Good afternoon! Another month has passed and I've been a bad blogger. Once again I have to apologize to you. I'm in the final two weeks of a new book (on dating and relationships) that'll be out in time for Valentine's Day and is going to come with all kinds of fun features, so stay tuned for more on that. But I've also been busy on a few things I CAN show you!

First and foremost, the good people at Creative Review -- specifically writer Eliza Williams and editor Patrick Burgoyne -- made me the featured designer of their current issue. If you're in the UK, please check it out at the newsstand. (And, you know, BUY the thing, too. It ain't a public library!)

As part of the article they asked me to design the cover. Seeing how it's the SUMMER FUN issue, I thought I'd represent California in style and offer up some surfing pop-up Monsters. Check it out in this photo by my generous and excellent friend, product photographer Jason Ware:


The inside cover beach part features three separate encoded messages, two of which lead to more riddles, and then there's an Easter egg, too. CR reader Alex Johns already claimed the prize (a signed copy of the Monster Book), but if you're in a decoding mood, please have at it. You can download a larger version of the beach here.

Another great benefit of the article was that I got to have my portrait taken by the amazing Jill Greenberg! I've been a fan of Jill's work for years, so getting to be her subject was a huge honor and a real thrill. And just the tiniest bit intimidating, too. Not so much because my time slot was sandwiched between two bikini models, but because my emotional range in front of the camera apparently veers from foolish grin straight to deep scowl, with not much in between, especially at 10AM. Needless to say, Jill made me look great anyway:

Please forgive me, but you gotta see it properly.
Jill is amazing, and I love this shot:


Courtesy of CR art director Paul Pensom, the rest
of the article looks pretty damn spiffy, too! Take a look:

CR-spread-photo-02 CR-spread-photo-03

Lots of fine 344 action, as you can see, accompanied by a very generous article about the stuff I do. And if that weren't enough, Patrick and Paul asked me to illustrate the section title for the SUMMER FUN bits, and create five mini-Monsters they could hide on their site. The person who found all of them first and unscrambled the word won a nifty digital camera. Not too shabby, right?

Allow me to show you that type a little bigger:



Also, here are those five little hidden Monsters, together at last.
Click on 'em for a bigger view if you like.


And that's that for the Monsters in the pages of Creative Review. My thanks again to Eliza, Patrick, and Paul for making me look so good in their pages, and for letting me have so much fun making new Monsters for them, and to Jill for making me look so stylishly stern.

Most of all, thank you for sticking with me as I'm creating things for you behind the curtain. I hope you'll like the results when I can show them to you. In the meantime, please check back tomorrow for another little extracurricular Monster action. For right now, I hope this jogged your memory that 344 LOVES YOU