Welcome To Night Vale – Live Episode 49

At the time I write this post (ETA: which was on the 11th if you’re looking at the post date and going “bwah?”), episode 49 doesn’t have a name that I know of. However, it’s their second anniversary show that was taped at Town Hall in NYC. As this episode got split into two halves, I’m not going to say anything about the plot. If you don’t want to see the characters that show up, don’t click through to the rest of the set on Flickr. I’m just going to post a few of the main cast you’d expect.

Cecil, the Faceless Old Woman, and Hiram McDaniels

Carlos Lauren and Kevin


Such a good show! On the camera tech side of things, still using my D10 which has an abysmal zoom but thanks to Cecil wearing a white suit and the floating cat in front of me before the show, I managed to get settings that didn’t blow out all of the whites on faces this time. The images are a bit fuzzy and noisy, but I think this may be the best I can do for those sort of conditions and what the camera is and isn’t intended for. I mean, my Florida pictures were great at the beach and it’s waterproof. Would love to hear if you have setting or editing suggestions for low light conditions such as these.

Thursday Pics

Cecil Baldwin on stage at the Welcome to Night Vale, Washington DC show

Cecil Baldwin and Meg Bashweiner on stage at the Welcome to Night Vale, Washington DC show

Pictures from the DC performance of The Librarian.

It is really frustrating when you camera doesn’t do what you want it to. I know mine’s not particularly fancy. I’ve got a Canon D10 primarily because it’s waterproof and shock-resistant. I wanted something that could live in my bag, go on hikes, and not be ruined when I inevitably drop it in the water. Unfortunately, it also limits how well it functions in difficult situations, like live theater. I turned the exposure down and I still ended up with the highlights blown out white in most of the pictures. But Caucasian humans under a spotlight in a dark theater is a more than you can expect from a point-n-shoot intended for shenanigans under full sun. I should probably be grateful it takes as good a pictures as it does of the aquarium fish. Again, not really something it’s intended for.

One day I’m gonna get me a camera that can cope with lower light situations. One day. And nice macro lenses. Those too. Because the world needs more pictures of the insides of bug eating plants right up close.

A Deer Holding a Painting of a Deer Like It Won Best Deer

It started, Joseph Fink says, as a chance encounter in a Hudson antiques store.

“My girlfriend, Meg, and I were browsing around and came upon this terrible, wonderful painting of a deer wearing a painting of a deer around its neck. It was very badly done, but also beautiful,” Fink tells me. “I wanted it so much, but it was too expensive.”

Collector of Harts

So when Joseph Fink put out a call on Twitter for “paintings of deer wearing pictures of deer around their necks like they just won a prize for Best Deer”, I thought it was funny. Then as it came up a couple times more, I started thinking about. I finally came home one night and actually did a test layout for the image I had in my head sitting on the highway in traffic.

Sketch of a deer holding an award ribbon against the Welcome to Night Vale logo background

Which, well, wasn’t fantastic but it wasn’t half bad either. It, and some discussions on Twitter, got me to thinking about what direction I wanted to go with it that were a bit different. I finally struck on the idea that I wanted to emulate Dutch and Flemish portraiture. You know, the stuff with the big lace ruff and collars and lush fabrics and oh god what did I get myself into. But sometimes stuff just falls into place. A friend reblogs a fantastic collection of stag photos. Somehow I stumble on a person recreating Dutch portraits in photos of people holding animals. It started to fall together. Thanks to the magic of Photoshop, I had my reference layout of a stag in a huge lace ruff holding a painting with an ornate gold frame. Oh yeah, let’s get started.

First picture is actually the second attempt to get started. My mock-up and my paper were of different dimensions so I had to redo my grid. But with that done, I could fit the Deer on the paper properly. You can see the false start lightly in this photo.

Starting to Deer
That’s supposed to be my sewing table on the right. Supposed to be.

In order to cover the false start and to give it more depth and interest, I decided I needed a wallpaper background. Something like a damask or similar, but not. Then I remembered this great stamp I ran across on Zazzle. Oh yeah, we’re going to make a carnivorous pitcher plant wallpaper for this bad boy.

Now with Carnivorous Plant Wallpaper

Here are some in progress shots so you can see the evolution. Jeremiah Vanderkamp, as I’ve been calling him, grew a goatee eventually on suggestion of my friend Justin. Deer don’t generally have them, but Jeremiah is a sophisticated Dutch deer.

Now with fabric folds Tonight's Deer
Tonight's Deer Almost Finished

And finally, after 12-15 hours of work, the final product.

Jeremiah Vanderkamp, Pastels on paper, 22″x32″.

I am extremely proud of this. Not only because it’s the first thing I’ve painted in years, but because I actually got it out of my head the way I wanted it. I wasn’t sure I had a chance in hell of getting all of those blasted folds to actually look like fabric. But they do and he’s pretty fucking awesome.

I am probably going to have prints for sale in the near future, but I’m thinking of switching print vendors from Zazzle because their terms are somewhat unfavorable to artists these days. So stay tuned if you want a print.

I did not get a chance to do a hand off to Mr. Fink himself. I managed to find their tour manager at a merch table at tonight’s Welcome to Night Vale show in DC and I hope it got back to him. Or perhaps the tour manager will decide to keep it for herself. I wouldn’t blame her, frankly. My husband is actually rather disappointed I didn’t keep it because he wanted to frame it and put it above the fireplace. Anyway. This is my painting of a deer holding a paint of a deer like he just won best deer. Thanks internet and Mr. Fink for helping me create him.

ETA: Prints now available: Jeremiah Vanderkamp on Society6