Fire & Water Glitter Tattoo Decorated Leotards

March 2012

I have created several leotards for Symone of Pole Paradise HK in the past, as she needs to have fabric protecting her limbs when she is doing hoop acrobatic shows and wanted unique costumes.

Sherazena glitter tatt snake peacock leotards crop bpc

She contacted me when I was at home in the UK and asked me to do two, one for her and one for her husband for an upcoming show.


I started Jose’s red tribal flame design with the leotard stretched over my trust shop dummy, but found that awkward to move about and hard to paint on.

I use the bottles and applicators I sell here. Videos of me waffling in so you can literally watch the glue dry…

I then managed to find an inflatable shop dummy to do Symone’s watery design blue leotard on, as of course she was in HK, so couldn’t fill out the leotards as I worked.


It usually takes several layers of glue, dried in between, to create a design sticky enough for the glitter to adhere too. Fabric glue does not work well – it dries too stiff- so I stick to my normal prosthetic adhesive which I knew does NOT wash out if you get it inot clothes, no matter how I try!

I also mainly use my cosmetic glitters from Facade, as I know that the dyes in them won’t leak and run.

Luckily this time the leotards ‘took’ the glue well and I was able to complete them within a week.

I delivered them to Symone when I was over to face paint at the Rugby 7’s.


We met up near the (in?)Famous Hong Kong Lady’s Market (it does have an ‘interesting’ range of men’s underwear!) as I’d had a request from my brother in Barbados for a few knock-off items.


I don’t think I’d ever bought any fakes when I was living in HK, and typically, visiting for a short period so rushing round this time, it turned out there had been a huge police crack-down on fakes and there were few to be found! 

The show looks like it went well and as the leotards can be hand-washed (I cool-machine-wash some of my glittered shirts) they can be used many times.

Birthday Girl Club Glitter Tattoos

I was contacted by Rowena, to go to her house and decorate herself and her friends with waterproof glitter tattoo designs, before they went out clubbing in Norwich to celebrate her birthday. She knew what colours and styles she wanted, so I did this swirling pink, silver and black pattern on her leg, opposite arm, chest and back.

Rowena top ed bpcSAM_3247 thigh edit bpcSAM_3249 edit bpc

The next girl I took inspiration from her animal print dress…

SAM_3255 ed bpc

Then I copied a dress’s flower motif onto another lady.

Video is here

And the final designs =- the most unusual I have done yet, I think, and something I will develop – the girl spotted a face I had done and wanted a tatt like that on her hand and leg. Very cyborg/ Charles Rennie Mac, I think… possibly even Lady Gaga?

Cyborg glitter tatt close arm ed bpc Cyborg glitter tatt arm feet 2 ed bpc

I then added to their own face makeup with some Glitzer/ Liquid bling, and swarovsky crystals.

And off they went!

A good night, it seems:)


SheRa-Zena leotard Glitter Body Tattoo

HK March 2011

I was let down by a couple of other models/ shoots that had been ‘booked’ whilst I was in Hong Kong, so my last free day before returning to the UK, I was able to get another leotard glittered for Symone instead. I was contacted by a couple of photographers after I advertised at short notice on Facebook, and they met us at Pole Paradise HK’s studios, where Symone had a gap from lunch until 5-ish between teaching.

She asked for something a bit armour-like and in reds, as she’d already a pinkish and a greenish suit I had decorated for her and wanted to be able to expand the colours/ themes she danced in them.

02n Sherazena glitter tatt cats glitter kit bpc

The leotard was a new type from a new supplier, and was not as thick/ nice fabric as her usual dance-wear. I started gluing; usually it takes 2 or 3 coats of the glue, dried between coats, for the glue to stop sinking into the fabric and actually stay tacky, ready for the glitter, on the surface of the cloth.

05 Sherazena glitter tatt glueing tummy bpc

1st problem; the glue sort of rolled off this fabric and didn’t want to sink in at all! A lot of fiddling and after a while it mostly started to work as expected.

06 Sherazena glitter tatt fanning dry bpc

2nd problem; it would NOT dry. The air con was off, to keep Symone warm, and I was fanning the glue…it took over 40 mins for the 1st coat to dry!

08 Sherazena glitter tatt glittering boob bpc

And then I ended up having to do FOUR more coats, with elongated drying times, to get the glue to work!

11 Sherazena glitter tatt stood hoop bpc

We had to give up with far less of the costume glued than I had planned, as we were running out of time (Symone had to have the pro final picture shoot before she started teaching her next dance class). Plus I was running out of glue!

Shera zena glitter tatt horsey_1bpc

Albert of had once again set up his time-lapse video equipment and was able to stay & talk this time which was lovely.

Anyway I finished glittering etc and Symone joined Kevin for her shoot.

Sherazena spaceship_2 bpc

The sword (a big, real, heavy, thing!) was what inspired the design, which Symone decided was a mixture of She-Ra and Xena warrior princess, hence the Shera-Zena title!

Symone had on the tallest heels I have ever seen too, yet still managed to do all sorts of moves and poses on pole and hoop!

This is her She-Ra pose.:)

80 Sherazena glitter tatt i have the power bpc

And this is her finished leotard collection…

Sherazena glitter tatt snake peacock leotards crop bpc

Kevin also did some funky editing to stick in different backgrounds….The AMAZING video by Albert is 

Back in Hong Kong, March ’11- Step by Step Pheonix glitter tattoo leotard

The HK Youth Arts Foundation kindly once again invited me to be the lead artist/ sole bodypainter for the HK  Rugby 7s, and as in 2009 (when I was in NZ) flew me to Hong Kong to take part. And this time put me up in a lovely hotel as well (before I either was living in HK or borrowed a friend’s place to stay).

After 6 hrs on a bus, 13 in a plane and another 90 min bus transfer, I arrived late Tuesday, pigged on my fave sushi, (not the HK delicacy of fish-heads as in the menu below!) stocked up on local essentials like Apple juice with Aloe chunks and crispy egg tarts, and crashed into bed.

I had a free day on Wednesday so arranged to meet up with (and decorate) my friend & glitter muse, Symone of Pole Paradise. I arrived at her studio full of jetlag, but excited to be back in HK – its a lovely city I feel very comfy/ safe in, and if not for the pollution/ the climate’s effect on my toddler, we would have happily kept living there.

Symone asked for a feathery glitter tattoo leotard to perform her aerial silk/ hoop routines in. She had a new white suit on, ready to be glittered, so I started on that as we blathered away at each other catching up on what hadn’t been said in a year of emails & facebook. She also read the article on my glitter work in the Spring Issue of Illusion Magazine, as a lot of that was really about her, although all the photos they used were from newer, then unpublished, shoots of mine (see previous posts on here!).

Symone glitter tatt peacock leotard reads Illusion start all bpc

Albert of who did the brilliant speeded-up video of me doing a goth necklace body glitter tatt on Symone last year  – video here – had to work elsewhere, but set up his camera system and left it to auto-record the process of the peacock glitter leotard.

Symone glitter tatt peacock leotard front glue 1 bpc

It was interesting doing a white rather than flesh-tone leotard (is my 1st on white!) as the green crumbs of facepaint I use to tint the glue (which otherwise dries invisible, as it goes clear) showed up darker and darker as it dried.

Peacock glitter leotard cat glitters feather above 2 bpc

The design morphed from abstract feathery peacock into a very chinese-paper-cut style pheonix, really. When I had glued (3 layers so it stops soaking into the cloth and stays tacky on the surface) and glittered the front, we stopped for lunch (she ordered in some of my fave fried rice – I MISSED HK food!!!).

Peacock glitter leotard cat glitters feather close bpc      

As usual we were fitting in with her teaching schedule so had most of the afternoon to paint and shoot the results in, before her evening dance students arrived. I think we did maybe 3 hours work on the glitter, about the normal time….

Peacock glitter leotard cat glues bum 2 bpc

Peacock glitter leotard cat glitters feather closest bpc

Darren LeBeuf, the photog who shot the last bodypaint event I did before we left HK (Canadian Chamber of Commerce Northern Lights themed ball) popped in to take pro shots for us.

Peacock glitter leotard symone in hoop wide bpc

Albert has done the time-lapse video which I have to share. She honestly is NOT as much of a chatterbox as she looks, we were nattering plus Symone has to run her studio from her mobile whilst we work!

Peacock glitter leotard symone window bpc

Peacock glitter leotard symone in hoop hi bpc

Thanks to Symone, Al, and Darren.

Peacock glitter leotard symone in hoop back bpc

Peacock glitter leotard symone in hoop bum bpc

LOVE the music too, Al!


Leaf Pixie/ Earth Elemental Body Glitter Tattoo Shoot Norwich

 Another shoot from last year (Nov), with photos embargo’d until now when the March 2011 Issue of Illusion Magazine, which contained them, was published. Been killing me to keep  them hidden, loved these!

This was with Hayley Bird again, who was able to fill in when a model cancelled on this shoot at short notice.

Victoria and I had seen each other’s online portfolios and wanted to work together; she had studio access but was keen on an autumnal shoot too. Seeing a it was a chilly November, I thought a glitter tattoo would be best, as clothes can be worn over it so the model could be painted elsewhere (ie in a WARM house), and travel to the shoot/ stay in clothes during the shoot, would be best.

The leaves on her torso too 3 hours; I had already gathered a bunch of real autumn leaves and decorated them with the same glitters. Hayley did her hair and makeup, I added Glitzer glitter gel and a little paint on top.

We met Victoria at Mousehold Woods in Norwich. I slashed up a jumper Hayley didn’t mind being ruined so she had coverage over her back/ sides, then she leapt around (barefoot!) posing in trees, leaf litter, bracken etc.

Hayley leaf glitter tatt tree arms bpc

We surprised a few dog walkers but most of the cyclists completely missed us – not sure why, we had Hayley’s rolling suitcase of clothes etc with us so were fairly obvious!

Leafy Hayley glitter tatt leaves face bpc

Just when her toes were about to snap off, we returned to the studio to warm her up and get a different set of shots. I had to leave to go paint faces with a Star Wars club for Children In Need, so had a lovely surprise when the super-fast Victoria sent the Cd the NEXT day!! Wow.

Hayley leafy g;itter studio dark chest bpc 0530

Hayley leaf glitter tatt studio sat bpc

Leafy Hayley glitter tatt studio akimbo bpc

Lara Lockwood Baubel Bubble Bristol Glitter Tattoo

Another shoot from last year (Dec), with photos embargo’d until now when the March 2011 Issue of Illusion Magazine, which contained them, was published. Been killing me to keep  them hidden, loved these!

Lara is a make-up and hair stylist as well as a model. We met online ( I really want to do an underwater shoot which she & Jack have done several times) and met up in Bristol – the other side of the UK from me, but my mum lives there so we made an early Christmas visit for a few days. Jack is an amazing photographer.

Anyway I went over just before lunch and spent around 4 hrs glittering her, and blathering my head off at her, as she lay wrapped in blankets on the floor of her flat.  Jack made an amazing sphagetti too.Detail1490 lara bubbly glitter bpc

I’d spotted some wierd Christmas glitter baubles which I’d brought, along with some shiney balls in matching shades, so that was my inspiration.

Finished, Lara dressed (as the glitter tatt can’t be damaged) and we drove to Jack’s family house studio. I sat in awe as Lara whipped up an amazing hair creation on herself, and added a few glittery bits to her lovely face makeup. Then the pair were off and shooting in the chilly studio.

Lara lockwood Bauble Bubble glitter tattoo body art bpc

Just stunning!

Lookout for more of theme in Illusion..and with me at some point, hopefully!

And yes the baubles made it onto my tree:)

Christmas tree decorating Dec 1 grin

Peacock Glitter Tattoo Neck Collar Body Art

Another shoot from November, with photos embargo’d until now when the March 2011 Issue of Illusion Magazine, which contained them, was published. Been killing me to keep  them hidden, loved these!

Hayley Bird had ‘found’ me online just after I emigrated to Hong Kong, which was a shame, as she was in Norfolk, where we had just left!

When we re-emigrated, she was often posing for camera club shoots friends of mine were in, so we arranged to do one together. The female photographers were especialy happy as I had the impression most shoots were ‘glamour’ style and the girls wanted some variety.

Hayley - Pride Without Prejudice peacock glitter neck angie bpc

Hayley’s a stylist/ make-up artist, but also a very good model. She turned up with a case of clothes; I had a bundle of feathers. We decided a plain black corset & sleeked back hair looked best. For a change, I fancied attempted symmetry, in a ‘collar’ pattern. Doodly drips were very hard to control as this wasn’t really one I could paint with the model lying flat.

But I loved the effect. It later reminded me a bit of the neck jewellery the head vamp queen gets killed in on the train in Underworld… need to watch it again and see, I think!

Huge thanks to Hayley who I later hear had cancelled a lot at a tough time to come work with me, and thanks to Michelle & the camera club whose fees in a slow season allowed me to fix my broken car AND get more glitter tatt supplies just in time!

Fire Over Water – Craig’s Glitter tattoo

Another shoot with photos that were embargo’d until now when the March 2011 Issue of Illusion Magazine, which contained them, was published. Been killing me to keep  them hidden, loved these!

This was glittered on Remebrance Sunday 2010- appropriate as the charming Craig had to leave the army recently after an injury.

This beganas a tribal but morphed into fire over water, making me think I’ll do an Elementals series. Craig coped well- it was an icy day, and he was lying on the floor of a garage studio in Suffolk!

14112010155848-Craig-00020 bpc

And Ian’s background here is perfect, gave me grafitti tatt ideas!

Bodypainting by at glitter tattoo on male-Craig grafitti body art
Bodypainting by at glitter tattoo on male-Craig grafitti body art

Ian did some really creative stuff with lighting too.

Craig is now starting a new career as a personal trainer, and has a modelling contract too. We think he’ll do VERy well!

IMATS London 2011; Sun 30th Jan; Satyr Wood Faun 1 stroke bodypaint demo

Rather stiff from lugging my heavy kit around London (sorry guys, Hong Kong wins on the underground train front – MUCH easier to navigate and far fewer stairs!) it was back for day 2 of IMATS. The morning was a ‘pro ticket only’ event which meant it was a lot quieter; most went to see the youtube guru demos, etc, and stalls were less busy as the ‘public’ wasn’t allowed in the 1st few hours. Shame, really, bit of a waste… maybe making that time pro-only shows would have worked better?

Anyway for a different look, I decided LL was going to be a sort of Wood Satyr. We had a set of foam latex horns and ear tips, again from Russ Hughes, which I glued on. Using a 1-stroke/ split cake I made myself with Snazaroo colours, I began sort of following LL’s contours. It started looking a bit 70’s wallpaper:) If we took a break he had to hide from his fans or he’d constantly be begged for photos/ chats and couldn’t eat!

IMATS 2011 Illusion brian n Satyr bpc

At this point my model from Wales 2010, Stacey who was my Spirit Shamen in August, turned up in a tizz. (With a cute bag printed with photos of her bodypaint modelling inc my Spirit Shamen).

She’d been booked for an airbrush artist to paint, but after a rule change or something the g-string & nipple covers she’d bought weren’t enough cover. LL had (clean!) spare grey boxers which were, with a bit of genius, transformed into a boob tube and boy-short set for Stacey to be painted in! Very clever…

IMATS 2011 Illusion wood satyr stall bpc

I was quite pleased with the wood grain look – fairly fun & easy to paint and I had decided for once to NOT use any black, going for dark grey instead. LOVING the new smallish dagger brush I got from Bibi (used for the dark lines) and the kabuki for shading, again. Amazing how many of the questions asked were about the 1 stroke/ split cake, seems the make-up world is not onto that trend as yet…

We could have let the LL there, but several painters, inc Lone Wolfe had asked if I’d demo my body glitter tattoos as well. Seeing as that’s what the article in the next Illusion mag about me will be on, and I love doing them, we did.

IMATS 2011 Illusion wood satyr oel chest bpc

Poor LL, last (1st!) time I painted him, in Dec in Bristol (not blogged yet as can’t publish pics till Illusion does), he ended up with a very intricate, hard to remove tatt on his chest and is still finding glitter all over his flat!

So this time I tried a new waterbased cosmetic adhesive from Mouldlife, which I was told by another artist still dries tacky but is easier to get off than Pro-adhesive, and, a huge plus, is a fraction of the price!

I decided on sort of  ivy leaf ‘tribal’ chest and arm jewellery. And a tiny wee googly-eyed owl in his chest knot hole.

After proper photos we did a tour of the stalls, so I could nose and LL could hand out his modelling card. And try to reclaim his shorts from Stacey (the boob tube ‘appeared’ on his computer at work I hear:))

Ladies, not only is he sweet & gorgeous AND working full time as a scientist,  you can now hire him to model!!!

IMATS 2011 Illusion wood satyr kiss Tumninus bpc

As for the rest of the show; I loved the chinese-paper-cut lashes, intricate little black pictures really. And the Makeup Museum…a few I couldn’t place but 1 from HellBoy I knew well. The actor in it (can see where it was peeled off round his mouth, I think?) mustve been soo skinny…hang on I thought it was CGI. Hmm have to watch it again!

There was also a v cool machine you gripped that coated patches of glue on your skin with ‘real’ looking fur pile – static electricity or something.

wood stayr bodypaint IMATS Illusion Mag

But all in, we were very well-received and answered a LOT of questions (yay for me I bodged through some in French, German and Dutch!) as well as posing (well, LL posed, I just painted and tried to keep my concentrating-tongue IN my mouth) for 100’s of pics.

If anyone does see us in photos/ videos anywhere do please tell me – I’d love to see the footage of the film crew who asked Satyr-LL to ‘say or do something’ and he gave them a load of cheeky tongue action!

IMATS 2011 Illusion wood satyr corner n me bpc

So huge thanks to Laurence Caird & Illusion Magazine, a brilliant, interesting,  fun weekend. And no I’m not hunchbacked I’m just leaning my head forward on the post for some reason….

IMATS London 2011; Sat 29th Jan Steampunk Angel Bodypaint Demo Illusion

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:)

IMATS 2011 Illusion Laurence strips

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!!

IMATS 2011 Illusion steampunk angel blue stencil vid bpc

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.

IMATS 2011 Illusion steampunk angel blue stencil  close bpc

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.

IMATS 2011 Illusion steampunk angel blue stencil bpc 

Step 5: Handpaint on chest wings, coils and add black shading to asstd sections of gears and foam latex.

IMATS 2011 Illusion steampunk angel look down bpc

Step 6: Add white highlights and small red or green blobs of glitter gel as jewelled screws etc.

IMATS 2011 Illusion steampunk bat wings 2 bpc

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!

IMATS STeampunk Angel bodypaint sign SONY DSC IMATS STeampunk Angel bodypaint lift

Brian Oliver’s stunning favourite of mine…

Steampunk Angel Laurence IMATS for Illusion

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! 

Press clip Illusion Mag IMATS review

Thanks Illusion- for taking me along and publishing it!