Site Notice: Reconstruction

Well darlings, it’s been quite a while.

We will certainly update you about all that & the reasons why soon.

First though, we’ve got more pressing matters at hand. Our business & website are going through yet another complete overhaul. While all things are being shuffled around & new security measures begin to take hold, I will be redesigning the place from top to bottom & fixing some of the formatting issues with text that occur when switching views from desktop to mobile devices.

We are going for a cleaner look with less of a cluttery mess in our sidebar area.

Some important points to mention

  • We will be updating our Terms due to incidents that occurred over the break
  • There will be cross-platform changes & updates (Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube)
  • Art Services are temporarily suspended until April. (We are booked solid & consulting new clients.)
  • Sleepy Sundays has come to an end. (For now, until further notice. We are planning something new.)
  • We are currently searching for a social media manager. Contact us for more info.
  • Snapping Turtle is interested in branching out even further. (More details on this coming up.)

We’ve missed you tremendously. Thank you for being patient & supporting us while we had a lot going on.

We ask for a little more of that patience while we get things back in order here & sweep out all the dust creatures that creeped up inside our little castle in the clouds while we were away.

Love Always,

The Snapping Turtle Family

31 Nightmares 2018: The 26th

We’ve had to make some changes to our slots due to cancellations and actors passing. With that said, we’ve added some fresh new content to our roster.

Featured here on CardCastles once before,

I’d like to reintroduce you to SunBunz.

I really enjoy her commentary at times. In this particular series SunBunz is playing Little Nightmares, a horror/adventure game and that’s what landed her here.

I’ve yet to play this game myself but I hear it’s right up my alley.

And, for your viewing pleasure here is Part 2:


This has been

Day 26

of

Sleepy Sundays: Peach Clouds

Peach Clouds © Snapping Turtle Arts | cardcastlesinthesky.com

Life has dealt an interesting last few weeks to say the least. When you’re used to having doctor’s appointments every weekend for about a month and a half, it can be difficult to adjust back to schedule. One of the things I’ve always liked with being in business for yourself and “being your own boss” so to speak, is–I get to make my own hours. However, I noticed in recent weeks I rarely take advantage of this occupation’s gem.

This Sunday, though, I’m taking full advantage of this perk, as I have a lot coming up here to plan for. We currently have a Back to School sale running all month of September that we’re thinking of extending until the end of November. Along with that, we’re mapping out the lineup for 31Nightmares this year in October, as well as some other events.

This wall art design was inspired by a scene I witnessed a few weeks ago upon leaving the hospital as August drew to a close.

Hope you are all having an amazing weekend! Much more to come.

Have a dreamy Sunday!

Sleepy Sundays: Brighter Day

Brighter Day © 2018 Snapping Turtle Arts | cardcastlesinthesky.com

A lot has changed in the past few months. Even more is still changing. We are no longer moving our place of residence and this office. (At least not any time in the near future.) A great deal has gone on behind the scenes.

One thing remains constant. My health is still considerably poor. We are doing our best to fix this. Although, I’m not too sure what’s in the cards for me.

We decided to renew CardCastles for another year anyway. Somehow, I still have this strange optimism despite having tea with the reaper lately. There’s so much more to tell you, but we’re going to have to save that for a Daydreams Diary. For now, let’s all just try to look towards brighter days together.

What gives you hope?

Have a peaceful Sunday

31 Nightmares 2017: The 14th

Furious © 2017  Snapping Turtle Arts | cardcastlesinthesky.com

This artwork was meant to be shared later on in the #31Nightmares lineup, but due to some guest cancellations, changes made, & things currently going on, I shifted some of the slots with artwork in them to make up the next few days so we could keep up with a consistent theme each week this year.

This weekend going into next week, we’ll be diving into the surreal horror art genre, and I’ll be sharing some of my own work of the sort. This technique was something inspired by Wes Craven many years ago, and I’ve been doing it ever since. I record my dreams. Then sometimes, they become art.

This piece is no different. & The funny thing is I got to speak about it before we shared this piece with one of the members of our community. The character featured is based off of a nightmare I had of being burned as a witch out in the woods somewhere. It was a freakish nightmare that came out of nowhere. & It was interesting because my ancestors are not from the United States, where they actually burned women as witches in what is now considered the New England region of the northern east coast. Not too far from where I live today as I was born & raised in New Jersey, very close to/just outside of New York.


This has been Day 14

of

31 Nightmares 2017: The 7th

One thing we haven’t dived right into here yet during this year’s #31Nightmares is horror in sound, or soundtracks, and even in special effects.
Sound effects have been a hobby of mine since early childhood so this is also another subject right up my alleyways.

The composers that took on the horror genre in film & tv have always taught me quite a bit along my work and training in music over the years. This soundtrack sampling I uploaded to SoundCloud earlier this year (The first few tracks on the soundtrack) featured above was heavily influenced by techniques I’ve learned & experimented with over the years.

Dismissed

If 2017 has taught me anything, it’s to not make hasty announcements. Things can always change down the line, especially when collaborating with others.
Alicia in the Woods, announced here last year was supposed to be just that, a collaborative effort, but things change.
People change and life changes.

I have however had fun working on this project because I got to take a stab at designing a soundtrack and working with sound fx. Later on through the months spent working on this endeavor, aimed at a teen to adult (family-oriented) audience, I got to experiment and learn a lot about a lane that has always interested me—stop motion.

The Backwoods © 2017 cardcastlesinthesky.com | Snapping Turtle Publishing

The project is not canceled completely. We’re just not sure when it will be releasing due to changes with cast & crew. Stop-motion has been a hell of a lot of fun (& work) though and I’ve been happy to work on this storyline and animation/character design as a side project.

The horror genre has influenced me deeply throughout my career as an artist and it helped lead me to the field of concept art.

I cannot wait to see where else it takes me.

 

Alicia

This has been Day 7 of

 

Clearing Out the Clouds


Above is the message sent out to my Instagram followers this morning. Right now, my Instagram account is just a close group mixture of friends, family, and clients. So, of course, they get to know everything first. If you’d like exclusive updates like this one, just pop on over to the CardCastles Instagram and hit the follow button.

As for things here, just like the above message states, #SleepySundays will resume in two weeks time to its normal scheduling. In the meantime, you may see a bunch of pieces moving and shifting about in the clouds. I assure you, this is all part of something much larger than CardCastles itself and when the full shift is made by the end of 2017, you will start to see the changes.

Everything will begin to operate from one central hub — here. My services have become a sort of small business in about a year’s time, and this place is going to start to reflect that. Thank you for being so patient with me with these ever-changing cards I’m dealt.

It’s been a fantastic journey. I look forward to the months ahead. Brace yourselves. There is so much more to show you this 2017.

Blowing the Doors Wide Open

Flight

Two weeks ago I announced my parting ways with Twenty20. While the wounds are still a bit raw, I feel it’s a necessary step to inform my most loyal following as to why this decision was made.

For some time now, not having control over the pricing of my own products has disturbed me. While I understood my parent company had to make some profit as well, I felt this was only hurting my customer base. After all, if everything I sell is overpriced, who is going to buy it?

The company made it clear this was an aspect that was not going to budge much. My customers always said my products were of pristine quality – so no complaints there. The high prices seemed to be the only concern a little less than a year ago.

How it Worked

Matters seemed simple at first. All I had to do as an artist was create. Easy, right? Wrong. Although they had the difficult part of transferring all of my designs onto the various products, they often changed bits of our agreement along the way. Over time more features were stripped away.

Before the significant changes the items for sale included: {canvases, photo prints,}(various sizes) prisms (glass art), apparel, greeting cards, throw pillows, iPhone cases, and magnets.

The Killing Blow

Late last year all artists that worked with Twenty20 were informed that our work would now become available via Digital Download. What this was dressed up to mean was our art/photography became accessible to vendors who wanted to purchase our designs for their own products. We were told we would retain all copyrights and other legal rights to our work. Sounds like a win-win, right? Wrong again.

What this really meant was our artwork was now vulnerable to these vendors seeking out original art and photography at a cheap price – royalty-free. For those that don’t know much about art royalties, what this basically translates to is the artist or photographer is paid a small sum of the larger profit for every single use of their work.

While we were lead to believe this was a vital change that we’d want to get on board with, what was actually being advertised to these third-party vendors was “Get high-quality digital art and photography *royalty-free*!”

I was furious.

However, after much thought and consideration I decided to deal with this change. Then, at the beginning of February, another change was announced via email.

Grand Opening, Grand Closing Flight

One chilly morning I opened up my inbox only to nearly spill my coffee on the floor due to what I read. The company heads sent an email stating that the future of the company was changing. The CEO announced that this shift would signal the end of all printed products.

That was the end for any hope I had retained for the company. My partnership with them was over. It wasn’t really a difficult decision on my part. My gallery has always been an integral part of CardCastles. The images along with my artwork helped weave and tell a story. That feature of this site was what everything else here was centered around. In fact, CardCastles itself was built upon the “cards” (memories, photos, artwork) themselves.

Restacking the Cards

Now that key content is missing it’s a clear question of where do we go from here?
I’ve decided to open up a viewing-only gallery (temporarily). As the description suggests, nothing will be available for purchase until (if/when) I can set something up with future vendors and/or sites.

Depending on how I set this gallery up (*Most likely a separate portfolio site) You will be able to leave “likes”, share, and use, so long as you link back/give credit to me.

I look forward to rebuilding this part of CardCastles for you. It’s been far too long already.

Thanks for visiting and coming back, as always.