It’s my favorite day of the year- Halloween! Happy Halloween, witches and ghouls! Since it’s the most spooky time of the year, my treat to you is….I’m officially releasing all the pieces completed for the Mab Graves Drawlloween challenge! This year has been nuts, so I chose to do 1 challenge per week rather than the daily challenge. The “vampire” piece has a special place in my heart. Halloween 2020 is the 20th band anniversary of the Dresden Dolls. Those of you who know me in person know my love of this band runs deep. One of their albums gave me strength during an abusive partnership. My love for them is such that I have one of their logos tattooed on my wrist. In short, the vampire piece in this challenge is also a love letter to this strange, magical, wonderful band.
Top Left: Prompt: “Cryptid” Title: Mugwump of Lake Timiskaming Medium: Graphite pencil
Top Right: Prompt: “Werewolf” Title: Graveyard Transformation Medium: Acrylic on birch wood
Bottom Left: Prompt: “Frankenstein” Title: The Bride Medium: Graphite pencil
I write this post from the East Coast in the USA. Typically, I wouldn’t post current events on my artwork website unless it directly tied to a piece I’m sharing. However, I feel the need to acknowledge what’s going on as the entire country is reeling from not only a pandemic, but also social and racial injustice. Earlier today, I watched footage of a protest in my city. Protests are going on nationwide over the murder of George Floyd. Protesters are at the White House calling for the resignation of the President as he cowers inside his ivory tower (literally!), threatening violence on social media. This weighs heavily on many of us Americans of all races and backgrounds. I finished a painting today that I will be sharing. As I thought about sharing a simple painting post like usual, I paused. I couldn’t make this artwork post without acknowledging the current climate here in the USA. Furthermore, one of the most important parts of art is to express our voices. My tiny little voice on the internet has not been silenced, but so many voices have been permanently shut up. In light of this, I dedicate this painting to the memory of George Floyd, who no longer has a voice, and to everyone who are suffering. It isn’t much, but here is a little moonlight in the darkness.
I’m slowly working on Mab Graves’ Halloween drawlloween challenge. Between work, a pandemic, getting married, having a spouse that is a school teacher with no damn idea how teaching in person will go this year, I’ve been a wee bit stressed. Last night I finished the Frankenstein prompt with this Bride of Frankenstein piece. She’s 9×12″ and done in graphite. I love her, and I hope you love her, too.
“What we need is a female victim of sudden death.” – Dr. Frankenstein
Squirrels. Some refer to them as “rats in trees.” In fact, one of my favorite movies, Inglorious Basterds includes this infamous speech from villain du jour, Col Landa, ” I purpose to you, any disease a rat could spread, a squirrel could equally carry. Yet I assume you don’t share the same animosity with squirrels that you do with rats, do you?” If you aren’t an amalgamation of the Nazi’s, then you probably see bushy tailed squirrels as a cute and frenetic part of nature. My fiance identifies with a squirrel’s curious nature, so you’ll see some of that in my paintings if you look closely. This is all to say that I had a recent custom coaster order with a general “squirrels” theme. I of course decided to paint them as dandy gentlemen squirrels. I added some special features to these coasters, including incorporating metallic copper paint into the design, metallic copper edges, a painted bottom, and contrasting felt feet. See them below in all their glory!
I’ve been spending the last week in my apartment in Delaware completing my library day job from a distance, annoying my chinchillas and fiance, and trying to stay sane. It’s been heartening to see the collective artistic community both locally and abroad connecting with one another. I attended my first virtual drink and draw last weekend. Pictured below is the drawing completed there.
If you’re interested in joining in, information is posted on M.K. Komin’s Instagram. I jumped on the streaming art trend for the first time last week when I hosted a painting party on Facebook Live. If you aren’t already following the Facebook page, you can do that HERE. I will also be participating in the Covid Creative Convention. Created by dark artist Shane Izykowski, it’s a way to connect art lovers to artists in this strange time of show cancellations and shutdowns. You can learn more about that HERE.
I’m busy cooking up new paintings. In the meantime, here is a spotlight on on a recent painting.
“Honestly, if you’re given the choice between Armageddon or tea, you don’t say ‘what kind of tea?” ― Neil Gaiman
“Spilled Tea” was a painting created for the Big Little Art Show in December 2019. The original is available for purchase. Visit my ONLINE SHOP to purchase. While you’re at it, keep up with my artwork on Instagram HERE. (Or search @stepsisterugly)
When you’re a “maker” of any kind, the holidays are the best way to add special touches to gifting. For the past few years, I have created original artwork for holiday cards. This year, I got ambitious and created an acrylic painting on canvas that was featured on cards. My favorite part of creating this was adding touches of metallic copper paint.
Now that (most) of friends and family received their cards, I can share the original painting. My inspiration for these winter holidays is the connection these rituals have with nature. Notice the toadstools, red squirrel, fox, and snowy owl. Without further adieu, Creatures in Winter.
As I posted previously, I participated in the October 2019 Drawlloween challenge. There were daily prompts, but I chose to pick one prompt per week. I posted teaser images on my Instagram and Facebook, but I chose to release the finalized pieces in an online gallery here.
The prompts I chose were “cryptid,” “pumpkin man” (I took some gender liberties here), “”Yokai,” and “haunted forest.” Some of the fun in this challenge was diving into the mythology of some of these creatures. I was completely new to the Yokai, and really dug to find out more about cryptids and cryptozoology. Click through the gallery below.