40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – inspiration

can you guess what my inspiration was? if you said stranger things – you’re right!

this show is just amazing. and so perfect for the “inspiration” prompt: the show itself was inspired by all sorts of 80’s movies, the show has inspired so much beautiful fan art and that has inspired me :)

screen-shot-2016-08-18-at-7-55-06-pm

the above image was my epiphany moment – i was like, yeah i could do that on my nails!!

i started with an off-white base coat (that just so happened to be the exact same color as the pages of my book). next step was to add the liquid latex (because i knew this was gonna be messy!) and start in on the upper trees. i actually really like it at this point – the streaks going down my nails plus the sponged part at the top looks like trees in fog or something. but i wasn’t done! i added the same grey on the bottom so i had a solid base to work on top of.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

unfortunately at this point i forgot to take pictures until i was done. but from here it’s simple enough! i re-taped off the top part, then sponged on a gradient of blue and navy over the grey. then following the same lines from the trees above i continued them along the bottom using the navy.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i added some glitter to mimic the particles that float through the air in the upside down. again, i could’ve been done here: representing the world that the show exists in. but that’s no challenge ;)

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

so i used my printable temporary tattoo paper and printed tiny little versions of mike, eleven, dustin and lucas on their bikes, and will running away from the demigorgon for the upside down (used the silhouettes from Matt Ferguson’s above image). will and the monster are hard to see – unfortunately i went a little too dark with my background colors. maybe i shouldn’t have done the grey before the blue…

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i love using the tattoo paper because it allows me to do much more detailed art on my finger canvases than i could otherwise do (i like to think of myself as the type of person who could paint super small details like that – but i seem to have proven otherwise on past endeavors). one problem that i have with the tattoo paper thought is that it is a white piece of paper with sticky on the top. when you’re using it the sticky side goes down, the paper gets wet and eventually comes off to leave the sticky side and image on your nail (or skin if you’re using the paper as intended). well this gets difficult when trying to place really small objects precisely because of the white paper blocking the image. it took me a few tries to get the bikes to look like they’re on the ground and not floating like in E.T. (although that would be fitting, seeing as how it is one of the inspirations for the show).

speaking of the tattoo paper – i originally did a different design for this mani. i really love typography and the intro text is beautiful. once again i struggled trying to paint that onto my nails. i ended up doing the tattoo paper on this one too.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i don’t really like that one. i like the concept – one hand being the normal logo and the other representing the upside down. it just wasn’t super readable when not under pretty bright lights. and the curve of my nails made some of the letters disappear :( also the second downside to tattoo paper is that the sticky side is like a super super thin plastic. if you get it on your skin it sticks to it and is kind of hard to cut through. i struggled with that a lot on this one. on pretty much every nail, it got stuck to the nail and my finger, and i had to take an exacto knife and cut through it, without cutting myself or ripping the design.

anyway here’s one more closeup!

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors bubbly, models own everyday grey, sinful colors love nails, sally hansen  deluxe, wet n wild kaleidoscope, essie matte about you.

40gnai - inspiration | @bulletnails

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40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – orange + geometric

i wasn’t too excited for this one – but i really like what i ended up with! i think i was intimidated by the “geometric” label – thinking i was going to have to do something super intricate or math…

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails

luckily neither was necessary :) i did a really simple asymmetrical color block – because squares are part of geometry right?! i love the grey to counteract the orange, the silver to add some sparkle and the matte to make the whole thing more subtle. i sorta lucked into this one!

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails

in person these contrast a lot more against my skin. i think my lighting setup needs some work – i’m really not that orange skinned!

colors used: pop ablaze, models own everyday grey, kiss spa10 silver glitter.

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails

hookah smoking caterpillar
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hookah smoking caterpillar

i don’t really ever do swatches. i barely even do my nails with only one color! but i just got this in the mail and i’m so excited about it.

hookah smoking caterpillar swatch by @eileenreis

the beautiful pic to the left popped up from @eileenreis on my insta feed a while back and i knew i had to have it. unfortunately when i went to find it at girlybits they didn’t have it.

so i was patient. and checked back. until finally there it was – available for my grubby little hands to snatch up. normally the price tag would be a huge hurdle here. i love doing my nails but for the most part can get a good design done with $2 drugstore polishes. but this gorgeous lacquer was about to set me back $20.11. for one bottle! that’s a whole decimal place different.

hookah smoking caterpillar

i obviously bought it. or i wouldn’t have pictures. to justify this purchase i ended up spending even more money and getting two more polishes. i know it seems counterintuitive but my reasoning is that shipping didn’t increase, therefore the price of each bottle went down… or something like that.

hookah smoking caterpillar

color used: girlybits hookah smoking caterpillar.

40gnai - things in the water | @bulletnails
40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – yellow & silver + gradient

i struggled here! yellow and silver did not mix well for me! i tried doing a sponge gradient that ended up an ugly mess (the mixed part in the middle was a really matte brownish green). i tried painting them yellow and sponging on silver. i tried painting them silver and sponging on yellow. all of it ended up looking poopy (literally).

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails

so instead of relying on the normal definition of gradient i was forced to think outside of the box. which is actually really good for me. i love gradients and they’re probably my most used technique but they’re all technically the same.

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails

so for my yellow and silver gradient i decided to make a half-tone pattern or bubbles or rain or something. i used a few different sized dotting tools and just went crazy. and i love how it turned out! the yellow is super bright (and makes me look really tan) and really makes the chromey silver really stand out. really simple but took a lot of creative thinking to get here!

colors used: salon perfect yowza yellow, claire’s liquid metal dime a dozen.

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails