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imagejpeg_0It sucks when a day turns into a milestone that makes you flashback to so much loss. An annual reminder of how long you have lived your life without someone in it. A day you flashback to when you were a child and felt the worse pain imaginable. For 27 years, March 16th has been a day of mourning,  a day of feeling incomplete, a day of “why her?”,  a day of confusion, a day or feeling alone, a day of tears you can’t hold back even in public, a constant reminder of when my entire world got turned upside down. The day the world lost an incredible woman. My mother.

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Every year on this day I go to the cemetery in her memory and it’s never easy. This year I decided to make a special bouquet for her. I am hoping it might help to use symbolism and to honor her instead of focusing so much on the loss of her not being here. I used flowers in some of the bright colors I know she would like. My goal was “let’s brighten such a sad and shitty day…….somehow.” Yes, the pink ribbon symbolizes breast cancer but to me, it also symbolizes that she was a fighter!  The owl represents who she was as a person. She loved owls and they remind me of the happier times of my childhood as they decorated the house we lived in. But they are also very wise, strong and beautiful creatures…… just like her.

As another step of trying to focus this creation 6tag_230716-104736post in her memory. I want to end it with a photo of her and I that always makes me smile. My Mom was a funny lady and my brother and I  get a lot of my personality from her. As you can also see in this photo 🙂 This one’s for you Mom! You may not be here physically, but your spirit will always live on within us. Thank you for giving us the foundation that helps to keep us strong.  For the signs, you send to Mike and I that let us know you’re with us or that you know what we are facing. For bringing random people into our lives at just the right times that help to keep us going. Your love shines through them. Thank you for being the woman you were to help me become the woman I am.

Never Forgotten,
LDG Nicole

Happy Birthday To My Biggest Inspiration!

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It’s Throwback Thursday but, more importantly, it’s my Daddio’s Birthday! So this post is in tribute to the man who has supported and believed in me and my craft since I was a young batling.

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I know I say I am inspired by so many famous artists, but my Dad has been my biggest inspiration since I picked up my first crayon. He taught me so many of the art skills I use today and I continually grow as an artist and a person because of him. When I doubt myself he pushes me not to give up and even has his own sketch pad full of suggestions ready to help me out.

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He never fails to amaze me with his talent and he has also inspired and introduced me to so many things that I still love today which in their own way have shaped me not only into the artist I am today but the woman I am today as well. It was him who had the giant cardboard cut out of Elvira that perked my interest into who she was and started my realization that you don’t have to look like Barbie to be stunning! It was him who took me to the video store every weekend to literally overuse their copy of Jim Henson’s Labyrinth. It was him who took me at a young age to see my first Tim Burton movie. It was him who took me to see the Little Mermaid and then afterward when we got home sat down with me and drew all the characters together. It was him who took me to the store to buy all the art supplies I needed to enter every art contest imaginable. It was him who let me listen to his Tom Petty and Aerosmith albums and fall in love with classic rock. I could go on and on.. but to sum it up, you can all thank my Dad for the weirdo I have become and am so proud to be.

Happy Birthday Daddio!  Thank you for teaching me to “Fink Differently!”

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“You belong among the wildflowers”

With Love,
Nic

Remains: Dad’s Very Own Yellow Submarine

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As you have seen in past posts and on the Remains page of my portfolio site, my husband and I often team up to make custom wood signs for people. We had been wanting to make a special sign for my Dad for quite some time now. The fact that he has been putting together his art space in his new house inspired us to do it for Father’s Day.

See my Dad is not only an artist but has also influenced my rock music taste. One of his favorite things is the Beatles Yellow Submarine. So we made him his very own……..

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He was pretty blown away by it and totally surprised when he opened it. Just what we were hoping for. I can’t wait to see how it looks hanging in his studio! Here is a little collage I made of the photos from Father’s Day…..

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Stay Spooky and Keep Rockin’!
LDG Nicole

Drippings: Harley Quinn For Ava

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Saturday was my goddaughter Ava’s very first gymnastics recital. In lieu of traditional flowers or stuffed animals I decided to put my artistic abilities to good use. Besides, Aunt Nicole is far from traditional anyways. 🙂 Seeing she is a big Harley Quinn fan (she even dressed up like the DC Super Hero Girls version of her this past Halloween) and often mentions the fact that she is a gymnast too, I used that for my inspiration. Seeing how passionate Ava is about this I decided to paint her a little Harley Quinn of her own. I even added some magical “super power” glitter to the blue and red streaks in her hair!

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Now typically you would give them their gifts after the recital. However as soon as she saw me holding a gift bag she started to ask questions ha ha. Then when I told her I made her something she got so excited I couldn’t hold off any more and let her open it. I made sure to tell her I made it because I am so proud of her!

When she opened it she said “HARLEY QUINN!!! HOW DO YOU DO THIS!!” and was all smiles! Totally made my day to see how much she loved it. Then she read the little note I put on the back “Ava… Follow Your Dreams. Love Aunt Nicole”

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On top of it she did an amazing job at her recital. Girl was on stage doing tumbling and one arm cartwheels without hesitation. So proud of her!

See more of my paintings on the Drippings page of my portfolio site!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole