Gothtober 2012 FAQ


What is Gothtober?
Where can I view Gothtober?
Can I view Gothtober on my smart phone?
How do I apply to Gothtober?
Do I have to be an artist or film maker to apply for Gothtober?
When are applications due?
Why do I have to pay a $25 entrance fee?
So I don't have to pay to apply, only if I am accepted?
What is the theme for Gothtober this year?
Can I put old-ass stuff that I've made before on Gothtober?
What benefits are there to being a Gothtober Artist?
How can I keep up on the latest Gothtober developments?
Who makes Gothtober?
How did Gothtober start?
What size do I need to design for?
If I make something and it's compressed, will it look crappy?
When can I put my piece on YouTube?
What are the requirements of making a:
     Slideshow-Style Presentation?
     Animated Flash Movies or Interactive Content?
     Video/Quicktime Movie?
     Printable Document (like stories, or a fold-out craft project)?
     Downloadable Music Files or other goodies?
     Anything Else We Haven't Thought of?
     Please go to Gothtober.com and click on ARCHIVE and go to Gothtober 2005 to see examples

How can I reach you?




What is Gothtober?

The Gothtober Countdown Calendar™ is a curated time-release flash-based online museum of 31 works of art by 31 different artists. The official run of the show is from October 1st to the 31st, a new piece being revealed with each day of the month. The best way to see what it is though, is by visiting it!

Where can I view Gothtober?

To view Gothtober, you don't have to go anywhere or do anything, it's on the internet. Sometimes this doesn't sink in... it's IN YOUR COMPUTER! You can look at it naked, you can watch it in coffee shops with wireless, anywhere there's internet is where Gothtober lives! Visit Now!

Can I view Gothtober on my smart phone?

Androids and some other "smart" devices can see Flash, but iPhones and iPads will need some assistance. If you own such a Mac "smart" device, you can download "Cloud Browse" for free from the Mac App Store. Here's the Cloudbrowse Link

How do I apply to Gothtober?

To apply to be a Gothtober artist, simply follow this link to the application

Do I have to be an artist or film maker to apply for Gothtober?

NO! You don't have to be an expert or a proclaimed certified anything to apply and make something for Gothtober! All you've got to have is an idea, and a way to make your idea, it can be recipe cards, stories, things that people cut-out or listen to, ANYTHING you think would be spooky or weird enough to interest the masses for Halloween! Chefs, body-builders, retail clerks, office workers, managers, teachers, travelers, students, families, couples and individuals have ALL participated in Gothtober!

When are applications due?

Applications are due August 21st, 2011

Artists will be notified of admission on the 29th of August. This will give artists a month (or more) to work on a project (give or take, depending on what type of project is planned, what deadline's been given, and other unforeseen factors.) Criteria for picking pieces for Gothtober is NOT time-based, getting your application in early doesn't affect admission. Gothtober likes fresh blood, if you've never been a Gothtober artist before, you have an excellent chance of being selected for 2012! If you have been part of Gothtober before, but you were very late or overdue in getting your piece to Gothtober Headquarters last year, it could definitely influence your chances of gaining admission to this year's calendar. Artists who are picked for Gothtober are asked to pay a $25 entrance fee.

Why do I have to pay a $25 entrance fee?

Your Gothtober fee pays for hosting costs, programming, advertising and promotional items AND the big giant party held at the end of the year to celebrate all Gothtober artists.

So I don't have to pay to apply, only if I am accepted?

That's is correct! All entrance fees for Gothtober Artists are due September 6th via Paypal, check or cashola. Filling out the application costs nothing, only when it's been established that you are going to be featured as a Gothtober Artist on the calendar, then we will send you a notice asking you to pay your entrance fee.

What is the theme for Gothtober this year?

Well it's been ten years of doing this, and really, the unofficial theme is BRING IT, because a decade of Gothtober means a whole lot of internet art, over 300 pieces, to be exact! But really, the very first Gothtober Countdown Calendar kept a basic theme of "Halloween" and so we're going to ask you to either embrace a.) The number 10 in some way (10 items on screen, 10 tips for severing fingers, 10 recipes, 10 sounds, just... 10, y'know? b.) OR you can ignore the "10" theme and make your piece all spooky, creepy, crazy, weirdy, autumny, candy, freaky Halloweenie like the original calendar from back in the day.

Can I put old-ass stuff that I've made before on Gothtober?

As things that have debuted on Gothtober have made it into film festivals around the world, we ask that you only make fresh stuff for us never before seen by human or inhuman eyes for visual consumption. I mean, whatever, if you made it in 1985, and no one has ever seen it, that's fine, but I think you know what I mean: nothing that's been submitted to festivals or YouTube or out in the world.

What benefits are there to being a Gothtober Artist?

Gothtober artists gain international fame and glory! Our stats monitor has shown that we are recognized the world over as the premiere Halloween Countdown Calendar featuring independent artists every day of October. People all over the planet will see your work, some of the pieces go on to premier at film festivals! Barry Morse's piece "Ookie Cookie" from 2008 went on to show at OutFest and Homo A-GoGo, as well as Jimena Sarno and Ms Bea's film El Miedo (Fear) that showed in the 47th Annual Ann Arbor Film Festival 2009.

Where can I keep up on the latest Gothtober developments?

Check out the Gothtober blog!

Who makes Gothtober?

Gothtober is a small group of ghouls who love Halloween!

The Gothtober Countdown Calendar is produced, curated, directed and illustrated by the Head Candycorn, Julianna Parr.

Cristin Pescosolido is our Horrific High Priestess of all things web, part-time programmer and head of media output.

Cathy Davies is our Gothtober Programmer, the evil mad scientist behind what makes the Gothtober calendar tick.

Our PR is handled by none other than the illustrious "Heinous Heather" Thomas.

And, of course, the calendar would simply not exist without the weird and wonderful work of our Gothtober Artists.

How did Gothtober start?

I was experimenting with time-release options in Flash, and came up with a Xmas advent calendar back in 2002. I designed all the art and work behind the doors myself. The following year, I invited 25 friends (as there are 25 days to Xmas) to contribute to the piece. Then I thought... how can I get more doors and make it less about Xmas and make it way weirder? I know! I'll make a countdown to Halloween! The first Gothtober was born in 2003. -JP

What size do I need to design for?

General Gothtober Day Console: The exact size of the window your art will fit in (artist console) is 650 pixels wide x 500 pixels tall. This is what is known as the 4:3 aspect ratio, the "TV" ratio. (If you're making something in print, that's about 9" x 7") Frame rate is 30 frames per second There will be a special "Gothtober" border/frame around every piece, it will be sent to you as soon as possible, so that you may plan accordingly for it's existence around your art. Go to www.gothtober.com and click on any one of the days to see the example size from 2008. Also: If you are making your piece in FLASH, we will be working in a legacy format, so please let us know if you only have Flash 5, so that we may work with you in making sure that the Actionscript from you melds well with ours.

If I make something and it's compressed, will it look crappy?

All music, visuals and other elements within Gothtober are compressed for maximum viewer access. Things are going to sound waaaaay less than pristine (very popply and warbly and crackly), and images (especially if they are video/Quicktime movies) will not be as crisp as you'd like them to be. Subtle use of color or things shot in very dark light is not recommended, neither is video work that is particularly text-heavy, as it will muddy up quite a bit and be largely unreadable.

If you are particularly concerned about this issue, talk with us about it ASAP, there may be things that can be done in the preparation/creation of your piece that will save time and prevent disappointment.

When can I put my piece on YouTube?

The whole reason it's a COUNTDOWN CALENDAR is because everyone's got to wait to see your awesome art piece! Don't spoil it for them! Before Gothtober is launched, we respectfully ask that you not launch your piece on YouTube or anywhere else until Gothtober has had its run and October 31st has come and gone. And please keep in mind that we have a Gothtober Video Channel on YouTube, and you may be showcased on that site as well for posterity.

What are the requirements of making a:

     Slideshow-Style Presentation?
     Animated Flash Movies or Interactive Content?
     Video/Quicktime Movie?
     Printable Document (like stories, or a fold-out craft project)?
     Downloadable Music Files or other goodies?
     Anything Else We Haven't Thought of?

Please go to Gothtober.com and click on ARCHIVE and go to any Gothtober after 2008 to view size specs, frame rate and general inspiration.

Slideshow-Style Presentation

(Examples in the 2010 Calendar are days 2, 5, 8, 11 and 14 and 24) (Examples in the 2008 Calendar are Days: 7,11, 12, 13, 14, 19, 28)

This could be a gallery of works, a story w/pictures, a recipe w/steps, comics, a poem w/visuals, etc.

Show can be activated by viewer pressing buttons (interactive mode) or a timed show that has no buttons that runs by itself.

Limited to 20 images or less.

Music limited to one minute, looped.

You will need a title page, an end page, BACK and NEXT buttons in addition to your content.

And if you don't know how to program or make buttons, that's okay, we can help you with such things, but prepare to meet and talk with us A LOT!

Animated Flash Movies & Interactive Content like Games or other types of interactive content

Examples from Gothtober 2008 are Days: 1, 21, 23, 31 (Examples of Flash Movies/Animation from the 2010 calendar are days: 6, 13, 23)

(Examples in the 2005 Calendar are Days: 4, 18, 23, 24, 30, 31) A "choose your own adventure" style Flash presentation can be found in Gothtober 2009 DAY 13)

Stories, cartoons, click-through narrations, "choose your own adventure" and arcade style games! Please follow size requirements: 650 pixels wide x 500 pixels tall. This is what is known as the 4:3 aspect ratio, the "TV" ratio. Music limited to one minute, looped, unless you have big plans like dialogue or other specifics (in which we can discuss what is needed) Frame rate is 30 frames per second! Every movie needs title cards for the end and beginning of the piece, a PLAY button, and it is imperative that within Flash, as far as Flash movies go: 1.) Make sure you have a background in your film, and not a transparent background (ask me if you are confused by this) 2.) Mask your layers, make sure everything stays within the confines of the 650 x 500 window. Movie times must not exceed 3 minutes (and yes, if it's "click-through" based, it's not going to have a time constraint) Gothtober frame png "console" will be provided to you so that you can work within its confines. Loading bar won't be necessary, one will be provided by Gothtober.

Quicktime Movies

(Examples in the 2008 Calendar are days: 2, 3, 4,5,8, 9, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 22, 24, 25, 26, 27, 29

Examples of movies from Gothtober 2010 : 1, 2, 7, 9, 12, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, 27, 29, 30, 31

This includes creepy music videos, eerie murder movies, tales of gruesome revenge and strife! When possible, please provide us with a .flv file containing your precompressed video. (Stage size specs will be coming later.) We will provide the loading bar. We will provide a frame .png so you can work within its confines for framing your video.

Remember to use bight colorful imagery and stay away from tiny objects and signage, since when things get compressed, it becomes unreadable or looks kinda crappy.

Movie Time Limit: THREE MINUTES (give or take 15 seconds...) You will need title cards for the beginning and end of your piece, as well as PLAY and PLAY AGAIN buttons. We can help you with this, but just so you know what's what, go look at some examples of the buttons/title cards on Gothtober's past pieces so you will see what is needed. If you send us raw video, it will be compressed into flash using state-of-the-art methods, and kept to a file size no larger than 7 megs unless you're willing to chip in some dough for our bandwidth costs. If you don't know how to compress your movie (or don't possess the technology), we can help you, but please plan to be working with us early on this.

Printable Things

(Examples in the 2005 Calendar are days: 6, 10)

A file for download that can be printed: Paintings, Mini-books, Halloween Masks, Cards, posters, fold-&-print projects, gameboards, trading cards, ANYTHING made on paper that you want to share with the world that can be printed and assembled/displayed by the viewer.

Actual physical artwork delivered must be no larger than 8 1/2 x 11" (must be sent earlier for digital prep)

Digital files must be same measurements (for easy printing) sent as Illustrator, Photoshop or hi-res jpg file at 180 dpi or larger. Let us know if you want us to provide a soundtrack, or if you have one prepared.

Downloadable Music Files or other goodies:

Examples from 2008 Gothtober can be found in days 6 and 30

(Example in the 2005 Calendar is Day 2- this piece also has a Quicktime movie in it)

CD-quality recordings of tunes or spoken word you've made that you want people to have for listening! Home-made gothtober sound effects, 1 minute of evil laughter, dippy country song about pumpkins, plunking the guitar and yodeling about goblins...etc.

Please no files larger than 7 megs, unless you're willing to chip in some dough for our bandwidth costs.

If you don't know how to compress your sound (or don't possess the technology), I can help you, but please plan to be working with me early on this.

Anything Else We Haven't Thought of:

(Example in the 2005 Calendar is day 11)

The most unique day we've had is a "mystery bike ride" that anyone can take from anywhere in the world. If you come up with something new, HOORAY! Tell me what it is, and we'll see if we can do it!

contacting us

Do you have more questions/concerns? e-mail us at