Tuesday, December 6, 2011

RSS Feed Me, Seymour!

A reader asked:  

"When I open your RSS feed it puts up a whole lot of strange characters, is the deal on my end?"

Dear Strange Character,

No, I believe the problem is that someone is squatting on the URL monstermache.blogspot.com, and you're seeing the feed from that address. (I never thought to check that when I was creating this blog!) My blogspot address is actually something quite different and I'm using a domain redirect to www.MonsterMache.net.

(Unfortunately for me, Blogger's policy is to never delete abandoned URL's or release contact information.)

Try using the brand-spankin' new RSS feed buttons I've provided in the sidebar.
Thanks for letting me know!



Saturday, November 12, 2011

Quab Update

Greetings, quab-people! I finally finished the paint job on this trinocular critter. I used the ends of the paint brush bristles to give it a mottled appearance, and a final coat of polyurethane for shine. Green was my color of choice, though as far as I know, quabs come in all colors.

Presenting some nature pictures of a quab at the beach:

The quab shell is paperclay over paper mache. Paperclay can be sanded and smoothed  to a fine finish or to the limits of your patience - whichever comes first.

Because they are tri-laterally symmetrical, I thought quabs had three eyes. It turns out that in the video game ("Uru: The Path of the Shell") they actually have only two! But that's the great thing about creative art: once you conceive it, it's yours!
So, presenting for the first time on any stage, The Three-Eyed Quab!

You cannot sneak up on a quab.

WARNING: Toe-pinchers will be flipped!
I warned you!

The Quab Dance

Monday, October 31, 2011

Good News - Bad News

The day has arrived for me to pick the winners of the Win a Barnacle Drawing! My problem is that although I have gained several new subscribers to this blog (thanks!), only two have actually qualified for the drawing by making known to me who they got to sign up!

  • Good news: all I have to do to pick first and second place winners is to flip a coin.
  • Bad news: I fear that I made the drawing too hard to enter.
  • Good news: I can always have another drawing or contest at a later time!
  • Bad news: It's not today.

Well, live and learn - right? I'll announce the winners probably sometime tomorrow (11/1/11).

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Just for fun: spam, spam, spam, spam ...

I wished to thanks for this excellent study!! I undoutedly savoring every single tiny little bit of it I've you bookmarked to verify out new things you post...

(I hope you undoutedly savoring every single tiny little bit of it! Have you me bookmarked?)

Remember to check out the drawing for a free barnacle-creature! See Oct. 7th post for details.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Quab Update

Awaiting painting and detailing. Legs have been attached; and joints, mouthparts, etc., formed from paperclay.  (Eyes are still masked with plastic wrap.)

Don't forget to enter the Barnacle Drawing by joining Monster Mache and encouraging someone else to join!
See Oct. 7th post for details.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Quab Update

Paper-clay carapace drying before final sanding / finishing.

Yes - yes I am.

 Quabrication continues.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Quab Update

Here's a quab-bag (I warned you!) of pictures of the quab under construction.

Eyeballs are hot-glued to roofing nails
Body rounded out with paper and masking tape

Post papering (it's the Dispatch, actually)

More pictures to come once this quabcake is baked!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What Has Three Eyes, Four Legs, and Flies?

A dead quab, of course!

Coming soon, the quab: that funny four-legged crustacean from the Myst franchise. Prepare yourself for many quab puns when I reveal this guy in paper mache.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

They're Multiplying!

 I thought I would try to sell some of these bad boys on Etsy. Making this many barnacles at once is kind of ambitious because of the great deal of work that goes into each one.

An even dozen

After strip mache-ing

Thursday, September 1, 2011

New! Monster Name Generator

Because the population of monsters on this blog continues to increase, I thought it would be handy to have an automatic name generator because, after all, everybody deserves a name! So, I took an existing name generator script and modified it extensively.

Just click on the above nametag or on the link to Monster Name Generator under the Pages section in the sidebar. Create as many names as you want: it won't run out.

What is notable about my script is the use of word modifiers to increase the number of variations.
Ex: "foo" could become "fooer", "fooey", "fooing", "MacFooable", "Foo-Lord III", etc.

I'm sure I'll continue to make improvements to it as time goes on. Send me ideas to make it better, or (clean) words you'd like to see included in the database.

Meanwhile, enjoy!

The Monster Name Generator is based on a free script from Online Name Generators by Niels Gamborg

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Power of Paper: Ban Plans Spans in Kiwi Land

Those wacky paper-folding Japanese are at it again!

A Japanese architect is to build a new cathedral in the city of Christchurch, New Zealand out of cardboard as a temporary replacement for the original 1864 Cathedral which was devastated by an earthquake on Feb. 22, 2010.

An article in the Aug. 22, 2011 Telegraph states:
The city has yet to decide on a long-term replacement for the landmark and has commissioned architect Shigeru Ban to create a structure that will be ready by the one-year anniversary of the earthquake and last until the Anglican cathedral can be restored to its original condition. 
Tokyo-based Mr Ban has earned a reputation for his use of cardboard – because it is recyclable and surprisingly strong – for large buildings..
The plan is to build an A-frame out of 86 cardboard tubes, each of which weighs 1,102 lbs., rising to a height of over 78 feet.
It will also incorporate a large stained glass window designed by a local artist, while the dimensions of the entire structure are based on those of the original building.
Mr Ban said the structure will take about three months to erect, seat 700 people and cost just £2 million.
At least Christchurch residents can be grateful that the building won't resemble a giant crane!

The image of the paper cathedral (created by K. Kanekawa and Y.Nakamura) can be found here 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Scream a Little Scream for Me

Well, my most monstrous creation to date is all done, and looking quite evil.

Here I've attached the various pieces to the backing board and begun filling out the contours:

After trimming the backing board:

Here's "Evil Roy" from different angles. I gave  him various "corpsey" features because he's supposed to be partially digested or assimilated or something. This is what you get when you cross "Half-Life" with "Silent Hill".

"Be sure to get my good side!"

My wife asked of the round bits, "Are those Cheerio's?"  No, they are paper-clay Froot-Loops!
She also suggested using yellow for the "good" eye, so I trusted in her fashion sense.

I fought the maw and the maw won.

You can see the Great Stuff used to fill in the voids between the head and side walls:

Evil Roy
In space, no one can hear you Escrima!
Various mounted shots:

Still looking mighty cheerful; some people seem to enjoy looking down on others.

Construction Materials:
cardboard, strip paper mache, paper-clay, cloth, masking tape, table-tennis ball, Sculpey, Great Stuff, coat-hanger wire, paint, clear gloss polyurethane

Keepin' it Real --- Cheap:
I stopped by a dry-cleaner's to ask for wire hangers and the attendant gave me all I could carry!
Asked for "mis-tint" paint at my home builder's store and bought two gallons for $5 each.

Anyway, that's that. Happy paper mache-ing!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Scream a Little Scream for Me (WIP)

I had a brainstorm about making a human-alien hybrid. This is my creepiest, most horrible project yet; working title, "Scream!" 

Starting with a cranium-sized, paper mache ball, I used a template to create the facial structure. The template is a rubbing from one of my skulls. You do have a spare skull lying about, don't  you? Of course you do.

Here's the basic head and separate jaw, sculpted from cardboard, paper mache, leftover Celluclay and Jonni's paperclay recipe. (I had some neglected Celluclay in the 'fridge and it had only started to go bad after six months!)


Aaaaaah! That's better.

Fang and teeth assemblies drying in the sun. This is my first attempt at making human teeth using polymer clay; in this case, translucent Sculpey. It's easier than you might think.

Here's a video by Criagsboredatwork that shows you how:  How to - Teeth that glow in the dark Pt. 1

I used a rotary tool to create nostrils and other details. The face, painted with a black-ish, bargain paint undercoat, is looking far too cheerful. It came out looking like a Greek comedy mask.
I'll fix that later, because remember: alien possession is no laughing matter!

More to come.

Friday, July 29, 2011

What's in a Name?

RIP Teratologic
Those of you who follow this blog (thank you very much!) may have noticed the name change from Teratologic.com to MonsterMache.net. There's a lesson here that I seem to have to keep relearning: no matter how cute or clever you may think you are being; a website, or domain, name ought to have certain characteristics:

  1. It should be easy to remember, to spell and to type
  2. It should be descriptive or have name recognition
  3. It should contain key words that search engines can find easily
  4. It should appeal to others, not just to you

Teratologic.com, in my mind anyway, was clever*, but failed miserably by the above criteria.  Even with the increasing sophistication of search engines one's domain name is still important. MonsterMache meets all four criteria; especially in the use of key words, because monsters and mache is what this site is all about!

Of course, if you only want to blog for your own enjoyment and don't really care about attracting readers then choose whatever name makes you happy!

* As Tyler Durden asks in Fight Club, "How's that working out for you?"

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Current barnacle project: Completed!

Here are pictures of the completed barnacle, as promised. I'm fairly pleased with the way this guy turned out; practice makes perfect! Here he is in his new home on my office ceiling.

Wait a tick ... it's my sister's birthday today, so in her honor I am naming this barnacle after her.
Happy Birthday, Leslie!


Milkah the cat was nearly a casualty. She ran underneath my foot as I was getting down from the stepladder after hanging this critter. (Or maybe I would have been the casualty.)

That sounds like a good safety tip: "Confine all non ceiling-dwelling pets before using a stepladder."

barnacle monster sculpture
The corner-hugging tendril was kind of a happy accident

Here you can plainly see my new tentacle/grabber design.

barnacle monster sculpture with tentacle

Here's a good view of the mouth. I had to lie on the floor to take this shot:

barnacle monster sculpture with tentacle

I think the long tendrils worked out very well as a design element. Leslie looks like he is planning on an extended stay; sort of like when your house guest begins forwarding his mail to your address.