The Art of Darkness

Quernus Crafts

April 30th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Teeny GhostThe cute, I am dying of it.

Kirsten of Quernus Crafts is an artist who specializes in polymer clay sculptures of small animals. To say that she is prolific is something of an understatement; the Flickr stream displaying her work runs to 150 pages. To say that she is talented is also something of an understatement; her creations include bookish dragons, rodentine grim reapers, and Snape, Dumbledore, and Harry Potter if they were mice. (Other mousy notables are Angus Young, Freddy Mercury, and Ozzy Osbourne.) She also has Viking snails because why not.

She sells pre-made “miniature masterpieces for your mantelpiece” on the site and also does commissions (although a note on that page says that she isn’t accepting new ones right now): Her “Quernus Your Pet” service will render your pet in miniature, and she also does custom wedding cake toppers; a few of those latter provide interesting glimpses into the minds of her customers, since some of her requested couples include a mole and a marmoset, a penguin and a tortoise, and–my favorite–“a girly mole and an army boy T-Rex”.

Her gallery is a lot of fun to browse, and is an excellent source of inspiration if you like to work with polymer clay. If she begins accepting commissions again soon, her prices are quite reasonable and it looks like she’d be a great resource for a one-of-a-kind cake topper or other memento.

(via Geek Crafts)

Posted in Needful Things, Terror in the Aisle | 4 Comments »

Calvin and Hobbes: The Movie

April 29th, 2013 by Cobwebs

GrittyReboots has done a faux trailer for a live-action “Calvin and Hobbes” movie.

While growing up, Calvin’s imagination always kept him sane. He didn’t have many friends, so he created one. As he got older, he tried to leave childish things behind. But his imagination had a different plan.

I don’t know about you guys, but I would watch this so hard. We need a Kickstarter to make this sucker a reality.

(via Blame It On the Voices)

Posted in Funny Peculiar | 2 Comments »

The Link Dump Wore Scarlet

April 26th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Edward Gorey’s Illustrations for War of the Worlds – Brain Pickings has a selection of illustrations. Although the original 1960 imprint is crazy expensive, it’s also available as a reprint.

Hover Sloth – Illustration by deviantART member bear65. I want a Hover Sloth.

Scar Makeup Tutorial – Fairly easy tutorial for making good-looking fake scars. (Although my personal preference has always been for Rigid Collodion for super-easy gnarly-looking scars.)

Jumping Spider T-shirt – One of those hyper-realistic T-shirts featuring an oversized jumping spider face.

The 6 Least Solemn Funerals Around the World – A roundup.

Release the Hugs – Sweet little Webcomic.

Harry Potter Birthday Party – Some lovely ideas, both for a party and also for Halloween decorations.

Knitmare on Elm Street – Instructions for knitting Freddy Krueger, Nosferatu, and lots of other weird little friends. Related: Knit Your Own Zombie, Super-Scary Mochimochi, and Knit a Monster Nursery.

Dinosaur Plant Markers – I quite like the idea of using cheap plastic toys as plant markers; it’d be easy to use spiders, bats, and skulls instead of dinosaurs.

LiarTownUSA – A Tumblr of Photoshopped hilarity.

Posted in Link Dump | 3 Comments »

Welcome to Night Vale

April 25th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Night Vale LogoI became aware of this project wrong-way-to (found the Twitter feed, which led to the podcast, which led to the site), so bear with me whilst I try to string things together with something approaching coherence.

Commonplace Books is, as nearly as I can tell from their less-than-pellucid Who We Are page, a sort of artists’ collective which leverages the internet to help artists find a wider audience. Their first effort was A Commonplace Book of the Weird, a collection of stories done in the style of H.P. Lovecraft (also on Kindle).

They’ve recently started a podcast:

Welcome to Night Vale is a twice-monthly podcast in the style of community updates for the small desert town of Night Vale, featuring local weather, news, announcements from the Sheriff’s Secret Police, mysterious lights in the night sky, dark hooded figures with unknowable powers, and cultural events.

Turn on your radio and hide.

You can see their list of past episodes here, which sound highly entertaining. A couple of my favorites are, “A protest against the removal of the Shape In Grove Park That No One Acknowledges Or Speaks About. Plus, changes to the school curriculum, a growing tarantula problem in town, and musical auditions!” and “The search for a dangerous fugitive finally comes to an end, but he’s gaining some unexpected popularity. Plus, what to do about those noisy sunsets, City Council rejects ‘breath entitlements,’ and more issues with Santa Claus at the Night Vale mall.”

And the podcast has its own darkly hilarious Twitter feed. A sample of their tweets:

When a person dies and no one will miss them, the mourning is assigned to a random human. This is why you sometimes just feel sad.

St Patrick drove the snakes from Ireland. No one knows where he put them. He knows. He lays his hand lightly on the latch. Not yet. Not yet.

The mayor, in a press conference today, said only “BLOOD”. No follow-up questions were asked, but all reporters chanted “BLOOD” in unison

Fun science fact: If you look deep into a deer’s eyes without blinking, you become a deer. This is how they breed.

Missing: dog. Black, obsidian. 22,000 lbs. Buried deep under the earth. Likes coptic script and pyramids. Last seen by early humans.

Mandatory fire drill this afternoon. When you hear the siren, burn as many things as you can.

A man wearing red pajamas who carries around a handwritten list of children’s names will break into your home tomorrow night.

Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog there is a weird dark staircase. Been walking down it for years. Help

No one knows what will happen when they die. And only a small secret society knows what will happen when you die.

In summary, these guys seem to be right up our collective alley and are definitely worth checking out.

Posted in Funny Peculiar | 2 Comments »

Yet More Stuff I Found While Looking Around

April 24th, 2013 by Cobwebs

As in previous editions, here’s a bunch of images I’ve run across which I want to share but might not be able to hang a whole post on. Several of them have no attribution, so if you happen to know the source for any of these please leave a note in the comments. (Click to view larger.)

Bat Ouija Board

Bat Ouija Board

This appears to be hand-stenciled, but I can’t find a source. I love that the planchette also features a hanging bat.
Get Out

Get Out

Next time I do any home renovations, I’m gonna be awful tempted to try something similar.
Gorgon Chandelier

Gorgon Chandelier

The photo is all over the place, but I can’t find any attribution. Apparently this hangs in a courthouse somewhere in Europe. Which would make showing up for a criminal trial sort of intense.
Coin Purse

Coin Purse

Sculpture by surrealist artist Nancy Fouts. It’d be interesting to see if a real coin purse could be made in a similar way, using a set of false teeth.
Spine Dress

Spine Dress

Here’s another one that’s all over Pinterest, with nary a source to be found. This is entirely awesome and would be an interesting embroidery/fabric paint project if you had sufficient time and ambition.
Painted Rock

Painted Rock

Snarky folk art amuses me.
Halloween Cake

Halloween Cake

I love this mosaic sculpture. It’s by Michelle Legler; there are more photos here.
Spider Street Art

Street Art

This is apparently in Hamburg somewhere.
Spiderweb Sofa

Spiderweb Sofa

Special commission by Jimmie Martin. The site has lots of other lovely pieces, too.


This just makes me ridiculously happy. It’s available as a print or T-shirt here.

Posted in Whatever | 2 Comments »

Medusa Tiara

April 23rd, 2013 by Cobwebs

Medusa Tiara

There was a discussion over at Halloween Forum recently regarding the best way to make snaky Medusa hair–apparently pipe cleaners wrapped around strands of hair don’t work so well–and user HalloweenEve posted the photo above, along with this explanation:

A few years later I found a better solution – I bought cheap plastic snakes at the $1 store (a few dozen in a pack), wire, a double banded headband, and a can of gold spray paint. I wired the snakes into a great little tiara and then sprayed the whole thing gold and I really loved how it turned out.

I gotta say, this looks pretty awesome. In addition to using it as part of a costume, it’s really nice enough to wear as a dramatic piece of jewelry.

Instead of wrapping the wire around the outside of the snakes, it could be inserted into them lengthwise. This would not only hide the wire, it would allow the snakes to be bent into interesting configurations. Adjusting some of them so that they were more horizontal and then arranging one’s hair over them so that their heads poked out would make them look more “natural.” The tiara itself could also be embellished with fake jewels or perhaps silk ivy leaves for a Greek-ier look.

The execution could hardly be cheaper or simpler, and the results are really great.

Posted in Resources | 1 Comment »


April 22nd, 2013 by Cobwebs

Evan Viera’s short film Caldera uses the viewpoint of a young girl suffering fron mental illness, where it “glimpses into a world of psychosis and explores a world of ambiguous reality and the nature of life and death.” Its inspiration was his father’s own mental illness.

CALDERA is inspired by my father’s struggle with schizoaffective disorder. In states of delusion, my father has danced on the rings of Saturn, spoken with angels, and fled from his demons. He has lived both a fantastical and haunting life, but one that’s invisible to the most of us. In our differing understanding of reality, we blindly mandate his medication, assimilate him to our marginalizing culture, and entirely misinterpret him for all he is worth. CALDERA aims to not only venerate my father, but all brilliant minds forged in the haunted depths of psychosis.

(via BoingBoing)

Posted in Whatever | No Comments »

Snow White and the Seven Link Dumps

April 19th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Newlydeads – Cute little salt-and-pepper shakers that look like a skeletal bride and groom.

Spider Lapel Pin – Steampunky spider with a watch for a body and a taxidermy eye for a head. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this.

Noell Oszvald – Photographer who does really interesting, surreal, self-portraits. I love the raven/shadow one.

Numbers Stations on Twitter – I wrote about Numbers Stations a while back; I had no idea that there may be something similar going on with Twitter.

Dead Frog with Flies – a) There’s a classical painting of a stinky dead frog that’s attracting flies. b) A pair of contemporary artists thought it would be a good idea to digitally animate it. What is this I don’t even.

Day of the Shirt – Site which aggregates all of the “one-day T-shirt” sites (TeeFury, Woot! and so forth) onto a single page for easy perusal.

LastBreathe – Really interesting fashion design; I’m not sure what it’s made of–it appears to be plastic strips–but it looks like the model is wearing smoke.

Cuffs from Bodyline Ribbon – Tutorial for converting an overlarge Bodyline JSK bow into matching cuffs.

Oonacat – Etsy shop specializing in horns, ears, and “heelless hooves” for costumes. The demon hooves are indeed epic, but I have no idea how you’d manage to walk in ’em.

Dungeon Maps – Some nicely-intricate D&D maps for your adventuring needs. Also I am amused to know that there’s a Tumblr blog called fuck yeah cartography!.

Posted in Link Dump | 4 Comments »

Feeping Creatures

April 18th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Feeping CreatureCartoonist and sculptor Dyland Edwards draws and sculpts little feeping creatures as part of an ongoing effort to increase the number of monsters in people’s homes and offices. That strikes me as an extremely worthwhile goal.

The name particularly amuses me: A perennial problem for software developers is feature creep, the tendency for a program to pick up additional (and unnecessary) bells and whistles that were never in the original requirements document. This is often referred to as “creeping featurism,” and since programmers tend to be a silly lot, it’s often deliberately spoonerized to “feeping creaturism.”*

Edwards has made the creatures that feep a reality, and they look exactly like I’d expect something that scuttles around in the depths of a server, feeping softly to itself, to look.

He sells many of his sculptures at fan conventions, but some of them (and also drawings of them) are available in his Etsy shop. They’re gratifyingly inexpensive and highly whimsical.

You can see loads of other examples of his work at his Feep o’the Morning blog, which has unusually specific categories like “Dervishes” and “Waffles.” If you like to play around with polymer clay, the site is a great source of inspiration to make sculptures of your own.

I’m beginning to suspect that my totem animal is the feeping creature, so I may get one to perch on my monitor and glare at when management asks me to make “one little change” to the code.

*This is the same programming tendency that causes us to refer to something done for historical reasons as being done “for hysterical raisins.” It passes the time.

Posted in Needful Things | 3 Comments »

Cemetery Wall Mural

April 17th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Gravestone MuralI ran into this on Pinterest the other day and have given up trying to source the original image; a couple of sites point to Marie’s Manor as the creator, but since most of the stuff there appears to be from someplace else, I doubt they’re the originator either. I did manage to track down the graveyard background, though; it’s a silhouette standup by ShinDigz.

It’s also made of cardboard and costs nearly a hundred bucks, which is just ludicrous. (The price seemed bad enough when I thought it was a vinyl wall decal. But cardboard?)

The shapes are all simple enough that you could cut your own out of cardboard sheets, but an idea that I like far better is to actually stencil them on the walls for a permanent room makeover.

The silhouettes shown here are all very simple, with no fiddly details, so they should be do-able for even a stenciling novice (obviously, you can make them much more intricate if you have the skill and patience). There are tutorials all over the Web for stenciling walls, and googling “how to make wall stencils” will turn up a wealth of information: This, this, and this should be enough to get you started.

The actual decoration would involve painting the top part of the walls whatever color you want your “sky” to be: The burnt orange in the example is striking, but you could use purple, grey, or even scarlet if you’re feeling particularly gothy; you could also paint them plain white for a low-key, monochrome look. Apply your stencils in a darker contrasting color, then paint the lower part of the wall the same shade. Bingo! Insta-graveyard.

If you’re feeling ambitious you could use more than two colors and add extra details: A full moon, a few bats flitting around, a big spooky tree with bare branches, or even an errant ghost or two emerging from their crypts. Taking care with your stencils will make your results look like the work of a pro for little more than the cost of a bit of housepaint.

Posted in Bad Things | 2 Comments »

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