Zombie Cakes

Zombie Cakes 1

Here’s a terrible joke for you – what do zombies use to bake their cupcakes?  A brain pan.  Wah-waaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh. 🙂

Zombies were the name of the game for the fourth prompt in the nail art challenge I’m participating in on Instagram.  I wasn’t in the mood for your more traditional blood ‘n’ guts design, choosing instead to go with this cutie pie cupcake manicure, which even features two of my favourite zombie-themed polishes, Girly Bits Cosmetics’ Dead Man’s Toe and Dollish Polish’s Look at the Flowers, Lizzie.  Can’t go wrong with brain cakes drizzled in sanguine coulis and snot green frosting, can you?

Zombie Cakes Collage

 

Ruby Friday

Ruby Friday Collage 1

You know, “Goooood-bye, Ru-bee Friday, who could hang a name on you?”  That’s how that Rolling Stones song goes, right? (massive joke here – my Boomer parents are hardcore Stones fans, particularly my mom, and have been since they were about 16 years old.  I’ve sent them off to Toronto on more than a couple of occasions to catch their shows, always with the vague fear that my mother’s head is just going to explode, simply from breathing the same air as the leathery, seemingly indestructible object of her lifelong lust, Keith Richards.  Anyhow, long joke short, I’m well versed in the Stones.  Also the Animals, the Kinks, the Traveling Wilburys, Bob Segar, bit of Springsteen – that’s the music I grew up with.  No wonder my taste in music skews so very rock.)

Anyhow, I may have gotten the day wrong on these ruby-esque nails, but whether it’s Tuesday or Friday, I think they’re still pretty dope.  I actually did this manicure last month for the nail art challenge I’ve been participating in on Instagram for the theme of gemstones.  I’ve been doing gemstone and stone-type nails for a little while now, actually had a few in reserve that I could have whipped out for just such an occasion, but I decided to try a little something different with this manicure, opting for a jelly sandwich mani wherein I layered sponged-on silver and glittery red polishes between thick, glossy coats of a vibrant, ruby red jelly.  It turned out to be a pretty good technique – I think these nails look like the cross-section of a cut gemstone, so pretty.  I think they look particularly nice in the matte finish – gems before they’ve hit the buffer ‘n’ polisher.

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And they don’t look too bad in WAY SUPER UP CLOSE MACRO MODE either.  It’s always amazing the level of detail that shows up in a macro shot, huh?  By the way, NEVER turn a macro lens on, say, your skin.  You’ll walk away convinced that you’re desiccating on the spot.  Hey, just like our leathery man, Keef! (kidding, Mom, I’m kidding – c’mon, you know Keith’s gonna outlast us all.  And thank goodness – we’re going to need sweet riffs in the apocalypse.) 😉

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East Is Up

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The second prompt in the nail art challenge I’m participating in over on Instagram is “Wicked Witches,” and who’s more wicked than…okay, so I was going to say the Wicked Witch of the East, but we don’t ever really get to know her, either in the Wizard of Oz or one of those interminable Wicked re-imaginings I can’t stand (the books; can’t speak to the stage productions.)

No, we don’t know much about the easternmost point of the witch compass, though we DO know that she had the flyest threads in the Merry Old Land of Oz – pun very much intended.  I’m totally on board with any babe badass enough to pair black-and-white striped hosiery with glittery red pumps.  Shame about the house business, though, and that footwear-thieving Dorothy.  Honestly, that’s how I would have written The Wizard of Oz – screw this avenging sister, Wicked Witch of the West business.  I’d have the broad rise up, brute force Dorothy’s sepia-toned shack off her bod like the friggin’ Hulk and then dump it directly on top of Miss Dorothy, her cabal of broken toys, AND the little dog, too.  Then I’d have her set fire to Oz (starting with the headquarters of the Lollipop Guild) with her Superman laser eyes.  The Wicked Witch of the West doesn’t factor into my story at all – you really don’t need someone on your team whose greatest nemesis is WATER.

Hmm, seems I’m feeling a bit witchy and twitchy myself today – just call me the Wicked Witch of the West End.  Well, at least I have the nails – and now also the glittery ruby slippers as well! – to pull it off.

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Fall Feels

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Here’s a fun dovetailing of two of my favourite interests these days, nail art and hand lettering.  I’ve done lettering-type nails before, of course – these Beetlejuice nails from 2016 remain undisputed champions – but not since re-discovering my teenagehood love of calligraphy via Instagram (oh Insta, is there nothing you can’t turn into a new obsession?)  After taking a lettering module during grade 9 art class, I got way into calligraphy and other hand lettering, even going so far as to compose my letters to my American pen pal in ornate, looping script (and in a rather dashing bright turquoise ink, no less, a present from my parents, who also supplied me with a gorgeous refillable pen.)

But just lately I’ve been taken with short lettering videos on Instagram; they’ve really reignited the old lettering bug, even if practice makes me feel a bit like I’m auditioning for the Well-Mannered Serial Killer Olympics (Hannibal Lecter is always a contender.)

Lettering Collage

Anyhow, here I combined a holo-happy gradient with some loopy lettering for a mani that’s really feeling all the Falls. 🙂

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Multi-Chrome Bones

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I’m participating in another nail art challenge over on Instagram, this time themed to seemingly everyone’s favourite holiday, Halloween.  This bonerrific manicure (c’mon, did you think I was going to leave a potential boner joke on the table, metaphorically speaking?) is in service of the first challenge prompt of “Spooky Skeleton.”

Speaking from a design perspective, skeletons are my least favourite Halloween decorating trope, and I’ve never really cared to paint them on my nails either (though this early design is way dope; I’d try anything in those super early days, and sometimes it didn’t even turn out that badly!)  But I do like bones (and boner jokes) and so I decided to do this simple, but rather striking, bone design, enhanced with four nifty, colour-shifting multi-chromes from Polish Me Silly (from index to pinkie, Obsession, Mystery, Dreamer and Paradise.)

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Those ’70s Zig Zags

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Not those kind of Zig Zags, though there were plenty of those on That ’70s Show (of which I was an occasional watcher; the hazy circle bit, especially when it involved Eric’s parents, was never not hilarious.)  No, just that there’s something very 1970s about these zig zag nails, which I did as part of a challenge I’m participating in over on Instagram.  I think it’s the colour palette I chose, or maybe the fact that the stripes look a bit like one of those ultra chic sweater dresses, Missoni or not, the girls wore.

And if this post is not making a tremendous amount of sense, that’s because I’m hella sick, and maybe a bit loopty (typo, but I’m keeping it) on cough suppressant.  I have a cough that can bring down walls under the very best of circumstances, and these are not my best circumstances.  I took a bath yesterday, and counted the fact that I was able to pull myself out of the tub more or less under my own power as a major victory, and then once more returned to my sickbed.  Oh, look at that – I’ve gone all Victorian on you.  From the 1970s to the 1870s!

Anyhow, hope you enjoy these nails.  I’m going back to bed.

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Literary Inspiration: 20th Century Ghosts

Pop Art Collage

So the long and the short of it with regards to Joe Hill, son of Stephen King (a fact relevant only in that there’s an inescapable comparison to be made between the two; they are both authors who work in the area of weird) is that I don’t jive with his writing.  And with all apologies to the man, too, because even if it’s an inescapable comparison, it’s a patently unfair one – he is not his father.  But as I mentioned in this post from 2017 about Hill’s book Heart-Shaped Box, I am so well versed in his father’s works that I have a hard time not likening one to the other, and Hill’s writing invariably comes up short.

Heart-Shaped Box didn’t leave much of an impression with me (beyond the memory that it was utterly obsessed with hand and fingernail trauma) and neither did this 2005 collection of short stories, 20th Century Ghosts.  I read this quite a few months ago, and before doing these nails, I had to go back over all of the stories in order to remind myself of what I had just read.  And then instantly regretted it, because I suddenly remembered the story that kicks off this 316-page book, a grimy little tale about a literary editor caught on the wrong side of a Texas Chainsaw-esque family that itself reminds me of an infamous episode of The X-Files that I in turn will not remind you of, and you’re very welcome.

20th Century Ghosts actually begins with an introduction from its editor (who is thankfully not being terrorized by hillbillies from hell, that we know of) and the not-very-encouraging assessment that “Modern horror is not often subtle.”  Well, it can be, but as presented in 20th Century Ghosts, it isn’t.

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So there’s the story about the folks from The Hills Have Eyes, “Best New Horror.”  There’s “You Will Hear the Locust Sing,” a squicky tale about a teenage boy living on the edge of a nuclear test facility who turns into a gigantic insect.  That was a real WTF-er.  There’s a haunted theatre story, the titular “20th Century Ghost;” “Abraham’s Boys,” a deeply perverted reworking of the vampire mythology; and “My Father’s Mask,” a Wes Anderson-by-way-of-David Cronenberg familial mindf**k.

There’s also “Pop Art,” a melancholy tale about a sensitive young man whose best friend, Arthur Roth, is inflatable.  Yes, inflatable, as in made of white plastic, nearly totally featureless, incapable of speech (though Art is real hell with crayons and a pad of paper) and bearing a little nozzle under one arm that allows him to be pumped full of air.  Art has adoptive parents (humans, both) and interacts with the larger world the way any other person would (save the bit where bullies kick him up onto the roof of the school) although you’re never quite sure if Art is indeed a person, just with a major, life-altering disability, or an imaginary construct of the narrator’s admittedly troubled mind.  It was actually a really heartbreaking story; I liked re-reading this one.

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So much so, in fact, I put it on my nails in service of the theme of “A numeric title” in my friends’ reading challenge.  This is Art, peacefully drifting through the late August sky – just a simple, pillowy figure on a basic blue gradient.

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