New things are afoot over at Etsy right now–first off, they have a new About page for shops that lets you see a little bit behind-the-scenes of what goes on to make the items offered (and helps you make sure you’re not buying something you think is handmade that’s really cranked out by a sweatshop full of six-year-olds in Taiwan). There aren’t a lot of them up yet, since the option to build one just became available recently, but I would encourage anyone shopping to check out the About page of the shops they’re perusing. All of the ones I’ve seen have been really interesting. If you’re curious, here’s the one for my shop, House of Whimsy (which features Hellpuppy Kora, of course).
In other news, Etsy is hosting a Christmas in July Sale that many stores are participating in–search cij or christmasinjuly tags (or just Christmas in July) to find some great deals. It officially runs until 7/22, but a lot of shops seem to be extending their sale items until the end of the month.
This week, we have some quite excellent selections, starting with this bright and cheery plush Scarab Beetle sculpture from weirdbuglady (aka Brigette). Need an amoeba or a planarian to cuddle up with? She’s got you covered. When she isn’t creating new plush creepy-crawlies, she’s working on her PhD in entomology, which would explain why you can search organisms in her shop by Phylum. Nice. (more…)
Perfume comes from many sources: flowers, tree resins, herbs. One source that is a little controversial is the glands of animals. Musk comes from the civet, something like a mongoose, the North American beaver, and from the Asian musk deer. Of course, most of these compounds can be replicated through chemistry, but synthetic or not, a good perfumer should be familiar with the secretions that certain glands can naturally produce.
We applaud Black Phoenix for getting involved with glands. (We’re, on this site anyway, extremely concerned with the adrenal gland.) In Black Phoenix’s case, they have turned their attention and imagination to human male testicles.
Another Kickstarter has been launched. This time, I’m a third of it. As you might recall, Ken Plume and I wrote There’s a Zombie in My Treehouse! many moons ago. Art Meister Len Peralta provided illustrations and the book was published. We got written up in Wired, which was awesome, and we sold–and continue to sell–copies of the book. This is also awesome.
Now we’re looking at making the book available in a different format. Specifically, an iBook that contains not just the words and art but the words as read by various and sundry celebrity readers. Not all have been revealed–but so far the roster includes Alex Day, Kevin Murphy, James Urbaniak, Trace Beaulieu, Bill Corbett, Doc Hammer, Jackson Publick, Jonathan Coulton and John Hodgman.
If we make our initial goal, then the iBook happens. If we make our stretch goal, then we can fund the creation of a second Johnny Fry adventure entitled Conquest of the Snowmen. And we have a very special celebrity reader who will read that book, provided we can get it written. That reader is Neil Gaiman.
There’s a lot of stuff that comes out all the time, and the companies are want your attention and mostly…your coin. But, you know, it’s your coin and you have to take care where you spend it. With these posts we try to take you through recent releases so you can make up your mind. If you find the info here to be of use, do us a favor and purchase stuff from Amazon through us. Especially if you were going to buy the stuff anyway. That gives us kickbacks, which help pay for things. Like the server. And coffee. And therapy. We thank you.
Every so often, there comes a project the scope of which is kind of baffling–not just in terms of the physical components, but in emotional and psychic resonance. TOME, by Ben Templesmith’s new artist collective/publishing house 44Flood looks like it’s shaping up to be just such a project.
To quote directly from the Kickstarter Page:
TOME is an annual anthology in an oversized format showcasing world-class artists as they explore a single theme using the comic book, painting, and music mediums. And by oversized we’re talking big, around 11×17″ [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][They have since updated this to 12×18″] and 180 pages! That size will let you experience art and sequential storytelling in a way that would be almost impossible outside of standing in front of the original work itself.
This year’s TOME will focus on the theme of VAMPIRISM. Modern popular culture has shown us all kinds of depictions of vampires, from the silly to the subdued. The artists in TOME will each take 3-5 pages to explore what we think is a unique and relevant take on vampirism as a whole, including the misuse of power and the objectification and exploitation of others. And at the conclusion of each artist’s contribution, they’ll have a one-page interview conducted by another artist to continue their artistic exploration.