November 1, 2010
Laughing Squid is more than just a web host, it is also on the front lines of culture and art. Their tentacles touch many parts of the Internet, including Tumblr. Here is a sampling of some recent cool content from http://links.laughingsquid.com:
August 18, 2010
Here we have another of this year’s birthday presents, and I’ll be posting a full review eventually. China Miéville crafts staggeringly original and brilliantly twisted fantasy stories, and, so far, Kraken is continuing this trend.
The Story So Far: Billy Harrow is a curator (an expert mollusc preparator) at London’s Darwin Centre. When he discovers that the museum’s prize Architeuthis specimen has mysteriously vanished, Billy finds himself thrown into a secret world of myth and magic where a cult of squid worshipers are just one of many factions trying to own the impending apocalypse.
March 2, 2010
For his senior thesis in the Illustration department at the University of the Arts, Philadelphia, Jim Tierney re-designed the dust jackets of four classic Jules Verne novels, including a particularly squid-tastic cover for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. If these books were for sale I would totally buy them. With money!
Via Faceout Books
Visit www.jimtierneyart.com to find out more about the designer and his process, and for detailed views of these beautiful creations.
January 4, 2010
Yeah, I know, I’m a few days late, but Happy New Year!!! I probably say this every year, but I have a feeling that 2010 will be the Year of the Cephalopod. (Well, I don’t say that about 2010 every year, but you know what I mean.)
My week offline, while a pleasant change of pace, has resulted in a large backlog (well, larger than normal) of material for the blog. So, let’s start with a trio of octopuses I spotted at the Antropologie store at my local mall.
These De Vincennes Dinner Plates are Antropologie exclusives by artist Nathalie Late. They are $24 each and are also available at the Anthropologie website.
Pictorial Webster’s: A Visual Dictionary of Curiosities by John M. Carrera.
When I was a kid I was always fascinated by the illustrations in the dictionary. I used to make up stories, often about a zoo that put all their animals in alphabetical order and you traveled through it in a series of similarly organized vehicles. Anyway, this book contains over 1,500 engravings from 19th century editions of the Webster’s dictionary. And yes, they are arranged alphabetically.
List price $35.00. Also available at Amazon.com.
Lastly, we have The ABC of Animals Activity Book by the North American Bear Company. It contains a cute little plush animal for each letter of the alphabet. O is, of course, for Octopus, and well…that’s all that matters isn’t it?
List price $75.00. Also available at Amazon.com.
December 30, 2009
I realized that I left out a couple of things from last night’s post, so here’s there rest…
The big book is Prehistoric Life: The Definitive History of Life On Earth by DK Publishing. It’s opened to the the section on Cretaceous invertebrates, and the reconstructed ammonite depicted there is the genus Scaphites.
The ceramic octopus was a gift from my friend Mur, and as soon as I know who made it (or where she got it) I will post an update here.
Lastly, we have one of this year’s Hallmark Keepsake ornaments. “Learning with Mr. Ray” depicts one of my favorite scenes from Disney/Pixar’s Finding Nemo. One of Nemo’s classmates is a young Flapjack Octopus (Opisthoteuthis californiana) named Pearl. Flapjacks, like all Cirrate octopuses, are deep-sea cephalopods, so, if she could have even survived living in a coral reef at all, Pearl must have been a transfer student or something. All the same, it’s nice to see obscure cephalopod species depicted in popular culture!
December 2, 2009
Sorry for the slap-dash nature of this post. I’ll fix up the formatting and add more description to each book when I have a little more time.
Anyway, because Wednesday is normally devoted to comics, let’s start our book list with a few graphic novels.
adapted and Illustrated by Gary Gianni
In addition to the fully illustrated adaptation of Verne’s sci-fi classic, this beautiful folio-sized hardcover includes H.G. Wells’ short story “The Sea Raiders” (which features an encounter with a Giant Squid) and an introduction by Ray Bradbury.
List Price: $24.95 — Buy on Amazon.com
Cthulhu Tales (2008-2009, BOOM! Studios)
written and illustrated by various authors/artists
List Price: $15.99 per volume
by Jane Austin and Ben H. Winters
List Price: $12.99 — Buy on Amazon.com
Mall of Cthulhu (2009, Night Shade Books)
by Seamus Cooper
List Price: $13.95 — Buy on Amazon.com
by Mark Norman
This is the oldest book in this list, and the only one that doesn’t appear to be currently in print. However, this is pretty much the definitive source book for cephalopod identification, and a must have for any serious cephalopod enthusiast.
List Price: $69.95 — Buy on DiveSeekers.com
The Deep: The Extraordinary Creatures of the Abyss (2007, University of Chicago Press)
by Claire Nouvian
List Price $60.00 — Buy on Amazon.com
List Price: $15.95 — Buy on Amazon.com
Other titles in the series:
20,000Leagues Under the Sea: A Pop-Up Book (2008, Sterling)
by Sam Ita
List Price: $26.95 — Buy on Amazon.com
October 8, 2009
September 5, 2009
Leviathan is a young adult steampunk alternate history novel by Scott Westerfield. If the book trailer can be believed, it will feature a plethora of awesome things, such as war squids and zeppelin whales. It is being published by Simon & Schuster and comes out on October 6th.
August 20, 2009
Born in Providence, Rhode Island on August 20, 1890, Howard Philips Lovecraft would come to be considered one of the most influential American horror authors of the 20th century
He is best known for the creation of what has become known as the Cthulhu Mythos, a series of stories and novels that feature a pantheon of cosmic entities so horrible and incomprehensible to the human mind that the mere knowledge of their existence is enough to drive a person insane. These tales of cosmic horror were often set in his native New England, and they featured a number of memorable fictitious Massachusetts towns such as Arkham (home of the equally fictitious Miskatonic University), Innsmouth, and Dunwich. Lovecraft also created the concept of the Necronomicon—an ancient book containing secret knowledge pertaining to these Great Old Ones.
Other authors, such as Lovecraft’s friend and publisher August Derleth, would go on to write their own stories of the Mythos, elaborating and expanding on the themes, settings, and mythology of Lovecraft’s bleak and fascinating universe.
Lovecraft died in 1937 of intestinal cancer. He was 46.
I came across the above image on the Ectoplasmosis! blog. They do a regular feature with the fiendishly clever name Cthulhu Cthursday (a name I wish I had come up with!). I wonder what Lovecraft would have thought if someone had told him that his work would be so revered and influential (as well as controversial) 119 years after his birth?