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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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 —>

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Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Spitting Image: Kindred Spirits

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Christina Ricci Winona Ryder

So even though I have already drawn Winona Ryder (as Mina Harker) and Christina Ricci (as herself and in tribute to us sharing the same birthday) I still have had them on my art bucket list because they have portrayed so many of my favorite characters and are two of my favorite actresses. There are two characters though that stand out from the rest and I have related to both of them and have loved them since I was younger…. Lydia Deetz and Wednesday Addams.

My original plan was to draw two separate portraits but after searching for reference photos I kept finding the same photos and so many of them had already been drawn. Some multiple times. I really wanted to do something to challenge myself as well as create something unique. I decided that since both characters have very similar qualities and traits why not try to combine them into one of my split face portraits.

So I present to you you my latest piece called “Kindred Spirits”….

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The entire time drawing it I knew I wanted to call it this because I feel like if these characters crossed paths they would be dressing up as homicidal maniacs together, rummaging the cemeteries, trying to join the dead in the nether world and capturing sheets with no feet on film . And on top of it I secretly wish I could be a part of it.

For those of you who also dreamt of the day these two would became friends and you could join them on their spooky adventures, I have prints and t-shirts of this piece now in my Etsy Shop! See more of my portrait work on the Spitting Image page of my portfolio site!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Days Of The Dead Indy 2017

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Days Of The Dead Indy 2017 (5)We just got back from Indy. Our friend gave us some weekend passes for Days of the Dead. It worked out perfectly because I really wanted to give Sid (Haig) my “Shit The Bed” split face portrait. I was waiting to see when he would be back in Chicago but these passes ended up working out perfectly. Frank and I had been discussing a small summer getaway, we had the extended long weekend already for the holiday and most importantly Sid was on the guest list. His birthday is in July so I thought how perfect is it that I will be give it to him before his birthday. So I made sure to wrap up my portrait (red and blue of course) and we were on our way!

Sid loved the portrait but he also took the time to catch up with us over dinner and drinks. These cons tend to get pretty busy so it was nice to have some sit down time with him since we don’t get to see him all the time. He is such a wise man. We took in so much of his knowledge, advice and enjoyed every minute of the quality time we got to spend with him. He also really loved seeing my Spaulding Skull tattoo (he had previously emailed me telling me it was “so fucking cool” right after I had gotten it) and signed an autograph for my Dad. I am truly grateful to have such an amazing person that I can call a friend. Days Of The Dead Indy 2017 (1)

I also was pretty happy to see that Felissa Rose (Angela Baker from Sleepaway Camp) was added as a last minute guest addition. So Frank and I decided to pay her a visit. Seriously one of the sweetest guests to meet at a con. She kept telling me how cute I was. How much she loved my Carrie/Barbie mash up shirt (she even took a photo of it) and kept saying how great Frank and I were together. I highly recommend meeting her if you get a chance at a con.

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Here are some great shots Frank took of me with some of the decor they had up at the con. The Halloween house was really well put together and I was drawn to it right away. The zombie girl eating intestines… well I told her I didn’t have too much of mine left so she shared some with me ha ha.

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The weekend in general was much needed little getaway and we had a blast. Here are some photos of our horror haul we brought home with us. We had to stay with in our budget (due to a hotel room dilemma that cost us more then we expected) but I think we did pretty good for what we could get.

Frankenhooker, They Live and Beetlejuice T-shirts, Critter Action Figure, Leatherface Political button, Elvira, Brainscan and Alien patches!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

 

Creature Feature: Chase The Morning For Beautiful Freaks Fest Day 2!

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WP_20170624_10_30_40_ProSo I was not sure what or who I would talk about today for Day 2 of the #beautifulfreaksfest2017 and then it hit me. I was getting all my paint supplies together to work on a commission piece and thought hmmm what am I in the mood to listen to…. and of course I pulled out the Repo The Genetic Opera soundtrack.

Now if you have seen this movie you know that it’s filled with tons of beautiful freaks. But if you know me personally then you also know that there is one beautiful freak that pulls on my heart strings …. Blind Mag (played by the stunning and amazing talented Sarah Brightman). So much that she inspired my art piece that I call “It’s Too Late For Me”. Call me a Genco Junkie but I absolutely LOVE this movie. From the dark horror story line, the visual artistry and the heavy rock ballads it’s a sum of so many things I love.

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So I am dedicating this post to the beautiful freak that is Blind Mag and giving a little more background on the scene that inspired the NAME of my art piece. Now if you read my past post when I completed this piece you know that it was drawn inspired by the scene (that kills me every time) of Mag right before her final performance. But the name of the piece comes from a specific scene that goes along with that. So here it goes…..

Mag’s most striking characteristic is of course her eyes, unnaturally blue and marked in a pinwheel pattern. But of course they came with a price. See Mag was born blind and was given her sight back through Rotti Largo owner of GeneCo and also the then fiance of Mag’s best friend Marni. To cure her blindness she received an operation which gives her back her vision in a very unique way. They are capable of not only vision, but projecting things she has seen. However the terms of her operation was she was obligated to work as a singer for GeneCo forever. A small price to pay at first until she starts to feel she is “owned” by them. When Mag is reconnected with her goddaughter Shilo (Marni’s daughter) she tries to warn her to stay away from GeneCo and to not follow the same mistake she made… “It’s Too Late For Me” and to “Chase The Morning”. Here is that very scene…

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If you have not seen the movie I highly recommend it. It’s truly a masterpiece on film and of course the most unique soundtrack you can own. My husband who is not a big fan of musicals even loves this movie. If you are already a GeneCo junkie you can purchase It’s Too Late For Me as prints and on customizable t-shirts. AND don’t forget! As announced in yesterday’s post I am offering a coupon code to celebrate this online freak fest! Just put in code BEAUTIFULFREAKS17 at check out in my Etsy shop and watch 13% get slashed off your orders (of $5 or more)! This code is only good during the Beautiful Freaks Fest so make sure to place your orders before Monday!

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I am now on my way to chase my morning with a smoothie, my Repo soundtrack and a canvas! Don’t forget to visit all the other blogs participating in the Beautiful Freaks Fest this weekend! So many amazing posts yesterday and I can’t wait to go through today’s posts from everyone later today!

Stay Spooky Freaks!
LDG NIcole

Creature Feature: #BeetleHouse

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I was on Instagram stalking the hash tag #BeetleHouse to try and live vicariously through all the people lucky enough to be on the West Coast enjoying Beetle House LA. I won’t lie the photos made me uber jealous ha ha. But, by doing so, I discovered some (public) photos that you can see my “What Nightmares Are Made Of” original portrait on display. They make my creepy little heart skip a beat so I had to share them with all my Freaky Fanatics and followers.

6tag_240517-201616Photo Credit: @j0hnnysdrivein 

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Photo Credit: @jeska_flowers

Look at all the other amazing pieces around it. It really makes me so thrilled that Beetle House worked with artists to use their original fan art for the decor of their place vs just buying random commercialized posters for the walls. I really think Tim Burton himself would also admire them for doing this.

Read more about my collaboration with Beetle House in my previous posts and don’t forget if you are in LA to pay them a visit and get a photo with my piece on display! Everyone that submits a photo gets a unique coupon code to be used in my Etsy Shop and will be featured here on my Eulogy Blog as well as in the Freaky Fanatics slideshow on my website!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole

Spitting Image: I Bind You Nancy

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I fell in love with Fairuza Balk in high school when I first saw the movie The Craft. Her portrayal of Nancy Downs is truly the reason I continue to love that movie even now in my 30’s. Watching Nancy on the screen I always wanted to be her friend and hang out with her despite the consequences. So in other words the moral of the movie went right out the window for me ha ha ha. I also would’ve loved to go shopping with her so I could own every piece of her wardrobe (well….besides the “I’m Flying” hospital gown and arm and leg restraints ha ha).

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I have always been drawn (no pun intended) to Fairuza because she isn’t like all the other actresses out there. First off her name is incredibly cool, she is a unique beauty (my god..those eyes!) and she tends to always get the edgier roles that I like. On top of being a very talented actress she is also a musician and an artist as well!

Fairuza has been on my art bucket list for as long as I can remember. But I can finally cross her off now. I just finished a new split face portrait inspired by Fairuza as Nancy.

I present to you ” I Bind You Nancy”……….

It was done in pencil and charcoals. The right side is the witchy goth every day Nancy and the left side is the crazy ward “I’m flying” Nancy. I hope one day Fairuza decides to grace us fans with her presence here in Chicago. If she does I plan to give her the original. But for my fellow fans of Fairuza, Nancy and/or The Craft I have both prints and tshirts available in my Etsy shop!

Stay Spooky!
LDG Nicole