Almost Abstract Giraffe Print

Animal Print was the 13th design prompt for the #31DC2013 and I chose to imitate the giraffe. My design came out short of what I had envisioned it to be; however, I did enjoy wearing it. They made me smile whenever I noticed my fingers typing, holding the TV remote, etc. And, in this post I include a few photos of the cutest giraffes – ever!


Returning to my comfort-zone of stamping, I pushed myself in the spirit of the challenge to use three colors and wanted to stamp an image on top of another. I was hopeful to capture the gradient that you see on giraffes as their spots fade into lighter or darker areas of their bodies.


Giraffe photo by Justin Morgan (flickr) at Southwick Zoo
While I got a nice gradient base before stamping, I didn’t think/stop to capture it with the camera. (Note to self!) I made a gradient using the lightest color to the mid-range color from cuticle to nail tip. Then, when I stamped the first layer with the mid-range color, the stamping dissolved into the edge – just what I wanted. Again, no photo. (Argh!)
Anyway, in hindsight, I can think of many ways to have completed these nails differently/better, as often is the case. After stamping again with the darkest color I didn’t get the look I was hopeful for. It hid the gradient effect and I couldn’t figure out how to make the edge of the stamp less harsh. As a last resort, I thought if I stamped MESSY ON PURPOSE it would lend to a more natural look. (In these pictures, it just looked like I suck at stamping…hangs head.)
The photo above shows the nails glossy, but I liked it better with a softer, matte top-coat (as in all of the other shots). On the up side, the colors I chose were spot-on for the animal. However, I found they were incredibly hard for me to get good pictures. I blame my extremely fair skin. Just as the giraffe likely blames it’s extremely long legs for making drinking from the ground very awkward. We all have to do the best with what we have, eh?
“Beware the giraffe behind you!” (Source)
In the end, these are a crude nail design – not quite a french tip and not quite a half-moon. And, yet, they still evoked a feeling of these majestic animals. So, I think I fulfilled the goal of this design challenge (even if it wasn’t what I had in mind at first).
One last picture of my nails. Doesn’t the background look like it could be in Africa? (Squint! Please.)
Materials Used:
Polishes (L to R): Zoya – Louise, Zoya – Flynn, OPI – My Vampire is Buff
Bundle Monster: plates BM-313 and BM-325
Inspiration Sources:
These awesome giraffe photos (in post and one more below):
2009 Photo Contest Winner Giraffe
Newborn calf under female giraffe in Kenya – taken by First Prize Winner John Eastcott and Yva Momatiuk in National Wildlife Federation photo contest, 2010

“31 Design Challenge” (more info in previous post here)

courtesy of Chalkboard Nails

Next up, flowers!! Will I use my new MoYou plate? Follow me to find out!

Till next time,