ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails
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anti valentines hearts

simple broken hearts. meh.

ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails

i think my problem sometimes with prompts is that they’re too specific. like maybe someone else will have some clever design for this – but when i’m told anti-valentine hearts, i’m not sure that it leaves enough room for creativity…

 

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ncu - red & black | @bulletnails
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ncu – red & black

when i decided to do this playing card mani for the black and red challenge i didn’t realize i would struggle so much with the little stems on the spade and club. tricky little buggars!

ncu - red & black | @bulletnails

i think they ended up looking okay, maybe a little out of proportion, but i can deal with that! i do really like this mani, if for nothing else, because of the combo of matte and shiny. that was unintentional, just the polishes i ended up using. i didn’t do a top coat because i really liked the contrast.

ncu - red & black | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, style me up! black, wet n wild red red.

26gnai - blue floral | @bulletnails
26gnai - new year | @bulletnails
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26gnai – new year new you

i’m not really in to new year’s resolutions. and “new year new you” doesn’t really speak to me. i’m actually really happy with who i am – and i feel like the resolution thing every year just makes people unhappy with themselves. people are constantly asking what are you going to change about yourself this year. why do we do that? only focusing on what needs to be changed or “fixed” instead of celebrating what is good leads to bad feelings about ourselves and insecurities.

so once again, this new year, there will be no new me. i am going to continue to love who i am. if there is something i think i need to change, i will work on it but i will not dwell on it. (end: new year’s resolution rant!)

26gnai - new year | @bulletnails

on to my nails – i did a new years celebration theme. i think this chunky glitter is so cute and it reminds me of fireworks and bubbles – both which remind me of new years celebrations. as far as the base coat goes, i just think black and gold together are super classy!

26gnai - new year | @bulletnails

colors used: wet n wild black crème, kbshimmer toast-ess with the mostest, essie matte about you.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails
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ncu – holiday movie

i’m a little late with this one because i went home for a week and a half over thanksgiving to see my family. it was a really nice vacation (cold – but i just stayed inside!).

this mani is inspired by i’ll be home for christmas. probably a not-so-famous christmas movie for most people. but i watched this so many times growing up, probably because i had a huge crush on jonathan taylor thomas! but now it’s part of my christmas tradition.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails

i have always loved the scene with the santa 5k. as a kid that was such a wild idea, to see all these different santas running around the city. now that i live in sf, where there is an annual santacon, i miss the idyllic (and sober) version from the movie.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails

since i ran out of time i decided that my nails would just be ten little santa hats – i guess sort of clustered like they are in the movie…

colors used: sally hansen red carpet, sinful colors  snow me white.

26gnai - black base | @bulletnails
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26gnai – black base

i’m going to start by apologizing: i’m sorry but this is not a happy post. feel free to skip to the photo (after that is were i get back to nail business).

but things suck right now. hard. i’m sad, embarrassed, angry, ashamed, confused. what happened tuesday was a failure of the system. people were told to be scared. i guess it’s not surprising that they ended up scared. scared enough to vote for hatred. scared enough to look past all the proven bad behavior and still want to follow.

and now, we’re being bombarded with stories of bullies (on both sides, but mainly directed at minorities). one day after the election and people’s better selves have gone into hibernation. people believe they are now free to treat others in atrocious and disgusting ways.

my only silver lining is that hillary actually won the popular vote. not by much (3-4 hundred thousand, depending on which source you look at), but i have to hold on to the fact that most people didn’t want trump. that does little good for this country, but restores my faith in humanity a bit at least. but who knows, maybe the “electors” will use their legal rights to change their vote and fix this error. i’m not holding my breath though – only 3 electors have changed their vote in the past 30 years (although if we go back further we see many more people with minds of their own: in 1832 32 electors changed their votes, 1836 there were 23 and in 1872 there were 63!). read more about this at fairvote.com and watch the video above to see why this system no longer works.

26gnai - black base | @bulletnails

so nails… when i originally read this prompt my plan was to do rainbow stripes on top of a black base. i was in a hopeful, optimistic mood. no longer. i am in mourning. my country is in mourning. so my nails reflect that. i did a matte and shiny combo of the american flag (sorry it’s not super accurate, still trying to get better at small details).

i love the matte/shiny look but i had a dickens of a time trying to photograph it! i got the best results using a flash – it lit up the matte part while reflecting off the shiny, hopefully making it clear whats going on. i don’t typically use a flash because it makes everything look so washed out. but i took the photos into photoshop and added a little color back to my skin (i’m not a zombie i swear!)

colors used: style me up black, sally hansen invisible.

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