NSFW Balloon Animals

For reasons too complex and bizarre to explain in full, I found myself needing to learn the craft of ballooning such that I could create sculptures of genitalia to support a lecture series at a museum. Such a ludicrous skill should not be kept secret, so I shall share it …

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Design Diaries – Quizotron Championship Belt

Last year at Dragon*Con, Phil “The Bad Astronomer” Plait defeated reigning champion Scott “The Dark Overlord” Sigler at the World Quiz-O-Tron Championship. He proceeded to complain bitterly at the lack of tangible reward. We at Mad Art Lab are nothing if not willing to Pander, so we designed and built …

"Be Mine?" valentine - muscly man with drawn-on flowery hair (by Lauren)
ActivitiesCraftingGeekeryGeneral ArtIllustrationVisual Art

MAL-entine’s Day is coming!

I don’t want to alarm anyone but VALENTINE’S DAY IS THIS FRIDAY. If you don’t have all your proper v-day accoutrements and hoity-toitily overwrought micro-tapas gastro-chic reservations prepared already, you’re either SOL or you care about v-day just as much as I do (read: not a whit). However, if this …

lined notebook paper seen through a cut-out sheep drawing
atheismCraftingGeneral ArtMeta StuffVisual Art

What Color is Your Sheep?

Last night in our Growing Up Godless panel during FTBCon, I mentioned that I’d been to churchy-camp without even realizing it was churchy as a child. Apparently there was a nearby church holding summer “camps” with a running theme of the Chronicles of Narnia; if I remember correctly, each year they …


Design Diaries – Pan Pacific Pauldrons

This week, I create some steel armor from Pacific Rim using only basic tools and beginner techniques to help demonstrate that armoring isn’t such a hard craft to get into.

Photo: Ange Clafield and Julia Hall

My Year as Slave Leo

Almost a year ago, I put up a post about my genderbent Slave Leia costume. I talked a lot about why I decided to create it and my insecurities around exposing myself on the internet. It got a little more attention than I expected, and when I was finished hiding …

sloth ornament 2

Happy Sloth Day and Merry Slothmas

I heard through the grapevine that it is sloth day. I have not bothered to verify this, instead I simply present to you a drawing I did where I reclaim Christmas for the sloths.  Scroll down to bask in the glory of the sloth!   Did I mention I turned …

surlies in progress
AIArt InquisitionCraftingGeneral ArtMarketing

Art Inquisition: Are there hands in your handmade?

Etsy is changing their policies to permit shop owners “to hire staff, use shipping services and apply to have their products made by manufacturers.” To quote the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, this made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.  Most under scrutiny …