arachne behind the scenes
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By michellemonique   |   Watch
21 41 193K (18 Today)
Published: November 1, 2013

Watch this video to see the making of "Arachne"



I started this project months in advance of the shoot. I knew creating 200ish skulls would be long and arduous so I allotted myself 6 months from day 1 to the final images. To make the skulls, I simply used a skull cake making mold but baked paper mache instead of cake. I basically had my oven going for 2 months straight, making around 3 skulls per day. I have to give a big thank you to my mom for letting me take her oven hostage and fuming our house with burning paper smell (:


Here are some of the completed skulls. I'm spray painting them cream since some of the skulls caramelized in the oven. When you bake skulls everyday, it starts to become a habit and sometimes I forgot and left them in the oven for half a day :<


I had a blast shooting with Faith Lucille, who drove to my studio so I could photograph her little creatures! I really enjoy photographing both people and animals, so I hope to do more collaborations in the future!


Here I am gluing the skulls to tarp which has been laid over a stool and held down with sandbags. I was struggling to find a way to make a "pyramid" of skulls and thankfully my boyfriend came to the rescue with this idea!


Here is a visual explanation of how I made the chains for "Arachne's Lair". When compositing, it is better to get the lighting and perspective right in camera than to photoshop it. (1) To mimic the chains resting on the spider's fangs I stacked two towels under a sheet that was similar in color to the spider. This way, the sheet won't reflect any intrusive colors onto the chain. (2) To make the chain look wrapped around the spider's leg I put a 5 gallon water bottle under a sheet and wrapped the chain around it. (3) To make the chain hang between the spider's legs I just held it at the same angle.


Thank you for taking the time to read my journal :heart: These are some of my upcoming projects for 2014 that I'm super excited about!: Princess Peach, Ariel, Daenerys Targaryen, and Troll cosplay from World of Warcraft.

FREE PSD GIVEAWAY:

To enter, all you have to do is comment and favorite Arachne's Curse, and add me to your watchers. The PSD consists of all the layers, edits, and color adjustments done to this image. No one has been able to see my process- until now! The winner will be selected randomly, and announced on December 1st.

Arachne's Lair by michellemonique Black Widow by michellemonique Arachne's Wrath by michellemonique Arachne's Curse by michellemonique


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What's going on with DeviantArt?
There's a lot of changes going on with DeviantArt, and we recognize that this is irritating. We don't want it to be irritating, but unfortunately we don't have a choice. DeviantArt must transform. The live product is failing to interest as many new members as it used to. We've identified many of the reasons for this, and we're making transformative changes to help new users adopt DeviantArt. We especially want new users to come in and Watch Deviants, and begin conversing about Art. Ultimately we want new Deviants to post Deviations and contribute to the community. DeviantArt is meant as the place to support people in the world as they become
Community Relations Newsletter - March/April 2012
Table of Contents 1. Gallery Clean Up Project 2. Feedback 3. Volunteer Openings 4. Share Your Opinions 5. Community Projects 6. Official Contests 7  Project Educate 2011/2012 8. Art History Project 9. Gallery Description Project 10. News from the Chats and Forums 11. News from the Galleries 1. Gallery Clean-up Project The Gallery Clean-up Project will focus on literally cleaning up the category tree in several ways. This first part of this project, is all behind the scenes.  Over the years there have been categories that have been "removed", merged, or changed and there are back-end changes that need to be done to fully remove them from the
Welcome phoenixleo
Please join me in welcoming the newest member of the Community Volunteer team - phoenixleo (https://www.deviantart.com/phoenixleo)! He will be helping out with moderating forums so take a moment and go welcome him :)
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Comments (38)
INDOFAON's avatar
INDOFAON|Hobbyist Digital Artist
i really like this,Bro? 100% awesome La la la la and the woman is really beautiful I am a dummy! Love 
Reply  ·  
snazzie-designz's avatar
6 months making skulls.... that's dedication for you. They look amazing though so well done. Great job on the whole project, and nice to see the behind the scenes aspect.
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Thank you :)
Reply  ·  
snazzie-designz's avatar
:)
Reply  ·  
IggyVillageKoopa's avatar
Those skulls look very realistic.

Also, when are you going to do your Princess Peach one?
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Thanks! Probably won't be for a while, unfortunately. I'm still working on finishing another cosplay before I start on Peach. Super excited though!
Reply  ·  
Luna-Fantasma's avatar
Luna-Fantasma|Hobbyist General Artist
I have seen this video and let me tell you one thing, you are not only an amazing talented artist, but you are as stunningly beautiful as the models you choose, only that you have a prettier body :hug: I really really admire your work, your art skills. You are something beyond imaginations michellemonique. Lots of love and hugs from Argentina dear Huggle! Lovely Shoujo Emoji (Huggy Hug) [V2] 
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Thank you :hug: that really means a lot :) I never would think of myself as pretty as a model but I'm flattered you think so :glomp:
Reply  ·  
Luna-Fantasma's avatar
Luna-FantasmaEdited |Hobbyist General Artist
I saw your pics and the video and I am amazed, you are not just nice but BEAUTIFUL, your beauty is perfect to make YOU one of your own models. 
Have you seen profiles like :iconhybridgothica: or :iconstarscoldnight: ? They make digital art of other models and themselves as well.
Both are gorgeous girls, just like you, and they make artworks with themselves as the stock model. Why dont you try? you have a stunning beauty!! you don't need to be super tall and skinny as supermodels of catwalks. I am not either of these, nor tall not skinny, and I also dared to use my own pics as model for some artworks. You are amazing, I am sure you'll surprise EVERYONE if you do so! Heart Love 
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Thank you, you're too kind! :blush: I feel like the models I use fit my vision much better than I ever could! I'll just stick to selfies haha

Those profiles are lovely, thanks for sharing.
Reply  ·  
EverTrey's avatar
EverTrey|Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome,,
:la:
Reply  ·  
kimoz's avatar
kimoz|Professional Digital Artist
how i can get the PSD? please
Reply  ·  
SpirtDancer's avatar
SpirtDancer|Hobbyist Digital Artist
I sent an angel to watch over you last night but it came back.
I asked "why?"
The angel said "angels don't watch over angels."
Twenty one angels are IN your world. Ten of them are sleeping, Ten are playing, one is reading this message.
Send this to ten friends including me. I guess if I don't get it back I'm not one of them. As soon as you get five replies, someone you love will quietly surprise you.
Please read, not joking. God has seen you struggling with something. God says its over. A blessing is coming your way.
If you believe in God send this message on. Please don't ignore it. You are being tested. God is going to fix two things BIG tonight in your favor. DROP Everything and pass it on. Tomorrow will be thebest day of your life. Don't break this chain.
Send to 14 friends in 10 minutes. It's not that hard.

writer of this story is: wintermoon95
please do! X3 :D (Big Grin)
Reply  ·  
Photo-By-L's avatar
Wow, Excellent work :D
I love your work so much >w<
Reply  ·  
kueebreeze's avatar
kueebreeze|Hobbyist Photographer
wwwhaaaaa, im late T_T  Y_Y
Reply  ·  
AmaranthineRain's avatar
What do you do with all those skulls when you're finished with the shoot?
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
I threw them out. I normally keep all my props but there were just too many.
Reply  ·  
AmaranthineRain's avatar
Gotcha. What about selling them online? Or offering give-aways?
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Interesting, but I doubt anyone would seriously want those things laying around their house! They looked pretty terrible in real life.
Reply  ·  
TheArtributor's avatar
TheArtributor|Hobbyist General Artist
Very well done!
Reply  ·  
DonZellini's avatar
Absolutely outstanding!  Shows what you can do when you put imagination and hard work into it.
Regards.
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
:hug:
Reply  ·  
SweetIris's avatar
SweetIris|Hobbyist General Artist
I love love love this set! :love: Even if I still find spiders creepy and icky. :XD:
I'm still apprehensive with photographing furry insects upclose (I don't mind dogs and cats, but photographing creepy crawlers aren't really my thing lol).
I always enjoy watching your BTS video. :D
Reply  ·  
michellemonique's avatar
michellemonique|Professional Photographer
Even though I'm absolutely terrified of spiders, for some reason tarantulas have never scared me. I don't even mind one crawling on me. It's like they're so big and fuzzy they become less creepy than house spiders :p

or you could use a 200mm lens so you can be on the other side of the room :p
Reply  ·  
anonymous's avatar
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