When the wolfbane blooms

Many of us have beasties that make us shiver, remnants of creatures that haunted childhood dreams. For me it was werewolves. I don’t know why, I like wolves and love dogs; but if something menacing with teeth and claws was due to make a nocturnal appearance it would invariably be werewolves.

However movie lycanthropes don’t bother me at all. For all their slobbery snarliness they don’t have the key ingredient that scared the bejeezus out of me as a tiny weasel: patience. Terrible, inescapable, awful patience. The nightmare beasts never ran because they never needed to. They would merely loom in front of you, waiting for you to realise you had nowhere left to run.

So when I was asked to draw something new and scary I remembered those lupine buggers, and decided to try and capture the combined qualities of stillness and menace. No snarling, clawing, or rabid leaping; just patience. These are some of the work in progress concept sketches for the eventual wolfies. I ended up referencing all sorts of odd animals (as well as wolves) including baboons, goats, fossas (the fossa is a scary thing), Tasmanian Tigers and lots and lots of dog skulls (with and without.. substance on them).

The Dark Nights are here

Halloween is a splendid time of year: the perfect excuse to eat your bodyweight in chocolate and wear your superhero costume in public. But any truly sinister creature knows that Halloween isn’t the best time to venture forth, precisely because the streets are full of chocolate-buzzed nutjobs dressed as superheroes. No, these chaps prefer a time that’s quieter and darker than Halloween: the night when the clocks go backward; the 13-hour night that ushers in Winter and heralds the dying of the light. Things are about to get very dark, and (as it’s me) that also means Victorian! (Apparently modern culture has monsters as well, but really, phoo, who cares?) These precious little monsters are all sketch-card sized paintings (2.5 x 3.5 inches) adorned with gory little treasures for a 3-dimensional touch.  The sale of each of these contributed a little something to an array of apt charities; for example Dracula helped an organisation in Africa get clean blood, Sweeney Todd’s donation went to Locks of Love; you get the idea. So swoon gracefully into the nearest velvet chaise, and enjoy!