Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Final Cut

I finished my first little Skelly Baby movie. Okay, "movie" is a stretch, it's only 25 seconds :)

My goal is to eventually (maybe this weekend) offer customized movies on my Gladditudes Etsy shop!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Skelly Baby Comes to Life

I created Skelly Baby in 2007/08 (I "conceived" the idea in '07 ;) -- but it wasn't until last year that I named the baby. What took me so long? It wasn't until (what felt like) the entire world started copying my work through copyright infringement that I realized Skelly Baby wasn't just another design in my shop, but a character. I had gotten so discouraged because I was having to send take down requests at Etsy, Amazon, eBay, Aliexpress, etc., and I was having trouble getting those marketplace sites to acknowledge my notices. Eventually this was resolved, but at the time it felt like an insurmountable task. But instead of giving up, I named the baby! (and got Skelly Baby trademarked on top of the registered copyright).

My next art-venture was to bring a bit of life to Skelly, this is my first go at animation.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Sugar Skull Skelly Baby

I created "Sugar" this past August.
Sugar Skull Skelly Baby or "Sugar"
On September 27, the night of the full moon and lunar eclipse, I intended to sit down and create a new non-maternity Halloween design, but -- as often happens-- ended up being inspired to design something completely different. I had a lot of energy that evening, and kept going outside to see if I could get a better view of the red moon, as we had some cloud cover that night. The inspiration struck me to do a girl version of "Sugar" with a rose instead of the bow that is on the original girl Skelly. I made a rose in Illustrator and tried placing it to one side, then the other. It looked out of balance, so I tried three roses, like a crown.

I liked the way it looked, but had to redo the scrolls and details of the sugar skull design. Hmmmm.... I thought to myself... It reminded
Frida Kahlo
Mexican artist
me of the pictures of Frida Kahlo with the flowers on her head, and especially of the costumes and makeup I'd seen using her iconic unibrow. So I moved around the scrolls and hearts into a brow-ish configuration, and it just clicked. I fell in love with the new Skelly Baby, and I named this one "Frida."

I don't know if anyone else will see that connection, or care, lol. But it made me happy, and I went outside again, this time with binoculars. The clouds had parted, and I got a fabulous view of the moon, dusky red with a sliver of bright light glowing on one side.

"Frida" Sugar Skull Skelly Baby
The next day I thought to myself that "Frida" needed a dad-to-be shirt that matched her funky self. Pizza and beer were not going to cut it. So I created a tuxedo skeleton shirt design using a Mariachi jacket and bow, with a rib cage peeking through. I noticed that the mariachi jackets were often worn with ornate silver belt buckles, and again I thought, hmmmmm.... I looked up the Spanish word for daddy and came up with Papi. I'm not sure if that is the word most commonly used, but it fit with the Jennifer Lopez song "I love my Papi," and gave it a little more meaning. (The detail that makes my nerdish self very happy is that my tshirt fulfillment company will produce that shirt with silver metallic material for the "Papi" buckle.)
"Papi" tuxedo skeleton costume

The crown of flowers and sugar skull Skelly would work equally well with Frida makeup or full sugar skull make up. I love this little girl dressed up like Frida Kahlo!!
Frida Kahlo costume (

Frida Kahlo inspired crown on Etsy

Day-of-the-dead makeup