Friday, April 30, 2010

[Flashback Friday TOP 5] 72. Papercraft Skull (with Articulated Jaw)

Flashback Friday is a weekly countdown of the fan selected top 52 skulls of Skull-A-Day 1.0. Each week I'll be posting an original skull along with some additional commentary in order from lowest to highest rated, with the #1 skull appearing in the last week of year 3 of the project...

#5: 72. Papercraft Skull (with Articulated Jaw)

One of my favorite parts of this project has been seeing what happens when you give things away for free! Not only have people clearly had a lot of fun downloading & making their own, but I've been entertained and inspired seeing where my work has gone! To join in the fun download a PDF for yourself by clicking the image below or going HERE...

Or for a blank version click on the image below or go HERE.


And to see what the finished skull looks like in action here's a video I just found online!...

And finally here's a tribute to the great opera singer Pavarotti, that was made for him shortly after his death by Daniele...

As always, if you make something yourself please send it in so we can share it with the other Skull-A-Day fans!

Recycled Skull-eton

Jay Butler in Richmond, VA wrote: “My son's SKELETON art project that was turned in this morning. This guy is made from all recycled items such as a milk jug, a spackle bucket top, old PVC pipes, old wooden toys and blocks, old wooden thread spools, and a waste bucket.”

Displayed with the proud artist.

Full Bodied C says:

You know I have a soft spot for up-cycling found objects into art, but this is truly a masterpiece. It is absolutely amazing what you were able to accomplish with the materials you acquired. I had a good time going down your list and trying to find where they were in the art. I wonder if there are more to be made in the future. I would love to see a series of them that show off the uniqueness of what you were able to find that time around. Thank you for submitting such an incredible piece of work.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Holiday Skulls

It is never too early to start thinking about the winter holiday season. Here is a little tool to help you keep track.

Our first contributor Jen wrote: “I made a batch of paper mache skulls for our holiday tree. This is one of my favorites. We'll see if my husband ever lets me decorate the tree by myself again. ” One can find more pictures of decorations here.

Next up is James Robinson at Fire Cat Studios who told us: “This was the ‘angel’ on our x-mas tree. Made from a white glove, black fabric, and part of a clothes hanger.

Tree Trimmer C says:

I really like the idea of a momento mori themed holiday tree especially when those decorations are handmade. Thank you both for submitting your work and Happy Skullidays to one and all.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

[BONUS] The Gift of Skulls - Iron Fist

Just had to give one more shout out to the nice folks at Iron Fist who were kind enough to not only give away a couple of packages of goodies to two of our fans, but also sent a bunch of their items to Skull-A-Day HQ! We always appreciate a skull gift, especially when it's such cool stuff! Of course your fearless (and unpaid) editors Tatman and Citizen Agent will be getting their fair share in thanks. And notice there's some lady stuff in there? Well we'll have an announcement related to that soon...

And hey if you want some of  your own Iron Fist gear, be sure to check out their site and use coupon code SKULLADAY to get 15% OFF your order through May 31!

Candle Lit Skulls

Mike Webber from London, Ontario Canada told us: “I've been a fan of Skull-A-Day for about a year now. I've always wanted to post something on your site, but never got around to either creating a skull, or e-mailing you - until now. ”

ShellHawk in Folsom, CA said: “I'm a beginner potter who is into Halloween. I made this skull to give myself a break from making jack-o-lantern pots, and I like the way he turned out.

Light C** says:

I know visions of Halloween immediately come to mind in these two examples, but the act of containing a flammable material in a non-flammable container is universal for any time of the year. I really like decorative lanterns because I am mesmerized by the patterns of light and shadow they cast, and imagining the patterns these two pieces cast has removed them from a holiday decoration and made them into works of art for me. Thank you both for sharing your work with us.

**(1/3 less calories than regular C)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tuesdays With Tatman #47

As the temperatures get warmer everyday I am happy to reintroduce some of my favorite shoes to the great weather.

I call these flip flops because of the regional dialect where I grew up. I've also heard them referred to as sandals or thongs(for some reason). Maybe they call them something else where you live? Let us know if you have any kind of crazy or unusual names for this style of shoe. No matter where you are I hope you all get to enjoy flip flop weather at some point in the year.

Each Tuesday in the 3.0 year will bring a new Tuesday With Tatman. As a tribute to the Skull Master's astounding feat let's all get creative and try something new(and hopefully skull related).

Samhain Skull Candle

George from Chicago, IL wrote: “ I made this candle for the Samhain festival last year. It took a fair handful of hours but I'm happy with how it turned out.”

Dark C says:

You really know how to brighten someone’s day! This is a wonderful piece, it is a shame you need to burn it. I like the simple nature of the design, with the stark use of color/white to offset the large dark area. It might have taken you longer than you expected, but the results are worth the effort. Thank you for submitting your work, and please keep us in mind when you do one for this year.

Monday, April 26, 2010

C-Rations: 0C101111

This week’s offering is a Cantaloupe.

“Already Married” 6" x 5" Pealed Cantaloupe.

Cucurbit C says:

While it is welcomed and amazing that traditional summer fruits are available all year round, it concerns me about the sustainability of this practice. I heard a report this week on the economic impact of the volcanic eruption in Iceland, and the millions of dollars of food that rotted in Africa because they were unable to deliver the produce to Europe by air. My thoughts this week are with the ever shrinking world and the impact of events on it’s populations. My thoughts also turn to the chemicals that allow for greater crop yields through pesticides and fertilizers, the social and economic impact on the local labor employed to tend and harvest those crops, and the natural resources used to get this product to market thousands of miles away from its source.

Remember each Monday during the 3.0 year I am posting an original skull design. My weekly offerings are nothing compared to the one-a-day massive project done by the Skullmaster in 1.0, but hopefully you will find some nourishment in these weekly offerings.

Need more nourishment? You can always Friend or Follow.

Natural Skulls (Helped Along)

A frequent contributor here President Wishnack sent us this: “I just picked up a new job in the Financial District and my office has a nice view of the Bay Bridge. It also has a nice view of this skull skyscraper! This is about 50% real and 50% edited to look like a skull-- but it was close enough that I saw a potential skull before taking it to Photoshop.

Greg from Australia wrote: “When I pulled an Oreo apart, the filling looked like it had eye sockets, so I helped the resemblance along to make an Oreo skull. The picture shows the before and after.”

Manipulated C says:

Inspiration comes in many different ways, seeing something in an alternative composition is just one way in which our minds help us to comprehend the world we experience. Sometimes all it takes is a a little push with our mind to make great things happen. Thank you for submitting your work, and keep pushing greatness.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Simulacra - Version 3.47

This week we turn to the bathroom for our collection of simulacra.

First up is Marcin who wrote: “This one was found on Sunday two weeks ago hiding in the toilets of UCC... first one is obvious but more you look more skulls you'll find.”

Next, is from Brad Sutton, Los Angeles, CA who said: “I found this skull peering back at me while I was...well you get the point!”

Last for the day is Al Frank from Austin, TX who “found this unhappy fellow staring at me from my bathroom sink.”

Occupied C says:

This is another interesting collection of simulacra assembled by our team of readers. Thank you all for taking the time to submit your finds to us.

Keep sending those pictures in to our submissions address. Just keep in mind that since we only post simulacra once a week it might take a little longer than normal for it to be posted.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Captured Skulls

Mike Christopher(Hare Krishna Zombie from “Dawn of the Dead”) captured this skull through the windshield of his 1984 SAAB 900T at Florida in January 2010.

Pat from Napa, CA said: “Just happily ran across your blog. These are a series of photos I took with a very old digital camera. I purposely shook the camera to get the effect of motion.”

André living in São Paulo, Brazil wrote: “I made a tattoo and then when I tried to stop the blood with a piece of paper towel I got this stains. So I scanned this to send to SKULL A DAY.”

Substitute C says:

It was great to see this collection of some of the different ways in which skulls that we experience everyday are capture in an artistic way by our readers. Looking at all these pieces I am reminded of how truly unique the moment of their capture was since the environmental factors that were present at the time can never be duplicated. Thank you all for submitting your work for us to share.

Friday, April 23, 2010

And the Iron Fist winners are...

Congratulations to ShellHawk ("You Call This A Cemetery?") and Brew ("Never Saw It Coming") who were the randomly selected winners of the Iron Fist giveaway contest!

Thanks again to everyone for participating. I can't tell you how much fun it is to read all of your creative submissions during these contests, you're such a talented bunch!

And of course even if you didn't win you can can still get some nifty skull gear at Iron Fist! Plus if you use coupon code SKULLADAY you can 15% OFF your order through May 31!

[Flashback Friday TOP 10] 46. Soy Sauce Skull

Flashback Friday is a weekly countdown of the fan selected top 52 skulls of Skull-A-Day 1.0. Each week I'll be posting an original skull along with some additional commentary in order from lowest to highest rated, with the #1 skull appearing in the last week of year 3 of the project...

#6: 46. Soy Sauce Skull

I cook a lot with soy sauce so it makes sense that it would eventually end up as part of the project. I also use chopsticks a lot so they were my go to tool for arranging things, though obviously it made perfect sense to use them on this one. This skull was actually trickier than it seemed, since the plate wasn't perfectly flat and if I moved away for a moment to set the camera up the image would  change and so I had to remake it a few times before finally getting the shot I wanted.

R/C Skull Truck

Will C. from Las Vegas, NV said: “I was inspired by the skull-a-day site when I built and painted my r/c truck even the body posts are skulls holding the lexan body down.”

Family C says:

It looks like I found someone else who may be at the reunion this summer. What an impressive vehicle you have constructed. It is such an honor to hear when a site that I assist with inspires someone to do something creative. I like the paint job very much, it was interesting to see your use of different styles of skulls in the motif. Thank you for sending us your work and best of luck racing (if you run that circuit). I hear the odds are 2:5 that you will have the coolest truck there.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

[BONUS] 377. Cardboard Moose Skull

I do a lot of design work for theater companies in NYC, but rarely do I get to make a skull in the process. So imagine my delight when I started talking with Clubbed Thumb about their Summerworks play series and discovered that a moose skull was central to one of the shows! We had already decided that I would illustrate all of the plays with cardboard objects that are found in the shows, so here's how my cardboard moose skull (with cardboard sticky note) came out...

The Summerworks series starts in June and more details about it will be on their site soon!

Speaking of cardboard be sure to check out the (non-skully) cardboard moose made by my friends at Cardboard Safari (who also make the cardboard skull & wreath I designed!).

Historical Daredevil Skull

Our friend Dan Springer just turned me on to an awesome skull-related historical figure I knew nothing about: Lillian La France was a motorcycle riding daredevil in the 1920's who wore a nifty skull and crossbones sweater and was apparently one of the most popular female "Wall of Death" riders of her era!...
 (image from Sideshow World)

Dan was so inspired that he created this lovely illustration to honor her...

Check out more of Dan's awesome work on SKULLUXE. And find out more about Lillian La France on The Selvedge Yard.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Scratched Skull

Gary C wrote: “My hood was trashed from a bad repaint and too much sun. This is a Skull I painted and scratched into my hood. The gray/silver star area will rust in next few weeks. ”

“Team Monte Collins”

DJ C says:

First off are you going to the family reunion this summer? Your dedication to making and displaying art is something we need to be in awe of. Maybe you saw the Skullmaster’s car hood based on 282 and maybe it was an inspiration for you. Although we have showed simulacra and temporary works, I believe this is the first permanent car hood we have shown in use at Skull-A-Day. Thank you for submitting your work and please make sure you send us a picture in a couple of months after the design is finished rusting out.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tuesdays With Tatman #46

My friend's dad hates paying upwards of $5 for a pack of cigarettes so he rolls his own to save money. Plus he enjoys a wider variety of tobacco than what the name brands offer. It's still smoking, but I couldn't help but think of a skull when I saw his pack of papers.

Alas, none of his smoke rings looked like skulls.

Each Tuesday in the 3.0 year will bring a new Tuesday With Tatman. As a tribute to the Skull Master's astounding feat let's all get creative and try something new(and hopefully skull related).
Shhhh! Today is also a (not so)secret holiday to those who know. That is all.

CSI Skull

I recently got a phone call from Catherine Ortiz and Layla Rushing at Feeling Frameous, a custom picture framing shop in Studio City, California. They had been asked by the production people at the television show CSI to create an original folded dollar bill skull for an episode of the program. And for reference they gave own Skullar Bill image! So Catherine and Layla tracked me down to ask if they could have permission to just fold their own version of my design and if I could give them a pattern. I was happy to give them permission, but sad to tell them that no pattern existed! We discussed how I believe it had been made and they said they'd give it a try, but in the end they decided to create their own unique skull dollar...

I love the end result and I'm glad a new skull design was created in the process. And even though my work won't end up in an episode of CSI it was fun getting to have a random conversation with some interesting folks I would have probably never met otherwise.

The episode of CSI, with their skull bill is scheduled to air on May 26th, so keep an eye out!

[UPDATE] Since a few people asked, I got Catherine to describe how they made it and here's what she said: "We took a piece of paper the size & shape of $ and mashed it around a champagne cork.  The jaw line sticks out a little more than the top of the head.  Stuff the skull with crumbled up paper.  take a strip of paper about 1/2 " wide and accordian fold the teeth.  Take another 2 strips of paper and roll them around a pencil to make the eyes.  Glue them together and cram them into the skull.  The crumpled up paper in the skull give the other stuff something to stick to.  That's it roughly.  As the day went on we resorted to my new favorite folding term  "pushing & mashing".  There is no pattern. Good luck."

Monday, April 19, 2010

C-Rations: 0C101110

This week’s offering is vintage China.

“Bone China” 9.5" x 9.5" vintage thrift store china plate with painted black embellishments.

Transfer-ware C says:

I had this thought of making true “Bone China” not of real bones, but of bones on the china. Not knowing where to go for just one plate, I decided to try my luck at the local thrift shop and there it was, one lonely mismatched chipped plate just waiting to be up-cycled. I really like how the leaves had a way of growing into the design to become eye sockets in various paces.

Remember each Monday during the 3.0 year I am posting an original skull design. My weekly offerings are nothing compared to the one-a-day massive project done by the Skullmaster in 1.0, but hopefully you will find some nourishment in these weekly offerings.

Need more nourishment? You can always Friend or Follow.

Skull Painting

Artist Greg Lipton from the Cayman Islands wrote: “Thank you very much for posting my coral skull, my fish were thrilled. Here is a painting of a skull I did.”

Manic C says:

This is truly a moving piece. The ghostly skull image emerging from the darkness is eerie, yet at the same time appears friendly almost as if it is about to offer something comforting out of its closed mouth. I found it almost hypnotizing staring at it trying to figure out if that additional face was intentional or just an odd coincidence. Thank you for submitting your work as well as your previously found skull.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Simulacra - Version 3.46

Some of you might know that I have a twin brother, Pudge, who has made contributions to Skull-A-Day in the past. Today we teamed up as skull hunters to bring you this week's round of simulacrum.

Pudge found this rock that looks like a strange alien skull. Maybe it's a fossil from a prehistoric space traveler?

As we ventured about I noticed this window fan that had a cool look to it.

Once we returned indoors I was shocked to see a skull that Pudge had hiding right in the house. This was on the base of a candle holder.

So as you can see, skull hunters, finding skulls does not have to be a solitary activity. In fact, skull hunting is enjoyed best when it's shared with friends. Maybe some of you could even organize skull hunting parties in your local neighborhoods. Just make sure that everyone knows you're not hunting real skulls. We don't need any readers locked up for a silly misunderstanding. Just let them know you're on a hunt for skulls to submit to Skull-A-Day.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Stellar Stained Glass Skull Saturday

Okay, I know I've been going a little big on the posts for Saturdays, but it's so hard not to show off the great work of our submitters. With great stuff to display, like these stained glass skulls from Tom Spencer of West London, I have no choice but to make your Saturday a little more skull filled.

Thanks for sharing your terrific talents, Tom. I'm a big fan of tattoos and stained glass and your works at your Tattoo Glass site really inspire me to learn the craft. Bold black lines confine colors that cry out to be noticed. Your style and subject matter create truly eye popping art.

Friday, April 16, 2010

[Flashback Friday TOP 10] 31. Plastic Bag Skull

Flashback Friday is a weekly countdown of the fan selected top 52 skulls of Skull-A-Day 1.0. Each week I'll be posting an original skull along with some additional commentary in order from lowest to highest rated, with the #1 skull appearing in the last week of year 3 of the project...

#7: 31. Plastic Bag Skull

I really didn't know what I was going to make this day and then I noticed the plastic bag just sitting on a chair and realized the opening for the handles would make great eyes! Like many things in the project there was a lot of serendipity involved!

Another helping of Skull Cakes

First up is Graphic Designer Adam Elliott from London, UK who said: “ I recently made a cake for my wife's 30th Birthday and seeing as she loves Mexican sugar skulls I made her this!”

Our second serving is from Kylie in the Bay Area, CA who wrote: “I made this in a cake decorating class I'm taking! I love it so much I may not eat it!”

Fondant C says:

I am always impressed by the culinary arts in our submission box. Useally one is not suppose to take a knife to art work, but in this instance it is what suppose to happen. Feeding your bodies as well as our minds, thank you both for submitting your work to us.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

C-Rations: 0C101101

This week’s offering is a Calendar Page.

“Certainty” 18.5" x 8.5" recycled calendar page with charcoal illustration and collage.

Full Page Detail

Days of C says:

“Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” -Ben Franklin (1789)

It was with those words that this week’s C-Rations was begun. Here in America as many are already aware today is “Tax Day” which is the deadline to file our national tax responsibility to the government. By coincidence it it also the anniversary of many notable tragedies. Of course two that quickly come to mind for me are the sinking of the RMS Titanic and death of Abraham Lincoln, but after looking at Wikipedia I found many lesser known tragedies that should also be remembered today.

Remember each Monday during the 3.0 year I am posting an original skull design. My weekly offerings are nothing compared to the one-a-day massive project done by the Skullmaster in 1.0, but hopefully you will find some nourishment in these weekly offerings.

Need more nourishment? You can always Friend or Follow.


It's no secret that the editors here at Skull-A-Day are big fans in "upcycling" for the good name of skull art. Darin Wiebe over at the Friar Junk blog knows just how fulfilling it can be to turn one man's junk into another man's treasure. I'll let him tell you about this adventure in imagination, "I usually make robots and rayguns out of junk but I tried something a bit different with my latest piece. Skulbot is my first wooden robot. The skull is from a Mardi Gras necklace, his body is a handle from an old awl, arms and hands are from an old typewriter, cogs from an alarm clock, and my favorite parts of him are the old ball and socket joint shoulders - I have no idea what they come from originally."

In all fairness, Darin admits that he didn't actually create the skull, but I had to give him credit for such ingenuity. The spare parts look great when given new life. Thanks for sharing, Darin, and thanks for not creating an evil robot hoard to take over the world. Although, they might make good opponents for the zombies.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

[BONUS] Skull in Use: Quack In The Box!

Artist Len Peralta used the skull from my Skullphabet #1 font as part of a design he created for a new card game called Quack In The Box!

Stoneware Skull

Keith from North Carolina wrote: “ I sculpted this skull from stoneware clay, it was then fired in a wood and soda kiln with a shino glaze. Embellished with images and poison labels and re-fired again to make the images a permanent part of the glaze.”

Side Detail

Arsenic C says:

This is an incredible piece. The skill that went into creating it as well as decorating it is unmatched. I appreciate the use of old labels and the use of floral artwork that gives it the appearance of being much older than it actually is. It also brings to mind those public art projects where artists decorate different items to be placed throughout a city. Thank you for sharing your work with us.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tuesdays With Tatman #45

(to the tune of "Take Me Out To The Ball Game")
"Log me on to Skull-A-Day,
Take me to it right now.
Buy me some C-rations and Cracker Jack,
I don't care if I never get back,
Let me root, root, root for the skull team,
If they don't make posts it's a shame.
For it's one, two, three years of skulls,
Here on Skull-A-Day."

I hope all of you baseball fans out there can enjoy whatever team your are rooting for this year.

Each Tuesday in the 3.0 year will bring a new Tuesday With Tatman. As a tribute to the Skull Master's astounding feat let's all get creative and try something new(and hopefully skull related).

Guerrilla Skull

Nick Ilton of Melbourne writes, "Love your site. I made this 4ft x 3ft skull a while back and didn't know what to do with it. I decided to give it to the people of Melbourne and bolted it to a pedestrian overpass over a main road. It looked awesome for a few days but was removed after less than a week. Hope you like it."

What a great gift, Nick! It's a shame that someone else had to hog all of it for themselves instead of leaving it for the whole city to enjoy. Maybe if someone in the Melbourne area has seen this sign they might be able to get it back to you. We could start up "Skull-A-Day's Most Wanted" in an attempt to return the stolen property. If not then at least we got to see it in the pic. Thanks for sharing that also.