Monday, June 28, 2010

Road Trip

This past Sunday I was hired to do face painting and temporary tattoos at an adult party at which kids would be in attendance.  I was actually referred by a Maryland face painter who'd painted at the hostess' niece's (follow along with me here) party while the hostess was visiting.  It sounds more convoluted than it is.

At any rate, I'm grateful to my Maryland colleague for the referral.

The party on Sunday was in Long Branch, NJ, over an hour from where I live, and part of the Jersey shore, but they were adamant that they needed me there.  And what a party it was!  I got to try a taste of the phenomenal catering, as the hostess insisted that I eat.  I made sure to try some of the multitude of gorgeous pastries and chocolates.

It was hot on Sunday, incredibly hot for an outdoor party, but I found a spot under some trees and not far from the really great Israeli band that reminded me of my dad's music from my childhood, and made due with the shade.

The kids were really great, and gave me a chance to do faces I love to make up for the school carnival of cheek art.

We had the requisite butterflies... but what cute butterflies!

And a puppy!

A monkey!  Monkeys have always been tough for me, but I think I'm kind of getting the swing of them.  The partiers approved, at least.

I haven't painted, of course, 'til I've done a tiger or two, and this brother and sister due accommodated.  When the girl got into my chair right after her brother, she was all about "pink and purple," and when I told her I could do a pink & purple tiger, she immediately jumped on the idea.

This young lady's mom instructed her to stay away from face painting, so we did her arms.  Her favorite color is blue, same as mine!

They chose some great glitter tattoos, too.

And this young man wanted a mica powder tattoo, that looked great... but got even better when he suggested I use the silver glitter in the blank area!  We both agreed that it was a very cool tattoo.

All in all, the heat and distance were really worth it; the party was great!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Just Clowning Around

On Friday evening, I painted, in clown, at a school carnival in Franklin Lakes.  It was crazy busy, so no photos, but it was fun, despite the heat and humidity, plus divebombing gnats and mosquitoes.  Ah, the adventure that is outdoor employment!

The kids were good, and there was one terrific girl who helped me end the line when it got late.  I promised her an awesome face in return for her assistance, since I sent her down the line with a full paintbrush, to number the rmaining kids' hands.  The idea was that if you weren't already on line, you weren't getting painted.  She actually staved off several kids who tried to muscle their way in, brave soul that she was.

She was going to be my last customer, and I was all set to do her up with a full face tiger (her previous request) and tons of neon yellow glitter to go with it.  She got into the chair.... and requested her name, Brianna, across her face.  That's it.  Sigh.  I felt bad that she waited all that time and helped so much for just that, but if that's what she wanted, that's what she was getting.  I did use my best handwriting and tons of glitter, at least.  And she was happy, which is what matters in the end.

Meanwhile, it was that evening that I met Patty Cakes the Clown, a very nice guy who's still early in his career.  He twists balloons, though, and is great with the magic.  I started to teach myself ballooning, only to discover that, as infatuated as I am with watching it done, I'm not fond of doing it myself.  So kudos to him!  Also, he's great with the kids and like I said, the magic.  We were trading some magic tips for face painting ones.

... and he's encouraging me to really work up a clown "character!"  I think it's a great idea, so you might be seeing a clowning option from me coming down the road!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Blast from the Past

About 6 or 7 years ago, I face painted at my friend's daughter's 4th birthday.  That was early on in my face painting career, when I was much more of a novice and not nearly at the level of quality I am now.

Well today, I got the best compliment based on that party anyway!

I painted this afternoon at the 4th birthday of a young man whose mother and sister attended the party so many years ago.  Mom kept me in mind all these years, and called me for this party!  As a face painter, I never know who I'm going to see again.  It's really great, and a testament to mom's opinion of me.

The funny thing?  This was a pirate party and I didn't paint a single pirate!  I did, however, forget my camera so I can't show you the tiger, bear, vampire, butterflies, lion, and other critters I did paint.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

I got up at 6:30 this morning.

Yes, on a Saturday.  I had a good reason, though.  I was face painting with two other artists at the Valerie Fund walk in Verona Park this morning.

We were all painting furiously for several hours straight, so I only had a little time to take photos, but here are some of them.

Two princesses and a monster.

A request for a red skeleton that was neither bloody nor angry, so we added glitter.  Nothing with glitter could be angry.  Except maybe my cat.  He glares at me when I get glitter on him.

My first bumblebee in many years.

A shark.

A tiger.  As you know, I love it when adults want to get painted.

A request for a unicorn with rainbows, for which I simply didn't have time.  Instead, my model compromised with me for a unicorn with a rainbow mane.

My very first werewolf.

And some wildcats.  I painted the two on the left; one of the other two artists painted the leopard.

Friday, June 11, 2010

What will you be doing for Labor Day?

Personally, I think you should be coming to the Rutherford Street Fair, where I'll be face painting at the Giants of Generosity booth from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Yes, I'm already talking about September 6, 2010.

Who are the Giants of Generosity?

They're a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that simply finds people in need and helps them.  Through internal donations from its members, other private donations, and fundraising efforts, Giants of Generosity works on a "pay-it-forward" philosophy of giving.

Their funding has gone to medical bills for a man who was gravely injured during an assault when he tried to come to a woman's rescue as she was being attacked.  It's gone to a woman's cancer surgery and radiation treatments.  It's helped pay the rent of someone in need.

For more information, visit their website.  The testimonials there made me cry.

I'll be charging for face painting, and all of the proceeds will go to the organization.  Please come out, support this worthy group, and get some information from them!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Going Away

No, not me.  Ha, you're not getting rid of me that easily!

Someone else... and so there was a big kids' going away party yesterday afternoon at Tribeca Cinemas.  I was hired to face paint at the party, and because I knew we'd have two hours and a lot of kids, I brought my friend Emilie with me.

The party was great, with balloons, a DJ, food, and drink... and of course, us.  When we first got there, only a few girls chose to get painted.

So I did what I usually do to try and attract attention; I started to paint myself as a tiger.  Well, I got the orange and white base done, and picked up a brush with black to get myself a nose, fangs, and start on my stripes... and of course, a line formed!  We painted furiously for over two hours straight, and I never did get a chance to finish my own painting, so I spent the afternoon painting with an orange and white face.  I actually forgot about it until I went to the bathroom to empty my water and looked in the mirror!


I was happy, though.  I think I got my puppy face down to about 90 seconds, since I did what felt like hundreds of them.  And we had some creative kids there.  This very pretty girl wanted to be a vampire, and was very happy with her face, even happier when she turned around and scared the heck out of two girls waiting behind her!

I also had a young mermaid swim away from my chair.

Recognize the very quick version of the shell I practiced for cheek art?  Speaking of cheek art, some of the most fun paintings I did were of the cheek and arm art variety.  The kids were so into the painting once we got going, that ones who'd already been face painted kept coming back and getting on line to get arms painted; I think had some had four or five separate paintings!

Well, my first new thing for the day... I got a request for a robot!  Um... OK.  Let's see what we can do with that.

And then... a lollipop!

And last, but not least, a flamingo!

Of course, those resulted in many repeated requests for robots, lollipops, and flamingos.  Of course!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

My Banker Asked Why I Was Wearing a Lei

Yeah, I walked into the bank to make a deposit this afternoon, wearing a plastic green flowered Hawaiian lei like this one.  I had to laugh; I'd forgotten about it!  It was given to me by a boy whose face I painted at a birthday party in his kindergarten class.  He was one of the birthday girl's classmates. 

The birthday girl herself was the puppy I painted at this party.  Her younger sister, my butterfly at that party in March was also in attendance.  This time, my birthday girl was a princess, while her little sister went for "butterfly" again.

I didn't take photos, but I had a blast with the class.  Most of the boys wanted fire-breathing dragons, though I did have one Spiderman, one Batman, and one boy who went from not wanting to be painted at all to getting a full-face tiger!

The lei came from a magician/balloon twister/comedian who came to entertain the class while I was painting, and I certainly couldn't resist a gift from a cute boy, especially one who was just five!

Tomorrow afternoon, I've got another daytime party; I've been hired by Tribeca Cinemas to paint at a going-away party at their venue.  I can't wait!

Off to clean my kit...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

First Birthday... and Selflessness

I painted this afternoon at a first birthday.  While the birthday boy didn't want to get painted, his friends and family were certainly willing... but then, I've painted several of them before!  Remember these guys?

Well, you might recognize two of them from today's party.

The kids at this party were great.  Even the ones who started out reluctant, like this girl who wanted a tiny butterfly on her cheek came back later for a flower on her arm, and wanted blue to match her dress, which you all know I love.

I tried a new puppy, and love the ears on this one.

And I got my first ever parrot request!

Maybe it's not entirely accurate, but it's not bad, if I do say so myself.  Of course, there were still the requisite butterflies.

Spidermen too, but these boys wanted them all on their arms!

One young man who'd already been painted as a lion decided he also wanted a pirate.  Since I couldn't put one over the other on his face, I suggested this skull pirate on his arm.  He was very skeptical beforehand and as I painted him, but once the design started to take shape, he understood and then he loved it.

Meanwhile, I did get to do one tiger, on this terrific little boy.  He's four years old.

And here's where the lesson in selflessness comes in.  He loved his tiger.  He and the lion were going around growling at all the butterflies and puppies running about.  But when he approached another four-year-old attending the party to play, the other boy, who wasn't a fan of face painting and was quite shy, got scared of the poor tiger-faced kid.  Apparently, my tiger kept trying, and the other boy kept getting scared.

So what did tiger-boy do?  He went and washed his face so he could play with the other boy, who then happily followed him into the playroom.  I've never before seen such a mature decision in a four-year-old.  Heck, I've yet to see some adults behave so selflessly!

Kudos to you, kid.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Lots and Lots of Henna

I was hired to do henna tonight at a birthday party for a 14-year-old girl.  The kids were great, though I was really disconcerted to hear "Oh, this is from Glee" when songs from my junior high and high school years were playing.  Wow, am I that old?  Really?  When did that happen?!

At any rate, the party was outside, where the humidity was wreaking a bit of havoc with the henna's consistency, but I got some decent results and the kids loved it.  Mom had set up a great little table from me, with printed paisley designs to "set the scene."  That was great!

Some of my pieces...

(The girl pulled this one up on her smartphone; it apparently means "love.")

(In case you can't tell, peace signs are "in" this year!)

And my very last request of the night, from the birthday girl's younger brother, a penguin.  I drew it first in surgical marker to be sure I'd get it right, and you can still see it behind the henna.  The marker is easily washed off, while the henna stain will remain.  It was quite dark at this point, and I was working by a dim porch light, so I wasn't quite as "on" the marker as I thought I was.

And yes, the penguin is holding a little fish.  I just had to.


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