October 06, 2014


Hidden Creatures Poster by Tim Raglin, 1980

When I think of brand rivalry I think Coke versus Pepsi, Apple versus Microsoft, and Dynamite versus Hot Dog! magazine. I was a Dynamite reader myself, but that was a matter of availability rather than preference. So I was totally caught off guard the day I saw this masterwork of poster art floating around class, and even more so when it was offered to me as a gift! Now, thirty-some years later, I am gifting the image to the internet. If my Google image searching is true, then this is the poster's online debut.

The piece is the doing of Tim Raglin who has illustrated loads of children's books, and specializes in all things spooky, including The 13 Days Of Halloween.

The poster stayed on my wall for many years, and periodically I felt the compulsion to find all the creepy creatures, yet again. (Note the list held by the green hand at the bottom right, if you haven't already.) It can be tricky, especially since some of the definitions are rather loose, like the pineapple leaf cluster with teeth is considered a snake. But the hunt is a great excuse to get lost in the magnificent scene again and again.

When you're done there's the whole monster party to study! The mad scientist poured an eyeball into the punch. There are twin mummy children. The chandelier's "nose" is radiating. There's a miniature skeleton running on the table. Who invited the robot?

Can you find all the creepy creatures? You'll want to see it big, so you may want to right click and 'save as' or 'open in new tab' HERE.

If all else fails, here's the secret answer key...


Brian Barnes said...

I had no idea Hot Dog even existed, and I think my world is a little grayer for it. That's a beautiful piece of art. The craftsmanship is high end at all points.

The shading/depth line work is very complex, one wonders if it was all ink work or a complex and tedious inking of pencils (or directly from the pencils.) The scales on the dragon, the waves in the table cloth, and pretty much all the fur/curtains are incredible.

I like less to look for things and more to imagine everything that brought the party to this point; it seems the vampire lady on the left is giving the cold shoulder to the bride on the right. The female werewolf looks defeated; she loves her husband werewolf but knows he's going to make a scene.

That said, the rubbery robot is way out of place. Everything else is much more angular and shaded. Still, a small complaint.

Thanks for this, another desktop worthy Halloween poster!

Tom said...

To me, the rivalry was Dynamite vs Bananas, even though they were both Scholastic publications. I stayed loyal to Dynamite beyond the age I should have. Great poster, thanks for sharing!

Dex said...

Yeah I'm not even sure I knew about Hot Dog, it was definitely Dynamite vs Bananas in my school.

This thing is amazing!

Kirk D. said...

Brian- Agreed, there is so much to see and so much depth. It seems even more detailed technique-wise than some of his later stuff. Seems like he really poured himself into it.

Tom and Dex (and Brian again)- I wonder if it was a regional thing. I've heard of Bananas and seen the covers but I don't think I've ever touched an issue. It was even rarer than Hot Dog!. Sort of like RC Cola in my Coke/Pepsi analogy.

Todd Franklin said...

Wow, that poster should be displayed at a major museum of art! Very cool!! I was always a SuperMag and Dynamite kid with the occasional Bananas, but never Hot Dog. Not sure if it was available to order in my area or not.