Thursday, March 31, 2016


"What I saw was a forward-slouching, vermin-gray figure, wholly devoid of hair or down or bristles, but marked with faint, etiolated rings like those of a serpent that has lived in darkness. It possessed the head and brow of an anthropoid ape, a semi-canine mouth and jaw, and arms ending in twisted hands whose black hyena talons nearly scraped the floor. The thing was infinitely bestial, and, at the same time, macabre; for its parchment skin was shriveled, corpselike, mummified, in a manner impossible to convey; and from eye sockets well-nigh deep as those of a skull, there glimmered evil slits of yellowish phosphorescence, like burning sulphur. Fangs that were stained as if with poison or gangrene, issued from the slavering, half-open mouth; and the whole attitude of the creature was that of some maleficent monster in readiness to spring."
Clark Ashton Smith, The Hunters From Beyond

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


"Come on, now," I said. "No one shall hurt you while I'm around. What are you afraid of?"

"Men without bones," he said, and there was something in his voice that stirred the hairs on the back of my neck. "Little fat men without bones!" 

"You can kill them with your boot, or with a stick.… They are something like jelly. No, it is not really fear—it is the nausea, the disgust they inspire. It overwhelms. It paralyses! I have seen a jaguar, I tell you—a full-grown jaguar—stand frozen, while they clung to him, in hundreds, and ate him up alive! Believe me, I saw it. Perhaps it is some oil they secrete, some odor they give out … I don't know …"

Their chief, who had been a great man in his day, sign-writing with a twig, told us that he had strayed there once, and drew a picture of something with an oval body and four limbs, at which he spat before rubbing it out with his foot in the dirt.

I saw that the plateau was ringed with pairs of shining eyes … as it might be, a collar of opals; and there came to my nostrils an odor of God knows what.

"It was grey and, in texture, tough and gelatinous. Yet, in form, externally, it was not unlike a human being. It had eyes, and there were either vestiges—or rudiments—of head, and neck, and a kind of limbs."

Then, out of that stinking green twilight came a horde of those jellyfish things. They poured up the tree, and writhed along the branch. 

Those boneless men do not bite: they suck. And, as they suck, their color changes from gray to pink and then to brown.
Gerald Kersh, Men Without Bones

Read Scott's blog-post about this story here.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


"It stood among osiers and alders on a low, mound-shaped elevation; and in front, toward the marshes, there was a loamy meadow-bottom where the short fat stems and tufted leaves of the mandrake grew in lush abundance, being more plentiful and of greater size than elsewhere through all that sorcery-ridden province. The fleshly, bifurcated roots of this plant, held by many to resemble the human body, were used by Gilles and Sabine in the brewing of love-philtres."
Clark Ashton Smith, The Mandrakes

"It looks as if the name 'mandrake' may have been applied to very strong plantroots shaped like little statuettes of the human figure. It was believed that small familiar demons took up their abode in these plants. Mandrakes revealed knowledge of the future by shaking their heads when questions were put to them."
Grillot de Givry, Witchcraft, Magic & Alchemy

"Mandrake. A poisonous perennial herb that grows in the Mediterranean region and that is reputed to have powerful magical properties. Mandrake, part of the nightshade family, has a strong and unpleasant odor. It is highly toxic, though it is used in theraputic remedies and as an aphrodisiac in love philtres. The magic attributed to mandrake is due to the shape of its thick root, which looks like a man or woman. According to lore, mandrake shrinks at the approach of a person. Touching it can be fatal. If uprooted, it shrieks and sweats blood, and whoever pulls it out dies in agony. 
Rosemary Ellen Guiley, The Encyclopedia Of Witches and Witchcraft

Thursday, March 10, 2016


Hey folks! Just a quick news update before we get back to the monsters. I'm finally able to reveal a huge project that I worked on last year. It's the wraparound cover for Michael Wehunt's debut collection Greener Pastures. It's available for preorder now from publisher Shock Totem.

I also finished up the poster for the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival & Cthulhucon in San Pedro CA. They currently have a Kickstarter going to raise money to fly some cool guests out. 

As far as upcoming monstrosities, I'll be posting a second round of my collaboration with author Scott Nicolay, Stories From the Borderland in a few weeks. I'll also have a Clark Ashton Smith "primer" zine that will be accompanying Cadabra Records vinyl release of S.T. Joshi reading some of CAS's poetry. So, expect to see some creatures from the back pages of the Book Of Eibon soon!

You should also head over to the Seventh Church Ministries site to keep up on new releases. There are a ton planned for this year, including Illustro Obscurum Volume IX! It's been over two years since I did a single volume of Illustro Obscurum, so I'm very excited!