Thursday, May 5, 2016

Celebrate You!

Hello lovelies! Today is a super special day because it is our 1st Anniversary over at Anything But Cute! We have an exciting challenge in store this month and want to CELEBRATE! I wanted to create something that I have never tried before and also use one of my favorite movies as inspiration so I came up with this design. Meet my version of Jack Skellington and his dog, Zero!

As we celebrate our First Anniversary at Anything But Cute, we want you to celebrate what you do best...mixed media! This is your chance to do it your way, in your favorite pull out those inks and paints and show us what you're made of! You can make anything you want, in any theme you want and any style you want, just as long as it has some mixed media products on it and no cute images. HAVE FUN!

We have some special treats for you this month. Along with our design team projects, we have invited our Favorite Artists from last year to come and celebrate with us. You don't want to miss the incredible line up of inspiration they have provided for you!! We also have a wonderful line up of prizes from some amazing sponsors...lots of chances to win some goodies, so don't miss out!

I started this design by sculpting Jack. He has a wire armature inside him because I wanted his arms to move and they do, although I did accidentally break his arm off, and had to fashion it back together! Sorry Jack!
I then added his legs, his bat bow tie, his eyebrows, his hands, and got to painting with acrylic paints. 
Zero was easier to sculpt and his collar was painted with red acrylic paint and his nose is orange acrylic paint. Yes, I added shoes to Jack. Hehe! 
I then started on my background while everything was baking in the oven. I tried a tag background with different designs but wasn't feeling it so I decided to create a tombstone. I drew out my shape on regular paper and used it as a template to trace onto thick matboard. I wanted the tombstone to be one sturdy piece to hold all these wonderful elements (I even add a kickstand to the back of the tag so it would stand on its own). The edges of the tombstone are made from a mold (I only used a section of the mold). You can see in the picture below what the stones and bricks are made from: I hoarded some of these foam pieces but for the life of me, I can't remember what art supply they came with. It's left over packaging of some sort. Any ideas? I think it is from dies.
I cut the foam and made my bricks/stone and glued everything (including the molded boarder) with TomBow Multi. Then at this point everything was painted with black acrylic paint. The texture sand in the picture below didn't end up showing up because of where I placed Jack. Oh well. Hehe! 
I used so many different paints and daubers to get the stones/bricks the color I wanted, then I applied white acrylic paint in certain spots to highlight areas. The inside of the tombstone was inked up with a stencil just for some depth. 
Then I started adding all the pieces together one little detail at a time. Some Spanish moss.............
A new clock mold and the pillars are new molds as well. All three were painted grey then antiqued. A few pumpkins, and a black branch looking thing. 
Some pumpkins and art stones that were painted with acrylic paints, a few bats...........
And finally some closeups of Jack and Zero! I did paint Jack's name on the bottom step of the tombstone but you can't really see it. 
Jack's head moves, as well as his arms. 
I know this was a long post and thanks for reading until the end. Don't forget to check out what my lovely teamies have designed! Hugz and Carpe Diem! ~Niki
I would like to share this design with: 

My "doll" isn't paper exactly but he's a sort of doll. 

I went LOC with a Halloween design. 


  1. Beautifully done! Perfect for a Halloween, (or in my house year around) decoration!!! Thank you for the step by step tutorial :)
    Paper Talk with Samra

  2. I am simply blown away, Niki!! I love, love, love this!! Jack looks amazing (broken arm and all ;) Oohh, the bricks!! I have lots of those foam pieces, too so I can try this!! I'm pretty sure they came with Tim Holtz dies or embossing folders?? Not sure which. The details are just spectacular!! How adorable is Zero, too!! Wow, I could study the pictures all day and still never be able to create something this amazing!! Love, love it my friend!! Have a great day!! Big hugs :)

    A Mermaid's Crafts

  3. Oh my, Niki, this is simply mindblowing! What a clever idea to use those foam pieces to create bricks! Your Jack Skellington and Zero look awesome! Oh, dear, it's an absolutely outstandingly beautiful and a super cool work of art! LOVE it!
    Big hugs to you! Branka xx

  4. I'll be a son-of-a-gun, I can't believe you moulded Jack Skellington and Zero out of clay! WHAT!!!! You completely rocked our Celebrate Your Style challenge Doc, because this is soooooooo NIKI-ISH (yes, that's a real word!) lol. I just love that movie and you really captured the spirit of the characters! What a fun ride watching you put this together, so many wonderful techniques! Thanks so much for all your hard work on this to help us celebrate our first blogiversary!

    It's been such a treat and an honour to craft along side you the last year Doc! Thanks so much for your support and even more so, your friendship! I am so honoured to know you as an artist and a person, I can't wait to get to know you even better over the next year!! big hugs my friend :)

  5. Holy Cannoli, Punkin! This sculpture is freaking AWESOME! Everything about it is so fun, and done so well--I love Jack and seeing how you made him really makes me appreciate your talents as a sculptor! And THOSE BRICKS!!! My favorite part about this--when I first saw them, I zeroed right into them (pun really not intended. You have colored and shaped them to PERFECTION! HUGE high five on this, Punkin--my favorite of yours so far! I say that a lot, don't I?

    Oh, shoot, I should have KNOWN those bricks were made from that foam! I used that for some of my bricks on my first Anything But Cute project last year! Duh, me! They came with TH Texture Fades and I have a hoard of them, too--great minds! big Hugs, and I just want to say how grateful I am for this year of friendship and fun I've had! I'm so blessed our paths have crossed!

  6. WOW, WOW and thrice WOW Niki!! As a total Halloween addict, I just love this gorgeous creation, it is full of drama and wonder - Jack is superb and the fact that his arms and head move - amazing. I love the stonework up the sides, I love the bat elements and Zero is just a delight. You really have blown me away with this fabulous creation!

    I too, want to say thank you for making me feel so welcome on the team, for your friendship, for always making me smile - you are a delight to work alongside! Hugs, Anne xx

  7. Absolutely wonderful, what a fantastic hoot, just love it. Hugs, Valerie

  8. Niki, you really captured the true sense of The Nightmare Before Christmas. Your sculpting is so amazing! You and Anne and your clay - wow! I need you two to teach me a thing or two. You could start your own embellishment line! Fabulous work here and I am just giddy to be your teamie and partner in artsy crime for the next year. Big hugs, Autumn

  9. Wow Niki, need to pick my jaw off the floor first lol. This is seriously brilliant, such an inspiring project and soooo cool ! Love it.
    Julie x

  10. I just LOVE your Jack and ghost dog - perfect likenesses - and what a creative design for your coffin with the clay - a wonderful project! Julia xx

  11. Awww Nikki our family adore The Nightmare before Christmas and you have made a really stunning project...wonderful work x

  12. Yes, girl! One of my fave movies! You did an absolutely amazing job on Jack and Zero! What an awesome piece! I mean, even down to the pinstripes on his bow-tie! Now I be wanting to see Sallllly... ;)

  13. This is my favorite movie of all time so I just love this project! Very well done! Thanks for sharing at Rhedds Creative Spirit!

  14. Great job! Thanks for joining us at The Dark Attic. Good luck.
    Groetjes van Ine (DT)

  15. I absolutely love this. It is a wonderful piece of art. The clock mold is a great touch. Very inspirational.

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  17. Wowsers I love this. Jack and Zero are amazing and you have so much talent and patience. I love your artwork always outstanding. Thank you for sharing with us over at Rhedd's Creative Spirit this month and hope to see you again in future challenges.

    Handcrafted by Ellapu
    Mother Hen for Altered Eclectics
    Mother Hen for Eclectic Ellapu
    DT Rhedd's Creative Spirit

  18. Oh wow, this is fantastic! So beautifully done, and with such detail. Amazing work. Thank you for entering your project at Rhedd’s Creative Spirit. Sammy-x

  19. This is so cool, Thanks for joining us at Left of Center Challenges.
    Hope you can play along again soon

  20. Utterly brilliant - your sculpted Jack Skellington is a treat, complete with Zero - and it looks as though you had lots of fun playing too!
    Alison x

  21. Zero is so cute!! Of course Jack is too, but you know I have a weakness for the four-legged among us! Very creative, Niki - never know what you will come up with but always fun! xxx Lynn

  22. I am amazed at how you did this, it's wonderful! And Happy Anniversary!

  23. So amazing Niki! I love Jack and Zero, so in awe of your amazing talents, great! Love it all and Happy Anniversary at Anything But Cute! Thanks so much for playing along at Dream in Darkness!hugs

  24. Such a dapper Jack, and so many elements involved in making his tomb-shrine. Thank you for sharing at Dreaming In Darkness

  25. Funny, crazy ,sooo Cool and amazing project
    Gr miranda

  26. AHHHHHH-----Maz------ING! This is insanely cool, Niki!

  27. That is so cool! That you created the figurine is fantastic!

  28. Amazing creative piece!! Love you how to pictures and the result ... just amazing. Thank you for joining Dream in Darkness, hope to see you back this month also

  29. Absolutely spookylicious ! Niki Wow what an amazingly designed and crafted piece of halloween art. Love that its interactive active too. Mwahhhh!
    hugs x