Rachel Ciavarella/Kickstarter
Rachel Ciavarella/Kickstarter

Reversible Anglerfish Toy Doubles as an Interactive Anatomy Lesson

Rachel Ciavarella/Kickstarter
Rachel Ciavarella/Kickstarter

Unless teachers have a specimen ready for dissection, it’s hard to turn a lesson in fish anatomy into a hands-on experience. But artist and designer Rachel Ciavarella thinks she’s found a way. Her reversible plush dolls use different materials to bring the inner workings of an anglerfish to life through touch.

According to Colossal, the toy originated as a class project. After seeing the excitement it inspired, Ciavarella decided to take her product to Kickstarter with hopes of making it available to a wider audience.

Rachel Ciavarella / Kickstarter

From the outside, the fish looks like a normal stuffed animal, with a fleece body and jagged teeth cut from felt. But once you turn it inside-out, all the glorious guts are on display. Each part is crafted from a different touch-friendly material like canvas, sateen, faux sherpa, and chiffon. He even has a cute name. Ciavarella writes,

“Morris is named after all of my dead goldfish. As a child, every time I got a new goldfish I would name it Morris and it would inevitably die, as goldfish eventually do. Their memories can now live on through the immortal toy Morris fish.”

With a week still left to go in the campaign, Ciavarella has already raised more than $26,000 of her $25,000 goal. Backers can reserve a Morris of their own for a pledge of $40 or more with shipping set for June of next year.

[h/t Colossal]

YouTube / MBARI
Hello, Horrible Anglerfish
YouTube / MBARI
YouTube / MBARI

The anglerfish is one of the creepiest, nastiest fish I can think of. An animated anglerfish gave me nightmares in Finding Nemo, but the real creature is worse. In this video from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, we get a very rare look at a live anglerfish, who seems mostly interested in getting away from the camera. Just look at that horrible thing. Look at those gross jaws, those dead eyes. And listen to the narration, explaining the anglerfish's horror-movie lifestyle. Okay, roll the ugliness:

Now that you've watched that, check out The Horrors of Anglerfish Mating...if you dare.

YouTube / PESfilm
5 Brilliant Stop-Motion Animated Films By PES
YouTube / PESfilm
YouTube / PESfilm

PES is Adam Pesapane, a filmmaker whose best-known work is stop-motion animation. His 2012 film Fresh Guacamole (shown below) is the shortest film ever nominated for an Academy Award. I got to see some PES films in person over the weekend, and was blown away; if you've got just a minute or two, I promise these are worth your time. This is all real, fully analog, non-computer-generated imagery, shot over many days.

Fresh Guacamole

My favorite part: dicing the onion.

Western Spaghetti

A precursor to Fresh Guacamole, you can see how some similar ideas are at play here.


Beware the deadly peanut. Oh, and there's a making of video for this one.

Game Over

Pac-Man's death is curiously satisfying.

The Deep

Moody, dark, awesome.

Tons More

If you liked that, just check out PES's website or his YouTube channel.


More from mental floss studios