Friday, January 13, 2012

Cleaning/Christmas Crises 2011

After the madness of Halloween came the annual retail hell/Christmas crisis. I won't even go into the failure of humanity that is Christmastime at Trader Joe's right now as it is entirely too depressing and too soon to revisit at this point. Luckily I did not become deathly ill until much later this year (ie now) so I was able to get some work done for myself before the shit truly hit the fan. Behold: THE CLEAN ART ROOM.

The new shoes I bought for myself as a reward. Custom Keds from Zazzle. The pink stitching and interior was my personal modification.

And lastly, the Christmas cacophony. The theme for the flyer was Polar Express. This one was mostly designed by my friend on the art team, Jen. I guess the book has a lot of sentimental value to her. Since it's a classic, pretty alright children's book and the movie was creepy as fuck we decided to stick to the book for our inspiration. I made this sign for the entrance/vestibule using the usual paint markers on foam core plus a little chalk pastel to capture the fuzzy outlines of the book illustrations.

The rest was pretty much all Jen. Check out the mountain train setup she built from scratch for this candy display.

That little train was so cool, but SUCH a pain in the ass in terms of maintenance! I won't even go into all the times when we thought it had broken down for good--at one time I was hanging snowflakes above it and accidentally played Attack of the 50-Foot Woman when I almost fell on top of the entire mountain and impaled one of my fingers on a miniature pine tree--but somehow that train still made it through to the end (despite the accusations from Jen that I did it on purpose and was trying to destroy Christmas.)

By the way, I don't actually hate Christmas. I just became sick of being disappointed by how increasingly lame it has become to me in recent years. That, and my Grandparents and my Dad now being dead as of this year, and the watching shoppers tear each other apart over material things in a frantic mob of bad will to the tune of sappy Christmas carols that I have already heard that day on the radio at least five times a piece...let's just say, it was rough. Sometimes I found little things to amuse myself. For instance, in protest to all the Santa hats surrounding me in the store I decided to come to work as the Krampus. In case you never heard of him, Krampus is like Santa's evil counterpart in some parts of Germany and Northern Europe. He looks like this, a big demon with horns, hooves and a long, lolling tougue.

Krampus comes down the chimney brandishing a whip and chains to kick all the naughty childrens' asses before dragging them to hell as his slaves. Kids in Germany don't just have to worry about getting lesser quality gifts when they've been bad. This was my Krampus outfit for work. The nametag says "Krampus" and I was wearing these knee-high clunky death metal boots, not pictured here.

I also had a whip I made of cinnamon sticks, which I later donated to my neighbor's cat as a Christmas gift.

After all the Christmas hoopla at work I didn't even feel like decorating our tree. Since Christmas is Martyn's favorite holiday we eventually managed. We were even occasionally able to find some comic relief as we tried to muddle through.

Yes, that is the Dumbledore ornament from my old Harry Potter set introducing himself to the "Pornament" Martyn purchased from The Junkman's daughter last year. We are very mature and classy people, after all.

So with full expectations of Christmas being a total letdown once again, I was somehow proven absolutely wrong on Christmas day...but that is a story for my next post!

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