Sunday, December 19, 2010

Treachery at lunchtime

Ok, I know, not another video link! But guess what? That's the last "creative" thing I did, other than a bit of writing for another project, thus endure. It's because I love you and you'll thank me when you'r older.

Imagined, shot and edited in one day.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

School's over!


No more school. Done. well, for this trimester, at least! I start the second trimester at the end of january.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

While we're on videos...

Here is a video I discovered via a friend's facebook page yesterday. I personally loved it and cringed terribly while watching it; reminescent of old italian snuff films. It is very straightforward; a guy maiming himself with a spoon.

Be warned that it is very, VERY disturbing. I mean it. It is gross, unhealthy, wrong in oh so many ways, and gory as hell. Please don't watch it if you just ate, plan to eat, or do not enjoy gratuitous violence and extreme gore.

The Man who Falleth Down the Stairway

Short stop-motion experiment done for college with buddies. Shot in 6 fps as requested by the teacher.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Movember - Manly solidarity.

This year, I'm participating to Movember, an annual month-long mustache-growing event which's goal is to raise funds and awareness to support the 1 in 6 men suffering from prostate cancer and their families.

Not enough people take time to think about prostate cancer; a man growing a rapist mustache to help men's junk be healthy isn't as attractive as teams of athletes wearing pink for boobies, of course. However the cause is a very serious one, and every penny will help. If you wish to support me, feel free to donate to the cause! After all, I'm shaving my beloved goatee and letting myself grow a 'stache for god sake's. And I'm ready to contribute financially myself, even though I'm a broke-as-hell student, living on cheap food and old clothes.

Here's a link to my profile if there is a dollar or two you could spare. as I said earlier, every penny can help.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Camera!

I ordered a few days ago a Nikon D3000 camera and it arrived today. I'm in love with it, dammit!

Expect much better pictures than what I usually take in future how-to's.

Monday, October 4, 2010

WANT - Burton & Elfman music box

For the 25th anniversary of their collaboration, Danny Elfman and Tim Burton are releasing a beautiful, whimsical  working zoetrope music box full of goodies including 16 CDs of Burton artwork, unreleased music & expanded soundtracks, a DVD of a conversation between Burton and Elfman, a 250+ pages hardcover book, and a USB flash drive.

A limited number of 1000 will be made, and they'll come with a hefty price tag of $499,99.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Naturalization of Insects - Bis

Hello again dear friends!

It's my pleasure to present you another insect naturalization and framing project. This one is a bit more ambitious; I have inserted 6 magnificent specimens in one large shadow box.

The way I proceeded was the same as in this earlier tutorial: On Mounting and Naturalization of Insects

However, I decided to use a new kind of frame, which is much larger, and opens from the back, not from the front like the first frame I used.

Thus, here begins my marvelous journey.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

On that which hides in the darkness of Quebec City

I recently went on a photo shooting spree in my town. All in all, I took around 350 pictures; after cleanup, I ended up with 68 of which I was proud. Here, I shall share a couple of those 68 pictures. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Finished small projects - Steampunk Skull and Memento Mori

Hey there you jolly ghastly bunch o' fun!

Just finished two smallish projects I started earlier.

You might remember the steampunk skull

(part 1 - part 2 )

Well, it's done! Finally, it's not very steampunk... for the sake of practicality (I use the skull as a model when drawing or sculpting), I decided to forget about over steampunkish accessories, and went with the plain & simply. I was satisfied with simply aging the skull, changing the teeth, and replacing the shiny steel hardware with something less new-ish.

Unfortunately, I dropped the skull's lower jaw once. Over stone tiles. A lot of teeth were knocked off, and I was too lazy to glue em back in. Instead, I used my trusty rotary tool, and drilled holes where the teeth used to be. Afterwards, I slopped the same wood stain I used on the rest of the skull on the jaw, and gave it a dip in dust & ash to make it look old & grimy.

In this picture, you can also see the new screws I stuck into the jaw. They are of a blackish, old oxydized steel, with brown and blue "highlights".

Of course, just sticking in screws is boring, so I glued on the exterior of the jaw a few tiny bits of metal, to make it seem like it was old rusty bolts held on with brass nuts.

I then added thick red rubber bands to hold the jaw to the skull. It'll break more easily than springs, but it is easier to replace, and I didn't like the look of stainless steel springs.

Now, other then that, I finished a small "memento mori" shadow box. Memento Mori simply means remember death, or more precisely, remember that you will die. That was a perfect sentence to go with a human metatarsal I had laying around in my appartment (don't ask.)

I used a cheap balsa shadow box I bought at the dollar store. Not satisfied with the natural wood finish of the shadow box, I went to work.

I wanted a black frame, but I didn't have any black paint left (gasp!). Looking for a solution, I recalled a few pieces of furniture I saw somewhere once, which were made with scorched wood, coated with resin for protection. I decided to try it out on my frame.

This is what I started out with:

I simply took out a propane torch, and scorched the wood of the frame, being carefull not to burn too deeply so that the frame still had a certain substance. You don't want ash, you want a fine layer of cracked charcoal.

This is what I ended up with:
In this close-up shot, you can see more easily the texture of the wood. Keep in mind that I covered it with epoxy resin so it wouldn't crumble or stain everything it touched.
Afterwards, it was simply a matter of adding a black felt background, cutting a banner from aged paper, writing the wanted sentence on it, and gluing everything down (including the metatarsal) with more epoxy. I used 5 minute epoxy from the dollar store, but you can use whatever you want.
That's all for now, peeps! I ordered a few insects from my favorite seller on ebay, so be ready for more insect mounting pictures soon!

see ya later.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Oh, by the way

I just wanted to share this picture of the street I'm currently residing in.

Links zwo drei vier

Hey there! long time no see. That's because I moved out july 5th to Quebec City, and I just got Internet. I don't have much to offer you craft-wise, unfortunately (although I plan to do a wee bit of taxidermy and entomology mounts after pay day), so you'll have to be satisfied with a couple of links.

Playing with Dead Things: The owner of presents a walkthrough of her dead pet rat's mummification. Rat guts ahead!

11 Old and Grungy Film Textures: Scans of Daguerrotypes in high resolution to be used as textured layers in photoshop or whatnot. Very useful!

160 Old Paper Textures: Exactly what it sounds like!

Guide to Synthetic Hair Extensions: Lots of info about synthetic hair, most notably how to make and insteal fake dreadlocks.

Monsterlist of Halloween Projects: Lots of tutorials on creating halloween props, costumes and effects. Lovely, and huge!

That's all for now folks. I'll try to share more later on.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Transi: A (Final?) Update

If you looked through my whole blog, or have been following me for quite some time, you might remember about the Transi, a small figure I sculpted in oil-based clay a while ago. Well, to put things plainly, I fucked up. My plan was to mold the sculpture in a latex skin, then create a plaster mother mold over it; bad idea. Latex will have a hard time curing when it's brushed on oil based clay. I should have made an alginate mold, then a resin or plaster cast, and THEN create the latex mold over the resin or plaster copy.

But what is done is done; I acted without thinking thoroughly and ended up with a sloppy mold, on which lots of detail was lost, and the original sculpture isn't in good enough condition to create another mold.

I wasn't going to let all this work go to waste, though. Thus about two days ago, I decided to try casting a plaster copy using the crappy mold I made. The casting process went absurdly well considering how bad I am at making molds & casting stuff. If it hadn't be for the poor quality of the latex impression, I would have had a perfect copy of the original sculpture.

Here's what I ended up with:

Thursday, June 3, 2010

On makeup, wounds and bruises - A short walkthrough

Today I took part in a very fun boredom-busting rainy day project with my best buddy and his girlfriend. Basically, I did the makeup for a gory photo shoot. The goal: beat up a bit the girl and hang her with fish hooks going through her skin.

Now, being obsessed with body modifications & piercings, if I was the model, I would've filed the barbs off the fishhooks, pierced myself with a sterile piercing needle and run the fish hook through it. But the lovely Mirenda isn't as masochistic as me, so I had to find a way to do this without harming her. It was pretty easy.

First of all, take a before shot of your model. Having a kitten in the picture helps attracting your audience. Promising a kitten at the end of the post helps keeping your readers hooked. Thus, keep on reading, and you won't see one, but TWO pictures of cute kittehs.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Shameless self-advertising

I've got nothing to talk about right now (lotsa stuff in progress, but being the eternal procrastinator, nothing's getting done), so I'm gonna show off my stuff. You've seen the crafty side of me, but I also dabble in fine arts, now and then.

Thus, here is an embedded slideshow of my deviantart gallery. There's pretty mediocre stuff on there, but a couple of works are pretty decent if I may say so myself. Please feel free to take a look, and say hello if you've got an account there!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Book Reviews - a couple more

Time for five new book reviews!

This time, I only cover novels; mostly fiction, except for Dharma Bums, which is kind of a romanticized autobiography, if you will.

So hey, let's start with this one, just after the jump!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The sentinel - a video

The always incredible Tom Banwell has posted a video of one of his most popular creations, The Sentinel, in action on youtube. The video itself isn't particularly interesting, but what is interesting is to see the texture, feel, weight and fit of this creation; something harder to gauge in pictures.

Link to the post

Just so you know

I'm working on two different projects and contemplating two others, so you'll see more interesting posts pretty soon. Since then, links and reviews will have to do!

But I'm trying not to be lazy. I don't work in a very inspiring and creative surrounding, and I'm a lazy bastard. These two things take their toll on the quantities of stuff I might create and document. I'll try not to slack off too much, though!

Here's a couple of teases to keep you interested though:

Monday, April 19, 2010

Deviant Moon Tarot

I received earlier today an order from Inside this order was hidden what I was the most expecting; a copy of the Deviant Moon Tarot by Patrick Valenza.

To put it plainly, this tarot deck is fucking gorgeous. Slightly twisted and surreal, with warm, earthy colors, the characters basking in the glow of the moon.

It came in a larger box which contained a beautiful tarot spreadsheet.

Inside this box was nested the smaller one, containing the cards.

And the cards themselves are jaw-droppingly awesome.

Similarly to the Rider-Waite tarot (and unlike the tarot de Marseilles), each card from the minor arcana is filled with symbolisme, making this deck easier to use for beginners who don't yet know by heart the meaning of each and every card.

But most of all, this tarot deck has something my 2 other decks are severly lacking: an interesting back design.

All in all, this deck is probably the most haunting and beautiful I ever held. A true work of art.

Deviant Moon Tarot's official website

Saturday, March 27, 2010

New blog... yet again!

I just started a new blog showcasing my "less politically correct" side, on which I might also post a few pseudo-philosophical thoughts now and then. There's not much now, but I should fill it out eventually.

I'm Going To Hell

Friday, March 12, 2010

One day short of friday the 13th

I didn't have anything to write about so I wanted to share the only LARP-type activity in which I would accept to indulge, which is related a bit to good ol' zombie walks.

Every friday the 13th, there is an event called ZV13 (an acronym for zombie vendredi treize). I wasn't aware of this event until I met a fantastic guy, now a good friend of mine, Carl. He takes part of the organisation of this event, in which hundreds of people turn up for a whole night of zombie killing and human biting.

The scale of the thing is pretty impressive; Last time (I unfortunately couldn't make it, though), they managed to rent a whole school. You're basically locked inside the venue, with paintball guns (without ammo, we wouldn't want to hurt someone!), and the goal is pretty simple: survive for the night. If you get "bitten", you go to the makeup room and you end the game as a zombie. If you're a zombie and you're shot in the head, the game ends for you.

The crew responsible for the game also has complete access to the electricity controls of the building, to add a bit of piquant.

I've yet to try it out, but from what I've heard from plenty of people, it is something a zombie fan MUST experience once in his life. Although the explanation I made is pretty basic, you've got to keep in mind that the players are what make the event enjoyable.

I'm not sure of the next venue, either a factory or a small shopping mall, if I remember well, but you can be sure I'll be there.


The security guards of the venue; they won't let you come in without a ticket, 
but they won't let you come out until morning.

 Resting a bit before the attack

Carl, in all his rotten glory
 Link to the event's official website

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Book Makeover

Rev. Marx at MRX Designs recently shared a clear, simple, to-the-point tutorial on reinforcing an old, tattered paperback's spine and rebinding it in hardcover with leather, using a french groove hinge.

The results are truly beautiful, and I am quite fond of the book he bound using the leather from a bomber jacket a leather of a color described as "bomber jacket" (thank you for correcting my mistake!)(illustrated above). The texture and color of the leather adds so much character to the book!

Take a look at the tutorial

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Music of Erich Zann

From the youtube description:
"Die Musik des Erich Zann (original german title)
A stop motion movie based loosely based on H.P.Lovecraft's novel.
Creepy and with a lot of atmosphere made by Anna Gawrilow at"
 A nice, creepy short indeed. I enjoyed it very much, even though the fact that they replaced Zann's viol by a piano. It is still very fitting, in my opinion, however, and let's keep in mind that it is described by being only loosely based on Lovecraft's short story.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Prayer of Exorcism

Here's what I've been up to today:

The text is a latin prayer of exorcism taken from the Rituale Romanum written under Pope Paul V in 1614.

You can buy this lovely little thing on my etsy shop by clickety-clicking here

Stuff for sale! yay!

Got a shop on etsy. Up to now, there's not much in it, but feel free to go take a look! More will probably be added later on. 

buy my crap! now!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

New formspring account!

The title is pretty self explanatory. I signed up on Formspring, so now, you can ask me whatever you want easily, using the widget stuck in the right bar of my blog, over my followers and under my ugly mug.

here's a direct link, if you wish to go to my formspring profile and see what I've answered to other questions.

Monday, February 8, 2010

I found a new favorite bookstore!

Yesterday, a friend and I went to a small market at about 15 minutes from his apartment to buy ourselves some beer. This small market actually has the largest beer selection in town, with many beers coming from small local microbreweries. It is there that I found my favorite beer ever, L'Aphrodisiaque by the Dieu du Ciel brewery; a rich cocoa and vanilla stout. A real dessert.

Anyways, while we were walking back with our beer and a couple of landjäger, we came across a large brick building, probably an ancien factory, with the windows completely boarded up. Except for a small part, which contained the most charming green wooden storefront. This huge, scary, abandonned building housed a small used bookstore. Unfortunately,  it was closed that day, so today, I went to take a look after work.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Botanical items for your perusal

Recently, while looking around in my room, I noticed something.

There are paintings on the walls, skulls on the shelves, a shrunken head and a dead mermaid now and there, a full library and wardrobe, a few bottles of spirits and musical instruments, a couple of dry insects pinned on a frame, but damn, there's no life in there!

No room should be left without a living thing in it. While I'm contemplating buying myself a few fish or some amphibian, bug or reptile, such a creature might need more care and light than what is available in my modest dwelling.

Thus, I shall probably add a plant or two, to freshen the air, add color, and make the place a bit less gloomy. I'll probably put a terrarium and a couple of succulents, for these are easy to care for, and my green thumb is yellowish and slowly turning to black, if you know what I mean.

A couple of links I found interesting during my research for the perfect vegetation, after the jump!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Wow... just... wow.

Amazing, hot guitar duel between Stochelo Rosenberg and Eric Vaarzon Morel. If you enjoy flamenco guitar, gispy guitar, or simply amazing displays of virtuosity, take a look. It's crazy.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Suggested reading for cold winter nights

As some of you might know, I'm an avid reader.

Snuggling up in a warm robe & slippers on a comfy couch, with a glass of whiskey or port by my side and my pipe full of cherry cavendish tobacco, and reading for hours is one of my favorite hobbies at night.

Thus, after the jump comes a list of books i've recently read that might interest most of you.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Of sideshow gaffs & taxidermy

After the success and interest that was bestowed upon my last creation, namely the Feejee Mermaid (from Borneo), I thought about sharing to you a few pieces of information on taxidermy and the art of sideshow gaffs.

Gaffs are simply tricked exhibits. The most famous of them all, of course, is the mummified "mermaid" body exhibited by P.T. Barnum during the 19th century. This creature, dubbed the Feejee Mermaid (from the original spelling of the Fiji islands), was of course nothing more than a hoax.

P.T. Barnum's Feejee Mermaid

More info and pictures after the jump.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Amazing Feejee Mermaid! (From Borneo.)

Here's a picture of the finished product.
I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it!

If you ever try to follow my instructions and make your own mermaid, please let me know! I'd love to see what I managed to inspire!

For those who landed directly on this post, here's links to the whole tutorial:

Part 1: In which we discuss the flaying of the fish
Part 2: In which we discuss the mounting of the skin
Part 3: In preparation for the application of skin
Part 4: In which we add flesh to the beast
Part 5: In which we finish the job

Here's also a link to a tutorial on how to make the manuscript you see on the left of the picture

If you enjoyed this, please let me know!


Taxidermy: In which we finish the job.

Hello again.

This time we'll deal with the finishing touches; coloration, antiquing and wall mounting.

First of all, it is important to support the dry mermaid for the painting process.
I used a wire coat hanger which I bent out of shape and slid under its arms.

For painting the body, I mixed a small quantity of paint matching the fish's color; I used burnt umber, burnt sienna, sap green, black, and gold paint to give a slight shimmer to the color.

I then mixed 1 part paint to 3 parts latex, and watered down the mix a bit so it goes on more easily.

Don't worry if the resulting paint is pale, it'll dry much darker. The great thing with this paint is that it won't be uniform; since it's translucent, there will be some natural variation in the color. This is a good thing if you want a realistic paint job. Also, cover the whole fish, not just the body.

More pictures & info after the jump.

Easy, drugless hallucinations! yay!

These are a series of easy ways to experiment basic hallucinations. I'll try a couple of these in the next days to see how it works out!

via cracked

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

New Blog

I've decided to start a new blog, focusing on a totally different subject.

Chucks and a Derby will be a blog in which I'll share my love for shoes, quality menswear, and bargains.

If my sartorial musings interest you, feel free to go take a look!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Taxidermy: In which we add flesh to the beast

Greetings, one and all! We are getting close, dangerously close, to completing the amazing feejee mermaid. This time, we'll see how one can apply a realistic, strong skin to the upper body to make it look like the dessicated flesh of a mummified corpse.

This part is my favorite. It's fun and messy, and doesn't require much talent nor concentration; it's impossible to make it look bad.

To add flesh and skin to some bone or armature, I like to use a combination of materials to achieve maximum strength and realism. For large areas, it's simply a matter of layering. For highly detailed zones, such as the hands or face, it's almost like sculpting with papier mâché.

Read the full tutorial with pictures after the jump.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Taxidermy: In preparation for the application of skin

This entry will be short. It is simply an update before I start the good ol' "corpsing" process, during which flesh and skin will be applied to the top part of the mermaid.

First of all, once the fish was completely dry, I applied a couple of thin layers of latex to the tail and fins, so that if chipping occurs, the chipped piece won't fall off the fin. After this, many layers of spray varnish or fixative (I used Tresemmé extra strong hairspray) are applied to the whole fish to protect it, since it is quite brittle, prevent the scales from falling, and seal it from humidity.

More after the jump!

Best show i've seen in years

I came back 2 hours ago from the best show I've seen in the last couple of years.
Alegria, by the Cirque du Soleil. DAMN it was fantastic!

I can only name 3 negative points:
1- We were seated on plastic folding chairs and the view wasn't great
2- It wasn't the original show, but an adaptation made for arenas. Actually, it's the same show, but y'know, it's not the same feeling then when you see it in the great, big, yellow and blue tent.
3- IT'S TOO SHORT! 2 hours just aren't enough. Gimme more magic!

Otherwise, I was sitting on the edge of my seat and my jaw was hanging loose 90% of the time. Last time I saw the Cirque du Soleil, I was a 7 years old kid (It was Saltimbanco, under the big top at Ottawa), and I couldn't believe my eyes. Now, at 19, I still can't believe how talented these acrobats, clowns and musicians are.

2 thumbs up to Guy Laliberté, Franco Dragone, René Dupéré and all the people who were behind this amazing show. They made me feel like a li'l boy again.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Taxidermy: In which we discuss the mounting of the skin


Last time, as you can recall by scrolling down to my last post, we dealt with skinning a fish for the purpose of stuffing and mounting it as a fishing trophy. You may also recall that I clumsily tore out the cheek of the fish, ruining its head. Thus, I cut it off.

The body of the fish still has a purpose, though; I shall use it as the bottom half of a taxidermy gaff representing a mermaid, as, for example, the feejee mermaid made famous by Barnum.

See how I did this after the jump!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Taxidermy: In which we discuss the flaying of the fish

Why, hello there, my tsantsa loving, guitar refinishing, spider web framing honey bunches of oats! (You know you are. My blog's stats can't lie.)

Today, we'll skin & gut a sea-dwelling critter! Yay!

You see, my uncle brought me a beautiful, HUGE red trout specimen, fresh from the waters of Chibougamau, located in the barren, frozen lands of eastern Canada. And my uncle, being a fun, quirky guy like me (ain't I great?), gave it to me. Not so I can stuff my face with it, but more so I can stuff the fish itself.

I'll try to give you step-by-step instructions concerning how I did it., after the jump.

Friday, January 8, 2010

In which we discuss "the room with the circulatory like they are glowing in the bodies exhibit"

So, today I was taking a look at my analytics page, and fell upon this gem in the list of adwords from which one can end up on my blog.

"why does it look like in the room with the circulatory like they are glowing in the bodies exhibit"

Because I'm, like, helpful, like I'll answer this question.

There is a light under the specimens.
The room being dark, and the liquid (or air) in which the specimens are floating being devoid of color or impurities, only the specimens end up glowing.

there you go.