Life Of A Dark Artist: 2017 Milestones

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wp_20170610_13_07_41_proI just wanted to thank all of you for supporting my work. 2017 has been a year of many milestones for me as an artist. Even though I have health setbacks I keep trucking along and your support helps to keep me doing what I love.

Here are just a few milestones I am grateful for in 2017…..

  • I marked a TON of Art Bucket List items off my list this year. I created so many things that I have put off for way too long. Knowing this makes me feel so accomplished as an artist. Thank you to those who always give me feedback on my work and inspire me to keep creating!
  • I enjoyed creating custom and commission pieces from both return and new clients this year! Thank you for believing that I could make your visions come to life! Thank you for all of your Freaky Fanatic photo submissions and reviews! You guys have no idea how much happiness I get from receiving these and being able to share them with the world!
  • I participated again in Woman of Horror Month which helps bring awareness and supports the woman that make the horror genre what it is today!
  • I started selling my portraits as Ghoulish Garments which have been a hit. I have been wanting to do this for years and finally found a DTG Printer that fit all of my needs. To know that you guys want to display my art is one thing. Knowing you want to wear it is a compliment on a whole new level. Thank you for all of your t-shirt orders. 2018 may open doors to even more products so stay tuned!
  • I got to meet the very talented and fun Kelly Doty at the Villain Arts Chicago Tattoo Convention and give her a Dead Girl Decay Barrette inspired by her. While I was there I was able to network with other artists. I also got my Captain Spaulding tattoo done by my very talented friend Dave Togtman of Black Devil Tattoo.
  • My “What Nightmares Are Made Of” Tim Burton and Jack art piece was selected to be put on display at the new Beetle House Tim Burton Bar in California. As scary as it was to mail off my original work, it made it there in one piece and is on display in their dining room! I am still in awe of this and hope one day I am able to travel there to finally see it on display in person. Thank you to those of you who have shared photos with me of it on display. I love living vicariously through all of you!
  • I got to finally meet Art Alexakis and the rest of the Everclear band. Even though this doesn’t directly have to do with my art it was a dream of my since the 90’s and their music has inspired me in so many ways!
  • I vended again with my fellow hearse collectors at the big Hardcore Hearse Club Show and sold double the amount I did last year! For those of you that were not able to buy something but visited my table, you are important too! You took a business card to spread the word, ordered from me online later or even just gave me positive feedback to keep me doing what I am doing! Thank you for bearing the heat with me again this year. And to my husband and my friends and family that help me each year with set up, watching my items when I need a break or making sure the weather doesn’t destroy anything.. you are my rocks and I couldn’t do this without you!
  • Thanks to helping out the hearse club, I was able to attend Days of the Dead in Indy where I was able to do more networking. I also was able to give more of my work to my dear friend Sid Haig for his birthday and catch up with him over dinner and drinks. Sid is not just a guest and not just a friend but a true inspiration to me.
  • I was “crowned” Best Horror Shop by Morbidly Beautiful Horror due to the massive support of my Freaky Fanatics who voted, posted and did everything the could to see me outbeat the big guys! I am still in awe of this and in all of you! This also allowed me to give back by teaming up with Morbidly Beautiful to give away my work to one lucky winner. And that winner didn’t just win the item. They proudly posted photos and video of what they received! Including their logo pin displayed on their bad ass vest!
  • You helped me raise money for the S.O.P.H.I.E Lancaster Foundation. The limited edition 10 year anniversary barrettes I made were sold out in only a couple of days!!! I even had a friend of Sophie’s contact me directly to reserve one so she could wear it for her wedding day!
  • I painted the 3 largest canvases of my life after being in the ER and out of work for a couple of weeks. This technically falls in the above category of commission pieces but I feel it stands alone as it was a big artistic milestone for me. They were not just large canvases but they were of a landscape which is not something I do on a regular basis. Thank you, Uncle Lou, for believing in me. Thank you to my husband for putting the canvases together, putting up with me and all the basement space I hogged up to get it done. Thank you to my Dad for all his advice and my brother and friends who kept telling me “you got this!”
  • I finally accepted Amazon’s invite for me to start selling on Amazon Handmade. I was nervous about doing this and knew it would take me forever to get my items all set up in my shop. However, my cousin Pat who is also my Accountant gave me the advice to push me forward and I am so glad I did. Since opening my shop I have had consistent orders coming through including return clients. During the weeks up to Christmas, I was packaging up orders every night after work to the point I had to stop and post a thank you. I am so happy to be able to reach more Freaky Fanatics through another outlet.
  • I entered the Rick and Morty Hot Topic T-Shirt Contest, and even though I did not win, I am still in awe of all of you that took the time to vote and comment on my submission. Some of you even followed up asking when it will be a shirt so you could buy it. I threw together a quick sketch so I could enter before the deadline. It was a vision I had for quite some time and I am glad I was able to participate. Stay tuned as I have plans for that design in 2018!
  • Frank and I did a lot of networking at Days of the Dead Chicago!! I was also able to give Sid Ghoulish Garments for him and his wife Suzie. I was also honored to give my work to Felissa Rose, Fairuza Balk, and Lisa Marie. To top it off I was able to finally meet the Soska Sisters (Jen and Sylvia Soska AKA The Twisted Twins) who remembered me from the American Mary barrettes I made them.
  • Frank upgraded my printer/scanner for my art studio for Christmas. This was something I wanted but also needed. With me getting more print orders it just made sense for me to be able to do more of them from home vs going to a printer all the time. The much larger scanner also saves me from going to a printer to scan larger art pieces. Next goal… a DTG printer of my own (a girl can dream)!

With 2017 being such a great year for me artistically I can’t wait to see what 2018 brings. One of the gifts my goddaughter Ava got me for Christmas is a really nice hardcover notebook that says “Enjoy The Little Things”. I plan to use it to jot down all creative ideas. So get ready Freaky Fanatics and……… Happy New Year!

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Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

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Freaky Fanatics Show Off Their Paintings!

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As you know, I did a lot of painting for clients recently and I was so happy when I received some photos from both clients showing off how they displayed the paintings in their homes.

The massive 3 piece set I called Equinox now fills what was a very large empty wall space in my Uncle’s home. Instead of separating the pieces they decided they liked the image so much (as a whole) they hung it like it was one very large painting. The great thing about this set is if they ever get bored of that look they can change it. It was made so they can hang it with as much space in between the paintings that it will still make one large image. They can even hang them on separate walls in one room and have 3 separate paintings that match. The possibilities are endless….

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I also received this spooktacular photo of Play Dead on display in my other client’s home. I am honored to have my work among so many other amazing Tim Burton inspired pieces. It’s like Gabby has a little piece of Beetle House right in her living room!

Play Dead Living Dead Girl Nicole Painting

See these along with my other happy customer photos in the Freaky Fanatic slideshow on my website. Have a photo of your Living Dead Girl Nicole creations? Contact me to be featured!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

 

Sell Your Soul: Amazon Handmade

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If you are an Amazon Junkie (like myself), then I have some great news for you! I have been approved by Amazon to sell my creepy creations on their site as a part of Amazon Handmade.

Bookmark my artisan page and check back as I continue to add more products:
https://www.amazon.com/handmade/Artwork-By-Living-Dead-Girl-Nicole

You can also click the “I Sell on Amazon Handmade” Widget to the right —>

amazon handmade page

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Drippings: Play Dead

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As you know, I love commission pieces and this last request I received was right up my alley. Gaby contacted me looking for a painting of Scraps from the Corpse Bride and Zero from Nightmare Before Christmas. As a fellow Tim Burton geek she knew I was the artist for the job. I finished the piece and sent photos to Gaby for her approval. I could not have been happier with her response…..

“Oh I love it! It’s perfect 🙂 The details are amazing! I can’t wait for it!”

Here are a few photos I took during the painting process…

And here is the completed piece, I call it “Play Dead”…..

Play Dead Painting (4)

See more of the paintings I have done in the Drippings section of my portfolio website and make sure to contact me if you are interested in your own custom piece of artwork!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

 

Drippings: Equinox

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So I haven’t been as active on here for the last past month. Despite having another fun ER scare (those who follow this blog know about my fun health issues) I also have been working on a very large commission piece for my Uncle. And when I say very large… I mean very large. So large that the art supply company I went through wanted to charge me $300 to send the canvases to me on a truck so I had to get canvas kits instead. Three canvas kits to be exact. And I had never stretched a canvas before in my life. Anytime I paint something on canvas it is already pre-stretched.  Lucky for me, when I was “down with the sickness” my husband Frank was awesome enough to take a stab at stretching the canvases and did an incredible job. Thank you Fredrix for you killer tutorial videos!

Equinox (1)

But stretching the canvas was not the most of my worries (despite having to re-arrange the living room to make it happen). I was taking on a whole new challenge outside of what I considered my “comfort zone”. I was asked to do a fall landscape piece spread out among the three large canvases to make one large painting that will fill one large wall. The center canvas being 48″W x 60″ L and the 2 side canvases being 36″ W x 60″ L. So like I said.. very large.

The first thing we did was move the canvases to our dungeon (aka basement) where we had to make space for me to paint. My art room is our spare bedroom in our townhome and there was no way this was going to work in there. Then we set the paintings up and I got started.

Equinox (2)

I had a sketch and some reference photos but was not sure what I wanted to do first so I started placing things to give me a general idea where I wanted them and started to fill them in for a nice base…

Equinox (3)

At one point I kept saying how much I hated brown and tree bark ha ha ha….

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Then that turned into how much I hated green and grass ha ha ha….

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But before long it started to take shape…

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And then I changed my mind and painted over a few things that were just not flowing right for me and then the fun colors started to take over which got me out of my brown and green rut….

Equinox (12)

Before I knew it a month had passed and I had put in 62 hours into this project. I even have the back pain to prove it ha ha. I decided to call the piece “Equinox”…..

Equinox (16)

As nervous as I was to take this big project on, I am happy that I did. Yah the money is always nice to have but so is the ability to say I stepped out of my comfort zone and made it happen. I hit some definite learning curves along the way but I also learned a lot of new techniques and figured out fun ways to use various brushes I had never used before. I even did a little sponging in there as well. Most of all I am happy that my Uncle believed in me enough to push me to do this. To be told “no monsters or anything scary” was definitely out of my realm but with Autumn being my favorite season I was happy that is what he chose for this.

Also a special shout out to my husband Frank, my Dad and my brother who were my cheer squad during this whole project. They kept me moving forward with all their encouragement.

If you want to see more of my paintings on the Drippings page of my portfolio website! Now off to get some reference photos for another commission painting I am doing for a client on Etsy! Stay tuned!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Drippings: Monster Faced Made To Order!

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5 years ago I completed my set of “Monster Faced” paintings for our living room. I want to let everyone know that I have created a listing in my Etsy shop for anyone who would like a set of their own. These are made to order so please allow atleast 3 weeks for them to be completed.

Monster Faced Paintings

Stay Spooky,
LDG Nicole

 

Drippings: Painting Prints Now Available

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I just wanted to let everyone know that I am now offering prints of my “Be Wise. Be Brave. Be True.” and “It’s Showtime Synergy” paintings in my Etsy shop! T-Shirts coming soon so stay tuned.

Paintings

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole