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Mutterings of a Mad Woman

Sometimes Weird Creatures Make An Appearance

on August 31, 2012 - 9:43am

Folks who have been hanging around this site long enough may have noticed - especially over the last year - that my creations are changing. Some slightly (like the Minions), and some...well...some seem to come out of nowhere.

I've started an album for these square pegs titled "The Others".  

The Creature in the Corner is one of those figures. Standing at approximately 16 inches tall (longer if you followed the curve of his spine), he towers over all my other figures.

Normally a story follows (or accompanies) a piece's creation. I had this figure on the table at the show without a name or story. It came to me on the last day. Short on details for such a tall character, but enough to let me have a basic understanding of who...or at least what...it is. 

Leaning out of shadows, the Creature in the Corner is usually overlooked.

It does not speak.

It does not walk from place to place.

It simply appears, bending its long body to peer over or around objects. 

Even if someone catches a glimpse of it, by the time they walk to where it was, it has faded away.

More pictures below. 

And more pictures to come of ANOTHER creature who came out of nowhere. I think I may have officially watched Labyrinth and Dark Crystal too many times (if that's possible). Of course, there are worse things in life than making something that reminds you in a distant way of the genius of Brian Froud. Look for that soon.

FanExpo Art and Autograph

on August 28, 2012 - 11:52am

I'm finding more and more each year that I spend most (if not all) my shopping time (and money) in Artist Alley at FanExpo. A lot of people have echoed this statement. If you're looking for Bazinga t-shirts and Doctor Who figures, the retail section is for you. But really, despite Artist Alley being shuffled around and organized like an afterthought, it's the place to go to find unique and cool items (just be prepared to wade through the mishmash of genres and levels of professionalism). 

This year I picked up a They Live print from Andrew Barr who always has a table nearby with Leigh Young. It was this print that I took to have John Carpenter sign. It's the first time I paid for an autograph in all the years I've attended the convention. Max Brooks, Guillermo Del Toro, House of Frightenstein folks: all free and lovely to chat with in years past. Mr. Carpenter was...there to sign autographs. Period. And that pretty much sums up our meeting. Though he did manage an initial smile when he shook my hand, and then was curious who the illustrator was for the image (luckily Andrew was behind me in line so I could point him out). But that was it. Yeah, yeah, we all love Jack Burton. Thanks for the $40, now step aside and quit with the small talk.  

FanExpo Fatigue and Follow-Up

on August 28, 2012 - 10:37am

 I have finally gotten a chance to add all of the new minions (well, all the minions that have been photographed) to the Art Ghoullery section with their stories. 

It was a weird convention experience for me this year. They changed the layout - again - so much that I had people saying they  had the hardest time finding Artist Alley (never mind my actual table). And since our creepy coven of artists were hidden in the far back corner, people who like horror (or Halloweenish things) usually turned down the main aisle before getting near us (since there was a sea of anime items close by that gave the impression that's all there was).

Some didn't find us until the last day.

Others just could not find us at all.

Little Minions: Gorza

on August 22, 2012 - 5:34pm

Gorza is a Hellion. A worker bee from the firey depths, if you will.

But one that has left the hive.

Why?

It could be the urge to travel and cause mischief across the lands!

Or...

It could be to find a small village and make the peasant folks his slaves to do his bidding!

It could also be that Gorza wants to flatten mountains and burn forests with his fiery breath!

But it turns out, the truth is...you can't get a decent cup of coffee in hell. Brains, sure. You can have brains raw, pureed or cooked 101 different ways.

But a good cup of coffee? No. Too smoky. Over-roasted. No cold spring water to brew with. 

Even Hellions need to take a break now and then to read the local paper with a white mug of dark deliciousness. 

It makes them more productive.

This figure is approximately 9.5 inches tall. 

More images below.

The Soul Eater

on August 22, 2012 - 5:17pm

 

They've gone by many names in many stories around the world.

Soul Eaters.

Call them what you like, but Soul Eaters are all the same.  

Preying on the feeble, the depressed, or the anxious and insecure. Slowly chewing away at their essence.

Not killing them, but not really leaving them alive either.

Hollow bodies, emptied of their passions, interests and motivations.

Living corpses. 

Sometimes death is better.

 

This figure is approximately 7.5 inches tall. 

More images below. 

Rosa

on August 22, 2012 - 5:01pm

When strangers see Rosa shuffling around her garden, collecting leaves and petals from odd or exotic plants that grow wildly in the fenced area, they often joke that the "old gypsy lady is casting a curse on someone again". 

Rosa's hearing isn't what it used to be, but if she heard them she might correct them (in charming, grandmotherly broken English). At least about the gypsy part. As far as she remembers, there were no gypsies in her ancestral line.But then again, who knows? Her varied European family tree may have a branch dipped in a nomad clan somewhere.

As for the curse part....you can't cast a curse.

More like you brew one. Simmer one slowly. Lovingly add a wide variety of ingredients, carefully balancing the mixture. 

"You no justa...wiggle your fingers and a  POOFY it's finito."

The more care used, the more powerful the mixture. You can't rush a good curse. You cultivate it, care for it, and then send it into the world. 
 

This figure is 7.5 inches tall. 

More images below.

2012 FanExpo This Thurs, Fri, Sat, Sun!

on August 22, 2012 - 10:14am

 

It's been a month since I last posted. Why? Because I've been creating an army of creatures for FanExpo which takes place this weekend starting tomorrow in Toronto.

I'll be in the Artist Alley section (you can see the map marked with my location in far left corner - not too far from the Tim Burton Frankenweenie exhibit) at table A45.

I have taken loads of pictures for all the new creations waiting for their big premiere but haven't had two seconds free to post them. August has been a runaway train. 

To remedy this, I decided to snap a couple of quick pictures for all of you to take a sneak peek (more below) and see what the table will look like this year, and who is on offer.

I always do a trial run for the table before a big show. This year, there are so many critters I barely have room for them all: Plague Doctors, Little Minions, Dark Dwellers, Carnivorous Plants, mini pumpkins and more. 

So come visit me sometime over the next four days!

Little Minions: Archie

on July 27, 2012 - 1:38pm

Archie likes small talk. 

He'll toss a casual salutation to anyone that passes him by. 

"How are you?"

"Nice day, ain't it?"

"Don't miss the Fall Festival. I hear Piltch's pumpkins are even better than last year."

"Hey kiddo, your Ma was looking for you!"

By the time he arrives at the General Store (his place of employment for many a year), Archie will have spoken to at least a dozen people.

Archie sweeps the floors, stocks the shelves, fixes what's broken, and goes down to the market to haggle with Kurcha for the odd item when inventory is low.

It's good work and he likes it. Keeps him busy, keeps him social, and most importantly, keeps him happy. 

This figure is approximately 6 inches tall.

Little Minions: Kurcha

on July 23, 2012 - 11:16am

Kurcha lives in a home built into a hillside, with only the chimney and the large moss-covered circular door as evidence to its presence.

The main living area - a cozy single room - houses his bunk, hearth, and a wooden table with benches. An orange tattered curtain drapes the entrance to a second room hidden in the back, with shelves from floor to ceiling, packed with inventory of used goods for trading. 

Each day, he packs his rickety cart full of items, hanging pans, lanterns dusted with rust, and various tools over the side to conserve room for larger trinkets in the main compartment.

He pushes it happily down the rock-strewn path (more of a parting through the tall grass made by the countless times he's taken this route) until he reaches the Meadow Market where he'll spend the day bartering with travelers, locals and other vendors.

This figure is 5.5 inches tall.

Little Minions: Maggie

on July 20, 2012 - 12:45pm

Maggie speaks in a language that sounds like squirrel-jibberish to me. Her voice is soft, friendly, and not too high but definitely feminine.

She wears a scarf to keep her unruly hair - with bangs that grow down the middle of her face - in place on windy days (and even not-so-windy days). 

She chatters and chitters as she walks along, collecting items for her daily craft project: some beach glass, a bit of long grass, perhaps some feathers left behind from a passing robin. For good measure, she gathers some dandelion for afternoon tea, and perhaps the petals can be used in her creation as well. 

She doesn't usually plan ahead when it comes to her crafting. Often, she decides what to make once she's gotten her inventory home and spread out on the kitchen table. Besides, the final product isn't what's important, rather the journey to get there. When she looks at the birdhouse made from sticks and seashells, she sees a day at the beach well spent with a friend and a picnic lunch. As she uses the pot holder made from woven grasses, she smiles at the memory of almost losing her sandal in the pond as she plucked the long blades free.

Her creations are memories materialized. And isn't that a lovely way to decorate. 

This figure is approximately 4.5 inches tall.

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