of your favorite dark songs, add a little Halloween decoupage, or chunk in some Edward Gorey stickers. The list of things you could do to nighten up your mail is endless! Have fun and create something fantastic!

Try to mail your pen pal within 2 weeks of being matched, but if life gets in the way, send them an email letting them know they will get your letter soon.

If you don’t feel comfortable giving out your address right away, get to know each other first by emailing/chatting/or facebooking.

Aside from anything you aren’t allowed to mail normally, (like liquids, live animals or hazardous materials) we also ask that you not send religious or political propaganda, business solicitations, and offensive or pornographic material.

We cannot be held responsible for the outcome of any contact of any kind made between you. We do hope you use common sense, and if you decide you feel uncomfortable giving your address out, don’t.

Posted in Whatever | 4 Comments »

Seen Online

June 26th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Every Scooby-Doo mystery could be solved by asking, “1: Who is your most disgruntled employee?” and “2: Does he have access to a mask shop?”

If I die, please avenge me. If it’s an accidental death, just go nuts on whoever.

instead of “thats what she said” start incorporating “thats how my grandma died” in its place

The meanest criminal ever would send back his last meal, just to ruin one final person’s day.

I want my hearse to have ‘JUST DIED’ written on the windshield with cans tied to the rear bumper.

I would describe my personal style as “this smelled clean.”

The song “Hush Little Baby” always has me wondering why they’re trying to buy this child’s silence? INFANT, WHAT DID YOU SEE?

Worried a serial killer might jump out from behind my shower curtain and start reading Twilight to me.

all you need to know about my thought process is that I recently screamed when I saw a sign on a restaurant that said ENDLESS CRAB LEGS

Instead of saying “in bed” at the end of my fortune, I say “but then, a pestilence will come…”

If anyone needs me, I’ll be at the hospital leaving robots and newspapers from the year 2310 in the rooms of coma patients.

Posted in Funny Peculiar | 1 Comment »

A Note About Google Reader

June 25th, 2013 by Cobwebs

As you may have heard, Google has decided to shut down its RSS reader as of July 1. There is much anguish in the blogosphere about this, but unfortunately the downside to using a free service is that there isn’t much recourse if the provider yanks it out from under you.

Fortunately several alternative readers have stepped up to fill the void. Of the ones I’ve sampled, The Old Reader, G2reader, and Feedly seem to be most Google-like (and Feedly offers a one-click import from Google, which is darn handy). There are reviews of other readers at Gizmodo, TechCrunch, LifeHacker, and Marketingland, plus searching for “Google Reader alternatives” will bring up plenty more. PCMag has a good overview of migrating your feeds.

If you subscribe to this blog (or, y’know, some other blogs, but this is the important one), don’t forget to migrate to another service. I’d hate to lose you as a reader.

Posted in Resources | 4 Comments »

Bat Shoes

June 25th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Bat Shoes

Tumblr makes me stabby.

Intrepid commenter pdq pointed me to these splendid bat-wing shoes on a Tumblr site that calls itself “Emmanilona” on sub-pages and “Emma Metso” on the main page. The same site has a lot of other interesting designs, such as this neon-green corset, which the notes say were “made for a customer.” Unfortunately, the site appears to have no contact information or other details about the artist, so good luck trying to become a customer yourself. (Googling either name is similarly unhelpful.)

The company these shoes were made for, Cloudberry Lady, is a Finnish “Lolita” brand; their Tumblr lists the artist’s name as “Emma Tsurumoto,” but I can’t find any other information about a designer with that name either. Also their post (made a few weeks ago) notes that the shoes are still available for purchase, but there’s no link and a browse through their online store turns up zilch.

Tumblr sucks at conveying useful information, is what I’m saying here.

Anyway, the idea is interesting and the designer (whoever she is) has an earlier post with photos of the shoe being mocked up with paper wings. It’d be interesting to try a DIY version, either as part of the shoe (perhaps hot-glued on to an inexpensive pair of pumps) or as something like spats with an elastic band that fit around the ankle. Pleather, vinyl, or even stiff-ish cloth (maybe with an extra layer of interfacing) are all reasonably easy to work with and should provide decent results. Matching wings on a hair bow or decorating the front of a clutch would be a nice additional touch.

(Thanks, pdq!)

Posted in Needful Things | 5 Comments »


June 24th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Waste is a short film which follows one man’s constant encounters with pop-up paper monsters. The film’s creators have also released several tutorials for making your own papercraft monsters, complete with downloadable templates.

(via Laughing Squid)

Posted in Funny Peculiar | No Comments »

A Link Dump by Any Other Name

June 21st, 2013 by Cobwebs

Sayaka Ganz – Artist who makes sculptures from reclaimed objects. Her Emergence horses are weird and haunting.

Goth Screenshots – Tumblr of particularly moody computer messages.

Macbeth – This made me giggle.

Gothic Wedding Bouquets – A small roundup. (Man, I hate slideshows.)

Magic 1400s-1950s Reprint – An cheaper reprint of the fantastically-expensive classic is being released. BoingBoing discusses it here.

Durham University Library Sign – It’s nice that librarians have a sense of humor.

WFKU – Dark alternative internet radio station. They also have a Gothgram feature which searches for #goth in Instagram image comments and displays the results.

Lego Inferno – The 9 circles of Dante’s hell, rendered in Legos.

Arthropod Pancakes – Pancake artist(?) Nathan Shields has an entire site devoted to the elaborate pancakes he makes. Who wouldn’t want to find a tongue-eating louse on their breakfast plate?

Goth Cupcakes – I love this fabric print.

Posted in Link Dump | 1 Comment »

“Mouse House” Wall Installation

June 20th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Mouse House

Thimbleanna’s sister and brother-in-law recently did some remodeling and decided to include a whimsical little accent in one of the new walls.

It’s like a fairy door, but doesn’t just open to the wall. There’s a mouse in there — with his pretty wall paper and fine furnishings.

I particularly love that the space lights up–the switch is inside of a laundry chute above the door–not only because it makes it easier to see small details but also because it just makes it seem more “real” somehow. Of course such a high-living mouse would have electric lights. (Helpfully, it also doubles as a night light.)

Thimbleanna notes that she’d like to something similar in her own house, but that it’d have to be a fairy door instead. I quite agree; this would be a splendid showcase for tiny fairy furnishings.

Obviously this would take a lot more work than simply sticking a door to the wall, but if you’re planning on remodeling anyway then adding an alcove wouldn’t be much additional trouble. And of course if you’re feeling particularly ambitious–and don’t rent–you can hack one into an existing wall whenever you want (with the caveat that wiring in a light switch will be harder).

A similar, somewhat easier, mouse or fairy house could be done using a bookcase or wall unit: Cut a piece of particle board, plywood, or similar thin wood to fit across part of the bottom shelf (top to bottom). Get several hardback books from a thrift store, cut off the spines, and glue them side-by-side to the front of the board; what you’re trying to do is create the appearance of a row of books. Carefully use a small saw to cut a door through some of the spines (and the board). Place the “books” on the bookshelf, add furniture and decorations behind it so they’re visible through the door, then fill in the rest of the shelf space with real books. The finished appearance should suggest that tiny interlopers have tunneled into your bookshelf and set up residence. Perhaps not quite as impressive as an actual hole in the wall, but infinitely easier on the wallboard.

(Hat tip to Empress Pam)

Posted in Bad Things | 1 Comment »

The Pugs of Middle Earth

June 19th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Boromir PugTwo things:

1) Even though cats are great, this right here is why I will always prefer dogs.

2) There is a fine line between “hobby” and “mental illness” and these people are dancing all over it.

Phillip and Sue Lauer are a California couple* who own three pug dogs. And they’ve spent the last six years dressing them in elaborate costumes and taking pictures of them. As you do.

They apparently started by making unique holiday cards and also competing in “local dog-dressing competitions” which…I did not know were a thing. (Why are they a thing? And are there also, y’know, international dog-dressing competitions? So many questions.) Eventually it grew into a full-time hobby. To the point where they had a custom photo studio built in their home so they could take really good pictures of their dogs dressed in costumes.

I…got nothing.

But! As ridiculous as this whole thing sounds, the photos are hilariously awesome. There are pictures of preternaturally patient pugs dressed as characters from Lord of the Rings, as rock stars, as bathing beauties, and many more. The Guardian and The Daily Mail have galleries for your delectation.

Dogs are splendid.

(via Geyser of Awesome)

*Of course they’re in California. Author Calvin Trillin once remarked after seeing a man blowing enormous bubbles on Venice Beach that people in California tend to become very, very good at completely pointless things.

Posted in Funny Peculiar | 4 Comments »

Don’t Starve

June 18th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Don't StarveDon’t Starve is a weirdly appealing little indie game with the slogan, “Survive! Collect! Attack!”

Play as Wilson, an intrepid Gentleman Scientist who has been trapped by a demon and transported to a mysterious wilderness world. Wilson must learn to exploit his environment and its inhabitants if he ever hopes to escape and find his way back home. Enter a strange and unexplored world full of strange creatures, dangers, and surprises. Gather resources to craft items and structures that match your survival style. Play your way as you unravel the mysteries of this strange land.

It appears to be a hybrid adventure/resource gathering game, with artwork that’s rather reminiscent of Gorey. The game developers appear to have a fine sense of humor, as evidenced by the recent update notes on the site:

New Things To Discover:
Peaceful rock lobster herds roam the gloomy depths.
Bunnymen turn into beardlords when your sanity is low.
Ever wonder what’s right below a tentacle? MORE TENTACLE!
The invasive Lureplant will taunt you with its delicious veggiemeat.
Eat exotic cave bananas!
Ferns! You can burn ’em!
More colourful mushtree varieties.
Stalagmites come in more varied shapes.

New Things to Craft and Use!
The vampiric BatBat.
The marginally useful Compass.

New Map Generation Features:
Gaze into the abyss in the caves!
Cave walls are prettier.
Cave layouts are… caveier.

(I was hooked the moment I learned that the main antagonist is a demon named Maxwell.)

There are lots of gameplay screenshots and videos (the latter, unfortunately, featuring flickers and scratches that are supposed to mimic old-timey film artifacts but are mainly just annoying) in their gallery. Here’s a trailer:

The game is playable either through Steam or as a standalone on Chrome. You can buy it here.

(Hat tip to xJane)

Posted in Needful Things | 1 Comment »

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