Friday, December 16, 2016

Dark places hide decorations

And where decorations relate to last year's Christmas, that have lain undisturbed for 11 months, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be dust... and SPIDERS!!! Possibly Shelob herself, as immortalised in Hobbit lore

Shelob has such a fearsome reputation among the orcs that few venture into her caverns under the mountains. And when they do, they make sure they bear “gifts” for her. And lest she come out and ravage other spiders’ territories, they too send her regular “tributes”. Bilbo was a hobbit who, in innocent ignorance, not only found his way into her clutches, but also got away. Later he floated his mates away from the goblins in barrels. Perhaps he had seen the spider tributes coming in to Shelob, not understanding the significance, but used the idea to make good his goblin escape.

Being a Middle Earthian myself, the idea of "innocent virgins" being sent to their doom, overlaying Bilbo & Frodo's escapes from Shelob, and Bilbo’s escape from the Goblintown, had obviously been in my subconscious came up pretty quickly, so I started auditioning ideas: a tangle of spiderweb that glows in the dark? Nope.  But there was some black&grey velveteen drifting round, I was checking through stamps I had from Smeared Ink - Rick St Denis images - insect & creepy stamps had just arrived from ButterSideDown. Then there was that soooo cute dolly border from Lost Coast just waaiting for re-use…

The background just fell in to place: Paint the sides of the canvas, glue in a piece of seascape scrapbooking paper, add another piece of it border-punched, drape the velveteen. I used double-sided tape to hold it in places until the gel medium dried. The corner folds were perfect for “lurkers”. The henge and portal stamps were just about the right width for the space, so they got painted up using Silks glazes and some Jacquard Interference paint.

Then it was back to those dollies again.

Paint the poker chips to disguise them sortof - Gold - All creatures like Gold. Stamp the centre of the web onto the scrabble tiles. Letters were chosen with intent! Glue scrabble tiles to the poker chips. Stamp a row of dollies with indian ink on sickly green thick paper and choose which ones to sacrifice. They needed to be sitting down, “drugged” with spider venom, of course, before being wrapped in spider web. That meant some geometry involved, which I haven’t perfected still: I inked up only part of the web stamp with Stazon, stamped onto acetate, cut and formed them into cones with a bit of overlap. I thought gel medium would hold the cut edges, but either I was impatient and took the clamps off too soon, or it was never going to work. E6000 did though. How to hold the cones onto the poker chips? Jacquard 3D Lumiere would fill any gaps as well, so out with the copper & red. If you are going to do this, know that you have to hold the cone and poker chip together for the same time as a tv program runs between 2 sets of ad breaks for the glueyness to work.

I really wanted to use the shrunken head, sunken in the deep seas (river?) So it was stamped with Stazon onto a poker chip and tucked in a corner.

Then the dollies went on – and pretty much hid him!
Spiders – some painted with Jacquard interference paints – Essential! Populate the waters (stamped critturs), tuck those eyes back in the folds of velveteen, all ready for you to enjoy.

But if you've not already got your decorations out of storage, pleeeeeease BE CAREFUL!

8x10 canvas on deep box frame.
Hand, eyes & most spiders from Silver Crow Creations
web: Third Stone RS.
Dolls Border: Lost Coast Designs.
Sea creatures & shrunken head: ButterSideDown Stamps.
Portal & stones: Rick St Denis, rubberized by Smeared Ink

Jacquard 3D Lumiere paint for Tribute cones, Silks Glazes and Jacquard Interference paints on henges & portal, & spiders
Fiskars border punch for waves (scrapbooking paper).
Fabric is a panne velvet-type fabric.

Since there's a Crittur Party going on over at Lost Coast Designs, this has been entered in that challenge.
And of course, though it's busying up to Christmas, Evil Froggy needs feeding, so link your creepmas, weird (no element of cute!) here for the chance to win goodies from Grumbacher.


  1. Thanks for using the Haunted places stamps from Smeared Ink-I am always happy to be included in projects L-)

    1. Thanks Rick, I had a look on your etsy and zibbett pages, but no joy finding these as digis.

  2. Oh my gosh hahahaha...totally new twist on a nativity scene lol. Fabulous creation :D XXX

  3. Thanks Gina - the Star of Bethlehem DOES look awfully like a spider in web!

  4. The most creative Nativity scene ever? LOL...what fun! Thanks for playing along at the Lost Coast Portal to Creativity, Anne! :)

  5. Beyond wicked cool! Your imagination knows no bounds😜 Thanks for playing with us over at Lost Coast Portal to Creativity😃 Happy Holidays!

  6. This is FAB - what an imagination ! thx for joining us at Lost Coast Designs


Thanks so much for visiting and partaking of our weirdness! Play on kind souls!
~~~(insert grown up voice)

A note regarding the GDPR and EU ePrivacy Regulation:

Those leaving a comment on any post on this blog do so on the understanding that their name and personal details will be visible to anyone who visits this blog.
People entering a piece of artwork into any competition or giveaway promoted here, they do so in the knowledge that their name and blog link are visible to all who visit this blog and in so doing have published their own personal details and consented to our use of that personal information should it be selected as a winner.
Thank you.