Good morning. How’s summer treating you? If you’re in the U.S. I hope that you’re all set for a short holiday week. For now, I thought I’d get you all set with a new Open Source Ink Blot.

If you’re a monster first-timer, don’t be shy! Here’s how it works: Download OPEN SOURCE INK BLOT 12, print it out, and have at it in any way you like: Draw, paint, origami, film, or sculpt. Just scan or photograph the result and send it my way at and I’ll put the result on the blog right here.

Below are some excellent monsters that sprang from Blot No.11. I hope they’ll inspire you. And please don’t be intimidated by any of the work. Some of the people posting are trained professionals, but you certainly don’t have to be! Some of the most fearsome beasts have come from people who haven’t used a pen for anything but phone doodles in years. As long as you have fun, you’ll end up with a fun creature!

Two of today’s Monsters actually escaped
into the third dimension! Very exciting business!
Check it out:


As always, I couldn’t keep from getting in on the action, too:


A new Weekly Monster is waiting in the wings for Monday.
Until then, I hope you’ll have an excellent weekend!
Please don’t forget: 344 LOVES YOU


  • 30 June 2007 8:55 am

    thought I’d stop by before I start packing (I’m moving this weekend) and I’m sure glad I did! I love the new design, Stefan! Your banner is so fun yeh heh!
    And the Open Sources are sweeeet! Danielle I really like the mixed media approach, and with those colors, your java (or tea) sippin’ monster really pops. I like how the hand illustrated set in a real life setting lends surreality 🙂 Sam’s ‘roo monster is great! Wow! I wanna learn how to do stuff like that! And Stefan’s too..I luuurve the bloomy breeches, they look rather onionish. And you two put shadows in there…how’d you do THAT?! (it can be a rhetorical question but I really am interested if anyone has a *quick* way to tell me)
    Looking forward to seeing what comes next, people!

  • 30 June 2007 12:54 pm

    Love the new banner Stefan! And your shadow is much better looking than mine. You are the gradient king though, so I should know better. Victoria, there is a Photoshop cast shadow tutorial that’s been floating around for years. I adapted some of what it says in how I create my shadows. Here is one of the cast shadow tutorials:
    Hope that helps.

  • 30 June 2007 1:04 pm

    From the Court of the Gradient King
    (Thank you for the surprise coronation, Sam.)
    That’s a great link, Sam. Thank you for posting it. I hadn’t seen that tutorial, but that’s pretty much exactly how I do my cast shadows. Beyond their description, it’s all about finding the right shape for the cast shadow. “Skew” gets you pretty close, but I like to scale a little bit, too, so that it’s not such a long, dramatic shadow. The eye is so used to seeing shadows that it knows a fake shadow when it sees one. The less attention the thing draws to itself, the better.
    I’m glad you guys like the new banner.
    I just thought it was time for a change.

  • Danielle
    30 June 2007 5:44 pm

    Thanks for reassuring me that even though my monsters won’t be getting a gradient out of me, they’ll still be welcome to join the party. :]
    Victoria, your splendid monster reminds me of the short, black, fuzzy caterpillers that used to inch across my old drive way when I was little. I was always afriad to touch them because I thought they didn’t have heads. But your monster makes me feel much better about those caterpillers. Oh, and my monster is sipping tea.
    Sam, I’m itching to call your kangaroo Lleyton…though not to much resemblance I suppose.
    And Stefan, I feel I bit sorry for your monster because he’s missing some elbows. Must be a bit challenging to maintain that beard… Lovely banner though.
    Can’t wait to get started on the next blot!

  • 30 June 2007 6:08 pm

    Hi Danielle. OSM11 appreciates your concern, but asks you please not to worry. It’s got a self-cleaning beard. There’s a whole ecosystem living in its facial hair. They survive on the crumbs. They do tickle, though, and sometimes give #11 ironic razor burn. Maybe that’s why he looks so out of sorts.

  • 3 July 2007 7:27 am

    Yes, I agree. This is something very appealing about this early form. And anything to get more monsters from that weird brain of yours is all to the good. *S*
    (you’ll notice i’m not in disguise as Sequana today)

  • 3 July 2007 7:30 am

    Keith! I just love her! And it so proves my point that they don’t need to be all feminine and sexy (altho, there is some of that about yours) to be “totally monster.”
    Get my drift?

  • Danielle
    3 July 2007 3:37 pm

    Jason, I like your extra use of the blots other than for the monster.
    Looking at this Bonus Monster is rather refreshing after all the other hunky fellows. The animations are cool but I might be leaning over towards the spindly sort of monsters. Either way monsters are the best. :]
    How’s the book coming along, by the way?

  • Justin
    4 July 2007 5:12 pm

    Old school all the way.

  • Charlotte
    9 July 2007 4:12 pm

    Absolutely wonderful – why many of us became instantly enamored with your project!

  • tuesday
    13 July 2007 5:10 am

    olivia, surprise to find her son marvin, abducted by aliens the week before, returned evolved and had acquired a PHD in ophthalmology.

  • Brian Catalano
    17 July 2007 1:50 pm

    the best thing to ever happen to America…that and French bread pizza.

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