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Snoopy

on November 4, 2011 - 4:21pm

An old friend and her husband attended my Halloween dinner in costume. 

She's 7 months pregnant and decided to use her belly to her best advantage. It made the perfect base for a certain famous beagle we all love.

Hubby was Charlie Brown.

 

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Best Spells by Betty Croaker

on November 3, 2011 - 12:15pm

Betty Croaker Spell Book

On Tuesday, I spent close to nine hours putting away Halloween decorations because I decided to completely reorganize the bins (and make sure everything was off the floor since we had that incident with water in the basement after the torrential storm). 

While doing so, I came across a box of all the decorations I had made for my first big Halloween party back in Grade 4.

Amidst the paper bats and pumpkins was a bound book entitled "Best Spells By Betty Croaker" (and my other name). I do enjoy that I put a copyright symbol on it.

I'd bound the book with thread and used wall paper for the cover. No, the wallpaper isn't very scary, but when you're little you have to work with what's in the house.

The book is a collection of spells for monsters from A to Z. Some are classic Halloween characters while others are creatures I'd seen in my Dungeons & Dragons books (I didn't play at the time, I just liked having books about monsters).

Want to make a mimic? A Frankenstein monster? A Zorma? 

It's all here.

Need an elf for a recipe but don't have one on hand? No worries. There's a recipe for making your own elf. 

A is actually an introduction. Note how little Ghoul uses the traditional spelling of Hallowe'en.

I hope you enjoy the pictures below. I got a good chuckle out of them.

Happy Halloween 2011

on October 31, 2011 - 12:48pm

Jack O'Lantern Mouse House

Happy Halloween everyone! 

Though reports of ice and snow storms are top stories for haunters on the east coast, Toronto is all blue skies and sunshine. 

I hope those shivering without power are safe and still finding ways to enjoy the day despite terrible conditions. 

As for me, I finally had a moment to carve this year's pumpkin. Decided to do something different from my usual styles and I think this mouse house is pretty cute (real mice need not apply). 

Not sure what the plan is for the day. It's lunchtime and I have yet to get out of my pajamas (which has made this whole day so far feel a bit like Christmas morning for me, and isn't that a nice thing?). 

The book I ordered for October reading at the start of the month arrived today. So much for leisurely reading this last month, slowly getting into the spirit of the holiday. But I'm still pleased to have it. Now I can thumb my way through some Poe, Lovecraft, Straub, Sir Walter Scott, Bradbury and a load of other authors perfectly designed for Halloween reading. 

Enjoy the holiday. Keep creepin'.

Party Nosh

on October 31, 2011 - 11:26am

Last night's dinner party was a blast. Great company, good food, and lively chat. I think that's the perfect recipe to keep the spirits away on devil's night.

Speaking of recipes, all three of the above dishes - chili cups, tomato eyeballs, Halloween shaped puff pastry - are available on the Eerie Edibles page in the Party Planning section.  

 

Full Story for Halloween 2011

on October 28, 2011 - 10:32am
A creature of darkness tired of working for death. He sought an existence the opposite of the world he knew.
 
Love.

But what is it? How to attain it? The living held the secret. So he studied their literature and observed their courting behaviour. He understood he needed a fiancee to shower in gifts (including the key to his heart). And in order for her to love him, he started gathering all the human elements of love: lips for love's first kiss; an ear where sweet nothings are whispered; a tongue that professes love; a nose to breathe in pheromones; fingers that caress; eyes to stare longingly; a brain for daydreams and romantic thoughts; a heart to give to her, and an extra in case the first should "break".

He found a house in a quiet neighbourhood which conveniently had a wife living in it. In his limited understanding of human custom, he grasped she couldn't marry him if she already had a husband unless he was given something called "divorce papers". He created a crude version with a simple statement and added his own wax initial (a gesture to make it official) though by that time, the marriage was technically over since the man no longer lived (better to be safe than sorry, he thought, apparently divorce indicates an ending to love while death has strange lingering romantic thoughts surrounding it).  

This Year's Theme

on October 27, 2011 - 2:02pm

A creature of darkness tired of working for death.

He sought an existence the opposite of the world he knew.

Love.

But what is it? How to attain it?

The living held the secret.

So he studied their literature and observed their courting behaviour, gathering all the human elements of love: a fiancee to shower in gifts (including the key to his heart) and the elusive workings of human passion. 

I hope to take the last of the photographs this evening, and have them posted for you tomorrow.

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Another Day, Another Painted Prop

on October 26, 2011 - 3:41pm

A very quick peek at the last of the large prop makeovers this year. 

After this, I hope to start snapping some official images of every character in its place and tell the story of this year's theme.

We have here a 6 ft hanging ghoul with a blue complexion. His detailing is pretty wonderful for a hanging prop which is what caught my eye. That and his almost gleeful expression which works well in my story (coming soon). But blue isn't what I'm looking for, so it was time to give him a quick paint job.

For the record, this prop could easily be taken out of the box, hung up, and with a good spotlight be ready to go. I just needed him to look a little different. Plus, I wanted those eyes and teeth to pop.

All I did was paint black around the eyes and mouth (image below, left). Then I used dark brown to paint the deep creases and shadows (below, middle). And finally, light grey/beige and white dry brushed highlights (with white for the eyes and teeth).

Crows in the Corners

on October 25, 2011 - 2:41pm

Martha Stewart has good ideas. 

Sometimes they just need some tweaking.

Here's my take on a cool way to display those feathery fiends you've collected for Halloween.

The Countdown is On

on October 25, 2011 - 9:57am

Less than a week until Halloween and I'm scurrying around to get last minute items in place (as I'm sure all of you are too). 

The weekend started with a late night screening of Fulci's ZOMBIE (or Zombi 2, if you like). Seeing a classic up on the big screen was great, and now it's being released on Blue Ray so everyone can have some 70's zombie goodness. Found this trailer with Guillermo del Toro talking about the film which is fun in itself.

Going to sleep at 3 am before a show is maybe not the best idea. On Sunday morning I actually forgot to bring copies of my book with me (I remembered the sign though. Does that count?). Still, it was a good day and many of my creations were adopted (especially the undead nutcrackers). I have some items leftover and will put that up on etsy closer to the end of November. 

Today I finish the last large prop of the Halloween theme and the final little additions to the house. Hopefully by Friday I'll be able to share some photos of that with you.

In the meantime, head on over to The Happy Undertaker where Drazen has slowly been releasing a 10 part series of story illustrations called House of Bats. So far, 3 pages have been revealed and I am patiently waiting for the rest.

Don't Jump!

on October 22, 2011 - 7:53pm

Yetch decided he wanted one of my little pumpkins from the batch I made for tomorrow's show. I left this little fella on his own while I packed up everyone else, and he just looked so forlorn (and a little desperate) by himself, perched so precariously. I quickly got him inside the curio cabinet with the other little pumpkins I've kept in the past.

I'm almost all packed up for tomorrow morning, which is good since all of Toronto is one big gridlock at the moment. Highway closures abound, and of course everywhere I need to be in the next 24 hours is on the other side of the city.

First stop is a late night showing of Fulci's Zombie (I won two tickets through Fangoria Magazine, which is pretty cool). But Yetch seems to finally be coming down with whatever virus has had me pinned to the mat all month, so I'm not sure if he's going to be up for it. It's one thing to get him into the car but another to ask him to travel to the other side of the city via transit and then walk a couple blocks when he's feeling poorly.

And tomorrow should be interesting since I have to drive across the city to get my wares to the Bazaar of the Bizarre and the highway I need to take will still be closed. 

So by the end of tomorrow I'll either be happy from all the Halloween goodness I was able to attend, or ready to climb up on the edge with my sad little pumpkin.

Have a great weekend everyone!

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