I’m running a new series of guest posts throughout 2015: Fetish Friday. Don’t get all sweaty in the pants—I’m going back to an older definition of the word, and asking artists to show us something that helps them with the ritual of creation, some part of their surroundings—physical or mental—that eases the path into the creative state, whether it be a location, a piece of music, person, picture, a doohickey, whatnot, curio or ornament without which the creative process would be a whole lot more difficult.
This week, we welcome Australian Horror Writer alumnus, author and illustrator, Greg Chapman:
At the end of a long 7 and a quarter hour stretch at the day job I like to come home, greet the wife and kids, and then go down to my dungeon and paint the walls in blood.
My dungeon is the literary equivalent of the so called man-cave, but instead of playing pool, tuning an engine or watching sports, I’m tinkering away at my latest horror story or piece of art.
The dungeon is where I find inspiration. On the walls are pieces of my art, alongside a poster of Neil Gaiman’s Nine Rules of Writing, signed by Keith Minnion. In the centre of the room, is my desk atop which sits my i-Mac where I create most of my illustrative work, “Zara”, a half mannequin, I turned into a zombie and about one hundred pens and paintbrushes that I just haven’t had the time to put away yet. I’m a creative person, so of course I’m going to be messy!
To the left of the desk is a small book case containing books I’ve had published or had stories in and more importantly, books written and sometimes signed by my writer friends. These books inspire me greatly; I revel in my friends’ successes and I thoroughly enjoy reading their work. Adjacent to that bookshelf is a much larger one containing the books I’ve collected over the years. There are lots of books by Clive Barker and King, and a hell of a lot of reference books and dictionaries. Dictionaries can especially spark story ideas as I have a bit of a fetish for obscure words. Both these bookshelves are guarded by two skulls I made for Halloween last year.
I guess this is my brain inside four walls. It’s chaotic and covered in words, and charcoal and watercolour paint, but all my friends and favourite writers are here to join me in my madness.
Surely, I’m not the only writer with a dungeon, right?
Are you a creative artist? Fancy joining in and letting us know about that special item, object, location or cosmic state of being at the heart of your creative process? There’s always room for another lunatic in the asylum: email me and make your most excited Horshack noise.