A little bit dark, a little bit spooky...

A little bit dark, a little bit spooky...

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Wishing love, happiness and peace to all! -


 2020 was in many ways, for so many of us, a real shitshow. 

I've always believed in the power of mind over matter, using positive energy to make things happen. No sense in stewing in your own venom, it's not only bad for you and everyone around you, it's also a huge waste of precious time and energy. I'll use a quote from one of my favorite poets (Mary Oliver) to try to illuminate as best I can:

"Someone I once loved gave me a box of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift."

Looking to make this coming year better and brighter as best I can, not only for my own self, but for those I love. I am enormously grateful to all of you in my life, all who care and support me.

-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- 

On this very chilly, rainy final day of 2020, I'm here in my studio, looking out the window at the bird feeder full of bright red cardinals, black capped chickadees, tufted titmouse, wrens, woodpeckers, nuthatches and more. Being able to provide food for them during the harshest part of the winter makes me feel incredibly happy.

While looking through one of my storage drives, I happened upon an old file with some artwork I was in midst of creating back in late 2008. We'd been in our new house for less than six months, and I was thrilled to at last have my very own "Art Studio" ... what an amazing and wonderful thing at that! I'd never had one those before; the most previous being a small table set in a corner. Setting about with my paints, ink, pencils, computer art, and a fairly new medium I'd used before but was very excited about learning to master (Sculpey - polymer clay!) - I was, as I said, thrilled to begin this next chapter of my life.

Among one of my early "serious" attempts with polymer clay was the creation of 'Smirky Witch,' a sort of an olde world, gypsy-like forest witch that was stout, sassy (as evidenced by her sweet smirky face) and very colorful. I posed her with one hand-on-hip, a handmade broom held aloft in the other, and dressed her various colors and textures of fabrics (mostly purple velvet) along with bits of cast-off pieces of old jewelry. She was a blast to create! Realizing that I'd grown emotionally attached to her, I ended up keeping her for several years, finally selling her to a dear friend in 2016 during my Monsters & Merriment show. I do miss her, but she's in a very good home, where she resides as the official kitchen witch in that household. 

And, so, here are a few photos her in stages of production, with the eventual finished transformation of Smirky Witch I thought I'd share with you.

May much good magic come your way! 

 

 

Freshly painted! I also added some eyelashes (from on old pair of falsies) and installed a full head of hair (from an old grey witch wig from previous Halloweens)






 

Smirky Witch - front view. She was a wise woman with a jaunty sashay and carefree attitude!

                             










Right side view of Smirky Witch. A definite learning experience in every way, from mastering the clay, to painting facial colors, adding faux wig hair, and sewing her costume. Once I completed her, I was anxious to do more!






Thursday, December 24, 2020

It was 1984...

I was working full-time as a Production Artist for a man - who I will not name - was very well-known for his highly-collectible statues of clowns (eeeek). 

Oh, for sure, it was not the best job, though it paid fairly well (assuming you met your daily quota of how many you were supposed to paint and complete by day's end). During my two-plus years there, and in spite of being systematically worked to death, I had a reasonable amount of fun at this rather grueling job in a suffocatingly hot (read: NO AIR CONDITIONING) warehouse in the San Fernando Valley, California, where summertime temperatures usually got to 105+ degrees or more for weeks on end.

 I worked with about 15 other artists crammed into an area of said warehouse at large desks, which we loaded covered with as many statues of said clowns as we could fit. Some statues were bigger and more intricate to paint, and paid a little bit better than the small simple ones, and you were paid extra for as many extra you could manage in a day's time. That's what I strove for, to paint each statue perfectly in as short a time as I could, and to do as many as I humanly could push myself to do. Believe me, it was not easy, but I felt it could perhaps be a stepping stone of sorts to a better "Job as an Artist" that may be waiting for me in the near future to get away from this sweatshop job (ha, that was not to happen for a long while, but hope is what drives the human soul, so you should never, ever deprive anyone of hope) as well as out of a very abusive marriage (which I thankfully did a few short years later).

During this time, I was trying to be as creative as I could, both at the job and at home, where I painted and drew almost constantly. I'd come up with a series of Christmas time paintings featuring cute woodland animals, one of which I'm sharing here from the holiday season in late 1984. It's ink with acrylic paints on heavy-stock paper, and as I took a quick scan of it (sorry for the poor quality), I realized that I never really finished it; so add that to my list of resolutions for the coming year. And, if anyone was interested, I'd be happy to make prints of it as well.

Anyway, just thought I'd share the "A Critter Christmas" here. Happy Holidays, y'all!



A Critter Christmas 

by Ellen Gee - 1984



Tuesday, December 22, 2020

My Winter Special magazine is published and available! -


Autumn Brilliance magazine's 

"We Wish You a Scary Christmas"

 

I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have been able to feature the talents of so many notable Halloween and holiday artists in this issue (as well as the premiere issue, which was published September, 2020). Each and every one of these amazing artists have been wonderful, as I got to know them personally and learned of their unique intricate process of creating their works of art.

My deepest love and thanks go to the artists who participated in this magazine:

Nicole Johnson - Audrey Swarz - Susie Krichbaum - Mandy Palumbo - Karen Steinkraus - Jacqueline Patrick - David Anderson - Ethan Black - Lauryn MacGregor - Helen Terlalis Dorn - and to both John Davis and Kristen Stafford for the fabulous, fun and informative articles submitted that helped to further flesh out this publication.  

It was most certainly a labor of love, without a doubt! 

I'll freely admit that having completed this latest venture, I'm TIRED! After having worked on two big issues in a row (which I put together myself, 100%! No other graphic artists or office assistants here, folks, just me in my little home studio), I am definitely pooped.

But even so, hard as it is to not want to instantly jump into another publication, I'm forcing myself to relax - just a bit - and take the rest of the year off (ok, well, it's only about another week till year's end)  before I dive headfirst into the next. Oh, to be sure, there are plenty of things scheduled to come to fruition in 2021, but for now, it's the chill pill for me. I'm going to set about clearing and cleaning up my office, it needs it!

Don't know if I'll post again until the beginning of the coming year, so until then, my love to all. Be well, be happy, be safe, and most importantly, please be kind to others. Here's to making 2021 a thousand times better than this one was!

To access your FREE flip-book copy of the magazine, click the link below. It is full of live links that will take you directly to the artist's web page where you can see and purchase more of their work. 
 

 https://autumnbrilliancemagazine.blogspot.com/

 


 

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Monday, November 2, 2020

My 'Halloween Art & Travel Podcast' segment is live!


I have so enjoyed Kristen Stafford's amazing Halloween podcast these past few years. Getting to meet her in person at last year's 'Bewitching Peddlers of Halloween' show where I was able to chat at length with this awesome lady was a treat in itself, as I discovered we had so much in common; namely, our intense love of Halloween, being an unrepentant collector of Halloween art, and the love of traveling to many new areas and towns and live events that all pertain to - can you guess" - Halloween!


If you have not yet discovered Kristen's podcast, please do so as quickly as possible! Kristen interviews every type of Halloween artist, mover & shaker of our favorite autumn holiday. It's a lot of fun and highly informative to delve into each artist's thoughts and creative process, as many of our mutually favorite artists opened up to share their world of holiday magic.

I am incredibly honored to have been included in the latest of her interviews this season. I'm usually the one who does the interviewing of artists, so having the proverbial table turned on me was interesting for sure.

Click the link below to take you directly to my interview!


https://halloweenartandtravel.libsyn.com/ellen-gee-producer-and-publisher-of-the-macabre





Sunday, November 1, 2020

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Why have I not posted recently?

I promise you, I've not been lazy ... quite the contrary!

I have been working nonstop on putting Autumn Brilliance magazine together. Yep, I'm a one-woman staff so my entire days and evenings have been spent sitting in front of my computer. Well, I'm happy to report, the end is near! - ha ha, as in, the fruits of my labor are nearing completion.

Look for the digital launch on September 15.

A huge, HUGE thank you to all who were involved in creating this project... all the wonderful, amazing Artists. 

I love you all!







Sunday, June 21, 2020

Countdown continues! ...


Only 133 days until Halloween!

What are you doing these days during the pandemic lockdown?
Looking at the world through my pumpkin-colored lenses, I know it's soon leading up to the most fun and favorite holiday we all live for. I'm practicing safe and sane social distancing, but also hoping to include at least one small road trip this autumn, as planned.

In the meantime, staying put at home as usual, tending to the garden, my six cats, and working on quite a bit of art of all sorts, such as the Dia de Los Muertos kitty cat duo below.

Today is Father's Day, as well as the Summer Solstice weekend celebration. Sending love and light to all the dads, stepdads, single moms, uncles, big brothers, all who have had to take the role of strong loving guidance, giving of themselves tirelessly for our well-being.


Plaster bisque Day of the Dead kitty cat duo
Hand-painted, with mucho amor.
4" H x 2" W



Wednesday, May 27, 2020

I haz a big sad today...

It has been a truly scary few months, not just here in Tennessee, but worldwide, as we all have been forced to quarantine in order to ensure the safety of everyone's health. We've been closely monitoring the news to see what steps need to be taken in order to jump-start our former regular day to day activities, hoping that it would soon enough be safe to proceed, based on the guidelines from our local/state and national officials. 

It saddens us to see so many people not taking this pandemic seriously and throwing caution to the wind, opting to gather closely in public areas without taking the proper safeguarding of masks and gloves.
 
This is extremely alarming to us. 

An awful lot goes into the planning of an event the size of Monsters & Merriment, and generally spans the course of most of the year to put all the pieces neatly into the puzzle so that they fit perfectly. In addition to myself and Vance Nichols, we have others who contribute much of their valuable time in helping to make our show the success it is.
 
One of those people is our dear friend Ethan Black, who is currently suffering much more badly than we are during this pandemic, as his father was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer, and has been given about six months' time to live. As you can surmise, his mind and energies are not focused on the show at the moment.

Our show is completely comprised of YOU: independent artists and small businesses, all of whom have been hit quite hard, as many of you were holding two or even three jobs to make ends meet before being forced to stay at home for two months without income. Any extra money is understandably not being put toward booth/table fees for any upcoming art shows at the time, as putting food on the table, paying rent/mortgages, are the utmost priorities. The overall economy has suffered as well. Folks just don't have the disposable income they did prior to the pandemic.

We've tried to stay optimistic about things. First and foremost, the health and safety of our friends, family, artists, and all those who would attend Monsters & Merriment, is paramount. We love nothing better than seeing everybody safe and sound, enjoying our big Halloween event with plenty of laughter and smiles on their faces.

While we initially thought that by the autumn, this frightening thing would pass, history has proven otherwise time and time again: this may only be the beginning before a second (and much worse) wave of the virus comes. Even if we were to implement ultra-mega safety measures, we nonetheless fear what 'might happen' in such a large setting with thousands of people in one place. 

While I would sincerely love to be able to say that we are undeniably confident that this year's show will be a go, to be honest, we are just not sure about things at this point. Our instincts tell us to be extra careful, though we are trying our best to remain optimistic. 

Is it worth taking a risk? We cannot in good conscience say yes. 
A motto we live by is "Better Safe than Sorry!"

It truly breaks our hearts to do this, but we need to err on the side of caution and postpone our event until it has been deemed safe to do so. We are disappointed beyond words that Monsters & Merriment will not take place in 2020. We appreciate your understanding of our safeguarding reasons, and promise to make up for lost time in the biggest, most colorful and fun way we can in next year's show. 

Here's to 2021! 

That is our one silver lining, shining in what has been a very dark cloud called 2020.








Friday, May 22, 2020

Happy World Goth Day! -


Not all of us subscribe to the lukewarm ambition of life.

I've always gravitated toward the more eccentric, flamboyant, outrageous styles and will never change. Don't expect me to cut my hair into a little old lady 'do (I'd rather shave my head instead!) or wear boring clothes.

Ain't gonna happen, peeps! Life is too short and full of too many fun colors and styles. 

My style SHEroes are Cher, Dolly Parton, Siouxsie Sioux, RuPaul, the Boulet Brothers, and a few others of the like who also were never interested in fitting in with the rest of the herd. I salute you lovely ladies!

Though I'm getting older and there's a slight hitch in my giddy-up, I still LOVE dress to the nines and wear wigs, false eyelashes, black velvet and thigh-high boots. Let's just say, the more drag queen the look, the more I like it! 

One of my favorite Dolly Parton quotes is, "It takes a lot of money to look this cheap."  I love that beautiful, creative woman so much!


My hair has morphed into so many different colors over the years, from white-bleached blonde to blue to blue black, red, purple, magenta, orange, you name it. As long as I'm able to reach up and slather some dye on my locks, I'll keep at it!

In honor of World Goth Day, I'll leave you with this oldy but goody of me, circa 1990s.

Share your best Goth look! 





Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Staying safe and sane ...

...well, sort of!


I generally have little to no problem staying home, and, being easily amused, have lots to keep me happily entertained!

However, lately, yup, starting to definitely feel some cabin fever creeping in. No worries, Halloween is but a mere 164 days away. Got plenty to keep me busy with, including my garden when I'm not indoors working on projects.

This ongoing project, "Batilda," is continuing nicely! The second decorated box (of four total) is complete. Quite different from the original, which was tres GOTH, this one is resplendent with summery flower colors of lavender, greens, and pinks. It is going to be gifted to a very special lady. Nope, can't tell you who it is just yet, but I promise it will be worth the wait.

Not the best quality photo, but it'll have to do for now.
"Batilda" decorated cackling keepsake boxes, by me.
Copyright 2020 


And how are you doing?






Monday, April 27, 2020

New project: Joli Chat Noir

'Joli chat noir
la bonne vie
elle se moque de toi'

Quarantine art has kept me relatively sane these days!


I'm a collector (read: hoarder) of many a thing that grabs my artistic fancy, including materials, ribbons, paper, old boxes of every sort, doo-dads, thingamabobs and whatnot. All these things that I had vowed steadfastly to repurpose into some lovely new hand-made original art that may, someday, somewhere, end up on a collector's shelf.

Being indoors has necessitated me to being using up some of these plentiful supplies in my studio, including this simple round box which was the container for fancy French brie cheese.

I have reincarnated this simple cardboard box into a thing of sweet whimsy. A keepsake trinket box which I have called 'Joli Chat Noir' (pretty black cat). 

The top of the box is a silvery 3-D paper of raised flowers. The sides are covered in frilly, satiny assorted ribbons with gold rhinestones, and adorned with a sleek black bewhiskered kitty dreaming of a delectable fish dinner (both the cat and fish skeleton are sculpted from polymer clay). The kitty's eyes glow in the dark. She sports a collar trio of crimson material roses, which adds a pop of color to the scene.

The inside of the box is painted muted vintage French sage, with an antique drawing of a black cat, as well as the little poem I wrote.
Joli Chat Noir
created by Ellie Gee
MacabreWebs Studios - copyright 2020

Monday, April 20, 2020

"Pandemic Dreams," Part 4 - Beulah Dreams


Beulah Dreams
by Ellie Gee
MacabreWebs Studios - copyright 2020 



Beulah dreams
of snow like ice cream
that falls across the land
A blanket of white
Obliterates her sight
Despair so out of hand




Friday, April 17, 2020

"Batilda and her lil Friend" -

A few months ago I posted about a project I was working on, called "Batilda," an odd little goth girl who had no arms, but enjoyed the constant companionship of a wee brown bat living on her head.
I had written a poem/story about them that I plan on publishing sometime this year.

Batilda started out as a pencil drawing, evolving into an acrylic painted figure on a 'cackling coffin,' and eventually becoming a full-sized polymer/paper clay sculpture. 
She was fun to create, and get to know!

Without further ado, may I present, Batilda!






Batilda
created by me, Ellie Gee
MacabreWebs Studios, copyright 2019

Cackling coffin created with acrylic paints, fabric, and glitter
5" x 3"

Sculpture created with polymer clay, paper clay, acrylic paints, fabric
7" x 5"






Monday, April 13, 2020

"Pandemic Dreams," Part 3 - Sasha Dreams


Sasha Dreams
Acrylic paint with ink
by Ellie Gee - MacabreWebs 
copyright 2020
10"x11"






Friday, April 10, 2020

"Pandemic Dreams" Part 2: Nightingale Dreams ....



Nightingale dreams
of things unseen
that whisper in the night
The moon above
fills her heart with love
of dark wings and sanguine fright

By Ellie Gee / MacabreWebs Studios - copyright 2020
Acrylic with ink - 10" x 11"





Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Next project: "Pandemic Dreams" series: Felina Dreams of Halloween -


Latest painting - "Felina Dreams of Halloweens"
10" x 11"
Acrylic paints with ink. April, 2020
Copyright 2020 - MacabreWebs Studios 

I realize that for most, it's difficult being cooped up in the house. Not for me, I was born for this! I have everything I want and need here. (I do miss being able to blithely get out occasionally, taking a walk through vintage stores, Good Will, etc. Soon!)

Put my acrylic paints and inks to use with an ongoing series I've dubbed "Pandemic Dreams," which features a woman who incorporates an aspect of our personality/dream in each painting. 

This is my first, "Felina Dreams," which shows my love of fantasy and - of course - all things Halloween. 

Each woman/child is dressed in a whimsical "onesie" suit with ears that could be a cat, bear, bat, dog, etc. Felina wears a cat suit (hence her name). 

Hope you are entertained... I sure have been, creating each one.

Soon as things are "safe" outside, I want to bring these to a printer and have copies made, in case anyone would like to purchase one. Details will be forthcoming on this site, directing you to my Etsy page.

 



Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Current project: Fenwick P. Mossbottom!

For those of you who remember my sculpture from several years ago:
 'Fenwick P. Mossbottom, Guardian of the Pumpkin Patch,' you may also recall that he had a story that went along with him. In fact, pretty much all of my sculptures and paintings have backstories to accompany them. It's just how I create - never simply a character or scene, there is always a background, a bit of origin, to them. And many are integrated with each other, in their respective places, all centered on Halloween of course.

A project I'd been working on but put on a backburner was an illustrated book with many of the Halloween characters I've created in the past. I've delved into bringing it to its fruition recently, and am elated in doing so. It has been a while since I earnestly broke out my paints, having spent the better part of a decade or more working exclusively with clay. Acrylic paints, I have missed you so!!!

Thus far, I have one full panel of the book completed: a painting of the overall land that Fenwick resides in. It is everything you would imagine a fanciful chap such as he lives in - a small pastoral village, where it is perpetual Autumn and all the trees and foliage are bright and alive with intense vibrancy. 


Fenwick is diligent about caring for the pumpkins every Autumn season, ensuring they grow well and are ready in time for Halloween. However, he's got the penchant to slip off occasionally for a wee nip on the bottle of high-octane pumpkin brew, and as a result, ends up inebriated and entangled within the pumpkin patch!

Even though I ordinarily work from home (call me a hermit, it's what I am), being forced to remain indoors during this awful pandemic has lit a creative fire under me. I feel like I'm getting more done now than I usually do. Hey, I call that a win!

I hope you all are doing well, staying healthy and happy. 
Stay creative, it will most certainly save you!


The original Fenwick sculpture resides in an art collector's home here in Nashville; he was sold at the 2017 MONSTERS & MERRIMENT Art Show.





Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Quarantine? No prob! - - -

We are a work-from-home kind of gal, so staying put indoors during the coronavirus quarantine is a piece of cake! (Just wish we had some cake right now)

Keeping very busy, drawing and painting every day. Working on an illustrated book I've planned over the course of the past decade.

How are you all doing?


'Felina Dreams of Halloween'

Felina dreams of Halloween
whilst tucked into her bed
with candy corn
new days yet born
Keeps her imagination well-fed

copyright MacabreWebs Studios 2020


Monday, February 24, 2020

Now for an Announcement! - - -



Mark your calendars: SEPTEMBER 27, 2020
for the return of MONSTERS & MERRIMENT HALLOWEEN ART SHOW

We are currently looking for stellar and UNIQUE Halloween artists of all sorts, and especially those who specialize in the following:

- Vintage Halloween
- Sculptures and assemblage
- Books, magazines, and the like
- Collectibles and ephemera, buttons, stickers, etc.
- Horror, fantasy
- Clothing, home goods and textiles
- Candles, perfumes
- Actors of Halloween/horror movies to meet with fans, sign and pose for photos


We're also looking to bring on food trucks that specialize in serving amazing foods, and separate dessert trucks as well. 
Hot dog vendors with small carts are encouraged to apply!

Please inquire at the link above, and click on "Contact Us/Join Us" to send an email with your name and information. 

Be sure to include a website where we can see your artistry! (Emails without this will not be answered)






Friday, February 21, 2020

How does this grab you?


Reach out and grab ahold!
Monsters & Merriment returns this autumn!

Where have I been, you ask?
No, I've not been goofing off since the beginning of the new year!


My absence here online simply means that I've been pretty darn busy, working on a multitude of things, including several school classes that take up most of my days each week. Yes, indeed, at my ancient age, it's a good thing to keep cramming new info into the ol' brain. How does that expression go? - "Use it or lose it!" The truth, for sure!

I've even joined a super cool and very fun belly dancing class. 
Boom shaka laka! 
Oh if only my achy lower back would cooperate a little better, ha ha.

Mostly though, I've been working on this year's Monsters & Merriment show.

Can't let out any secrets just yet, but the above logo will figure into it. Very excited because we have a really amazing new venue. It was quite sad that last year, we lost our old one - Fontanel - as it was sold to new owners, who have since closed the property down for the next few years while they re-do it. I have no idea what exactly it will turn into, but I wish them good luck. The years we spent there were wonderful, full of nothing but sweet, happy memories, and I'm incredibly thankful to them for hosting us.

So, in the meantime, between classes, putting the show together and creating new art, I'm glad to see that 2020 will remain very full and exciting for me.

Oh yeah... and I just turned 60 this February, too. Holy smokes, what a milestone, which is another big reason why I'm wanting to stay as busy as possible and learn new things. Either that, or sit like a bump on a log, and gather dust and cob webs (yeah, I know, it would go perfectly with my decor).

Ok, kiddies. Back to the salt mines I go. Catch up with ya soon!