Watchman's Note

This is a journey to the best designs in the world of Handpicked and presented (along with my own artwork) by yours truly, the driving force behind Surreality designs. We'll discover great artists and special products -mostly with a taste for the eccentric. But let us not confine ourselves in specific genres: the possibilities are endless and so is the great art one can find at Zazzle.


A dog to rest your mouse on

This upbeat mousepad made my day. I like the way the puppy cartoon follows the pad's form and the big black shape of the ear that gets cut off: it gives the design a funny bottled look while keeping the essence of...dogness!
I found this sweet and cheerful at ZoomWear and I'm sure it'll look nice on any desk.


Season's darkness

The yellow bird may sing for joy and peace on Earth, but the overall feeling of this Christmas card is miles away from the usual splurge. It doesn't make you uneasy (at least not me!) but this weird collage makes a darker, ironic statement about holidays. Plus, the design is absolutely great.

The next card is more abstract -and equally amazing. Seasonal or not, the art you'll find at PhDilettante Designs is unusual and striking, with a touch of dadaism to spice things up.


Rudolf's nose (and some asteroids!)

Rudolf's radioactive elixir gives a boost to red noses and an unexpected meaning to the famous song! A funny postcard from Scott Saavedra's Cartune Gudz, a store that specializes in offbeat cartoons. Scott's style is inspired by the '50s, and his playful sense of humor shines through all his creations.

The spaceman running to avoid asteroids is another favorite: there are days that feel exactly like this!


Message to the goddess

In this poster I see an attractive combination of folk art and Greek-Orthodox iconography (the flat background, the stylized muscles and golden elements are some of the characteristics of Byzantine religious art). Yet, instead of the introversion and the austerity of forms there is so much sweetness expressed in the lady's face and the bird!
Madonna, female deity or an expression of femininity? It doesn't matter... What matters is the quiet beauty of this painting made and offered by Lynnette Shelley, a great painter and illustrator from Philadelphia. Her rich, imaginative colors and shapes are outstanding.


May all your Christmases be white

Come on in, take off your coat. Then grab a drink and enjoy Tom singing about the less fortunate. You're among friends here.


Dinosaur killer

Childlike drawings that tell fanciful stories: that's what Dirty White Shirt is about and that's why it's great. Bone-crushing moose, man-eating bucks and (my all time favorite) the day when I killed this really big, terrible dinosaur. Don't you wish you had that on a sticker? Now you can! What else do you want for Christmas, anyway?
[I wish I was a dragon slayer. And an astronaut.]


Asses and baby-eating

I knew her as an amazing, hilarious blogger, not as a zazzler. After finding her store, aptly named The Bloggess, I realized that her surreal sarcasm extends to crazy designs as well. "Ass magnet" is an amazing idea and a must have for all you smart, perverted souls out there!

Have you ever felt the need for cute, baby-eating cats? Well, Jenny Lawson  tells it like it is:
This mousepad is awesome because people will see it and they'll be all "Aw, what a sweet kitty!" and then they'll read the bottom and they'll be all confused and they'll back out of your office without ever giving you whatever work they wanted you to do. The cat on this mousepad just saved you from work. Also, it eats babies.

For once, I'm speechless. I should add, though, that if you haven't visited her blog, The Bloggess (Like Mother Teresa, only better), you are missing out on the craziest, most enjoyable rumblings this side of the web!


Art'll make a czar of you

Bold, vivid and to the point, this t-shirt by Freeman Photographic will bring out the czar in you. I like the b/w urban/propaganda style of this design -plus, I realized that it's been a long time since I featured a t-shirt, which is a shame, really! BTW, does a czar really need a gas mask? If he is about to riot, maybe...


Santa goes to war

Extreme times give birth to extreme measures -and weird propaganda. This poster's Santa wears a helmet and an army outfit and carries a rifle. His gift in War World I times was weaponry for the soldiers fighting the most devastating war the world had known.
This vintage print (picturing one of the strangest "Ho, ho, ho" situations I've seen) is found at BurbanKPilot,  the store of photographer Ron Irwin. It's a great illustration that captures the spirit of wartime holidays.


Remembering Gilda

All of a sudden I missed Gilda Radner, that comedy genius of Saturday Night Live's first glorious years. I remembered this song and I thought I should share... Bless you, Gilda.

La Gioconda - dada

Page 32 postcard
Create your own postcard with

Marcel Duchamp, the famous French dadaist and surrealist, would be proud of this creation that celebrates his own weird Mona Lisa experiments.In fact, I like this more -it probably has to do with the Frank Zappa-esque mustache!
This wonderfully absurd postcard is a collage from Objets Trouvés, a store that is not a store but (true to it's name) a handful of assorted dadaist works waiting to be found in the backstreets of


Darth Vader on kitcsh

What can I say? I try to avoid big brands but some people find ways to crack you up! Here's Darth Vader wearing a cosby sweater, wreaking havoc on every sense of good taste imaginable. This disturbing exhibition of Dark Side hideousness can be found in many products in Star Wars zazzle store. The colors of yule adorn this funny abomination but it may serve your sinister, nerdy purposes all year round!


Judo power

The point of view of this drawing and the form of the two fighting judokas contrast surprisingly well with the colored squares. This is a great hoodie, not only for the fans of Judo (did you know that the word means "Gentle way"? I didn't!), but for everyone who loves inventive and powerful apparel design.
I found this gem in General Bat, along a small selection of mainly Judo-related stuff.


Warm nonsense

Travelling Light card
Travelling Light by DoubleExposure
Shop for a greeting card on

I see this bird (is it a seagull?) flying on a cloudless sky and I get a warm feeling inside. Outside roars the winter, but the bird on the card belongs to a different plane. A plane created by Dewk and Dazy,  the creative minds of Double Exhibition, a store with a keen eye for strange collages.

Dada and absurdism (plus a surreal kind of tender, subterranean humour) permeate their work and surprises the mind. I'm glad to have found them and we'll be seeing more unusual stuff from the loose "association" they are allied to: a bunch of talented dadaist minds that constitute one of the most creative niches of the Zazzle ecosystem!


Alice, insane

After her adventures through the looking-glass, Alice becomes the sole survivor of a fire that kills her family, loses her sanity and is institutionalized. Years later she enters a twisted Wonderland in an attempt to save the place -and her own mind.
All these things happened (as many of you already know) in American McGee's Alice action game. This stunner from 2000 featured superb artwork and music from Chris Vrenna (of Nine Inch Nails fame). It has sold more than 1.5 million copies and has influenced many artists.

Artwork from this game is offered from American McGee's Alice Zazzle store, and it's simply great!  Both those who are waiting for the much-expected sequel and those who haven't experienced Alice before, should have a look at this shop: it's worth it!


A wife and a pig

Today's find is a hilarious character from Kimberly Hoffard, that reminds me of Terry Gilliam's style (and everyone knows that's a good thing!). I can't help but wonder: Who is Claude? Why did he marry this funny, bespectacled, mustachioed lady?

Kimberly's paintings are humorous, imaginative and playful. Another one of my favorites is her Vampire Pig, the cutest pink abomination you could wish for!


Haunting femininity

Vintage beauty? Check. Christian imagery? Check. Tattooed lady? Check. Luchador mask? Check. Weird mood that combines goth with surrealism? Check.
This ingenious design (created by Ross Farrel and found at Ross Farrel Design) makes a fabulous burnout t-shirt and showcases Ross's talent and imagination. He is a true master of splendidly executed weird ideas. Go check him out!


Necklaces on Zazzle!

Just heard that zazzle started offering sterling silver necklaces. We'll be seeing much more in the next few days. I already started exploring the possibilities.

Eris Brown necklace necklaceChaos Revisited necklace necklace 

Printed koan

Spiraling Buddhas, over-saturation (reminding of lomography), and strangeness make this poster unique. It seems that not even koans resist photo-manipulation!
A koan (or kōan) is a seemingly irrational statement that may be accessed through intuition. Koans play an important role on Zen Buddhism and they are created mainly to shock the mind into awareness. "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" may be the most famous. It also served as an inspiration to talented Unruly-e, who tried to answer by creating a visual koan, eccentric and delicious enough to catch my attention (and yours, I'm sure).


Christmas victoriana

The Victorian era loved depicting kids. Mostly rich kids or fictional kids, since these times are notorious for  children labor in factories and mines (the dark side of the Industrial Revolution), and the portrayed innocence of children was not to be found on everyday life.
This vintage Christmas card is charming in it's vintage look, like having a piece of history in your hands. On the other hand, the kissing children covered in plush foliage cary a certain paganistic weirdness that I find irresistible. A unique find from the Golden Oldies shop, a real treasure cove for retro stuff!


Long live the king

Pure black and white inventiveness on a shirt! A simple, clean design from Dan Kuhlken and Nathan Goldman of DKNG Studios, that combines the timeless elegance of playing card aesthetics with a rockin' idea.
They say that one of the names proposed for this one was King of Clubs: not bad at all. What pops into my mind when I see this is Elvis on his Vegas days!


Flying saucers scaring white folks

This brilliant postcard works on so many levels:
It conjures a humorous nostalgia for cheap sensationalist book covers from the '50s. It parodies both the flying saucer craze and the stereotyped "white folk's interests" theme that has white people complaining for stupid things and being smart in useless stuff. It pays a funny homage to Frank Scully (the writer who single-handedly created the UFO crash mania back in 1949) by using the original cover from Scully's Behind the Flying Saucers book.
Kudos to FBod Studios for offering this gem.

[And, yes, F.Scully was the inspiration for Dana Scully's name.]


Lemon tea

Many have tried to express themselves using a grungy neo-vintage look, but very few have succeeded in standing out from the crowd. First Night Design manages to do just that with well-thought designs like these two presented here. The first one is used for a fine greeting card with tea-related elements . Their combination (especially the use of the samovar on the right) gives a unique collage.

The second one I like even more. It's a great postcard with an excellent composition that balances the handwriting with the remarkable lemon photographs in the center. A postcard I would be really happy to receive!


Cats as cats can

Cat Washing Bottom shirt
Cat Washing Bottom by Squirrell
Browse Zazzle for another

Why cats do that? Well, because they can! A funny and sweet illustration of cattitude that matches perfectly  the color of this t-shirt, by the hands of Squirrell (yeah, I know how this sounds...).

Squirrell's is a great shop to be when looking for humorous, wacky and imaginative pet designs.
Seeing is believing so here's a little something for those who prefer dogs -the superhero kind:
Hero card
Hero by Squirrell
View other Hero Cards
See? Told ya this shop's great, didn't I?
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