Since 1946, the Clown Egg Register has collected blown eggshells that clowns hand-paint with their distinctive makeup, in order to claim that particular makeup as belonging to them; by custom, clowns do not copy each others' faces.
If this sounds familiar, it might be because a clown egg register plays a key role in a murder mystery in Making Money, one of my all-time favorite Terry Pratchett novels.
Today, the Clown Egg Register lives in the Wookey Hole Clowns Gallery-Museum in Somerset, and most of the eggs are ceramic, to avoid the inevitable damage and loss of history.
Photographers Luke Stephenson and Helen Champion have documented the egg-faces in a new book called The Clown Egg Register (natch). It sounds gorgeous and incredibly weird, and makes me want to swing by Somerset the next time I'm in London!
This mesmerizing volume collects more than 150 of these portraits, from 1946 to the modern day, accompanied by short personal histories of many of the clowns. Here are Tricky Nicky, Taffy, Bobo, Sammy Sunshine, the legendary Emmett Kelly, and Jolly Jack, clowning since 1977 and still performing today with a penguin puppet named Biscuit. A treasure just like the eggs it enshrines, The Clown Egg Register is an extraordinary archive of images and lives of the men and women behind the make-up.
The Clown Egg Register [Luke Stephenson and Helen Champion/Chronicle Books]
How whimsical/horrifying! Here’s a book of clown faces painted onto eggs.
Burbank's amazing quarter-century institution Dark Delicacies is a horror book-, memoribilia- and clothing-store that is a community hub for genre creators, hosting a wonderful stream of events, signings, and even an annual chance to get your photo took with Krampus at a Christmas open-house.
Neil Gaiman says Edgar Allan Poe should be read aloud, and he's right: he recorded this video of him reading "The Raven" in 2016 as part of Pat Rothfuss's Worldbuilders charity drive. It's Poe's birthday today, and I can think of no better way to celebrate it than to listen to it again.
The next installment in the SFinSF reading series features Kim Stanley Robinson, Howard Hendrix, and Cecelia Holland; it's this Sunday, Jan 20, doors at 6, event at 6:30, $10 (no one turned away for lack of funds), at the The American Bookbinders Museum (355 Clementina).
These days, there isn’t much our iPhone camera can’t do – except feel like an actual phone. Despite years of steadily increasing resolution and image sensing technology, we’re still taking shots awkwardly with two hands, fumbling for the shutter button. Leave it to an avid photographer to design Shuttercase, a versatile iPhone case that solves […]
Still determined to keep those New Year’s health resolutions? If you’re going to stick with the exercise plan, it’s enough of a challenge to budget your time. No need for your financial budget to take a hit, too. Here’s a more convenient – and cheaper – alternative to a gym membership or Peloton bike: Two […]
Want a career in web design? It’s true that these days, most anyone can throw up a page or two. But for true workhorse web design, you’ll sometimes need to match the platform to the project. Enter the Complete Front-End Developer Bundle, an educational grand tour around the best tools for the web. For beginners, […]