Halloween Henson Coven 2022!

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So last year for Halloween weekend my husband Frank and I went on a little road trip to have Famous Monster pizza for our wedding anniversary dinner and came home in time for Halloween day where I transformed myself into a Muppet (Dr. Teeth to be exact). Then this year we went on a longer road trip to see Muppets and got home in time for Halloween day where I transformed myself into a “supreme” witch! The best of both worlds 2 years in a row and my heart is full.

You could imagine when we got to Grand Rapids Art Museum for the Jim Henson Exhibition, Imagination Unlimited that I would take tons of photos with everything in the exhibit. I narrowed it down to some of my favorites to share here and it was still hard to choose. For instance, Labyrinth has always been my all time favorite movie. I had a hard time pulling myself away from Jareth’s iconic Goblin King Masquerade suit. If people were not waiting for their turn to see it I could’ve stood there all day in complete awe. Just knowing there was only a display case between me and this sparkly wonder that David Bowie (aka as my “fairy godfather”) wore just blew my mind. I felt the same magic at that very moment that I felt the first time my Dad introduced me to the film as a young gelfling.

When it came to the puppets themselves it felt like you were about to meet a celebrity. I know that sounds crazy.. but that excitement you get standing in line at a con to meet your favorite actor.. add your inner child about to burst at the seams of your very existence and that was me.

One of the really remarkable things about this exhibit was not only being this close to Jim Henson’s work but also seeing the workmanship and production materials up close. From to the materials used on Grovers mouth.. to the glass in Count Von Count’s monocle, it was truly remarkable to experience as a fan but also take it all in as an artist who has been inspired by the magic of Jim Henson their whole life. We walked the exhibit multiple times and I even got to experience putting on a puppet show in a booth they had set up. As you can see from the cheesy grin on my face I didn’t want to leave.

When we got home from our little anniversary getaway it was time to finally reveal this year’s costume to everyone on Halloween day. Not checked off my art bucket list (yet) but officially off my costume bucket list.. I present to you the one and only real supreme.. Myrtle Snow (as portrayed by me but originally portrayed by the incredible Frances Conroy in American Horror Story). I loved how naturally my sassiness came out reincarnating the look of Myrtle. Forever one of my all time favorite AHS characters I couldn’t help but feel powerful stepping into her shoes.

I hope all my Freaky Fanatics had a wonderful Halloween and I appreciate all of your patience with getting back to you on art and order inquiries while I have been away.

If you are new here and like this post, be sure to check out the Skinned page of my portfolio website and feel free to leave a comment with the costume you think I should do next year!

Balenciaga!
LDG Nicole

Creature Feature: The Jim Henson Legacy

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I feel like I just won at Halloween! My Dr. Teeth Costume was featured in the recent issue of the Official Jim Henson Legacy Newsletter! Am I totally geeking out right now? Yeah.. a little. NO.. A LOT! Thank you so much to Craig Shemin for including me! I am so honored to be any part of keeping the magic of Jim Henson alive!

See more of where I have been featured on the Creature Feature page of my official portfolio website!

Stay Spooky & Magical,
LDG Nicole

A Groovy and Monstrous Halloween 2021!

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This past weekend was not only our favorite holiday (Halloween of corpse) but it was also our 12 year wedding anniversary as well. The weekend started off rainy and cloudy but we took some time off work and headed on a little road trip for a few days so we could have our anniversary dinner at Famous Monsters Pizza! Horror and pizza HELL-o! Of corpse sign us up!

We got back home in time to celebrate Halloween Samhain which turned out to be a beautiful sunny, brisk fall day here in the Midwest. I was so excited to be able to cross another character off my Costume Bucket List making this year the grooviest of them all!

So here I am. The Jim Henson geek that you all know and love paying homage to one of my favorite Muppets.. Dr. Teeth leader of the Electric Mayhem Band!

It was so much fun making and putting the pieces of this costume together. As someone who does not crochet I commissioned the help of my very talented friend Emily of Emily’s Art Alley who custom made my vest! The base of the vest is all crochet and she dyed and attached the tassels to it. I originally had considered wearing one of my crochet hippie vests in my closet but am so glad I didn’t. Emily nailed it and it pulled everything I made myself, brainstormed and gathered completely come together. This is now by far one of my favorite costumes I have attempted and there have been MANY! You can see a few of them featured on the Skinned page of my portfolio website.

Hmm now what to do next year?!

Stay Spooky & Magical!
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 and spirit animal.

Like myself, Deet (born Deethra) is a creative and sympathetic empath who feels very deeply. Being a misunderstood Grottan (from the bat caves), 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 to help save all of Thra from the darkness. So in other words if I 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