Here is the story of how we started creating the collectible ornaments.
We called our first ornaments Greeting-Goyles. They first ran in our Holiday 1996 catalog.
One of our staff artists was chosen to complete a special project for a very good customer. The customer had a lamp and fan business and wanted Toscano to do pull chain sculptures for the lamps he sold. The designs were non-Toscano images like stars, moons, cats and dogs. Items his clientele would respond to but not necessarily ours. As the Toscano creative team reviewed the quality of these lamp and fan pull chain sculptures, we had a great idea when seeing the pieces hanging in front of us. How about making a holiday ornament version for our customers. We had the staff artist create two versions of our best selling gargoyles at the time The Emmett and the Florentine Gargoyle for us.
Over the years we have asked some of our hottest artists to sculpt the featured Holiday Gothic Beast. Because of our customers trends, we have changed the focus from Gargoyles to Dragons and have never looked back. Over the years, we have had works of art from Toscano artists like Jaimy Chuang, Frederic Levesque, Alan Dickinson, Gary Chang and this year's artist Liam Manchester All have sculpted an exclusive collectible version for our customers enjoyment.
Our Holiday dragon ornaments are not for everyone—but we always try to have fun with the design, and maybe that is why our customers have grown to love each year’s design. We have offered a Santa riding a holiday dragon, gargoyles biting a star, dragons with a sword, a gargoyle jumping out of wrapped holiday packages, dragon with a sweet tooth (holding a candy cane), a dragon twisting around a holiday wreath and a gargoyles tong frozen to a ice cube.
Artist Liam Manchester, Toscano’s British, senior sculptor, accredits artists Frank Frazetta and Boris Vallejo as his creative inspiration. Liam created this year’s 2010 collectible Dragon ornament. The Protector of the Gothic Portal Dragon ornament, which features a sparkling crystalline resin Celtic orb. Manchester thought the use of the beautiful crystalline resin orb would be the perfect compound to catch the light off a twinkling holiday tree light. Manchester sketched many versions of the dragon but settled on a more heroic medieval beast protecting the mystical gothic portal. Manchester regularly sculpts pieces for home and garden for Toscano. His favorite being; The Spirit of Nottingham Woods: Greenman Tree Sculpture, Treebeard Ent with Mystical Orb Statue and the The Dweller Below Garden Sculpture