CthulhuPress

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The Twitter consensus yesterday was that CafePress products based on this design were required so here they are. As usual I never know what people want from CafePress so I tend to throw the design on their entire range so long as it fits the requisite size and shape. This piece works better than most since it’s simple and direct, my more detailed and pictorial creations look better as prints. I keep feeling that someone must have made a design like this already, these variations on the “Keep Calm” poster have proliferated so much, but searching didn’t reveal anything so… The web address doesn’t appear on the CafePress things, that’s just for the images posted here if and when they drift into Tumblr’s Sargasso Sea of uncredited pictures.

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The Call of Cthulhu (1987–88).

While we’re on the subject of everyone’s favourite Great Old One, I may as well take the opportunity to remind those interested that these earlier renderings are also available as various CafePress products. The Call of Cthulhu piece above is the opening page of my comic strip adaptation of the story as seen in The Starry Wisdom anthology from Creation Books and my Haunter of the Dark collection.

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Cthulhu from The Great Old Ones (1999).

The Great Old Ones drawing was one of the plates from the series of the same name I produced with Alan Moore for the Haunter book. And Cthulhu Rising is the cover of that volume, of course, seen here with its Haeckel-derived frame. The Great Old Ones Cthulhu was drawn with a Biro pen then tweaked slightly in Photoshop. I don’t think I’ve ever posted a large version of it so here it is.

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Cthulhu Rising (2004).

Previously on { feuilleton }
Design as virus #8: Keep Calm and Carry On
Cubist Cthulhu

Weekend links 45

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That essential journal of esoteric culture, Strange Attractor, announced a fourth number this week sporting a psychedelic cover which may be the work of Julian House (no credit is given on the SA site). As to the contents:

From Haiti and Hong Kong to the fourth dimension and beyond: discover the secrets of madness in animals; voodoo soul and dub music; ancient peacock deities; Chinese poisoning cults; the history of spider silk weaving; heathen mugwort magic; sentient lightning; Jesuit conspiracy theories; junkie explorers; Dali’s Atlantis; the resurgence of Pan (in London’s Crouch End); anarchist pirates on Madagascar; an ancient Greek Rip Van Winkle; French anatomical waxworks; Arthur Machen’s forgotten tales and Alan Moore’s unpublished John Dee opera.

Further details and the means to order a copy can be found here.

• Resonance FM’s Weird Tales For Winter has returned beginning with a presentation of The Gateway of the Monster, one of the better Carnaki tales by William Hope Hodgson. The story is read by Moon Wiring Club‘s Ian Hodgson (no relation) and the musical atmospheres are provided by The Advisory Circle. I ought to have posted this news yesterday since you’ll have missed the broadcasting of the first half but the second half will go out at midnight (UK time) on Monday. Details here, and the next release on the Café Kaput label in February will be the soundtrack, Music for Thomas Carnaki (Radiophonic Themes & Abstracts).

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• The Keep Calm and Carry On Image Generator lets you work your own variations on the ubiquitous poster. It wouldn’t work for me, however, so I rolled up my sleeves and made my own. This may be good as a CafePress design, yes?

Interplay is an album by John Foxx and The Maths due to be released on March 21st. As with last year’s collection of Foxx instrumental pieces, DNA, the package design is by Jonathan Barnbrook. John Foxx first came to prominence as the lead singer in Ultravox (do I need to say “of course”? Okay…“of course”) and Ultravox’s debut album was part-produced by Brian Eno. It’s been painfully obvious recently (and it pains me to say it) that Foxx’s DNA was a far more accomplished and engaging work than Eno’s recent collection of over-hyped instrumentals. Related: Barnbrook Design’s albums of 2010.

Word Horde 2.0, “a substantial archive of manuscript material, correspondence, and books and printed matter, mostly signed” from the William Burroughs archives can be yours for $260,000. Related: William Burroughs’ Wild Boys photos. Also: Rudy Rucker on David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch.

• “Nabokov described how ‘a modern taxonomist straddling a Wellsian time machine with the purpose of exploring the Cenozoic era’ would encounter the following series of events in the evolution of these butterflies…” The Royal Society confirms that a contentious theory of Vladimir Nabokov’s concerning the descent of butterfly populations was accurate.

• The work of Gérald Bertot aka Thomas Owen, a Belgian author of weird fiction, is explored at A Journey Round My Skull.

The Other Side of the Wind, Orson Welles’ unfinished film from 1972, may finally be given a release.

• Jon Savage celebrates Roy Harper and his extraordinary Stormcock album.

Philip Pullman wants the Tory philistines to leave our libraries alone.

• Rick Poynor takes a dérive through the arcades of Paris.

Space music new and old.

Young Savage (1977) by Ultravox | Clicktrack (2010) by John Foxx & Jonathan Barnbrook.

Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration #5

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Continuing the delve into back numbers of Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration, the German periodical of art and decoration. Volume 5 covers the period from October 1899 to March 1900, and the Art Nouveau style is in full flower at this point, as it was across most of Europe. This is also the place at which the journal becomes so laden with impressive design work that it’s impossible to easily do justice to over 300 pages of contents. Anyone wanting to see more is encouraged to download the whole thing as either page scans or a PDF. As before I’ve tended to concentrate on the graphic material but this issue also features more lavish interior designs, a range of jewellery, and ponderous monumental architecture including proposals for some of Germany’s many Bismarck Towers. Examples follow below. There’ll be more DK&D next week when we take a trip to the Exposition Universelle in Paris.

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Sascha Schneider was Karl May’s favourite illustrator and one of the few openly gay artists in Germany at the time. He’s represented here with a small feature on his paintings among which there’s this depiction of a team of strapping oarsmen.

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Continue reading “Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration #5”

Designs on Kafka

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Book covers of the week are a series of new Kafka designs by Peter Mendelsund for Schocken, a set comprising eight paperbacks which will be out this summer in the US. What’s notable about these designs aside from their minimal style is the way they dispense with the visual clichés which have accumulated around Kafka’s work. So no sombre author photos, ominous shadows or views of Prague, just bold colours and simple shapes to create a beautiful collection. The script typeface is Mister K by Julia Sysmäläinen, a design based on Kafka’s handwriting. Peter Mendelsund has the rest of the covers and some words about their design on his blog. Via Coudal.

Elsewhere on { feuilleton }
The book covers archive

Previously on { feuilleton }
Kafka’s porn unveiled
A postcard from Doctor Kafka
Alexandre Alexeieff and Claire Parker
Hugo Steiner-Prag’s Golem
Steven Soderbergh’s Kafka
Kafka and Kupka