Local Artist’s Creations Brought To Life Through Kickstarter

Have you ever imagined what your lunchbox may look like beyond the grave?

Sara Vecchi is a local artist who has put a spooky – and adorable – spin on some of your favorite foods. Vecchi’s “Food Ghosts” started like many great projects: born from boredom on a road trip.

“They were originally just digital drawings I did just to entertain my son.”

Sandwich ghost pin by Lancaster, Ohio artist Sara Vecchi.

Sandwich Ghost Pin

Vecchi was doodling on her iPad when her son told her to draw a ghost and make it pink. “I was like, ‘This looks like a piece of bologna.’ So I added little olive eyes and stuff and it started this whole thing of, well let’s draw a ghost, what food do you want it to be?” The original trio came out to be Bologna, Pizza, and a Sandwich.

About a year later, Vecchi decided to try to turn her art into a pin selection. “I’ve been collecting for a long time. I’ve always loved them and I wanted to try making something out of my art that was sellable.”

Collecting and trading pins is a hobby for people across many different fandoms and interests. You can find pin vendors and traders at conventions and local pop-ups that swap pins from major icons like Disney and anime to small artists and limited edition creations.

“That to me was a really fun idea: something of mine that I could make into a pin that I could actually keep and have, and friends of mine could have,” Vecchi said. She decided to use Kickstarter, an online crowdfunding platform, to raise support for her project.

Birthday Cake ghost pin by Lancaster, Ohio artist Sara Vecchi.

Birthday Cake Ghost Pin

“I’ve backed a lot of Kickstarters and so I was familiar with the platform but I had never done a Kickstarter before,” Vecchi said. “So the ghosts were kind of my first foray into learning how to do all of that.” A lot of research went into the development of her first project, including checking similar projects, tracking their momentum, what factors seemed to help or hinder their progress, and more.

“I’m one of those people who gets an idea in their head and just digs for a really long time on the internet.”

When looking through her art to decide what she should turn into a pin, the food ghosts floated right into her vision. The first “Food Ghost” group included Pizza, Sandwich, and Ramen – Bologna sadly didn’t make the cut.

“At first, I was going to do a spaghetti ghost but my brother convinced me to go with ramen and it was such a good choice,” said Vecchi. “Now ramen’s one of my favorite ones.”

Ramen ghost pin by Lancaster, Ohio artist Sara Vecchi.

Ramen Ghost Pin

The pins picked up in popularity faster than Vecchi anticipated and she decided to announce a stretch goal as it became clear they were going to hit their initial funding mark. “I did the Ice Cream ghost and the Cake ghost with the idea being I was going to have a line of three desserts. I have a pie ghost design that never actually got made!”

The first group of pins and their stretch goal additions were a success, leading Vecchi to put a second edition into production. The breakfast ghosts included Pancakes, Waffles, and Toast and were also a hit on Kickstarter. The Food Ghost series is something Vecchi plans to continue in the future.

“It’s something that’s so flexible. I wanted to start with savory things and then I thought, ‘Well I’ll just do desserts’ and then it was ‘Oh, breakfast foods!’” For the next trio, Vecchi has a few beverages in mind to bring about a twist. “There’s just so much potential. I would love to be able to fill up whole things of pins.” On her website, Vecchi sells the series as both pins and stickers.

Pancakes & Syrup ghost pin by Lancaster, Ohio artist Sara Vecchi.

Pancakes & Syrup Ghost Pin

In addition to commission work and the pin series, Vecchi is also working on a comic series, ‘Michael & Margo’. The comic is described as “an all-ages short story comic about a young boy, an inquisitive young creature, and her club-wielding father.” While the first part is already published and printed, the second is set to release soon!

Stay tuned to learn more about these adorable creatures and creations from Vecchi! The Lancaster Herald has an exclusive with the artist about the storytelling and comic development process coming soon. For more information about Sara Vecchi, you can visit her website at SaraVecchiArt.com.

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By Eleanor Mathers

Eleanor Mathers is a lead contributor to The Lancaster Herald. As a freelance writer with a special interest in the arts, Eleanor contributes stories about the arts and artists. Besides running her blog and services at EleanorTypes.com, they can be found behind bookshelves and at coffee tables around Lancaster.