Thursday, August 9, 2012

More Cthulhu Chess Madness: Copper and Silver

Back in the long-ago time when I originally cast up my chess set, I did two sets and then ran pretty low on resin. The first set I detailed here, painted in faux marble and basalt.

The second set I did in corroded copper and tarnished silver.

 And some shots of the individual pieces:

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Cthulhu Army Grows

I've been doing some experimenting lately with various designs of Cthulhu idols, seeing how different I could make them while still staying true to the pulpy, tentacle-y description.

In addition to the six-eyed Cthulhu I made for my chess set (somewhat of a friendlier, smaller version of Big Squishy Cthulhu) I've been playing with designs based on various cephalopods or other critters. Six-eye Cthulhu is based somewhat on the Portuguese Man-o-war jellyfish.

I also have a Squid-thulhu:

An Ammonite-headed Cthulhu:

And a "classic" squishy octopus-head Cthulhu:

Stay tuned for more Cthulhu madness...

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Chronicles of Cthulhu

Greetings, Internet! It's been awhile since I honked at you from the Land of Many Goldfish And Also Cockroaches And Now Some Hermit Crabs.

I have, in fact, been both incredibly busy and without internet (relocated temporarily out to Buttwhiff, Nowhere, with neither cell phone signal or internet) but am now back among the land of the wired, with a growing army of Cthulhus. It has taken entirely longer than it should, but I've now got some painted examples of my Lovecraft minis/chess set.

The first one I painted is basalt and white marble:

And some detail shots:

Monday, April 2, 2012

I have a love-hate relationship with superglue. I use the hell out of it and can go through several tubes in a week when I'm on a good creative clip, but somehow I manage to glue myself to everything in existence in the process. And I do so every single time I open a tube of the stuff. Sometimes I don't even get the lid off before I'm glued to the glue tube, or the table, or a sculpting tool, or just the good old-fashioned glue-your-fingers-together.

However, due to this I have become a champ at being able to remove the stuff without peeling off my skin.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Allergy Season!!

Every spring, I get wonderful allergies. The past few years spring has been cool and wet, so there hasn't been an overabundance of pollen floating around to make me miserable. This spring, however, has been unseasonably warm and sunny, and EVERYTHING has burst into bloom all at once. Which means burning itchy eyes, nonstop sneezing fits, and a massive amount of head goo. I woke up the other day to a sneezing fit, and when I looked in the mirror my eyes were red. Not just bloodshot--full on RED. Fortunately it rained all day yesterday which knocked some of that stuff out of the air and made things a bit less miserable.

Apparently, around here average pollen counts for this time of year are 400-600 parts per million, with "extreme" being around 1500. There's been a "high pollen alert" the past couple days, and it turns out pollen count has been over 9000ppm.

I couldn't resist.

On an aside, has anyone ever stopped to think that all that pollen floating around and making people sneeze and sniffle is actually a massive, massive amount of plant spooge?
I don't know what a fish is doing in a field of grass and flowers though. I suppose the underwater equivalent of pollen would be coral breeding season and plankton.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Creative Process: Painting Clouds

I hate painting clouds.

That being said, I love clouds. I find them fascinating, and I love to watch all the different shapes and colours they can be. I spend a lot of time staring at the sky, and I have tons of pictures I've taken of different cloud formations, and every once in awhile I get the overwhelming urge to paint something with prominent clouds in it.

Recently I was working on a painting with a large red-and-purple cloudy sunset sky (you know the type) and I screamed at the paint a lot. I came back later, stabbed some more paint at the canvas, and screamed at it even more. Clouds are so frustrating! It's their amorphous nature that makes them so irritating--they don't ever have a defined shape, but you can immediately recognize a cloud that doesn't look cloud-like. There's a fine line between clouds that are too defined and look unnatural, and clouds that just sort of look like smushy colours because you tried blending them around too much and the paint all ran together and now your canvas looks more like a fuzzy smear of white and blue and you start screaming and throw it across the room in a fit of rage and frustration.

Okay, maybe you don't do that last part (or maybe you do)*. Fortunately, last fall I took a painting class with a long-time family friend and very established painter, and learned a ridiculously simple and extremely effective way of painting clouds.

*For the record, I have in fact screamed at, punched, and thrown canvases out of frustration.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Creative Process

Over at my DeviantART page, I've been running a little segment for awhile called "The Creative Process." It's mostly a social commentary on art, creation, and life in general, featuring the Savage Goldfish. Since it's been gaining some popularity I figured I'd bring it over here as well.

A lot of "The Creative Process" deals with the rage, frustration, and general angst of an artist. If one could listen at the door of my studio when I'm working, one would hear periods of silence punctuated by bouts of excessive screaming and profanity. Most of my non-artist friends--the ones who see a finished product and go "OMG That's SO cool, I wish I could draw/sculpt like that!"--can't fathom that a lot of the process is frustrating, tedious, aggravating, and really not that fun. The few people who have sat in with me when I'm working are thus usually puzzled by the amount of screaming I do, and wonder why, if it's so aggravating, I continue to do it.

The answer is typically "Because I am COMPELLED to," which is not something easily understood by non-creative types.

Take, for example, this:

I have not done many sculptures with feathers, but every time I do it's something like this. Which is probably why I have not done many sculptures with feathers. 

Monday, February 6, 2012

Building my army!

Fear them! FEAR THEM!!

Churning out piles of mini Lovecraft sculpts. They'll require some cleanup, as there were some bubbles in both the silicone and resin, though overall I'm quite pleased to be able to pull one after another out of the molds.

Resin is some interesting stuff. Sticky and nasty in its separate components, and once you mix it up it gets super hot and you have to be careful not to spill it in your lap and on your nice work chair like a moron because OH GOD IT BURNS!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Lovecraft Chess, Round 2

Awhile back I sculpted up some mini Lovecraft monsters that I was going to mold and cast and turn into a chess set. As chronicled here, that was less than successful due to a batch of cheap silicone I bought. Ultimately I decided to just re-sculpt the entire set, due to the fact that I was less than pleased with certain aspects of the original. I hated the bases, so opted to hunt down some wee little wooden plaques so the would be all round and uniform, and some of the designs I felt were a bit lacking.
So here is the New And Improved Chess Set.

It's more difficult than you might think to sculpt a good-looking amorphous eyeball slime monster.

The original Deep One was one of the pieces I was least happy with, as it felt rushed and the crouching hands-on-knees pose was too similar to Cthulhu.

The Old One I kept almost identical to the original sculpt I did, but simplified the surface detail some. 

Little Yithian? Adorable.

The original Shub-Niggurath was another of the pieces I wasn't really happy with, it also felt too close to the classic Cthulhu pose, so I went for something a little more dynamic.

And little Cthulhu: more cuddly than menacing.