Greetings from Krampus

I made a decision recently to make my blog a lot broader, to give some of the art I'm posting a little more context, and to occasionally talk about things like inspiration and process. I spend a good percentage of each day reading about things on wikipedia, and looking at art and movies that are probably relevant to what I draw and if not, probably interesting in general. So bear with me as I awkwardly attempt to share...

It's been a while since my last update. I'll start with October, which I mostly spent whining and getting over a nagging cold and watching chinese vampire movies and during which my only artistic output was my halloween costume:

A pile of regurgitated guts made from batting and fabric scraps with the blood handpainted on.

Lately, I've been reading a lot about painting miniatures. I have a lot of large jewelry settings and small frames I've been waiting to make TINY paintings for, and it occurred to me that it's really just a tad bit more tedious than what I already do is. Below is a sort of accidental first attempt, a creature from the black lagoon painting I made for Mike that's about 2 1/2 in tall:
One of the things that got me particularly excited about miniature paintings was remembering and researching Russian lacquer box painting that I remembered having seen years ago. There are a couple of styles but the one in particular I was looking at is called "Palekh" after the town of origin. These things are really really amazing and detailed and beautiful and generally feature scenes from fairy tales and bylinas and after ordering a book I found out the sort of paint they use is essentially the kind I use (a casein emulsion). I really like the vivid colors with the dense black backgrounds and the stylized...well everything:

Last week I also finished another tape cover for Sal's record label, Peasant Magik:
The band requested a creepy nocturnal animal and pretty much nothing is creepier to me than an AyeAye:
And while I said I was done with the inside out skull creatures I just stumbled across a picture of an ayeaye skeleton and couldn't help myself. I decided to experiment with doing a watercolor background and laying the foreground on top in my usual pelikan plaka paint. It was moderately successful but I think I was more than a little heavy handed with the watercolor which might have undone the contrast I was hoping to have between the two paints with their different opacity.

That takes us pretty much through November as I am now a mere hour away from December first. In just two days I leave for Austria. The impetus for this trip is Mike's and my obsession with the Krampus festival. We'll be arriving in Vienna and then heading to Salzburg to catch the Krampus run (if you're interested in what this involves please go to youtube and search "krampus attack"), the Christmas Market "Christkindlmärkte" where we can eat hot donuts the size of our heads, drink cider and rummage through piles of christmas ornaments, to Hallstadt to see a pile of skulls, and then back to Vienna to see various creepy museums and eat veggie brats and wursts and whatevers.

here's the krampus:

One of the coolest things about those Krampus costumes is that they are all handmade by their wearers! Also apparently they really go after women and children so I anticipate running for my life screaming "nein! nein!" while Mike laughs and takes pictures. To bring it all back to the purpose of this blog, here's the Krampus card I made for Mike last year:
Gruss vom Krampus!!!