Inside the Mysterious Bots of Beau Gunderson

With 16 bots and hundreds of other coveted projects to his name, Beau Gunderson is a prolific developer and valued contributor to the open source community, responsible for adding thousands of unique artworks and text snippets to the Twittersphere. And Twitter really is the ideal gallery for this form of expression; ideal for audiences because it allows them to become immersed in the bot’s stream of consciousness, and ideal for developers as an easily-accessible sandbox in which to store and evaluate new ideas quickly.

Since the earliest days of Secret Cave, we have been obsessed with the art of bots and the motivations of their creators.…   [continue reading]

Outsider Textiles: A Conversation with Shanell Papp

This interview is a part ofย Issue #2: Breath. You can get your own physical copy of the zine through our store or Patreon.

In our last issue, Birth, we featured a single piece of Shanell Pappโ€™s distinctive artwork. We would have liked to show more, and initially planned for an in-depth look at her talent for textiles. Itโ€™s a medium she explores and warps in surprising ways, with an intense attention to detail. The physicality of her output makes her focus on anatomy and the macabre more direct. For this zine, we spoke to Shanell about some of her intentions and drives.…   [continue reading]

Almost Normal: Why I Love Lowbrow Art

This piece was written by Warren “WEE” Elliott for Issue #2: Breath. You can purchase a physical copy through our store or Patreon.

Lowbrow art is a raw, frequently unpolished graphic style that grew out of the underground comix, punk music, and hot-rod scenes. Often it focuses on sex, drugs, and anything that might be considered taboo. Its aim is to violate social norms and slap polite society in the face with the dirty and calloused hand of reality. Itโ€™s rough, itโ€™s real, and I love it!

I grew up in a working class family, in a working class neighborhood, in a very conservative Christian community โ€” Lynchburg, Virginia to be exact.ย …   [continue reading]

Constructing Achewood: A Momentary Diversion with Chris Onstad

Click here to order Issue #2: Breath, including this interview, from our store. Alternatively, copies are available through Patreon.

Achewood, a webcomic launched in 2001, is among the densest works of fiction on the internet. Resting on the mannerisms of a developed cast of complex characters, it later evolved to include blogs, Twitter accounts and even a cookbook. Its creator, Chris Onstad, has given life to every corner of its titular setting through a series of inspired arcs. For Issue #2: Breath, we talked to Chris about Achewood, some of the process behind it and its future.…   [continue reading]

Issue #2: Breath: FINAL ANNOUNCEMENT

Issue #2: Breath is available to order through our store or, alternatively, as a reward to Patreon supporters.

We’re now preparing to post out copies of Issue #2: Breath! If you haven’t yet ordered a copy, you can do so by visiting our store or brand new Patreon page. We’ve worked hard to make this zine worth the money, by filling it with as much writing, art and photography as we could source. In the end, we’ve more than doubled the page count of our debut issue.

We’re immensely proud of the contributors who have given this project life.…   [continue reading]

The People’s Gallery: A Look at the Bogside Artists

On Rossville Street in the Bogside area of Derry stands a unique set of twelve large-scale murals that have attracted global attention for their themes of violence, peace and unity. The gigantic artworks are a portrayal of the brutality that the Bogside area has witnessed โ€” called the Troubles โ€” and the three artists who produced the wall-paintings are brothers Tom and William Kelly (who sadly passed away in January 2017), and their friend Kevin Hassan.

The first mural, called Petrol Bomber, was painted on a three story maisonette building in 1994. The massive black and white image shows a young boy in a gas mask, trying to protect himself against CS gas as he holds a petrol bomb in a scene from the Battle of the Bogside, which took place in August 1969.…   [continue reading]

Issue #2: Breath: General Updates and News #3

You can pre-order a physical copy of Issue #2: Breath here!

The next three weeks represent our final push before we publishย Issue #2: Breath. Benjamin and I have been doing all we can in the background to make this zine special. We’ve worked hard to give our excellent submissions the formats they deserve, and we couldn’t be happier with the results.

However, we originally planned for a 2nd of April release date. Due to a number of circumstances, there will likely be a fortnight’s delay.ย The issue will still print in April, but we need the extraย days in order to perfect the product.ย …   [continue reading]

Issue #2: Breath: General Updates and News #2

You can find some more background on Issue #2: Breath here!

Since posts have definitely been slower here this year, I feel it’s only fair that we show why. We stated our heavier concentration onย Issue #2: Breathย in this previous post. But,ย with so much going on in the background, it’s about time we gave an update.

Several contributions have already come in, and received full page formatsย from Benjamin and I. Neither of us can believe the quality of submissions this time around, and we’ve tried to live up to that with our designs. Last week, we worked on a three-page spread exploring the art of Katrine Claassens.…   [continue reading]

Steamed Hams?: How Communities Shape Their Memes

How are memes born? While there’s no set answer to such a wide question, there are some interesting trends to consider. A cursory glance through the archives of Know Your Memeย proves that anything’s game.

For instance, stolen footage of home video embarrassment ranks among the earliest memes. In fact, such examples predate the internet with terrible shows likeย America’s Funniest Home Videos. Years after its televisual popularity, the same mean-spirited instinct becomes meme with the Star Wars Kid and his cohorts.

Of course, not all viral videos or images are entirely accidental. Accidents, after all, can be contrived. Corporations have gone to great lengths to capture the magic of memes for marketing, even if it includes trying to sell shoes by having Kobe Bryant pretend to jump over an Aston Martin.…   [continue reading]

Issue #2: Breath: General Updates and News

This year at Secret Cave, we’re changing our pace somewhat. Following the release of our first zine last year, we’ve already started work on a second issue. It’s important to us thatย Issue #2: Breathย is an improvement in every possible way on our original venture. As such, certain elements of our output are likely to slow down until our estimated release date in April.

In no way does that mean our domain content will stop. In fact, Benjamin and I already have numerous drafts that we’re working on. However, we have made our next zine a conscious priority. Unfortunately, this is likely to have an impact on the amount of posts here.…   [continue reading]