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September 1, 2007

monster month challenge

by sven at 8:00 am

Woo-hoo! I've just gotten my first paid illustration contract!

My employer is noted cryptozoologist, Professor Ichbonnsen (no relation). He's hired me to do illustrations for his forthcoming book, "Lifeforms Heretofore Unknown by Science: New discoveries from the world's most renowned monster hunter."

Professor Ichbonnsen
click image to enlarge

I'm actually kinda baffled as to how he found me, given that I've never really done illustration work before. It's possible that he found Scarlet Letters by googling his own name -- after all, I did mention (1, 2) his work during last year's monster month.

It's also possible, though, that he's mistaken shots from Let Sleeping Gods Lie for actual documentary footage... And thus thinks that I'm a fellow crypto-enthusiast??

Anyway, the Professor -- he's never mentioned a proper first name (hm...) -- has asked me to do illustrations of 31 creatures, to be delivered one-a-day over the course of October. Doing that many is a bit of a challenge, so I've already started work on some sketches and studies. I plan to use this as an opportunity to develop my skills in painting with acrylics; that's how I'm hoping to do all the final pieces.

Ichbonnsen, frankly, seems rather eccentric. I confess, based on the adventure stories he's told me so far, part of me's wondering if he's flat out delusional! But, money is money...

(The "Dark Strider," the "Noble Shellkaye," the "Trick Squilligoss," the "Colossal Ubertuber," the "King Shielyana"... What the heck are these things, anyway??)

an open invitation

I'd like to invite all my artist friends to join in the fun. I'd love it if you'd do up some monster sketches of your own for October and post them on your blogs. ...BUT -- and here's the trick! -- be sure to make them illustrations of purely imaginary creatures!

See, I want to play a little game and test the good Professor -- to see whether he's really the World-Class Monster-Hunter that he claims to be -- or if, rather, he's a Certifiable Loony!

When I point him to the pictures on your blogs, will he believe that the intentionally made-up creatures are also "new discoveries, heretofore unknown by science?" ...Or will he immediately see through the ruse?

Help me discover the truth!

P.S. I want to give everyone adequate time to start thinking about this. But please DON'T post any of your pictures until October 1st! That's when I'll start posting my own pictures, one-a-day -- and we don't want to tip our hand to the Prof, OK?

posted by sven | September 1, 2007 8:00 AM | categories: bestiary, exhibits & events, painting