Over the years, as a professional face painter, my kit has evolved. I have always unified my kit with black, where possible (products, accessories, table cover etc) in an attempt to create a seamless, smart look. I’ve experimented with all sorts of paints and products along the way – paints not only need to be safe and approved products, but need to have great coverage on the skin, good density ( ie nice, bright impact on the skin) hold their colour well without staining, blend easily, be easy to remove, withstand hot conditions without dissolving into a sticky mess, and travel well. I travel to most of my bookings by tube and so my paints, in their palettes, need to be carried vertically, inside my suitcase. Some paints don’t travel well in this way at all, so little by little I’ve eliminated them from my kit.
My home kit mostly stays in my studio for face and body paint practise and for creating bespoke designs on individual paying clients, but also comes with me to special events such as body painting festivals and conventions. This kit consists of my beautiful Cameleons, in large sizes, my Cameleon colourblocks (one strokes), and home made splits.
My away kit comes to private and corporate bookings, and consists of Cameleon baselines and Colourblocks, Tag mat paints plus Tag, Paradise and Superstar shimmers, mostly decanted into the most suitable pots for travelling. I store all of my shimmer paints in clear stackable pots – I half fill them so that if they are going to ‘ooch’ up the walls of the pot during transportation, they have some empty pot wall to climb up, rather than ooching out of the pot altogether and making a mess! I have saved lots of smart black Paradise pots over the past three years, and these now contain other brands and my home made split cakes.
It has taken me lots of time and money to source the best paints and equipment. I absolutely love my kit and love the excitement it generates when I arrive at a booking.
Today’s paint – using exclusively Cameleon Body paint baseline and one stroke paints. This session was interrupted by my son coming home early with a crazy fever, so we photographed it unfinished, but it was still worthwhile. I mixed some of the Cameleon colours prior to painting on the skin, to create the perfect shades for the doves. The second photo has a green tint. My model Jennifer’s face has a very soft, almost Edwardian feel, so I like the way the second photo has turned out.
I have spent the past three days face painting for an organisation called Phoenix in south London, at an event raising awareness of local social and environmental issues. I met and painted some lovely people. Here are some of the children, painted with roses. It was my job to encourage people to have natural designs. Once you have painted one or two roses, you don’t need to do much encouraging! These designs took up to 5 minutes.
Yesterday I joined dozens of other face and body artists at the 2014 Paradise Jam, run by artist Juliet Eve, and held at the Paradise Wildlife park in Hertfordshire. Painters from across the UK gathered to jam ie to paint and enjoy each other’s company in a relaxed environment, where, despite the friendly competitions held this year, the emphasis is firmly on sharing and joining in.
I created an upper body paint (using mainly one stroke) to the given theme of the event – The Garden of Eden. I researched the character Lilith, according to The Alphabet of Ben Shira – Adam’s first wife who was demonized after refusing to subordinate herself to him! In some forms of the myth, Lilith was the serpent who returned to the garden to corrupt Eve.
My motifs are swans for the grace and innocence of the first people in the garden, snakes for deviance, flowers for potential and a candle for knowledge. The clear orb between her demonic horns is the moon – also associated with Lilith in mythology. Her feathered shoulder pieces represent wings – Lilith flew from the garden to the Red Sea. I would love to create a much darker design around the stories for this character. Paradise is a family event, with children wandering among the painters at work, so I kept it bright !
My photos are just snaps – I left the photography in the capable hands of UK body painter and photographer Simon Smith. Here he is directing my model Gina.
I love to layer details on top of well blended base colours, but I also like to consider areas of bare skin, which allow the design to ‘breathe’. This design, painted today, combines one stroke on a large scale with simple flowing line work. The face design has layered paint and powder, topped with triple dipped petals.
I made the head piece, hair pieces and latex and gem adornments.
Thanks to my beautiful and graceful model Liesl.
Today I painted Jodie, a lovely make up artist. I was working freely, without any particular agenda, with a simple blue, yellow and red palette, using flat base colours, powders and one strokes. For the butterfly on the chest I used Evening and Roses colour blocks by Cameleon bodypaint. Evening is one of two colourblocks (the other is Siren) I was recently asked to design for Cameleon – they are now available in the UK and globally http://www.cameleonpaint.com
I also used Cameleon Blood Red, Celadon, Banana and Strong Black, plus Grimas in royal blue, an apricot orange by Superstar, Grimas translucent powder and Sleek eyeshadow.
I rarely use primary colours together on large areas in my designs, but I recently experimented with very bright yellow-blue-red combinations at a booking where we had to paint dinosaurs over a whole week, and I experimented with colours in combinations that I don’t normally use in order to keep everything fresh and interesting. I love the way the colours pop. I’ve included a black and white shot here, simply because I like the look of it!
Today’s self painted freehand glitter tattoo. I apply these freehand, using Y Body cosmetic adhesive, cosmetic grade glitters, a fine nib and a brush. Once the glue has dried and the glitter has been applied, they can last for several days and will withstand swimming and showering, so are a beautiful adornment to have for a special occasion, wedding or before going on holiday. I do lots of glitter tattoo bookings for Bat Mitzvahs and Hen parties as well as at children’s parties.
To make a glitter tattoo booking you can email me on email@example.com.
Mucha inspired arm, self-painted this evening using Cameleon Bodypaint. If I was painting this on paper, I’d have fiddled around with the proportions and made sure that everything was just right, but when I’m painting on my arm, I abandon self criticism and just go for it. I rarely make any alterations, other than perhaps intensifying shading or deepening the black lines and white highlights, once I’ve finished. This took about half an hour. I’m going to be doing an Art Nouveau style body paint on a model in a couple of weeks.
Welcome to my face and body art blog. Here I will be sharing images and information about face and body artistry, events I have attended in the body painting world, my classes, and reviewing face and body painting products. But mostly I will be sharing my own work, and my working process as an adorner. I like the term adorner as that is what I do! I adorn faces and bodies with paint, makeup, latex, gems, glitter and many other embellishments created in my little black studio, here by the marshes, in east London. I paint and teach all over London and beyond.
A self – painted glove design, using Cameleon Bodypaint baseline paints, Cameleon Colourblocks, and gems. All fixed with Kryolan Fixative spray which holds the design and gives extra sheen.