Back Bone: KeepItHandmade Auction Items Revealed

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I created this little collage showcasing the items I will have up for bid for the Instagram Artist Auction taking place tomorrow at @keepithandmade. All of these items have been revealed on their page so go check them out and give the listings some love and shares while you wait for the auction to open.

This Artist Auction is a great opportunity for you to stay home and still get to shop! But this time you will be helping all the artists/vendors/small businesses that are participating. When the auction opens tomorrow at 7pm CST just visit the @keepithandmade Instagram page, go to the item you want and comment your bid amount. Be sure to read the caption description of every item for their starting bid and BIN details.

I would like to showcase 1 of my items as it is a special framed print of the art piece I drew and gifted to my dear friend Sid Haig. As most of you know Sid passed away last year so I have chosen to give all of my proceeds from this item to his wife, “my sista” Suzie. This will help her with the upcoming medical procedures and the expenses she needs help with now more than ever. So if you bid on any of my items please consider bidding on this one as the cause is very dear to my heart and I would really like to raise as much money as I can from this item to help her. You can find, like, share and bid on it HERE!

Happy Bidding!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

My Art Is Now Available At Closet Collectibles!

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I am very excited to announce that I have partnered up with one of my favorite places to shop…. Closet Collectibles! This is the place my husband and I frequent during our treasure hunting adventures and on one of our recent visits they offered me a special place to display and sell my creations in their store. This gives you Freaky Fanatics a chance to now see and purchase my artwork up close and in person without waiting for me to vend my next event.

Closet Collectibles located at 1626 Wood Street, Crete IL 60417

Closet Collectibles is a family owned, small business located in Crete IL that focuses on everything you could imagine collecting and for all ages! This includes stuff for us big kids who still enjoy a memorable toy from their childhood or an action figure that was discontinued that you still can’t live without (yes I am speaking from experience). People travel from all over to come to their shop because their variety and staff are incredible and their inventory is always growing. Each time you visit there you are sure to see or find something new and never leave empty handed.

Here is a sneak peak of some of my items currently on display in their store….

Shopping with Closet Collectibles means you are supporting a small, family owned business that is not only passionate about what they do but also believes in this local artist. So the next time you plan your next treasure hunting adventure make sure to add Closet Collectibles to your list of stops and also follow them on Facebook for inventory updates every Wednesday!

Don’t forget to tell them Living Dead Girl Nicole sent you and make sure to adventure through both floors of their amazing inventory! You can thank me later!

Closet Collectibles is located at 1626 Wood Street, Crete IL 60417 and they are open weekly Wednesday – Sunday from 11am – 5pm CST.

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Spitting Image: I Will Carry On

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Some of you may have noticed from my lack of posts that I have been in quite of an art rut. To say the least 2019 was a hard year for me and it took a toll on me creatively. Normally I would use my art as a form of escape but this past year there was a lot of death and loss that really took over and I started to feel like my art was something I was pressuring myself to do just to keep up with other creatives. In other words, this piece I am about to share with you not only represents the character I was inspired by but also a big piece of myself as well.

As a Jim Henson geek it comes as no surprise that I would fall in love with Netflix’s Dark Crystal Age Of Resistance. However, I didn’t expect to be so drawn into (pun intended) and relate so much to one of it’s main characters. That character being Deet, who I now refer to as my gelfling heroine.

Like myself, Deet (born Deethra) is a creative and sympathetic empath who feels very deeply. Being a misunderstood Grottan, she may not have the most confidence sometimes but she doesn’t let others negativity discourage her. Instead she pays it forward to inspire others to be true to themselves and try to see the world more optimistically. She will do anything to heal the pain of the ones she loves no matter how draining or overwhelming it may become for her. On top of it Deet has a soft spot for creatures and animals (hence the hint and reference in the opener of my last post) making her that more sympathetic and amped to join The Resistance and help save all of Thra from the darkness. So in other words if Nicole was a gelfling.

I was so in tune with this character that she got me picking up my drawing pencils again and helped to give me my motivation back. Then again if anyone could be inspired in real life by a puppet it’s this girl right here! When I finished this piece I was not sure what I was going to call it and then I decided on “I Will Carry On” which was a phrase that Deet says in the show (I won’t say when incase you haven’t splurged on this masterpiece yet) but I find it very fitting to Deet’s personality, her sacrifices, how I relate to her personally, my overall vision for this piece and the fact I was trying to overcome not only my art rut but other obstacles in my life while creating it.

I actually have been working on this piece on and off again since the end of December. I know this is not typical of me but ehhh art ruts suck to get out of and if you don’t want to mess what you have started up you don’t rush it. I also wanted it to have a soft feel to it so I used pencil, charcoal and chalk pastels.

I am very happy with the way it turned out and I have since accepted the fact that I don’t have to feel the pressure to make something all the time to be considered an artist. I just need to feel the inspiration and let it take over when the time is right. I have also taken on additional ways of self healing to bring more zen into my life and I feel this has helped me to release some of my artistic tension. This piece is a wonderful representation of where I was and where I am going. The Deet in me hopes this piece also finds a way to speak to and inspire other empaths and tortured artists out there that may need it.

If you would like to see more of my portrait work feel free to visit the Spitting Image page of my portfolio website. If your a Deet, Dark Crystal or Jim Henson fan and would like a print or a shirt of this art piece, they will be available in my Amazon Shop starting today!

Stay Spooky & Resist!
LDG Nicole of the Grottan Clan

Hardcore Hearse Club Show 2019

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Lily Munster Rain Day.gifSaturday was our Hardcore Hearse Club‘s big annual hearse show at Brauerhouse.  Despite it being a rainy day the show was still a big success with lots of people coming and going throughout the day into the evening hours. But then again storms don’t scare us strange and unusual folks!

It was great to see familiar faces who came out specifically to support us. As you know I have been working endlessly on creating and getting my inventory ready and Frank has been working hard at getting Frankenhearse running smoothly and looking sharp! By the time the show started, we were exhausted. At the show, we were exhausted and after the 2HyvfAfshow, we were even more exhausted ha ha. So to have our friends come out to support us means just as much if not more then the sales I make at my table. It’s like my favorite episode of The Office when Pam decides to do the art show and Michael Scott comes out and supports her. I literally cry EVERY time I watch it. I know exactly what it feels like to be afraid but still, put yourself and your work out there. And how much it means to have people you care about come out and show they believe in you.

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I was vending solo this year (my volunteer partner in crime had to go to a wedding) but I was kept busy with all of the people who visited my table. It was great to hear “oh wow you made this?” or “you drew this?” and to know that so many of you chose to purchase some of my art or handmade creations vs. other things people were selling that you can get retail at the store or online. It speaks volumes! So many of you purchased art prints this year and it has really got me itching to pick up my drawing pencils because when life gets in the way, it’s the people like you that keep me inspired!

Here are a few shots of my table set up. This year I was between 2 other vendors who I befriended.. of corpse!

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The incredible dress I am wearing is from my all-time favorite clothing line Sourpuss Clothing! As soon as I saw they had a GREEN and WHITE HEARSE dress I knew I had to have it. Not just for the show but because it totally matches our Frankenhearse! I even wrote to the company and told them I really wanted to wear it for the show and they made sure it got to me on time! This dress is gonna get a lot of use at future car shows!

And speaking of Frankenhearse.. here are some shots our friends took of our beast outside on display during the show.

And last but not least, here is a great Freaky Fanatic photo posted by Ashley who purchased one of my “Friends Til The End” portrait prints at the show and gifted it.  So awesome to see how much he loved it!

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Did you buy something from me at the show? Let’s see your pictures! I would love to feature you on my site as well! Also, keep an eye out on my Amazon shop as I will be adding some unique items that were left over from the show!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Xmas Turnaround Times

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It’s that time of year again. Halloween is over (waaah) and before you know it Christmas will be upon us. So this is just a friendly reminder that if you want to order any of my art shirts for gift giving to keep in mind turnaround times. Each shirt is custom made to order. They average 2 weeks to produce and get shipped out once the order is placed in my Etsy or Amazon shops.

Actor Sid Haig holds up his Living Dead Girl Nicole shirt

Living Dead Girl Nicole’s art shirts are Sid Haig approved! 🙂

I am also already getting orders in for custom Dead Girl Decay barrettes and inquiries for other custom creations, so if you are looking for me to handcraft you something unique for a gift, make sure to reach out to me ASAP so we can discuss your vision. Most custom items need time for ordering supplies and then additional time to actually make your vision come to life.

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Artist Shoutout: Troll Hunting the works of Thomas Dambo

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Yesterday my husband Frank and I had the day off work and decided to go on a day date adventure. I had heard that the Morton Arboretum was having a troll exhibit featuring 15-30ft trolls designed/created by artist Thomas Dambo. Needless to say, this Jim Henson, Brian Froud fantasy loving geek was in her glory. If it has to do with monsters, goblins, trolls, mermaids, fairies, gnomes, unicorns or anything else mythical from fairytale land…sign me up!

This is how their website describes the exhibit:
Journey through our far-reaching forest to hunt for six colossal trolls crafted from reclaimed wood by Danish artist Thomas Dambo. Marvel at these 15- to 30-foot-tall (and one 60-foot long) sculptures that have been created to serve as protectors of our environment. These mysterious creatures—resembling the trolls of European folklore—were first spotted at the Arboretum in the spring of 2018. As sightings increased, an official investigation was launched to learn about these fascinating new residents. The trolls share the Arboretum’s desire to care for trees; however, they seem suspicious of humans. We need you to join the investigation and help trolls and humans come to understand each other. What will you discover when you join the hunt?

Seriously! Sign me up.

Well due to me still trying to heal from my sprained ankle, the heat and sporadic rain (which interesting enough made the whole adventure feel even more authentic) we decided to do the driving route. Doing the drive and park is the way to go even without a sprained ankle. You still have to walk and go find the trolls but you don’t have to walk miles upon miles to get to their general area. Not to mention you don’t get as tired and can really enjoy and take it all in. The arboretum is HUGE (17,00 acres) and the trolls are spread throughout all of it. Driving through the woods was magical in itself and the map they give you is both helpful and fun to follow!

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Here are some photos we took during our adventure. Click on any of them to enlarge and read the captions. These wood sculptures are massive but still incredibly detailed! We were blown away by them.

 

Such a magical day! I am literally honored we were able to experience these magnificent pieces of art and so thrilled that Morton Arboretum and Thomas Dambo brought this to Illinois for dreamers like us to enjoy!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Slasher Sale Starts Black Friday!

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I just wanted to let my Freaky Fanatics know that I will be running a sale that starts on Black Friday and ends with Cyber Monday.
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Just use coupon code SLASHER16 during check out in my Etsy shop between 11/25 – 11/28 and get $5 slashed off any order of $30 or more! 

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole