Geeky Gecko Tank Makeover

16 May

Written for CulturSHOCK’s tutorial section CulturCRAFT. Read submission.

Lyle Lyle Crocodile’s Geeky Tank Background.

With all the geeky accessories for the human population, it’s easy to forget about giving our pets a little personality of their own to enjoy. If you’re not a fan of dressing your pet, you missed out on Pet Smart’s amazing Marvel pet themed products, or your pet is not of the roam around free variety, this is the craft for you! With a tank background, magazines, stickers, glue, and some imagination, your reptile, amphibian, fish, insect, or mammal can enjoy its own sanctuary of nerdom.



First you’ll want to gather your supplies. A tank background (cut down to size of course), magazines and sticker books to decorate, and glue. You can choose to go with one theme, or go all out and have an extravaganza of geekery as I have chosen. Both the magazine section and children’s book portions of your local stores should have what you need. I opted to go the multi-fandom route with some dinosaurs and fun miscellaneous photos I found while browsing Target.


Cut out your desired pictures and stickers. I highly recommend playing around with a layout before you glue stuff down. This way if you change your mind or want to alter something it won’t be that much of a hassle to rectify it later. If the stickers have an additional background, I highly recommend you cut around the picture to make the items look more natural in the space.


Once you are happy with the finished results, glue and stick everything down and attach the completed background to the tank with a clear tape. Voila, a simple, affordable project that you and your pet can enjoy. Lyle Lyle Crocodile and I enjoy our finished product immensely. I have included some in-depth shots and more tips I learned while creating the background below.




The left, middle, and right of my tank background respectively. I went for a hodgepodge of different themes, and made sure to evenly fill up the space while still working with the location of the items in the background. This is why it’s so important to get a feel for everything before you commit to it. If something doesn’t look right, there’s still time to change it without sacrificing your vision. Try a few different things, you may be surprised with the end result.


Perhaps my favorite part of this background is the Avengers fighting Hitler. When I cam across Hitler in a history magazine at the store I knew I wanted to incorporate him somehow, and with the Avengers stickers being so active I decided to pit them in a fight scene against the ultimate evil. It works particularly well considering the use of Hitler in both Captain America and the Avengers films.


For this scene, I have Captain America flying past the earth with his trusty dinosaur companion also floating by on a craft of his own. Add a lightsaber toting Yoda hopping on the back of an brontosaur neck and you have the recipe for hilarity. The rainbow Tony Stark left behind certainly does not help his bad boy image.


The tank needed some Agent Coulson love, so I featured him popping out from behind a rock while a happy unicorn stands next to him. Just because I could. Down from the top of the background comes a giant snake tempting him with a copy of Barney Stinson’s The Bro Code, because a snake with an apple just would have been too biblical and much less fun.


Finally, the crowning close-up features an enormous Loki emerging from the darkness between two pieces of driftwood. This is why I recommended cutting the stickers out of their original backgrounds and working with the background’s landscape. As a severed head, Loki would have been much less effective elsewhere in this scene. Feel free to use your imagination and alter the materials you have at your disposal whichever way you see fit. It’s your project, so don’t feel like it has to fit in a specific mold. Most importantly, have fun!

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