Bites of Terror: Behind the Scenes with Liz and Jimmy Reed

Posted by Quirk Books Staff

Calling all foodies and fans of horror! Bites of Terror hits bookshelves on March 24, 2020. This graphic novel of hand-sculpted dioramas delivers darkly funny stories—all food-based—and is hosted by the Cake Creeper. Dive into the creepy cute world of Bites of Terror with Liz and Jimmy Reed, the husband-and-wife team behind Cuddles and Rage, to learn how the Cake Creeper came to be!

P.S. If you preorder Bites of Terror, you'll receive a limited edition scratch & sniff card with proof of purchase.


Liz and Jimmy: When we started our webcomic Cuddles and Rage on Tumblr in early 2010, our goal was to make quirky comics and get better at drawing—and eventually sculpting. We had no idea that ten years later this little outlet would lead to gallery show opportunities, an award-winning animation, picture books, and now a 144-paged diorama graphic novel starring our favorite foods making very bad choices.

The Cake Creeper was the first character we created for Bites of Terror. Truly, no horror anthology is complete without a host full of saccharine puns and delectable deception! Making the Cake Creeper took a little over a week from start to finish. Unlike your grandma’s chocolate cake recipe with that one secret ingredient (it’s mayo btw), we're here to dish all of the Cake Creeper’s ingredients and more! 


Step One: Every character goes through a thorough design process before we sculpt. With the Cake Creeper, we wanted every element to have purpose and also remain practical with minimal maintenance for weeks of shooting.


Step Two: Before we sculpt any major character, we make a paper-cutout of the design to scale. This ensures we don’t make the sculpture too big or too small. Next, we use aluminum foil and tape to build the basic shape, keeping the sculpture lightweight.


Step Three: We cover the foil with a layer of Super Sculpey to create a smooth surface before we apply any colored polymer clay.  Between each new colored clay addition, we bake the sculpt before moving forward. This lets us handle the figure without distorting any previous work.


Step Four: For the Cake Creeper’s chocolate icing layer, we mix liquid polymer clay and tiny flakes of brown clay to recreate an icing-like consistency. We bake the piece one more time and then gloss the icing.


Step Five: Creating his blood-like gel icing took lots of trial and error. We needed to use a material that would hold its shape and not attract dust. In the end, we created a mold of the basic topping shape and used Smooth-On Ecoflex and red pigment to create a jelly topping. Next, we glued it to his head with super glue. 


Step Six: The remaining elements, like his bowtie, were baked and attached separately. Bits of his icing and suit were accented with acrylic paints and pastels to make him pop. His limbs are made out of floral wire, thread, Smooth-On Rebound and black pigment. They are removable limbs, which allows us to replace any broken appendages.


Step Seven: For his mouth, we baked multiple expressions and would swap them as needed for each scene. We sealed any gaps with polymer clay and blended them with paint to create a seamless effect.


Step Eight: Finally, the Cake Creeper is ready for his closeup.


Want to see more from the world of Bites of Terror? Follow Liz and Jimmy on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and even TikTok, where they're making waves with their video "Corndog Drama Ep. 1." And don't forget to check out thier videos over on Youtube!