Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween Everybody!

What a pouty face. Well, it's one of the few that turned out okay. Once again another Halloween has come, and I didn't get my costume finished in time. I just kind of threw on what I had so I could take some photos. Hope that everyone has a wonderful Halloween & thanks for joining me in the Halloween countdown!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Time is ticking away...

I can't believe in a few hours, it will officially be Halloween. The big day. The day I think about all year long. I went out tonight to pick up some sale Halloween items, and will most likely take one last trip on November 1st. Christmas stuff has already began to muscle it's way into the limelight now, even though Thanksgiving is still weeks away.
I'll be busy working on my costume, that may or may not get finished in time. It's a costume that I started to put together for last Halloween, and it just didn't happen. So hopefully, I'll have it ready for tomorrow.
I was watching some of The Munsters marathon on WGN this evening (hosted by Alice Cooper, heck yeah!) and I was reminded of one of my favorite commercials. Thanks to the wonderful world of YouTube, here it is:

When I was seeking out that commercial I found some other Frankenstein Ads.
And here's an older commercial for Shasta with the Frankenstein Monster. Oddly, he's referred to as Igor:

Frankenstein Monster and the Bic Pen:

Doritos & Pepsi:

Jackson Hewitt:

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mixed Treat Bag

As Halloween rapidly approaches, I realize I won't be able to post about all the things I had originally planned. *sigh* I was having trouble trying to figure out what to post tonight, so I just decided to throw a bunch of stuff together.

A friend sent me this photo he took of a newsletter cover from 1952.

Here is some Halloween merchandise that I picked up & received as gifts this year.

Here are some sketches I did that I haven't had time to turn into final pieces yet.

Annie, Laurie and Linda from John Carpenter's 'Halloween'

Fredrick, Igor and Inga from 'Young Frankenstein'.

Tomorrow I will be getting up to enjoy this years Martha Stewart Halloween Show on tv, then I'm going to catch up on all the shows that ran this week on

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween's Past

I have to make an educated guess on the year, as I don't have the photos in front of me

1976. The Pink Princess.

1978. (But I don't think this was my actual costume).

1979. I wish I still had this thing.

1984. The Red Princess. A jump in years here
from the 70's to the 80's.

You know, I'm quite disappointed that my family didn't take more photos of me at Halloween when I was growing up. It's really a shame too, because most years, my grandmother made my costumes. I'm also disappointed that I'm not better prepared for this post. I actually still have 2 of the costumes that my grandmother made, and was going to photograph my little sister wearing them. Unfortunately, my timing didn't work out and I most likely won't get to shoot the photos until after Halloween. Oh well, I can always use them for the countdown next year.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween Parties

Here's two cartoons with a Halloween Party theme.

'Betty Boop's Hallowe'en Party'

And Toby the Pup 'Halloween'. Wait till about the 3:25 min mark for things to get spookin.
A side note about this one. As far as I know, all Toby the Pup cartoons are public domain. However, not many of them survived. This was posted on Youtube earlier this year from a European source (can't remember where), and then removed a few months ago.

If you enjoy these old cartoons you might also want to check out Uncle John's Crazy Town. His posts are great year round, but right now he's got a few spooky ones up for the month of October.

Monday, October 26, 2009

HP Lovecraft

When I did the EA Poe piece, I wanted to do a companion piece of HP Lovecraft. He was also great fun to draw as he, like Poe, has a very distinctive look. And I am also including three Lovecraft related clips for today.

First up, a trailer for HPLHS's (HP Lovecraft Historical Society) terrific film, 'The Call of Cthulhu'. Filmed in the style of a 1920's silent film, this is one of the best Lovecraft adaptations I've ever seen.

Next, still in the 1920's style, an animated short film by Peter Rhodes of 'The Other Gods'.

And last, a trailer for John Carpenter's 'In the Mouth of Madness'. While not based directly on any Lovecraft story, it is very 'Lovecraftian'. This is a film I re-discovered in recent years, and I think it's quite good at capturing the feeling of Lovecraft.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sing Cats Sing!

So this is a bit of a cheat post. These cats were part of another composition I was working on that just wasn't coming together, and I knew I wouldn't have it done by Halloween. So I just did floating cat heads. It still looks pretty cute.

Next week I will be away until Friday, but I am going to try and make pre-posts for all of next week. I wish that I had more time to work on my unfinished art pieces before the end of the month but it looks like that's not going to happen. I can't believe Halloween is less than a week away.

Well, hopefully, I will have everything up & ready for next week before the day is through and I hope that everyone has a wonderful week.

Also I know I haven't had a chance to respond to my comments, and I probably won't get to that until after Halloween. But thank you for posting feedback, and I WILL get to it, I promise!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Oopsie, I missed a post!

Oh dear! I missed a post! It could not be helped. I was out of town yesterday, and away from house longer than I thought I would be. And today's post isn't going to be that great, but I didn't want to drop the ball entirely.
Well, today my husband & I went around to a few different stores, looking for sales on Halloween/Horror DVDs. Last year Best Buy had a pretty good sale on, so that's where most of the titles we picked up this year came from. All under $10! I really like these sales because it gives me a chance to fill holes in my collection, especially with things like 'The Shining' & 'Evil Dead' 1 & 2. 'Poltergeist' is replacement for my VHS copy. I'll probably be watching a little bit of these before I go to bed. Mmmm, sweet dreams!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Edgar Allan Poe turns 200!

Well, actually his birthday was in January of this year. I thought I would just share a few random Poe things.

It's Rue Morgue's 12th Anniversary! And Poe is their cover story. The October issue of Rue Morgue is usually the biggest & best issue of the year. For me anyway. As I've said before, if you've never picked up Rue Morgue before, give the October issue a try. This year they even have a brief article on vintage/antique Halloween cards.

Rue Morgue also featured these stamps, which I didn't know about. I will have to get some.

Poe has one of those faces that just begs to be drawn. His features lend themselves very well to caricature. And to me it's really interesting to see how other people draw him, because it really does vary. Here's a couple of diverse examples.

And I will close with some videos. First, is a video from The Parlor at Halloween Town. Earlier this year they held an EA Poe Group Art Show. This is a little video of some of the works on display. Not all of the pieces are of Poe himself, some are just based on his stories.

Next is a something I really love. Edgar Allan Poe & the 'Rave-ons'. In the role of Poe is Lee Presson of Lee Presson and the Nails, a great swing band from the 1990's. Here we see Lee, as Eddie, singing Oingo Boingo's 'Little Girls' . Lee Presson + Poe + Oingo Boingo= Awesome!

And last is the first part of Stuart Gordon's Masters of Horror episode 'The Black Cat'. I'm pretty sure you can find the rest of it on Youtube, although I didn't check. I include this because actor Jeffery Combs does such a great job as Poe in this. Combs of course is probably best known for his role as Herbert West in the Re-Animator films. This is also one of my favorite episodes of Masters of Horror.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Swingin' At the Seance

I did this piece earlier this year and it was inspired by The Moon-Rays wonderful CD 'Swingin' at the Seance'. The design & photography for the CD's packaging was put together by my friend, the very talented & crafty Wendy Amdahl. Some of you probably know her from her terrific blog, The Halloween Tree. The album 'Swingin' at the Seance' would make a perfect addition to anyone's Halloween Music collection. It's available from many online stores including CD Baby, Amazon, and Itunes.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Most Likely to....

Suck? Leave Hickies? Give you Rabies? Hmm... Some dumb Photoshop fun.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Dancing Skeletons

Here is a couple of cartoons that feature dancing skeletons. And who doesn't like that?

First up, the granddaddy of all dancing skeleton cartoons,

'Skeleton Dance' from 1929

Next Mickey Mouse is forced to play the organ for a group of dancing skeletons in 'Haunted House' also from 1929.

Flip the Frog finds himself in a similar situation as Mickey in 1932's 'Spooks'. Only the head skeleton of the house seems to have a more sinister plan in store for Flip.

And finally it's back to the graveyard for a 'Skeleton Frolic' (1937). This is very similar to 'Skeleton Dance' with good reason. They were both directed by the great Ub Iwerks.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Dark Shadows Bloopers

I miss Dark Shadows. I used to watch it on the Sci-Fi Channel when it ran back in the 90's & I loved it. Word on the street is that Tim Burton is planning to bring his version of this Gothic soap opera to the big screen, with the possible release date set for 2011. It's also rumored that Johnny Depp will be cast as vampire, Barnabas Collins. I'm going to make a prediction and say that Helena Bonham Carter will play Dr. Julia Hoffman.
One of the fun things about Dark Shadows is that they rarely did any second takes. So there are lots of flubs about in the episodes. I found these compilations of Dark Shadows bloopers on Youtube, and thought this will be my share for the day. Some of the bloopers are more obvious than others. My favorite is in Pt. 1 at the 8:57 min mark. I laugh every time.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Home from Collegeville

Tonight's piece is dedicated to the old masks and plastic smock costumes from the old days. I don't really know when it was that stores stopped selling these, but when I noticed they were gone, it made me a little sad. My Vampire Girl is kind of a hybrid of two different costumes, one from Collegeville & the other from Bland Charnas Co. And of course, I've added my own touches.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Haunted Radio

I did this piece to use as an album cover for all the old horror/suspense radio programs I've been downloading and listening to on my ipod. I've been getting them at The Monster You have to sign up and get a password but it's FREE and you can listen to these dark tales online, or download them. Happy Haunted Listening

Thursday, October 15, 2009

My purchase this evening...

Let me just say, World Market is Awesome! I'll have some more (and better) Halloween merch photos up soon but I just got this guy & I'm so excited. I normally don't like to buy glittered things because glitter get everywhere. But had to have this. It's the monocle. I love his monocle!
If you haven't been to World Market to look for Halloween stuff, I recommend that you do. Ours didn't have a ton of stuff, but what they did have was pretty cool. We saw lots of stuff that we are either going to try to go back out and get soon or wait till Nov 1st and clean up what's left.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Vintage Deviling

Continuing with the theme of Devils, I found these great vintage devil decoration photos on the Flickr photostream of riptheskull. He has an amazing collection of vintage Halloween items. I picked out some of my favorites to share, but go check out his photostream. You'll be glad you did!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Halloween Special: The Devil & Daniel Mouse

In 1978 the Canadian animation studio Nelvana released 'The Devil & Daniel Mouse'. Two mice named Jan & Dan are struggling folk musicians trying to catch a break. One night after being fired from a local club, Dan leaves Jan alone in the woods to take his guitar to the pawn shop. Jan is then confronted by the Devil (or B.L. Zeubb) posing as a record producer. He offers her a deal for wealth & fame, which is too good to be true. And of course it is.

I remember watching this special every Halloween in my early years. Except I remember one year in particular it played on Halloween, and I was out trick or treating with my grandmother. There was a house that we went to and I remember they had the TV playing in the background & DDM was on. I had to be urged away from the door, and I was standing there, open mouthed, not believing that it was on, and I was MISSING IT!

A few years later when I was in 7th grade or so, I found the VHS for rent at a local video store. I rented it many times. Then when I was in High School, I tried to track down my own copy to buy. But I never actually got a VHS copy until I was about 26. Thank you ebay! I got lucky because this release also contained 3 other short film specials that Nelvana made in the late 70's. I think I paid about $50. It was worth it. A few years ago, Nelvana released a special edition DVD of their feature length film, Rock n Rule. A cut down version of The Devil & Daniel Mouse was included.

What amazes me sometimes is when I bring up this cartoon in conversation to people in my age group, and they don't know what I'm talking about. It seems like it ran along with the Peanuts special every year before the Garfield special was made. And listen up goth kids, if you have Bauhaus' album 'Swing the Heartache', there is a track on there called 'Party of the First Part' that samples most of the dialogue between Jan Mouse & the Devil.

Youtube also had the full special:

Extra added bonus. I found a drawing that I did when I was in 7th or 8th grade of the super model cat girls that were on screen for about 2 seconds. I would pause the tape, and try to draw as quickly as I could. I think I'll call these two Jerry Hall & Lady Gaga.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Visions of Hell

Today I am showcasing three cartoons and one live action movie clip featuring Hell. What a wacky place it is. Enjoy your trip to Hell.

First up is a Silly Symphony 'Hell's Bells' from 1929.

Next Betty Boop has demon trouble in 'Red Hot Mamma' from 1934

Willie Whopper gets a taste of 'Hell's Fire' from 1934.

And from 1930 a great song and dance clip from 'The Cuckoos'. Hell has the most awesome showgirls!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Lately I've been enjoying looking at photos of old Halloween decorations & cards that feature vegetable people. So for fun I made this guy. Butternut Squash man. And I thought that I would include my favorite Butternut Squash soup recipe. This came from the magazine Cook's Country Oct/Nov 2008.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup (Southwest Style)

1 med. butternut squash (about 3lbs) peeled, seeded and cut into 1 1/2 in chunks

3 med. shallots, peeled and quartered

1/4 cup vegetable oil

Salt & pepper

4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (I'm a vegetarian, so I use vegetable broth)

1 tbs. honey

1 tsp. lime juice

1/2 ground cumin

1/4 cup heavy cream

2 tbs. finely chopped fresh cilantro

1 tbs. minced canned chipotle chile

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Toss squash, shallots, oil, 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper in large bowl, then arrange in single layer in a large roasting pan. Roast, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are golden brown and softened, about 45 min. Add 1/2 cup broth to pan and scrape up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Return to oven and cook until liquid has reduced and vegetables are glazed, about 5 min.

Working in 2 batches, puree squash mixture and remaining broth in blender until smooth. (I have a hand mixer, so I usually blend it all in the cooking pot I'm using. They are inexpensive and are really handy for making soups). Transfer pureed squash mixture to large saucepan and stir in honey, lime juice, cumin, and cream. Bring soup to simmer over med-low head, adding 1/4 cup water at a time as necessary to adjust consistency (I usually like mine to be a little thick, so I don't add too much water). Last add the cilantro & chipotle before serving. Can add dollop of sour cream, if desired.

It's a wonderful warm, smokey soup that's perfect for fall. Yummers!

Also, I drained off of the pumpkin & spices from my Vodka. Here are some photos

Right before draining:

And right after:

I had a little nip & I can definitely taste the pumpkin & spices. I'll have to wait until next Thursday, as I will be away working for the next 3 days. When I get home a Pumpkin Pie Martini would certainly hit the spot!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Monster Cereal: Count Chocula!

Over at, it's fan art month!! And I couldn't resist submitting my very own Count Chocula. Stop by and visit this terrific blog and take check out the fantastic fun art featuring old friends Count Chocula, Frankenberry and Boo Berry. Even Fruit Brute and Yummy Mummy are making special appearances. I had so much fun doing sketches of these characters, there may be another monster cereal post or two, before the month is done.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Artists I Love: Gary Pullin

'Ghoulish' Gary Pullin's Art Show poster

Some of you may already be familiar with 'Ghoulish' Gary Pullin's handy work if you are a reader of 'Rue Morgue' magazine. He is the publications incredible artist/art director. Talk about a dream job!! If you've never read or looked at an issue of 'Rue Morgue', I recommend picking on up just for the beautiful layout & design the magazine has. The Halloween issue (on stands now) is usually the best issue of the year. I admit that I have not yet picked one up yet (for shame), but will very soon. Gary is a great artist & his design style is a real inspiration. Below are two author portrait by Pullin, Edgar Allen Poe & HP Lovecraft. I decided to showcase these two pieces, because I have a Poe & Lovecraft that will make an appearance sometime later in the month.

Rue Morgue has a Halloween party/event every year and here are two posters Pullin designed for that event. One from 2008 & the other for this year. I wish I could go one year, I bet it's amazing.

To see more work from Gary, go to his website here.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Is it Pumpkin Vodka yet?

So back in July, the blog Creepy Cupcakes posted about this Pumpkin Pie Martini, complete with a link to the recipe. Well, copied off the recipe & decided to make some this month. Part of the fun is making your own pumpkin infused vodka. You know how if you go to the liquor store, there are so very many different 'flavored' vodkas now. Well according to a program about cocktails I saw on the TV, these are products of infusions. So what you are seeing above here is my first attempt to infuse a pumpkin with vodka. Will it be a success? I'll find out this weekend, when after two weeks, I'll be ready to strain off the vodka from the pumpkin & the spices.

And how about that jar!! I have no idea how old it is. I remember it sitting in my grandparents old canning cellar for years, until I final relieved them of it. It must have been made sometime in the mid to late 80's. If anyone knows anything more about this jar, please let me know.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Halloween Movie: Halloween III: Season of the Witch

I have a secret to confess. I LOVE Halloween III. Maybe that's not such a big deal to admit anymore since I've seen more & more people coming out of the woodwork to profess their love of the film. It's cheesy & ridiculous in some parts, but there are some scenes in the film that still really disturb me. Following the successful Halloween & Halloween II films, Halloween III (1982) was meant to take the franchise in a new direction. The idea was, they wanted to continue to make films about Halloween with the name 'Halloween' but have new & different stories with each film. Well, it didn't work. People were expecting Michael Myers, and that's not what they got. Instead they got a wonderfully creepy movie about popular children's Halloween masks tied to pagan ritual sacrifice. Hmm, maybe I've said too much. I even love the soundtrack to this movie. It's strange, simple electronic sounds takes me right back to the early 80's.
So my art piece of the day is the 3 Silver Shamrock masks that are featured in the film. And here is a trailer for your viewing pleasure!