Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Money Shot (part 1)

Over the new year, I was working hard on a special order for They had seen my re-covered prop books for sale on, and commissioned me to make them some blank journals in the same style. I've always said I don't like to do commission work, because I don't do well with deadlines, or projects that I'm not inspired to do. Fortunately they caught me in the right mood. I was already in a book making mode, and I really needed the money :)

In all, I made eight custom blank books for them and six custom quill pens with skulls. This is the first time I had worked on this many books at one time. I usually have 5-20 projects in production at any given time, but I really only actually work on two or three of them at once. I work until I get bored with them, and I set them aside and either continue work on something from off the back burner, or start something new. This time, I had to work on all eight books, and the pens, to completion and all at once. The project took me about two months to complete.

The items were completed and shipped some time ago, but I waited to blog about them until Shadowmanor had a chance to post the items on their site and make them available for sale, so that hopefully any visitors on this blog who were interested could visit their on-line shop.

So without further ado, here are some glamor shots of the first installment of the Shadowmanor Order... (click through for larger images)

This blank journal is approximately 8.75in. x 11.25in. with 120 blank unlined pages. It was covered with a black cotton fabric and circumscribed by a black leather strap with a hand made black leather belt closure. The metal rivets and buckle are an antiqued silver-tone. The bosses are hand cast resin tentacles writhing and stretching out from the corners. They are finished with an antiqued silver color created with acrylic paint and silver Rub-n-Buff. The centerpiece is a hand cast resin baphomet head pentagram with a cold cast nickle-silver finish, polished with steel wool and antiqued with acrylic paint. The book features a black cloth ribbon bookmark and a framed dedication space on the inside front cover (not pictured).

This book is very similar in style to the Black Book of Evil, which was featured on the Shadowmanor site blog and is the item that attracted the owners to my work in the first place.

My recent financial issues, and the success of this project has lead me to rethink my "no commissions" policy. I have since taken on two new commissions. One was for three movie props, which was recently finished and about which I will be posting shortly. The other is for the repair and recovering of an RPG rulebook for an old friend from high school, which I am currently working on. Hopefully, the future will bring me some more commission work, as I would like to start turning my hobby into a career. I think my work in this field is starting to progress to the point that I could start considering doing it for a living. Of course, I've still got a lot of learning and growing to do, but I've seen real progress in these past few projects.

This item, and others, are currently for sale on the website (tell them Rev. Marx sent you!). To see other items from this collection, visit:
The Money Shot (part 2)
The Money Shot (part 3)
The Money Shot (part 4)
The Money Shot (part 5)
The Money Shot (part 6)


  1. That book is very nice. "You can't tell a book by it's cover" the saying goes but it's usually the cover that makes me open it. I would be compelled to open that one.

  2. As the one who commissioned these items, I've gotta say they're simply gorgeous. I'm glad to hear that we might have inspired you to take on more commissions in the future; you've got a real talent for these.