I was lucky enough to be asked by the ladies at Illusion Magazine to come and demo on their stall at IMATS, the big international make up artists trade show. (It visits Toronto, LA, Sydney, London I think).
I had seen photos of (and been excited by much of) the pro body art there the last few years, and had said to some of ‘us’ that we needed to go and see/ paint there, to see if non-make-up trained artists could hold their own, so I was delighted to go. Its something I have done a lot of – bodypainting in front of big crowds, in small spaces (thank you Hong Kong Rugby 7s!) whilst answering repeated numerous questions from the audience, so I felt comfy.
Huge thanks to my cousin Sammy who let me arrive extremely late Fri night at hers but still got up at 7 on her day off to show me how to get to Alex Palace by 10 am on Sat! (Yes I knitted the Twiggle hat).
We decided that as it was likely to be crowded, and the Magazine only had a small stall (this being their 1st year trying IMATS) I would only paint the Lovely Laurence from the waist up. We also wanted big impact fairly bold designs. Claire had some of Rus Hughes’ foam latex ‘engine parts’ from an earlier paint on LL I could use, and I ordered a cheap aviator/ biggles hat from ebay. So the 1st day, Saturday, I went for a sort of bio-mech/ steampunk aviator angel look – I called him Clockwork Angel in the end!
We were really lucky to have an end stall, so actually a bit more space than expected, letting LL& I set up on the end of it so we weren’t blocking the view of Illusion’s wares. As soon as he took his top off, deservedly, ladies were stopping to watch/ take pics!
So Step 1: Gorgeous guy takes off top; from here on, both of us got a bit blinky now and then due to excessive camera flashes and questions:)
Step 2: Stick on asstd foam latex mechanical bits.
Step 3: Paint said gorgeous guy (henceforth LL for Lovely Laurence) copper with Mehron mixing powder and matching mixing liquid. Loving my new kabuki brush, 1 from Bibi @facepaint-uk, 3 from Royal & Langnickel– no lines!!
Step 4: Using slightly uncontrollable too large cog stencil (one of very few laser cut airbrush designs available at a reasonable cost on ebay) sponge metallic blue DFX all over in a vaguley symmetrical design. Using homemade smaller cog stencils fill in arms, gaps etc.
As you can see LL was fab, chatting away at the onlookers (I thought he knew people in the crowd, originally, but he was just a friendly charmer) and posing for endless pics.
Step 5: Handpaint on chest wings, coils and add black shading to asstd sections of gears and foam latex.
Step 6: Add white highlights and small red or green blobs of glitter gel as jewelled screws etc.
Big wings behind Laurence were attached to a monster in the Makeup Museum – tales set out with all sorts of costumes and models from SFX films. Perfect!
Step 7: Attempt to clean own face of asstd smears… then dash rund Alexandria Palace looking for photo opps!
Brian Oliver’s stunning favourite of mine…
I then had a quick chance to look around. Stalls seemed to be straight ‘beauty’ makeup lessons/ schools/ product suppliers (inc MAC, etc), SFX the same (lots of gore and monster making), and asstd brush/ container shops. Illusion and WOlfe FX paints were the ony ones aimed diectly at face & body art, although the weekend left me even more convinced that ‘extreme makeup’ is just extremely slow face/ body painting with a better base!
Thanks Illusion- for taking me along and publishing it!