May Paintopia Part 1 – Class with World Champion Matteo & Main Bodypaint Competitions

May 2014

This is the 3rd time I have been to Paintopia, which is my ‘local’ event, just over an hour from me at Dunston Hall near Norwich. As the guests started arriving, the great weather we’d been having left, and torrential rain set in for the week so we hardly had a chance to use the historic hotel as a backdrop.

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I was luckily able to treat myself to a class with Matteo the double world champion on Thurs, and it was well worth it.

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He showed us how to do his trademark eyeballs and water drops, and I was really pleased with my own efforts. His brain-bending holed-skin thing I’ll need to think about – its like 3D celtic knot-work with added difficulty!

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Friday was the main body competition, plus world class artists like Nick Wolfe and Pashur doing freestyle demo body paints alongside others who didn’t want to enter. The ‘Vintage Britain’ theme inspired a wide range of designs, from Art Deco to uniforms.

Vintage Spirit Paintopia 2014 SP front bpcVintage Spirit Paintopia 2014 SP bpc

My idea was (Triple-) Vintage Spirit, inspired by Historic British Houses, Afternoon tea Parties and Gardens. I HATE (and can’t paint) stripes or roses… so that is what I decided to do.

Vintage Spirit Paintopia 2014 SP eyes bpc

I wanted an extremely ornate chintzy look on her front, so carefully built a huge ruff to rest on Stephanie’s shoulders, with lace doilies etc in it. Typically all the small rose gelatin prosthetics I made got squashed and hot and melted so I couldn’t use them!

Vintage Spirit Paintopia 2014 SP back bpc

Video of my Vintage Spirit Bodypaint

On her back she decorated with many leaves and grains used to make traditional british drinks (from tea to beer and whiskey) and I used my newly learnt water droplet skills to paint in the water used in them all too.

Cat Steph interviewed mustard tv paintopia

ITV turned up to film a ‘few seconds’, and the reporter was so blown away that she shot an hours worth. (Anglia TV then ran ‘taster’ clips all weekend before a much longer slot about the event was broadcast on Monday.) We were also interviewed by Mustard TV which was FAB.

2014-05-11 16.36.34 My little nephew even loved it!

Mik Richardson had painted and built an amazing backdrop for the catwalk show, which when lit by David Cook lifted the finale to a new level.


You could tell the models felt it – they performed amazingly in front of a large whooping crowd which included Terry Malloy (Davros the Dalek who presented the awards last year and asked to come back). The standard of artwork was higher than ever and even the student category was marvellous.

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