Monday, October 31, 2011

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Happy Halloween!

I made it! Besides being a little late with the last few posts, I did a different nail design for 31 days. This was really fun. If other nail artists are thinking about doing a challenge, I say go for it! 31 days is a long time, but you will really improve at nail art with all of the practice! And after doing this challenge I have SO much more respect for Melissa of The Daily Nail who did an entire YEAR of nail art. Melissa rules!!

My final manicure for this challenge is zombie nails! I think this is actually my third set of zombie nails for this challenge. Zombies RULE!

Oookie! I have a bunch more ideas for Halloween nails, so I guess I will just save them for next year. These matched the costume I am wearing today. 

I started with a lovely pink shade, though it looks more orange in this shot. 

I added red polish in random patches to the tips of each nail. 

Then I used a dark brown acrylic paint to make jagged cracks, and then highlighted the bottoms of each crack with black acrylic paint. 

I did both hands! Hello right hand, long time no see!

So my costume is Miss Zombie Sonoma County! I had fun putting this together. As soon as I had the make up on, the character just came together. So funny!

Grrrr! Arg! Brains! (I photoshopped my eyes in this pic. No money for cool contacts.) Polished used in this manicure: Sally Hansen First Kiss, Revlon Raven Red, Cult Nails Get It On basecoat, and Seche Vite topcoat. 

And I was even inspired enough to make a short video. Meet Miss Zombie Sonoma County!

Hahahahaha! Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by a Tutorial

The reason I started this blog is because of one woman: Robin Moses! She is the most incredible nail artist I have seen. Her designs are innovative, fun, and she is brilliant at sharing those designs with the rest of us. Robin's videos are really great to get ideas from, and to learn new techniques. I rarely copy one of her designs directly, instead use techniques or a part of a design to springboard and try a hybrid or something new. The one thing Robin asks is that she is credited if you copy one of her designs. I feel like almost everything I do is connected to Robin, so I guess all of my posts are Inspired by Robin Moses! She is a doll, so please go check out her work. I guarantee you will learn something new. This manicure is Inspired by Robin Moses' Pink and White Zombie French Manicure. (I love how Robin loses it at 5:15 in the video. So hilarious!) I changed it up a bit, and swapped out the sinister zombie face for an equally sinister Hello Kitty zombie face.

Bwahaahahhahaha! Oh this kills me, it is sooo funny! Hello Kitty had her little skull ripped off by zombies, and now she needs to feast on kitty brains. And maybe a Keroppi or two. 

I started with this very pretty base color, which is sort of a mauve-ish brown. Great for BRAINS!

Then I added in a dirty pink color for the twists and turns of the brain. Random shapes are best, with each nail a little different. 

As Robin does in her video, I added a lighter pink to make the brain lobes more 3D, and topped with little bits of white paint to make it look juicy. You see why I love Robin?! She's so macabre! 

Next came a black jagged line, and I topped that with white paint to get the bone fragments up close to the brains. Once that line was in place, I painted white nail polish down the rest of the nail to make the french manicure. Robin's video illustrates this so well. 

Here is why my design veers from Robin's. I decided to go with a Hello Kitty zombie. I added her eyes, nose, and bow. 

Finally, I topped the white in her nose with yellow paint (this helps the yellow color really pop), whiskers, blood in a few areas, and the red of her bow, as well as a little bit of glitter on her bow to make it blingy. Cause even Zombie Hello Kitty needs bling. 

Polished used in this manicure: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Expresso, Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Whirlwind White (this color is SOOO gloppy, does anyone have a better white that they like to use? I even tried thinning this with NO luck. Blech!) and China Glaze Ruby Pumps. I also used Cult Nails Get It One basecoat and Seche Vite topcoat. 

Tomorrow is Halloween and the final day of this challenge. The original list says that on Day 31 I am supposed to recreate my favorite challenge. Um, I think I would rather just do another rad Halloween manicure. So that is what I am going to do. I haven't decided what to do yet, and will probably get on it tomorrow morning. Any suggestions?

Thanks to all of my followers and those who are commenting. I love your encouragement and enthusiasm. This has really been a FUN challenge!

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by the Supernatural

I absolutely LOVE how this challenge turned out. I chose ghosts as my subject for the Supernatural. And who is the awesomest ghost evar?? SLIMER, of course! Slimer is the gross-out ghost from Ghostbusters who slimes Bill Murray in a great scene in the hotel. So funny!

I was sad to take this one off. Man, it turned out good, if I do say so myself! :)

I started with black nails (yes, I pretty much recycled my Skull and Crossbones manicure!) then added bright yellow and green neon polishes to put a glowy aura around where I wanted to place Slimer.

Here's his basic outline in light green acrylic paint. I could have started him in white and then topped with green for a brighter ghost, but I think this turned out just fine. Besides, he is not super glowy, more see-through actually. 

I added darker shading with a dark green acrylic paint. (I mix my colors for each manicure, I don't have a bunch of green acrylic paints, just one shade.)

Then I started adding highlights and accenting low light areas. I also added his gaping mouth. 

Next it was his eye balls, nostrils, gums, and finger nails. I painted a ghost on MY nails, and then painted HIS nails on MY nails. My head hurts. 

Finally I added his tongue and his teeth. I also tried adding a bit of China Glaze Ghoulish Glow glow in the dark polish in his aura, but it did not do much. I could kind of see it in the dark, but I didn't layer it on thick enough. 

Here he is all topcoated. Oh Slimer, you are so cute!

Both hands together. I added some slime on my other hand on the middle and ring fingers. I like how the look together. This was a SUPER fun manicure. 

Polishes used in this manicure: Sinful Colors Neon Melon, Love and Beauty Scented Polish in Lime, China Glaze Ghoulish Glow, and Wet 'n Wild Fast Dry Ebony Hates Chris. I also used Cult Nails Get It On basecoat and Seche Vite topcoat. 

Next up: Nails inspired by a tutorial. You can probably guess which nail artist I will choose. :-)

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by a Flag

I was thinking of doing a "Freak Flag," which probably would have been fun, but instead chose this as my Halloween flag. It's the good ol' Skull and Crossbones.

I just painted the skull and crossbones on my ring finger. It was a fairly quick manicure, although looking closely at these picks, I should have spent more time cleaning up my cuticles. Ah well...

I painted the skull and crossbones with white acrylic paint, and used black acrylic paint to add the eye sockets and nose. Also used black polish to clean up some of the lines. Acrylic paint makes mistakes go away!

Here are both hands together. Yes, it was a really quick mani. I could have done more with it, but I realized that I was behind in posting, so this is what it is. The polish I used in this manicure is Wet 'n Wild Fast Dry Ebony Hates Chris. 

This is my 40th post which means I will be making another donation to Women's Recovery Services. Every 20 posts I will donate $10 to this organization. They help women get back on their feet after dealing with substance abuse. Part of their program offers women toiletries and personal grooming items. Every woman deserves a chance to feel good about herself, and a bit of make up can really boost self-confidence. Find out more about Women's Recovery Service online by clicking here

Next up: Nails inspired by the supernatural.... ooooOOOoooOoo!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by Artwork

Today's post is inspired by the artwork of Charles Batte, also known as Chas Batte. Chas worked for the San Francisco Opera for many years. Now he focuses on his art dolls and figures. These things are AMAZING! I have been lucky enough to meet Chas and I also bought one of his gorgeous little figures at an event called Halloween and Vine, a juried Halloween art show in Sonoma County. Here are the nails I painted inspired by Chas Batte:

It's a little devil dude! And my friend Nev pointed out that the swirls on the other nails are inspired by Robin Moses, another great artist. They sure are! Robin is the guru of nail art. Check her out on YouTube.

Here is the piece that inspired this manicure. It is a magic potion bottle with a removable head! 

I started with a base coat of butter LONDON Knees Up. I lurve this color! This is one coat, and I could have done two coats, but I was too tired to do two. 

I did the outline of the devil first with black acrylic paint. I was worried that this would be harder to do since my model for the art was a sculpture, not a print. I really had to think about shape and shading more than usual. 

Then I added the red and white with more acrylic paint. Letting the paint kind of dry out on my brush made it easier to do the textured finish on his cloak/jacket. 

Here is a closeup of the face. Those eyeballs were a bitch to do. I had to do the left eye about 4 times to get it right. The acrylic paint lets you do that kind of thing. Polish is way less forgiving of mistakes. 

Here is the full mani topcoated. It is pretty cute! I mean EVIL. 

Here is me holding my magic potion bottle. I love this little guy. It is so cool to own a piece of Chas Batte's artwork! Support artists! Buy their work!

Here is the little devil without his head. You put the magic potion inside his little body and his neck fits nicely back into his collar. (Of course, this is too precious to me to fill with ACTUAL magic potion, so I just pretend.)

Polishes used in this manicure: Cult Nails Get It On basecoat, butter LONDON Knees Up, and Seche Vite topcoat. 

Check out Chas Batte! He's incredible! Check out Robin Moses, she is incredible too! 

Tomorrow: Nails inspired by a Flag. :-)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by a Pattern

Today's nails are inspired by the pattern on Sally's dress from Nightmare Before Christmas! I thought this was a perfect way to do a Halloween pattern mani. I first saw the patchwork-style on the whole nail manicure done by Kayla Shevonne. You can see her amazing patchwork manicure by clicking here. I did not do my patchwork in the same way she did hers, by starting with the black, but I like both styles and they are really fun! Also, check out Robin Moses for more patchwork ideas. Her videos are incredibly helpful for learning new techniques.

I studied Sally's dress closely to match the fabric styles of her dress. I did all of this freehand, but you could totally stamp on the swirls on the purple instead.

I started with this lavender polish from Sally Hansen, and then added random patches of green polish. The green polish is from Claire's and it is actually a color changing polish from bright green to light green depending on your  mood. I wonder what mood I was in when I took this pic?

Then I randomly added the other colors, with a dusky blue, an orange, and a burnt umber kind of color. Saying burnt umber always reminds me of Bob Ross, and thinking of Bob Ross makes me smile. You will see that I did not include every color on every nail. I think that makes the manicure more interesting. 

Then I added details to some of the fabric using acrylic paints. Again, you could totally stamp the swirly pattern on the purple at the beginning, to save yourself some time. I tried to make the patterns match Sally's dress as well as I could. 

Here's the mani with all of the black lines and stitches added. This part is really easy. Just outline the areas and add a few stitches here and there. It doesn't have to be perfect, in fact it looks better if it isn't. Add topcoat and you are done!

Polishes used in this manicure: Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Delphinium, butter LONDON Minger, China Glaze Happy Go Lucky, Essie Very Structured, Cult Nails Awakening, Claire's Mood Nail Polish in Happy/Earthy. (Apparently I was feeling Earthy!)

Thursday's mani: Nails inspired by Artwork. Ooo, this will be fun. :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Inspired by Fashion

When it comes to Halloween, who is more fashionable than Elvira, Mistress of The Dark?!?! She's the freakin' Supermodel of the Underworld! Plus she always sports a fabulous mani. I present to you: Halloween Nails Inspired by Fashion:

Pictured are Elvira's logo (here's her website where you can see her awesome logo), Elvira and as much of her bouffant hairdo that will fit on my nail, and of course Elvira's.... assets. I think these could also count as my Breast Cancer Awareness nails for October. SAVE THE TA-TAS!

I painted my nails black except for my middle finger. Most of the red is covered up with the Elvira portrait. 

I started with flesh tones, but tried to make them rather light. Elvira keeps her lovely complexion by staying out of the sun. She'd rather stay UP all night (you see how I did that? ha ha).

She looks so nekkid without her hair.

I showed my mani to my hubs at this point and he said, "Where's her t*ts?" Simmer down honey, they're coming. 

There they are! She's so bodacious, her boobs need their own nail. I just love Elvira and think her campy take on Halloween and all things creepy is fantastic. You go girl!

Polishes used in this manicure: Wet 'n Wild Fast Dry Ebony Hates Chris, and Revlon Raven Red. Raven Red, what a great name for a Halloween nail polish! 

Tomorrow: nails inspired by a pattern.