Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Portrait Sculpture Urn

I searched around... I can't believe these don't exist!
  [vote for,

Last year, I lost one of my cherished friends, Tahj the Ferret, when he chewed the cap off a bottle of children's liquid Tylenol and ingested the contents. I held him as he wheezed his life away, gasping and fighting for his final breaths. I did everything I could to revive him... but it didn't work, and he passed away in my hands. I only had Tahj for about 6 months, but I quickly grew attached to the charming, feisty little guy, and it was indescribably painful when he died. I buried him in my backyard, wrapped in his favorite blanket, with his favorite toys, inside a shoebox wrapped in 3 layers of Saran-Wrap, 2 layers of Aluminum foil, another layer of Saran-Wrap, another layer of aluminum foil, and 6 layers of red and black duct tape, with a poem dedicated to my little friend displayed in a heavy-duty sheet-protector securely taped to the outside. Thusly, he was lowered into the earth and buried, hopefully protected from the elements for a very long time.

It pains me that when I move to another home, I will leave behind his gravesite and will never again get to pay my respects. I realize I could dig up his box and take him with me, and with it protected by as many layers as it is, it will probably be perfectly still-intact. But I shudder at the thought of disturbing his remains in such a manner.

This led me to thinking of what I would do if I ever lost my dog, Corona. I know I couldn't bear the thought of leaving her behind in such a manner. I've raised her since she was only 7 weeks old, and she was my sole companion during many of the most difficult and lonely times in my life. I want her remains to be with me wherever I go (at home, anyways, not on my person at all times). This led me to look into options for urns in which I could keep her ashes. I've seen many special urns, crafted beautifully. I've also seen even more- beatifully crafted portrait sculptures. A portrait sculpture is a sculpture crafted in the exact likeness of a person or pet.

What I have not seen, and what I feel would be the only appropriate vessel for the remains of my beloved Corona, is something that combines the two. A Portrait Sculpture Urn: an urn-sculpture crafted in the exact likeness of the preson/pet who's remains it carries inside.

21 Quest, Mar 18 2009

Might be helpful. http://www.patentst...6615463/claims.html
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Mar 18 2009]

Not a self promo...just seemed relevant. http://www.halfbake...m/idea/Matrioshkurn
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Mar 18 2009]

Baked: Portrait sculpture urn. http://www.crematio...onal-Urns-c109.html
Particularly apropriate if your loved one was killed by Sylar. [jutta, Aug 02 2009]

Baked: Metro news article http://www.metro.co...n_article_id=712809
(For non-UK readers - the Metro is a free paper and is not necessarily top-quality, trustworthy journalism) [hippo, Aug 03 2009]


       Wow... that was a fast bone. Any particular reason?
21 Quest, Mar 18 2009

       seems rather excessive [ ]
FlyingToaster, Mar 19 2009

       That's the point, FT. But can any expression of affection for a lost loved one be considered excessive? Besides, it's a lot less excessive, and less expensive, than a tomb or marble headstone such a lot of wealthy folks get for their loved ones. And you can take it with you, wherever you go.

       2-fries, those are pretty good ideas. I'd read yours, actually, and I really enjoyed reading it. The idea you linked to seems rather expensive. My idea is for a statue of the deceased with a hollow inside that contains the ashes.
21 Quest, Mar 19 2009

       The loss of a pet brings a lot of pain. Been there. +
xenzag, Mar 19 2009

       I read an account of a potter whose beloved dog died. She had the dog cremated and then used the ashes as a glaze on a coffee mug, so that she could then use the mug every day as a reminder of this dog (ashes are mostly silicates and trace amounts of other elements and when heated to 1200C or thereabouts melt like a glass - you may need to add some other traditional glaze ingredients, like calcium carbonate and tin oxide to stabilise it though). This seems to be to be a much more pleasant way of remembering a pet than thinking about it slowly liquifying inside multiple layers of plastic and duct tape in my garden. The other approach I'd suggest is mummification: The ancient Egyptians used to mummify all sorts of animals - either for some religious reason, or because they were practising. Anyway the British Museum has some fantastic mummified fish, cats and birds.
hippo, Mar 19 2009

21 Quest, Mar 19 2009

       Wow, I read this and thought it was about an actual child being burried in the backyard. I quickly scrolled down to see who posted it. I saw your name and figured I would read it again. I understand now it is about animals. My initial horror restrains me from voting.
zeno, Mar 19 2009

       sorry, I misread it as you mummified your pet in duct-tape which I thought was a bit weird... [+] and sorry for your loss..... last year I buried "LS" (cat) in her favorite (my) quilted shirt.
FlyingToaster, Mar 19 2009

       Zeno... what made you think "Tahj the Ferret" was a human child?
21 Quest, Mar 20 2009

       Does this, perhaps, give us a clue as to the names of [zeno]'s children?
hippo, Mar 20 2009

       I was quickreading and saw //cherished friends\\ and //children's\\ in the same sentence. Then I skipped to //six months\\ and //little guy\\.

       My son is not called Ferret.
zeno, Mar 20 2009

       The last paragraph is very concise. I envision a website where you send in a picture and they put bas relief into the urns using machine.

       I commiserate with you, [21], over dead pets.
daseva, Mar 20 2009

       Ah, I get it, Zeno. Easy to misread. Daseva, thanks.
21 Quest, Mar 20 2009

       I would vote for a portrait scupture gurn.
bungston, Mar 20 2009

       S'pose the only problem is that many animals which are kept as pets don't live all that long meaning you'd end up with a house full of funeral urns. I'd rate myself as a moderate indulger in animal companionship but if I had one of these for every pet I've lost to natural causes, I'd have sculpture urns of 1 cat, 2 dogs, 3 gerbils, about 40 fish of various types (and try sculpting a pygmy corydoras!) and an entire bushfull of stick insects. Perhaps you could make a single, expandable or extendable urn for your ongoing pet remains storage requirements.

       (and chin up, [21], hope you're feeling better)
squeak, Mar 23 2009

       Xen, you say a large number of deceased pets would make this a problem, but I disagree. You see, I love art sculptures, especially those depicting animals. The only problem is, I cannot ever seem to justify to myself spending money and space in my home for a statue of animals I've never even seen in person, let alone known personally. With something like this, I could satisfy three passions of mine: The passion for art, the passion for conversation pieces, and the passion for nostalgia. Eventually, as the years go by, I will accumulate many such urns, which will make fine display and conversation pieces to adorn my home, for what better topic topic to discuss than friends who are gone but never forgotten? And, as the years pass, and age overtakes me, and my mind weakens, what better way to help retain my fading memories, than to be surrounded by physical representations of the wonderful creatures who helped make many of them?
21 Quest, Mar 23 2009

       //Gotta ask. Would that include humans too ?//

       It absolutely might. It might seem a little macabre, though.
21 Quest, Mar 23 2009

       No, no, not stuffing. And not a death mask. A death mask is a wax or plaster mold of the deceased person's face. My idea is for a scuplture, of stone or bronze or copper, of the whole of the person in a pose, either sculpted while the subject is alive and able to actually pose for the scuplture, or produced from photographs taken from various angles while the subject was alive.
21 Quest, Mar 23 2009

       The one in those links is very close... but not quite what I had in mind. They only do heads, not the whole person, and they don't say if they do pets or not.
21 Quest, Aug 03 2009


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