Art Couture Painswick Turtle /Plastic pollution Bodypaint

Sun July 17th 2016

Much sooner than I hoped it was time for Art Couture Painswick (ACP) again- I’d been busy away painting nearly every day for 8 days, and with a sick toddler hasn’t finished the props I wanted to make for it.

ACP is a stunning biennial event in the scenic Cotswold town of Painswick. Streets are closed for the day and filled with food and craft stalls, whilst competitors in a range of categories wander the 10,000 crowds in the clothing and headgear they made from unusual objects.

Acp Alana & euan.042016-07-17 17.55.47Angela Youngs in her 2016 creation

The main stage catwalk and judging (by celebrity/ industry experts etc) is set up in the historic churchyard with its 99 yew trees.

Art Couture Painswick 2102 Queenie cat onstage sm bpcPainswick Art Couture cat n Laurence Blackadder Quennie 2012Photo by Tony Cook

I have been lucky enough to paint in the body art category every year since that was included. In 2012 I placed 3rd with my “Comedy Queen’ about UK TV comedies for the ‘Celebrating Britain’ theme.

Painswick my magic man by Tony Cook bpcACP Magic Man back studio AnneMarie Randall photo bpc

The following year, again on model Laurence Caird, my Victorian Magic Man depicting stage magic & automatons from the 1800’s, won the Body Art 1st place!

This year the Body Paint Category’s theme was ‘Food For Thought’, so I based my design on plastic pollution in the ocean and how if affects sea-life which in turn affects our food-chain. I planned a huge neck ruff of recycled bottles, etc, but it wasn’t looking quite as I wanted. Its a bit tough to design things like that without the actual model to fit it too, and as the lovely Grace (god-mum of my toddler) was based in Norwich & I’m now in Bath, I wasn’t seeing her before the event. Or I needed the shop dummy to fit my props to that I typically sold when we moved to Bath as we didn’t have the space! But I liked the bottle-jellyfish I’d made.


We had to send in a statement about the artwork in advance, so this was mine – actually sent in a few weeks before, unusually for me, so I had a brief to paint to if not an actual design plan!:

“Plastic Soup/ All the Fish in the Sea

Only 5% of plastic is recycled, 1/3 escapes into oceans, a lorry full per minute. By 2050 plastic will outweigh any fish in the sea.

Marine creatures starve as it fills them, or strangle in netting and 6-pack rings. Bags look like jellyfish underwater, so if turtles catch one, their special throats, evolved to stop jellyfish escaping, mean they have to keep eating it.

Albatross eat fish eggs on floating objects. Toothbrushes, lighters, sanitary waste – all stuffed dead albatross chicks.

Ocean currents collect ‘plastic soups’ millions of kilometres wide, 5 swirling rubbish patches twice the size of Texas. The sea bed, Earth’s last frontier, is coated in tiny plastic particles.

Boyan Slat’s cleanup system, a floating barrier passively collecting rubbish for recycling, launches in 2020. But we need to stop plastic ending up in our oceans if we want to keep our seas and ourselves alive.”

Grace & Jennie stayed overnight at my mums’, then followed me over to Painswick far to early on a lovely sunny morning. One of the kind ACP volunteers jumped into my car to direct me to the competitors carpark, and luckily I bumped into a bunch of other painters who had already dropped off their kit who helped cart my stuff to the hall beside the Art Couture Gallery. 

 We had so much space to set up in- luxury! And ladies offering cups of tea etc.

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I set up my kit, and as the briefing went on started attempting to add rollers and plastic flotsam to Gracie’s hair, which was allowed before the official start. The rules are only professional cosmetic products, only a small % of stencilling or prosthetics, and 6 hours with a compulsory break in the middle.

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At 9.30 we started painting and I began to kabuki on colours in Cameleon white, yellow and celadon. I hate yellow so am trying to use it for once! I shaded the white neck / face with the Kryolan lustre powders in white & blue, dry (as they can be used wet).

We were closed to the public for the 1st few hours, out of respect for the models and to let artwork cover over underwear etc (even though all models wear underwear and female models have breast covers on) but I made sure I had blended colours on Gracies back too before the doors opened.

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The turtle in yellow, orange, bollywood pink, purple & inkheart blue, I based on several photos I found on the internet and a bit of memory from living in Belize. From then until the lunch break we chatted to extremely interested public as I painted.

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After snacks / lunch we started again but sadly I’d not switched on the plug so my camera ran out of battery & stopped taking time-lapse pics. I had planned to paint or make paper netting strangling the turtle but Gracie held a poll with the public and they decided I wasn’t allowed to! I did love the turtle too so I left that out.


On the back I painted a whale & baby and a colourful, healthy reef. I added freehand glitter tattoos over the abstract bobbly layer I had painted around her shoulders (to represent the layer of plastic shapes) and decorated that with glitters from Facade and Kryolan. 

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Her face I re-used some zombie paste prosthetics I had sculpted when Gracie was being Sc’Ariel at the Prosthetic Event last year. I added flat-back pearls and some heat fused film and then added more pearls and recycled plastic to her hair

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I stopped painting about an hour early, after the public were ushered out, as I knew I would be a while sorting out the not-quite finished props.

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After a lot of messing about we decided the bottle-ruff was too bridal if worn over Gracies head, and too awkward if worn on her shoulders. I also ended up ditching the isis wings, and stuck to the jellyfish, gems and beads, all made of plastic bottles or recycled from ornaments etc. It gave a slightly netted/ dancer effect tangled around Gracies arms and neck, but I loved it. Sadly (?) it was so sunny the glowsticks inside the jellyfish weren’t visible outside the hall though.

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We all trooped out into bright sunshine to applause from the waiting public which was fantastic.

Gracie turtle apc leaving hallACP 2016 Turtle parade to pics bpc ACP 2016 Turtle spire bpc-001 ACP 2016 Turtle Grace & bellringer paul bpc 

Following Paul who was once again our charming cheeky Town Crier, all body artists took their models through the streets and across the churchyard to the photo rooms for official shots. Grace & I then took a few photos and she posed for the public in the churchyard.

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The models were then presented onstage whilst our design statements were read out.2016-07-17 17.02.06

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Whilst judges deliberated, and the other category awards were given, Paul took most of the models (some couldn’t walk too far due to the heat or uncomfy shoes or props) on a tour of the churchyard, streets, and finally the main road.

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I really loved this paint and was a bit over-excited through the whole day. I’m so happy that it turned out like I had imagined (and that now it is out of my head I will sleep a bit better!).

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Huge thanks to all the staff, sponsors, volunteers, organisers, the hugely appreciative public, and of course my genius model Gracie! Also my mum who wrangle my 2 boys (the toddler being hot & sticky & awkward!) all day….

ACP 2016 Grace n Izabella bums.05 ACP turtle n Eliza by Suz.14    Mum n euan ACP.24

I will add a timelapse etc video when I finish it…

Art Couture Painswick Promo Time-lapse Body Paint 2016

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I’d been invited up to do a quick demo body paint at Art Couture Painswick as the BBC wanted to film a time-lapse to promo the vent on their social media. None of the usual models were available at such short notice mid-week, but luckily Sally the ACP Body Art Co-ordinator had the details of a member of the public who’d been so impressed by the photos in the ACP gallery he volunteered his body!

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I drove up on the 1st sunny day we had had in ages, and met Libby (the director, who rather marvellously had the winning paint I did on Laurence at ACP 2013 on her business cards ), Sally, Bob the model and Hayley from the BBC.

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As I’d only had a couple of days notice and was painting every day that week, I had made a quick stencil of the ACP name & date, and that was about it. 

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I wanted to depict all the themes for the different categories as well as advertise ACP so designed a slightly circus/ festival themed ‘poster’ on Bob’s torso, with rainbow rays coming out behind it. Clouds blended the white poster into this colourful background to represent ‘flight’, areas of cogs and machinery were for ‘Moving Parts’, green leaves meant ‘Food For Thought’, the body art category, orange brickwork and ‘splats’ for ‘Graffiti’, and Blue bubbly splooshes for ‘Underwater’.

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Bobs neck was bright pink and had the stylised ACP face on it. I finished this off with a circus top hat I made for Grace at the Professional Beauty London Excel paint, but removed the flowers etc to add a colourful ACP flyer to.

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Hayley edited it all into this video, and not only was it on BBC Gloucester’s sites,

but national BBC picked it up! Great for ACP and thank you to everyone involved.

My video clip is here.

Paintopia 2016 UV bodypaint by Bath facepainter Bristol body artist

I’d got to Paintopia by Tuesday evening to help Jennie & the rest set up.

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Wednesday was helping host the Pre-Paintopia workshops with the amazing Madelyn Greco (headdresses) and Maria Malone Guerbaa (animal transformations).

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Thursday I was the runner for the brilliant Kryolan masterclass whilst typing up the running order for festival announcements.

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Thursday evening, more and more artists and models were arriving for the first ever Paintopia UV Jam.  I’ve worked in UV clubs a lot doing small bits on the faces & bodies of clubbers, and done a couple of UV backs on clients, but had never had the chance to do a full UV body before.

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The lovely Grace had asked if I would paint her, and then arranged a vague collaboration with a Dutch artist Tanya Hommes and her local model. I’d already thought we’d maybe do something on a Tim Burton theme as grace & I loved his work, and set the Oogie Boogie UV scenes from a Nightmare Before Christmas as our idea.

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I’d not had time to sketch and hadn’t done more than print off some reference photos, so started with a giant Oogie Boogie on her front. Her hair was already slicked back with clay from the look by Gemma Horner at the Masterclass, so I decided to attempt a Jack/ moon look on her face.

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I kept stopping to do announcements or find things for people, and soon realised I wouldn’t have time to do a full body. I drafted in the fab Jade to fill in the black around my outlines, and cut back my vague plans to get a finished paint on Graces front and legs.

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David Cook and the crew had set up the stage Mik painted and it looked amazing.

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The UV lighting was super-bright when it came on and the artwork was brilliant. Everyone whooped it up and had a great time, a super way to kick off the festival.

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I shot a small timelapse and some videos of it here

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May 2014 Paintopia Part 3 – Freehand Glitter Tattoo Competition, Professor & Apprentice Bodypaint Comp

The sparkling Facade-sponsored Freehand Glitter  Tattoo competition was fun too.

Video of horse freehand glitter tattoo here 

Steampunk steed Paintopia 2014 SP look bpcSteampunk steed Paintopia 2014 SP all bpc

I went for a sort of equestrian necklace feel, a bit vintage and slightly steampunk, (Steampunk Stallion, I think we called it) so I got to use both the horse-head and the hat I’d made for previous paints again! Louise Neal looked fab, thanks so much for modelling.

My favourite was the Professors & Apprentice Bodypaint, where an ‘experienced’ Prof like me is teamed up with a newbie (in my case, Nicky Gardener) to produce a body on a “Classic British Children’s Story’ theme. After a short facebook discusiion, Nic designed the body.

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I spent ages making a paper wig, which she added a fab book-page-covered ship to. (We then had to slice into the wig to fit it to James’ head!)

Treasure Island Paintopia 2014 SP me bpcTreasure Island Paintopia 2014 SP face bpcTreasure Island Paintopia 2014 SP lunge bpc

We had a ball, asking our last-minute model James (we had booked and planned to paint a girl) to turn every 20 minutes or so and each continuing painting what the other person had started.  All whilst madly singing “everything is awesome!”

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The last minute panic to tit-tape the many ‘blackbeard’  plaits she’d made onto his shorts was insane, thanks to Michelle for dispensing the tape!


After another buzzing catwalk show (with public watching too as Sunday was the ‘open’ day) our Treasure Island came 2nd! James really worked the paint, as always.

Video of James as Treasure Island here

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We were just possibly a bit excited!

As many have said its like the best family gathering ever! It just keeps getting bigger and better!


Well done Jennie & crew xxx

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.

October – Instructing Face Paint at Jamvention/ FIP EU

Oct 2013

Due to an instructor having to pull out, I was delighted to be contacted by the lovely Jacklyn and Willy Suiskins who run an amazing event called Jamvention in the EU.

Jamvention Dutch appleflap

I flew to Amsterdam, trying to recall my Dutch, and caught the train down to Maastricht to stay with my ‘Dutch Brother’ Reuben and his lovely wife Danielle whom I last saw at my handfasting in 2006. I got to know him on the Education & Adventure camp we worked in back in Dorset, pre – 2000. I had a lovely day with them and their wee girls (who knew me through gifts I’d sent from Hong Kong but had never met me) and the next morning they dropped me off, en-route to their coastal holiday, at the castle (only 15 minutes from theirs) where Jamvention was hosted.

Jamvention horse carriage Ruben village

The huge Castel Notre Dam is in Voerstreek, where Holland, Germany and Belgium meet. It was full of kids on an activity break so I left my luggage and walked back into the village to find a pub I could eat lunch in whilst waiting for kids to go assorted painters I knew to arrive.

Jamvention chicken sign

No brain engaged, I texted Eugenie panicking as I’d forgotten to get out any cash before leaving the train station and thought I only had Dutch money – and being now over the border into Belgium wasn’t sure if they’d take it- “duhr- Euros” was the reply:) My childhood of having different purses for the different countries we lived in/ visited tripping me up there!

Jamvention village pub foodJamvention village

So I sat reading and sketching and stuffing my face with local sausage and other specialities. Sorry Sjors, I know you liked making me try the dutch fast-food places but the proper home-made versions were MUCH nicer!

Jamvention dutch vending food

Eventually everyone arrived and I was picked up by the bus full of  Matteo Arnafinotti  and the rest of that bunch. It was fab to meet Jacklynn and Willy who were really friendly, and catch up with Cree and Liz who I hadn’t seen (but had missed!) since the Welsh Face & Body Art festivals stopped. I tried to be useful with my pidgin dutch/ german helping people book in and get their goody bags (all sorts of lovely bits including cute character bath ducks – mine was an artist!).

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The castle is run like a huge youth hostel, split into dorms and bunk-bed rooms with shared loos and showers. Only a few had their beautiful original ceilings etc but its a great place to jam. All sorts was going on – beginning with an amazing selection of cakes one lady had made, including a copy of the castle with all instructors flags on them. AND she’s made a rainbow of cakes each with a different flavour and instructors photo on!

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I taught a few classes (and got really nervous in the 1st for some reason) and didn’t actually take many photos of the amazing things going on as my camera was playing up. Matteo was swamped as usual- he and Francesca are LOVELY. Balloonists at work making dresses looked familiar- and I finally realised we’d met in Shanghai! She’d been part of the balloon art show (amazing dresses etc) whilst I was there for the body art show representing the UK, in 2009. I spent a fortune at the prosthetic stall!

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I loved Yvonne Zonnenberg’s Zombie skin demo. You can make all sorts of effects and prosthetics, even over unprotected eyebrows, and they are paintable and re-useable. Her creative hair workshop was fab too.

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The quiz night was hysterical and was another evening that went well past my bed-time!

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After it was all over, Jacklyn and Willy took us back to their lovely house and we had a fantastic meal together. They changed my breakfasts for ever by introducing me to Spekuloos paste which is basically a sweet-crunchy-peanutbutterish paste made from those patterned (windmill etc) spice biscuits I always make sure to buy at Christmas. The next morning the 2 welsh ladies, myself and the 2 Italians were taken to a huge mall to get souvenirs. I had a yummy horse sandwich. And what did we all go look at ? A tupperware shop:)

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An amazing weekend, thankyou so much to everyone involved. There was a lot of painting and balloons too, I just seem to have gone on about food, sorry!


Phizzog body Paint Phestival 2013 – B Movie Hero

July 2013 

This was another painty break helping to distract from a sad event for me – my beloved Highland Granny had passed away the week before and the funeral was on the Monday after Phizzog. This was the event that I won (thanks Laurence and Jade, my models for the 2-day event) last time, organised by the lovely Carrie Hoyle and her family.


I’d already booked a hotel for the weekend, food, party night and model as well as spent a week making a ‘hat’ so decided I was going to go after all. I did have to cancel the workshops I was supposed to teach on the Sunday as I’d be leaving early, but that was OK luckily.

Phizzog bodypaint Phestival 2013 my poster giant bollar

The theme given was ‘B Movies’ and I actually did try to watch a few as they aren’t my favourite thing! I eventually decided to think laterally and amalgamate many of the factors that made a warrior in them to create the Ultimate ‘B Movie Hero’.


The drive down from Norfolk on friday night wasn’t as awful as last time (not quite so many jams!) although it was so hot I was watching the engine gauge, but it did take over an hour to find parking and even then I had to get up early to move my car twice before I found somewhere I could just pay enough to leave it all day.


By then it was late so I spent a few hours wandering Folkestone (some very cute retro bits- with knit-bombed bollards that looked like fluffy jellyfish as well as some iffy back streets) trying to find anywhere to park or at least be able to drop off stuff the following morning. Sadly all locations remotely close to the Town Hall were a few hours stay only. Rather fab to see my winning paint from the previous Phestival (the Folkestone Rocks one on Jade) as posters of all sizes! After meeting and chatting to fellow painter Fran in the hotel, we decided we’d have to lug our kit on foot rather than risk tickets and having to leave to re-park every few hours:/


Typically it was spitting the next morning, so we eventually arrived, very hot and damp, with aching shoulders, to set up. Alex Hansen was there to do an exhibition paint, and super cheery, and as I started unpacking lots of familiar faces arrived. It was great to see Michael of Fantasy World Wide (who organised the amazing Shanghai International Body Paint event back in 2009 that I was lucky enough to take part in) too.


The yummy YC Art Yvonne and Gareth were over from Holland, and created the most brilliantly horrible alien birth body that actually popped and oozed as it happened!


Sabine and her husband Mario (who she met at Micheal’s Shanghai event) had crossed the Channel too, and her paint was killer.



Angela’s, with an undead Cinema Ticket Girl selling eyeball ice-cream was FAB. Loads more of great ideas too!

I got my hugs in with Eugenie and her family, the Cameleon paint crew, who were making us all dribble at the stunning steam punk paint display Alex had made her. Whoa!


The hugely tall and very sweet Will Shave had offered to paint for me and arrived reeling after what sounded like a bad night of little sleep. Fran was painting his girlfriend Claire (they were 2nd & 3rd at Art Couture Painswick when I won, and I first met them when they first met at the Welsh meet-up where I painted the Snow Queen on Fern). I must admit that most guys I paint are smaller in height than Laurence and wow I noticed the difference on Will – extra long time needed to paint all the extra skin:) He was a total trooper despite his eyes slowly turning red!


I used all Cameleon paints again but didn’t quite manage the effect I wanted of bright, chitinous (the stuff beetle wings are made of) armour – I will have another go another time. Will’s Hero had ‘panic buttons’ all over him of things he could smash to release when he needed them – love, holy water for vampires, cold and other disease virii for invading Tripod Aliens, ice for the Blob, sound for exposed-brained Marsian attacks, etc.


His height, stacked boots and enormous fake alien head made him look huge and intimidating to any monster, a defence in itself. He had ports for weapons and missiles to emerge from– and a giant water gun I’d blinged up to be a mega-gun. He also had cyborgy computer interfaces to release computer virus’s.


On his back he had a sort of ‘kill list’ recording various species he’d overcome, e.g. zombies, tripods, vampire bats and a a giant wasp with huge crystal eyes.


The mayor and members of the public were wandering in to see us, and at the ned we all trooped out to explain our designs on a small stage set up outside the hall. One (drunk?) passerby shouted out some rude comments about one model’s lovely chest and suddenly found all of us and a large crowd turning to glare at him and slunk off sharpish! Of course Will was too tall to fit onto the stage in his gear:)


That night most of us met up at the harbour for a meal/ party but typically a massive storm was brewing. Carrie had organised a more sheltered location (shame as the little cafe deck over the harbour edge was stunning) and we just managed to dive into the ice cream parlour cafe before the heavens opened – impressive lightning! Carrie had on a B Movie-print Rockabilly dress I lusted after. Most of us were tired and a bit painty so Yvonne & Gareth kindly stuffed their van with dozy painters to save us the trek back up the hill, and we all tried to sleep.


The next morning various workshops and paints were happening; but I left just before lunch the next day, for a mega drive back home (6+ hours) after which I collected my hubby & son for another 10.5 hour drive up to my Grans’ in the highlands. The funeral was lovely and so was the weather, despite a downpour at the end of the wake. Then poor Pete had to drive us all the way back down to Norfolk as he’d only got 1 day off work!

A lovely surprise was Will phoning to say we had come 3rd at Phizzog, and he’d collected the rather fab trophy Carrie had made as well as some Cameleon prize goodies. As usual, thankyou so much everyone involved, you do keep me happy!

Apologies for my rubbish snaps  -I’m hoping Simon Smith took some better ones!


Painswick Art Couture BodyPaint Steampunk Victorian Magic Man

June 2013

I left for Bristol after a hot days painting at Bewilderwood, and as the A/C in my car can’t be fixed, got so hot I had to stop and buy some lighter clothes to drive in! After a night at my mum’s I met Laurence and we convoyed to Painswick Art Couture.

Laurnce start Painswick last painted signPainswick cupake

This year the body art side of things had been brilliantly organised (last year, their first time, was a bit scrambled). We were met in a beautiful building (and given cup cakes!!!!!) with areas roped off to paint in. Jill had everything sorted down to drink facilities and food runners…wow, and she was heavily pregnant too! Of course it was so scorchingly hot that we’d almost have been better off outside this year, trying to catch the breeze under the many (chilly last year in very different weather) gazebos. Huge thanks to Charlotte and the other runners who helped keep our models (and us) fed and watered.

Painswick my magic man by Tony Cook front bpcPainswick my magic man by Tony Cook bpc

The theme given was ‘Magic’ and a few weeks beforw I’d given Laurence the choice of something Celtic or Victorian, as I thought Voodoo etc was maybe a bit cheeky seeing as we’d be judged in a churchyard. He fancied Victorian, so Victorian Magic Man it was. I’d discovered whilst researching ‘magic’ that it was in that era that travelling shows started transforming into the stage magic more familiar to us now, especially with men inventing all sorts of mechanical tricks to wow their audiences and even electric lights being an amazing phenomenon.

ACP Magic Man back studio AnneMarie Randall photo bpcACP Magic Man front studio AnneMarie Randall photo bpc

Some people had ‘automatons’ that did all sorts of things, one could draw portraits of hundreds of celebrities. So, his front was my take on a steam-punk victorian robot, in a waistcoat and striped trousers and gloves with all sorts of exposed clockworks.

I’d turned up with some printed pics of lightbulbs, crows etc but hadn’t really sorted designs as is my usual way, although I’d had to send a detailed blurb in earlier for the judges! I used mainly Cameleon bodypaints, over a base (on the front upper) of Graftobian or Mehron gold powder and mixing liquid. The few bits of cog stencils were home-made, and a BAM one was used on the waistcoat.


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Fab venue, beautiful stone windows open to let the music waft in from the street entertainments (and a great view of the Battle of Britain flypast later on). We were painting beside Nic who was attempting to use the airbrush we’d all clubbed together to get her as a wedding gift (early) on her fiancee Pete. Many of the usual crew were there doing their amazing stuff, including Brierly and the vast height difference of a team that is Mel Broom and Will Shave.

DSC_0078 Brierly’s stunning work

LL’s back showed the transition from ‘hedge’ magic involving animals and the moon, to electrically lit stage shows. I was really pleased with this, and the hat I had made (after tips from a really worth-while ‘Foam Headpiece’ workshop with Alex Hansen) seemed perfect.

We finished a little early so went down for photos then out into the cooler day – our building was packed with interested public and steaming! I only managed a few snaps/ quick film as we shuffled through the crowds on the quaint streets (packed with really interesting stalls selling all sorts of crafts I’m dying to see) the rest of the time LL and Pete were mobbed.

Painswick Art Couture cat n Laurence Blackadder Quennie 2012Cat's Elizbethan Man

Tony Cook stopped us in the churchyard to get our emails and sent these 2 amazing shots he edited from a snap he took of my half-finished paint on Laurence last year.

DSC_0073DSC_0072 LL, Pete and some of the great work by students waiting to be judged- in the shade

It was so hot that this year all the models were glad to literally ‘chill’ inside the church whilst we waited for judging.


Then we were treated to a cocktail in another building before going back for the results. I loved the dress made from eggshells, and another from maps.


After hearing 3rd & 2nd place body winners announced I was just turning to LL to say, ah well, thank you it was great’ when we were announced as winners!

Cat after winning Painswick 2013All3

The top 3 – Laurence by me, Will by Mel Broom and Claire by Helen Eyre

Brilliant event, so many talented people, and huge thanks to the sponsors, Brewers Dolphin. I used their cheque to pay for the hotel rooms Laurence & I had booked for Nic & Petes wedding!

May 2013 Paintopia Face & Body Art Festival

4 days of paint and glitter  I really looked forward to, as we’d lost my pregnancy late on a few months earlier and needed some distraction – and this lovely bunch were the best & kindest help ever. So excuse me looking an even worse mess than usual.

This year Pashur, a fab American artist, had asked to come and teach there; he and Jay Bautista were amazing.

316189_512576758806429_1278038343_nPashur painting on Gracie

It was also Laurence’s birthday, and even though he was just back from the USA and heading up a Stag party the next day, he kindly drove over to model for me on the main body paint comp day.


As it was his 30th, Jennie arranged a beautiful cake (as one of LL’s superman body-paints) and I’d got a superman (in black so paint wouldn’t show!) dressing-gown for him. And we got the whole dining room to sing to him of course.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA432163_10151703051251115_1842947219_nIt was Eug’s birthday too

On the main paint comp day, I tried a bald cap (my 2nd ever attempt!) and facial prosthetics on LL to transform him into a svelte ‘The Rock’ from the Fantastic Four.

The Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents painting stare bpcThe Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents posed chair bpcIMG_3929

His back I attempted re-creating a comic page of how scientist Ben gets transformed in a cosmic space storm, set against that space storm.

The Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents galaxy bpcThe Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents studio snarl bpcThe Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents studio back bpc

The catwalk was a fab idea of Jennies and totally worth all her stress. Each artist had chosen music to suit their theme, whilst Shelley read out a prepared blurb on the design – good to hear the ideas and inspiration!

431843_10151677228821115_374660026_nIMG_8020Simon Smith’s amazing Catwoman on Stephanie

IMG_8152The Thing Paintopia 13 isnapevents catwalking bpcthing back cartoon rhonda p

I really enjoyed this paint, its not my usual style as ‘hero’ paints are generally a bit too easy (bright and simple) to do at competitions. But, seeing LL onstage getting the audience going to Queen’s “We will Rock You”  as Shelley read out my blurb was FAB. I think he quite liked it to!

248296_10151675615171115_2069407047_nLaurence with Gracie as painted by Jennie Marquis- she won 3rd place!

He had to shower and dash off to drive hours to be head stag, poor soul.


The theme this year was Sci-Fi and Fantasy so we had all sorts of interesting people stopping by – the Nor-Con Dr Who crew, Iron Man and the UK Predators. They did freak me out – and at 1 point I couldn’t work out what the red dot on my paintwork was – it was 1 of them teasing me with his laser sights!


The party that night was full of brilliant costumes- I was R2D2 as the Death Star idea I’d orignally done didn’t work without a baby bump to fill it. My fave was the Star tTek ‘Adopt a Tribble’agency – my wee boy still has the fluff ball, thanks!

391540_636363366375706_1931521510_nIMG_7776Brill work by David Southworth

The next day was the Professor’s Apprentice competition where I had the lovely Daniel Formosa from Malta. He’d not really used brush & sponge to body paint before so was trying that out instead of airbrush.

Ivy Paintopia 13 isnapevents studio stood bpc

He’d also made some really cool cones for the hair of the Poison Ivy and had some amazing nails done.

Ivy Paintopia 13 isnapevents painting arm bpcIvy Paintopia 13 isnapevents painting boob bpc

The stunning Leeanne (the blue Paintopia starry girl I painted before the 1st ever year) was our model and really lived the lush temptress look. The idea was that she was plant based like the Batman evil poisoner, with plant tubes giving off pheremones to attract men AND the (using real beetle wings) insects to her. She won the model of the year comp later on!

575861_10152984830730727_1800060960_nIvy Paintopia 13 isnapevents studio head side bpc

I did a not-quite-on-theme Freehand Glitter Tattoo so it wasn’t really in the comp but could be used to promo 2013’s ‘Vintage’ theme on Emily, who had been the gold Paintopia statue that 1st year.

Glitter corset Paintopia 13 isnapevents painting 2 bpc

A slightly circus ‘corset’ top was made with stripes of cosmetic adhesive and curly prosthetic breast covers.

941914_650116418339232_579295682_nGlitter corset Paintopia 13 isnapevents studio bpc

We borrowed Liz Bylett’s lovely top hat and net bustle to complete the outfit. Emily’s brother James was modelling for Brierly with an amazing steampunky beetle glittered on his chest, and as the 2 used to dance, posed marvellously together.

405656_511436005587171_2075443556_n479736_10151699228096115_325365587_n Gorgeous stuff from Brierly as ever.

On Sunday I held a beginner’s body-paint workshop, kindly sponsored by Charles Fox who gave the class a lot of Kryolan Aquacolour paints to try out. We had Stephanie and another model to try and create 2 very fast Super Heroes on – Storm and Pheonix- which I later finished off.

969308_463259647096505_1947463047_nSun Student paint finishing pheonix - Mich Paintopia pics

My wee boy Finley had been bought over by his god-mum Michelle (of Purple Photography) and had an amazing time with all the sci-fi characters, in his Anakin Star wars costume. Huge apologies to Kate MiniMonsters & anyone he light-sabred… at home he’s not allowed to make contact with it but I realised that had not been stuck to when he got in the car to go home with a totally battered to floppiness lighsabre!

Paintopia pirate Kate jedi Fin

FAB Mega Jam & Paintopia Sparkly Alien BodyPaint

Feb 2013

Jennie & I wanted to do a promo paint for Paintopia’s Sci Fi & Superhero theme, so agreed with the lovely KJ we would do a demo-paint at her event, the face paint & balloon Fab Mega Jam. Also, it was to intro the Isnap Events boys to what one of our industry gatherings was like, before they got thrown into the deep end with Paintopia!


As several models we’d asked had to cancel for one reason or other, we met  Louise at Dunstan Hall to drive her to Cambridge. She’d never been painted before but was brilliant and looked so cute in the bald cap (our 1st go at a proper bald cap). Poor Jennie had to do all the driving – I was pregnant so not allowed to as well as being very sick:/ (So hair etc worse mess than usual!)


We were painting in a cosy room so had Jam go-ers popping in & out as we worked to watch and question. Lou coming to lunch in her dressing gown caused a bit of a giggle!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe used Cameleon pink with some of their darker shades and white, Superstar silver, then stencilled on some purple. After that it was lots of highlights, lowlights and ‘circuit board’ dots and lines in freehand glitter tattoos.

 FAB Paintopia Alien me jenn bpcFAB Paintopia Alien crouch stairs bpc

Despite James’ hate of glitter the boys took some amazing shots and even persuaded Lou to pose outdoors. In February!!

FAB Paintopia Alien kneel side bpcFAB Paintopia Alien torso cross hands pink bpc

Then Lee of Amrkandi made this rather awesome graphic

 Paintopia alien beam me up lee

and the Illusion Magazine team transformed the front cover of Paintopia’s brochure/ time-table with this:

 Paintopia space alien 2013 cover brochure

LOVE IT:))))

FAB Paintopia Alien torso cross hands pink bpc

We stopped to stuff our faces on the way home….