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Tom Cockeram
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Still alive and kicking

1 min read
Hey folks, just a quick post to say I've not been snarfed by zombies or crushed under the weight of my son's cuddly toys (it was a close shave)

I've got a couple of things I'm working on currently - a 3D printed boardgame, a cardgame involving spoons (spoooooooooooons!) and a PC game based off one of my series of paper toys so apologies for the lack of news as I'm struggling to fit it all in with the day job and still trying to spend time with my family. Need a 25th hour. and a 26th.

Anyhoo, there will be pics laters but in the meantime, I still function!

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Pretty much there...

1 min read
After a lot of faffing around and a complete overhaul this lunchtime, My website is pretty much ready for business. The hardest part was trying to get blogger integration to work so I can add extra bits over time. The first thing I plan to do with it after adding a bit more of a bio is to go through my toys and explain where the influences and what challenges I had with them. So basically a PDP (why didn't I think of doing this in Uni? might have ended up with more than a desmond :p)

Anyhoo, go have a lookit at www.tang-mu.co.uk and let me know what you think.
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The great website exodus

2 min read
I'm currently in the process of updating my website - moving it over to the cargo collective instead of using my own flash efforts which frankly are looking a little bit shabby after 3 years. The only problem is that the Cargo websites don't support PDF format so I'm having to use dropbox to host the files... You can see how the webiste is looking here cargocollective.com/tangmu/ (Still working on a banner... any thoughts?)

In other news I've got my Folksy shop back up and running selling printed kits of some of my designs. folksy.com/shops/TangMu

Now I know what you're thinking - the whole point of paper toys is that anyone in the world can download and print free of charge (as opposed to the crazy prices and exclusivity of the Urban Vinyl scene) and I'm totally for that - I'm going to keep putting the models for my toys up on the interwubs for the world and his wife to get crafty, especially blanks of the toys so they can design their own unique one. However, I think that they also make great gifts in kit form - not everyone is scouring the internets looking for papercraft exactly and if you're after something for a friend then it saves the hassle of sourcing the right card and getting everything printed and wrapped in order to make a present. I'm planning on doing a couple of craft fairs in the next couple of months with some friends so having something physical is a great help.

Not that this is a sales pitch... honest.
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Over a year later.... again...

4 min read
Erm.... so I'm still working on the Marfusha paper toy idea - gotten further with the weapons and skinning side of things plus getting everything into a5 format so I can make it into kits similar to the Squat toys but just a few other things have happened since then...

Moved house... got a cat... became a dad - a normal year then eh?

On the same day that we found out Meep was pregnant someone decided to give us (for free) a one eyed pony. Great news all round (guess what she was more excited about... typical) however we;d just signed the lease on our flat for another 6 months and so had to explain to the landlords that we couldn't continue to live there as having children would invalidate our lease. Their answer - we could move out as long as we found someone to fill in our place. This led to a very frustrating six months of making sure everything was spotless and slyly packing as well as the morning sickness and mood swings of the first trimester. We felt we couldn't look for a new place whilst everything was uncertain and this caused no end of frustration.

As the 6 months was up (and Meep was really struggling with the 5 flights of stairs at that point) we said 'sod it' and started to look for a place, hindered by the fact that we could only look around places on the weekend due to my work hours so most places were taken before we even got a look in. Finally we got a streak of luck and are now in an amazing 3 bed terrace just a stones throw from the train station... there's even places to park (now that we were borrowing my 'rent's car as the baby was getting due)

Moving in was alright thanks to friends and family - relatives flocked from the length of the country in order to see how we were doing and to move a couple of boxes and we were all moved with time to spare for the nesting instinct to kick in. So well behaved was the labour, that it didn't start until *after* we had unexpectedly house my brother-in-law and his Fiancee for 2 weeks, their boxes had gone and Mimi had had a good scrub at the skirting boards :p

Labour wasn't as smooth as we'd liked - Mimi was adamant to not have any pain meds and she managed right up to the time she had to be anasthetised for the c-section - something neither of us had planned for as we were reliably told a week before by the midwife that he was the right way up and progressing nicely. How wrong she was. When the contractions got to the magic number (3 every 10 mins) we went to the hospital for a check up, accompanied my Mimi's mum who had come up from London for the birth. We were told it would be ages and that we should go home and run Mimi an bath so she could sleep and rest. An hour later her waters go... in the bath, and we rush back to discover that our child was a footling breech and had to be rushed into the operating theatre for a c-section right away.

After a spinal aesthetic that took 3 attempts and a lot of apologising from Mimi, we became proud parents of Sebastian Ray Cockeram at 2am on the 6th of August. He's constantly amazing us - first off by having really bad silent reflux that meant he couldn't sleep unless he was lying on one of us and is only just being managed by a combination of gaviscone, enzymes and antacids - and now by chuckling, waving his head around and becoming... well  a little person really.

I'm getting back into the swing of the arty things now (albeit on more of a back burner due to nappies, bathtimes and cooking as well as a fulltime job) but I haven't just been frittering the time away, I promise.

I have plans...
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Little Martha

2 min read
getting back into the game....

Currently at work on final protos of Marfusha - need to tweak the shoulders, shrink down to working on A5 sheets, skin and work on more accessories.

Last Sat I was in Wrexham helping the Jess run her collab wardrobe of wonders at a craft fair in central station. Pretty slow but it made me realise that it was fun to do art again (things have been feeling too much like work at times). During a food run I ended up in waterstones examining their comics, art n architecture books and stumbled across a tourism centre made by this fella Renzo Piano on a polynesian island consisting of 5 curved 'mask' like structures. Got me doodling curvy bowl shapes and combining them together and from this Marfusha took shape.

The name comes from browsing wiki at work and finding an article on dogs used by the russian space programme (She was a rabbit that made a suborbital flight with two dogs in 1959) and deciding that Marfusha or 'Little Martha' was an awesome yet pretty damn creepy name for a toy. I think that the tagline for this kit (with Squat it was 'sullen. Lumpish. Melacholy.') will be a youngblood brass band lyric:

'and we're in... hordes of us, scraping over the walls....'

(from nuclear summer if anyone is interested. Gotta love me some brass band hiphop)

Yeah i know it looks like someone handed cubone a pair of glocks... I'm going to make a bone club attachment and mebbes even an homage to mouseguard at some point. Swooshy cape!
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Still alive and kicking by tang-mu, journal

Pretty much there... by tang-mu, journal

The great website exodus by tang-mu, journal

Over a year later.... again... by tang-mu, journal

Little Martha by tang-mu, journal