LETTER FROM THE EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Dear Artists Unknown, In my many travels toggling between New York and Boston, I always plug in my earphones and stare at the passing streetlights as the bus half speeds half bounces down the highway. Out the window, the lamps were like flower buds in the form of cascading spotlights. They shook with the movement of the vehicle, each bulb of light a smaller and more opaque reflection of the one above it. I began to wonder if it was my astigmatism (terrible eyesight) that was making me see these extra lights. If I took a photo, would the print look the same as what my eyes were picking up? Will someone else see the same thing I was seeing? This issue of Artists Unknown, we have collated our biggest issue yet, just in time for the Christmas season! We brought more diversity, sassy but fabulous artists, and an overload of ideas. I had the pleasure of reading through this issueâ€™s unique stories and understanding the process behind each submission. A commonality I feel with the featured artists is being able to use a limited amount of resources to make something awesome. The creation of illusions with the help of color, appliquĂŠs and strategic photography has added an extra coat of exquisiteness on many of the editorials found here. With that being said, please enjoy our third issue! Do what you love,
SUBMISSION GUIDELINES www.artistsunknownmag.com/submit GENERAL INFORMATION email@example.com
C O N T E N T S
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ELIZABETH PETROU................ SHELBIE BARRON.................. ELLIE COSTELLO...................... ERIKA MARIE NI BHRIRAIN... KRYSTAL HUANG.................... PARI ALEXANDER.................... RYAN FAHERTY........................ RYAN KELLY............................. KELSEY WEBER....................... SHAUNA SHANKS................. SUSANN GRASSOW.............. NICOLE BARNETT.................... MADELEINE HARIRIAN.......... ZOE BUTTERWORTH............... ACHRAF BAZNANI.................. VIVAN WONG......................... MARIA GRAZIA........................ KYNE SANTOS........................ TIMOTHY PAKRON..................
ATHENS, GREECE TEXAS, UNITED STATES UNITED KINGDOM EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND UTAH, UNITED STATES SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS UNITED STATES CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES INDIANA, UNITED STATES BERLIN, GERMANY CHICAGO, UNITED STATES SWEDEN NORTH WALES, UNITED KINGDOM MARRAKESH, MOROCCO HONG KONG ITALY PHILIPPINES MISSISSIPPI, UNITED STATES
44 THE SONG OF AVARICE
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7 DEADLY SINS FREELANCING: IT’S NOT FOR EVERYONE MEMORIES IN JEWELED ARMOR STAY WARM (IN STYLE) THIS WINTER IT’S JUST PLAIN RACISM
ELIZABETH PETROU MAKES IT HER PREROGATIVE TO TRANSFORM THE HUMAN BODY INTO A CANVAS, GIVING “BODY OF WORK” A WHOLE NEW MEANING.
AST YEAR SHE STAGED BODY PAINTING exhibits in galleries, with each installment exposing another taxing social issue. In the first, she touched on the economic crisis of Greece. Using inspirations to influence her ideas and opinions, she turned two people into statues, which bore strong historical references to Greek history. She painted them into bleeding figurines, mourning for the difficult conditions that humans had to live with in each passing day. This is Elisabeth Petrou, a professional makeup artist of almost three years from Greece, who in the past year and a half has branched into the field of body paint. As a child, her passion and interest in experimenting with colors and painting materials led her to eventually choose a profession that used her creativity.
“I love make up artistry because I can express my ideas and inspirations on the human body. I am drawn to the human body as a canvas for my art because each body has a unique shape. With my art I can demystify the human body and allow it to be re-visualized. Because of this, I prefer to paint on a real canvas—the naked human body. This is the perfect way for me to communicate my art to the crowd and allow them to see a simple body in a new way.” Her inspirations are centered on controversial topics in society such as economic crisis, poverty, violence, homosexuality, environmental waste, and use of technology. Another exhibit called L’objectos personas featured her transforming two people into furniture pieces and placing them in a living room. The man was painted into a table lamp and the woman, a table. For this piece she hoped to symbolize how dependent humans are on the material world.
“WE HAVE LOST THE ABILITY TO C O M M U N I CAT E WITH EACH OTHER.” Petrou attended a cosmetology school, but taught herself the basics that define her own style of makeup. She notes that in Greece, there aren’t as many opportunities to learn different types of makeup as in special effects education, so in order to learn these things, she banked on her own research, readings and travels. At the moment she is studying the history of modern art and is inspired by iconic artists of the 20th century. However, the ones she respects the most and feels the weight of influence from are Kandinsky, Gleizes and Pollock. Currently, she is busy organizing another exhibit called Terra, where she will turn a woman into a tree to stimulate conversations about the impacts of environmental
waste. Not surprisingly, her muses for this project were the symbols found in Greek mythology. She seeks to combine the art of makeup and body paint with other mediums of art such as sculpture, traditional paint, performance art and more. Petrou plans on experimenting with different materials on the human body in order to create unique images and characters. As she continues to evolve, the most important message she can share with us is to truly love the profession you choose. “Believe in yourself and in your skills,” She says. “Try to improve them and you will succeed in your dreams.”
“THE OPPORTUNITIES THAT HAVE PRESENTED THEMSELVES TO ME THROUGH A SIMPLE APPLICATION SUCH AS INSTAGRAM ARE SUCH A BLESSING.”
ShelbieBarron SHELBIE BARRON, ONLY A SENIOR IN HIGH SCHOOL FROM A SMALL TOWN IN TEXAS CALLED LIBERTY HILL, BEGAN CREATING CHARACTER MAKEUP LOOKS FOR HER INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT. WITHIN MONTHS, HER PROFILE BLEW UP TO 18.9K AND COUNTING.
“ONE OF MY BIGGEST INFLUENCES IN PURSUING MAKEUP WAS MY MOTHER.” Her mother had taken cosmetology in high school and had a particular talent for makeovers, which she practiced copiously on her twin daughters. Since then, she had a knack for playing with makeup as much as she could get her hands on it. In the end, her mother decided not to pursue a career in the field of cosmetics, and Barron in turn considered makeup art as simply a hobby. But as she grew up, the hobby had transcended into more of an aspiration. With her abundant Insta following, this dream grew more and more feasible. Even with this popularity, she hasn’t even begun formal training, but plans on taking classes shortly after she graduates in the
upcoming year. She currently is working hard on winning a $5000 scholarship to a cosmetology school near her home. Barron is more than ready to jump on the road to her goal of providing makeup services for celebrities and models, for the chaotic and seemingly glamorous life of magazines and fashion shows. Following in the footsteps of one of her makeup idols, Mykie, better known by her Youtube name as “Glam and Gore,” she is well on her way to successfully pursuing the path that her mother had chosen to avert. “I am beyond excited to see where this takes me and what my future holds.”
LLIE COSTELLO NEVER PLANS her creations beforehand. She didn’t have any training and relies on the sudden pop of an image in her head of something she itched to make into reality. Her process is very go-with-the-flow and she finds an element of surprise in outcome at the end. Sometimes her looks can go wrong, because this method paves way for a greater room for error, but she notes that it is all part of the creative process. “Sometimes the mistakes turn into something captivating. I like to surprise myself and do something unexpected. I think that is how creative and individual pieces of art are made.” Costello may mindlessly scroll through Instagram, browse through other artists’ work and be extremely inspired by something she sees. She gets a similar reaction by even the smallest bits of life, sometimes a pattern on a scarf or even a cushion. But it is the work of other people that motivates her to challenge herself and get her creative juices a-flowing. Often times she is jolted by an idea out of her seat, so transient and intense that she has to quickly jot it down before her memory drops it in the abysmal unconscious trash bin.
“If it weren’t for my notes on my iPhone, I would forget a LOT,” She laughs lightheartedly. Costello names Alex Box as her idols. Her biggest aspirations is to be as creatively experimental and good as Alex Box. “I think Alex’s work is just beyond incredible. All of her pieces are so full of color, which is my biggest love when it comes to creating make-up... using lots and lots of bright colors.” She adds, “I always let everyone know about my love for color on Instagram.” Alex Box is known for her abstract artwork, both in technique and meaning. There is mystery to her work, which is what Costello adores most—the fact that people can have completely different interpretations of her art. To reach that point of professionalism, she wants to one day complete a course in Theatrical Makeup/Face & Body Painting. Until then, she is just a self-taught artist who gained her skills like most people, watching makeup tutorials left and right on Youtube and following step-by-step, or imitating looks she found on social media.
“When I look at my work now compared to a year ago, or even five months ago, I see a huge improvement. Your skill and talent is constantly developing and growing.”
on a constant lookout for collaborations with other talented artists on Instagram, where she is a prevalent presence. Soon enough, she will be holding a Christmas Collaboration as well on IG.
In five years time, she would love to have a Bachelor’s degree, and be moving into the world of theater doing makeup backstage for popular shows and musicals. She always aims high, with shows as widely renowned as The Lion King or Wicked, but to start it off, she admits it would be nice to have a collection of work on smaller-scale theatrical productions.
To makeup artists who share a similar background as her, she offers a positive message to never lose your own style and originality. “The whole reason of art is to create something fresh and to think outside the box, so never doubt an idea... always try something out because you never know how beautiful the outcome might be. And as a lot of artists say, practice makes perfect. The more you create looks and try new techniques the better you become, you are your own teacher, so if you put the work in, you get a good reward out of it: seeing yourself grow as a artist.”
In addition, Costello hopes to one day be honored a personal column in a magazine, which would allow her to create a different look each week. It would be extremely rewarding, as she is
“I ALWAYS LET EVERYONE KNOW ABOUT MY LOVE FOR COLOR ON INSTAGRAM.” 13
“ALWAYS TRY SOMETHING OUT BECAUSE YOU NEVER KNOW HOW BEAUTIFUL THE OUTCOME MIGHT BE.”
AVING ALWAYS HAD AN INTEREST and tendency to experiment with art, Erika Marie was for a while searching for her niche, the medium that would speak to her. Her artistic journey really started to develop with being accepted to Limerick School of Art and Design. There she studied fashion design, which in turn lead to fantastic opportunities such as being invited to Paris Fashion Week to work for a designer. While there, she was witness to runway makeup by Val Garland, an experience that opened her eyes to the idea of makeup being a career. Growing up in Kilkenny, Ireland, a major inspiration to Erika has been Alex Box. According to her, she would fall in love with images, and those would always turn out to have been done by the same person, Alex Box. In her final year of school, Erika began working for a cosmetics brand which gave her the chance to learn about the medium, and then to express herself with it, ultimately giving way to and obsession that she realized to be her desired career path with which she could have a lot of fun. Erika embodies a sense of spontaneity and embraces the unknown. In her own art she trusts her impulses and instincts rather than attempting some premeditated vision. She admits that sometimes when starting a project she does not have an idea or even know what direction she will go. Erika, like many other artists, has become very familiar with and endorses the concept of “happy accidents”. That is to say often the best creations can be credited to unconscious happenings or even mistakes rather being the result of intention. In describing her own “Human Portrait”, a piece inspired partly by impressionism and partly a friend’s painting, Erika says, “I didn’t want to overthink my placement so I did this quite quickly and just kept applying product until I was happy with the overall look. I think this is why I am so happy with this piece as I didn’t hold myself back and just really had fun in the process and trusted myself to stop when it was still quite raw.” Though Erika was not formally trained, her own process of trial and error has bestowed on her not only considerable skill in her medium but something that some artists never find. She has come to posses a precious mindset in that she embraces her own tribulations, realizing that she can learn from each piece she does. It is also refreshing to have an artist that values herself and is simultaneously able to express and willing to connect with others through her art. She has made herself a success story and with an attitude that we could all afford to share, one she concisely declares in saying “Do what feels right and trust yourself because at the end of the day, art is personal and it should come from the heart”. She is now living in Edinburgh, Scotland, working in makeup artistry full time.
“I DIDN’T HOLD MYSELF BACK AND JUST REALLY HAD FUN IN THE PROCESS AND TRUSTED MYSELF TO STOP WHEN IT WAS STILL QUITE RAW.”
VERY PERSON—NEVER MIND—every photographer has heard the saying that a picture speaks a thousand words. Some might think the statement cliché but Krystal Huang makes it her mission to confirm that statement by filling her images with personal emotions and messages that more than suffice a simple word count. She understands that with the medium of photography, she has the means of showing things that cannot be seen by the naked eye. That impossible frame of reality can invoke imagination, something she knows first-hand from being inspired by other artists on Flickr such as Brook Shaden and Joel Robinson, who take part in creating surreal images.
It is through this fascination and inspiration that Huang developed her art techniques. Equipped with basic tools from high school photography class and a curious mind, she would discover work that she was impressed by and proceed to study and watch videos in attempt to recreate what she saw. It is a similar story to many photographers in that it is not an art form that can be altogether taught, but rather, something you need to learn on your own by challenging yourself to see differently and operate more creatively to find solutions. It is this struggle for resolutions that develop personal tactics, which in turn eventually give way to one’s own style. Huang
admits, “I don’t consider myself in any way a master of this form of art yet.” It is becoming of her to make note of the level she sees herself at but at the same time it is important for any artist to acknowledge that we all have plenty to learn, that no one is a complete master of any craft. All anyone can really be a master of is what is inside of them, a sentiment Huang, when asked what advice she would give to other artists, expressed in saying, “Only you can create what is in your heart.” Huang insists that for now photography remains a hobby, but would very much invite having photography be incorporated into her future career. Regardless of her career path, it is highly probable that she will take her own advice and continue to be inspired by the art and nature around her.
PA R I A L E X A N D E R
LENTY OF ARTISTS AND CREATIVE MINDS in general often feel lost and without a purpose. That is, until they discover that thing, sometimes a specific medium or subject matter, that speaks to that person. For Pari Alexander, it was not until she began practicing with makeup that she unleashed a very real passion that would make her realize a change in her life’s path. At the moment Alexander is in the process of finishing up a film degree at San Diego State. Her wish is to link these two mediums (makeup and film), by training in the art of special effects makeup, which can be applied to her film projects. Alexander has no formal instruction in the SFX area, but that has not stopped her in the past from honing considerable skills. She is a firm believer in the phrase, “practice makes perfect.” As part of her practice, she summoned the courage that most starting artists do not and put herself and her work out into the open. She entered a contest for Michael Hussar, where she was tasked with the recreation of his piece “Twink”. This was an experience that she had a lot of fun with, but also thought got the best of her. She felt slightly lost until people started to inquire the type and brand of contact lenses she was wearing, not realizing what they were seeing was actually the eyes she had
painted on her own eye lids. Needless to say, it was a huge vote of confidence and a turning point for her individuality. Alexander significantly credits the makeup community of Instagram with helping her bring what was just a hobby into a passion. She is very interested in giving back to this community. She shared with us her plans to delve into YouTube as another platform in order to teach and inspire more artists in fostering an encouraging environment. Alexander’s is an example of how “your late night practice sessions will turn into something bigger than yourself.” Makeup was not her focal point, but then it became one when she realized where her talent lay. She practices makeup today not for the fame, but for the fact that she simply loves doing it. With this dedicated mindset, she has elevated herself and her skills to the point where her name and her work can be noticed and appreciated. She hopes she is inspiring someone beyond the screen, something that is in almost every artist’s dream.
R YA N FA H E R T Y
What was your thought process behind this collection? I think of my work as a collection of effigies with some lost, obscured mythology behind it. It is while I am working on an individual piece that I am uncovering shades of what that mythology is. This makes creating a passive process as much as an active process for me. I am simultaneously receiving information as well as applying it to the piece. At any given point while working I am thinking what am I being told and what must I add or subtract. It’s the space between the thinking and doing, that a piece really takes form for me. By keeping the thought process abstract I feel that it allows a lot of the unknown to occur in my work, which keeps it exciting for me. Hopefully this makes for an exciting experience for the viewer as well. When I’m working on a piece, I’m constantly fluctuating between three modes of creating. First, there is the actual illustrating of each of the smaller images that make up the larger comMONKEY BONES position. Second, there is the cropping and cutting of the drawn image. Finally, there is the constructive process of adhering the smaller pieces to the larger composition and building the larger image. Then I respond to the piece and repeat. I feel like having this layered way of working allows me to achieve the intensely layered images. How do you think the beginning and final product of your work has changed? How much has it changed from the original planning stage, your vision, to the post-processing? Most of the time, I do not have a specific idea as to how a final product will look. For the most part, I start with a general idea and work off of that. However, while I’m working, change is constantly taking place while I go from one move to the next. I’ll often get half way through a piece thinking that I know how the final product will look just to find that the addition of a certain drawing or image or mark has moved the piece in an entirely new direction. I like to think of the central starting point, or the base off which I build, as a gravitational mass. The gravity of this starting point is attracting, collecting and coalescing objects and images around it to create a solitary mass. Each session I spend with the piece has changed it into something new. Since my work is so layered, it allows me the unique opportunity to repurpose certain sections of work for other pieces. What I mean by this is that sometimes there will be a finished product that, overtime, I no longer feel connected to. If this happens, I’ll typically break apart this piece and I will be left with a pile of collage material. From here I’ll either build an entirely new piece off of each individual component, or add certain parts from the broken piece to different works in process. Because of this, I never really know what type of life a final product will take on, even after I’ve thought it’s reached its final destination. Did you think you would go in this direction or was it just a hobby? I’ve always known that art and making art was what I wanted to spend my life doing. I can remember a specific moment in kindergarten that affirmed this for me. I was in Ms. Adams’ class and we were all coloring or working on some project. As I was drawing the Riddler from Batman, my hands down favorite super hero growing up, a couple other kids from the class came over to look at my drawing. They loved my Riddler and started asking me to draw different things for them, which I gladly did. It stuck out so much to me because it was a distinctive moment in which other people were like, “Yeah dude, keep drawing”. Growing up, my parents were always incredibly supportive of me and my art. They noticed that I showed a strong interest in art making at a young age and encouraged it. They would sign me up for art classes, buy me materials and always let me do what I love. I’ve always been extremely grateful for that. I’ve had my moments where I’ve thought it would be easier to get into a field that was a little more secure than art making. But I ultimately know, as dramatic as it might sound, that I just couldn’t spend my life doing anything else. Art has always been so incredibly important to me mental-
BIRD BRAIN 32
FEATURED ly and emotional that I couldn’t go without doing it. I will actually find myself getting anxious if I feel like too much time has passed between the last time I’ve made something or worked on art. For better or worse, I’m doomed to make art. What do these pieces mean to you and what do you think it means to others, your audience? As I mentioned, I view my work as a collection of effigies. Which is why I often like my work most when it’s altogether. I think it makes for an interesting experience when the different pieces I’ve created has a conversation between one another. This also plays into my attraction towards maximalism. What I am trying to create for myself with my work is this experience in which the images I create are exciting and not easily digested. I try to make work that both viewer and myself want to, and can, spend a lot of time with the work. I’m really trying to create a world for both me and my work to live in. It’s often a bit surprising to me how often my work gets described as creepy or dark. I don’t hate this description, and I can understand how it could be viewed that way, however that is not my intention nor is it how I view the work. I do try to make work that creates an intense viewing experience and the images I work with are definitely odd at times. For me, the work is a lot about dealing with little parts that make up a whole. So by creating characters that have a sort of Frankenstein quality in which the human form is broken apart and reformed, I can see how it could be unsettling. But then again, I always found the idea of Frankenstein sort of beautiful.
Can you give a short bio of where you’re from and your biggest influences on your art?
Growing up, there were two big artistic influences that I can still see inspiring me to this day. One, like most kids from the 90s, I was oversaturated with comic books and cartoons. Trying to recreate my favorite super heroes or cartoon characters was the earliest influence and inspiration to make me want to draw. The second influence was church. I was raised catholic, so as a kid I would be taken to church most Sundays. I was always fascinated with the architecture and art surrounding the space. The otherworldly nature of it all caught my attention at an early age. Although I don’t consider myself a religious person, the imagery has always stayed with me. It’s this fascination that I believe to my later interest in folk art and art not made by conventional artists. What attracts me to folk art is the attitude of making art with found object, or available means, in a way that is self-referential. There is something unique to each piece of folk art because the artist is calling upon personal references before they are calling up references from the art community. I’m also a huge horror movie and sci-fi fan, so these influences seem to find their way into my work with out me necessarily intending them to. What is your next project going to be? Currently I am working on a commission piece, however I have a couple ideas for projects that I would like to take on next. I would really like to create more artist books. I have done a couple in the passed and I really miss doing them. My work has also changed quite a bit since the last one I’ve done. Throughout high school and early college I used to keep really intensive and elaborate sketchbooks. By the end, with out intending it, they would turn into what were essentially artist books. I always saw artist books as a nice marriage between my love of comic books with my interest in more abstract forms of working. Also, artist books seem to have the ability to handle time differently then other forms of visual art. Unlike a single composition, an artist book has in innate sense of the passage of time because the viewer is moving from beginning to the end. The other project I would like to take on is series of work in which I create interchangeable, large scale body parts. These body parts would then be assembled to create an entire figure. I would create a number of these figures and each one of them could be rearranged with the different parts from one another. Essentially just like interchangeable puzzle pieces that could create a large variety of creatures/figures. This idea sounds particularly exciting to me because it could really explore the idea of creating these hybrid or Frankenstein characters in a way in which I haven’t before.
THE HILARIOUS AND EXCEPTIONALLY TALENTED LIP ARTIST GIVES US THE REALITY OF HER BATTLE WITH SELF-DOUBT, HER MUSES AND HOW TO DEAL WITH DOGS THAT LOVE GLITTER MORE THAN SHE DOES 38
CCORDING TO RYAN KELLY, inspiration and ideas are everywhere: holidays movies, pop culture, and friends. It is fair to say though that when it comes to makeup, mainly creativity in lip art, many people can name their inspiration as Ryan Kelly. Having been interviewed by Yahoo and Time, she has gained considerable, well-deserved recognition for her innovative artwork as well as expert execution. She interprets simplicity in a conceptual fashion that many people strive to do and she efficiently produces valuable work with perfected minutiae. Even so, this experienced artist still feels the weight of self-critique and embraces the artist’s struggle.
She cringes at anything she completed outside the last two months. Anything not recent becomes a canvas for nitpicking. Even when this professional artist sits down to begin a new project, her creative process does not differ from others. Ryan Kelly starts with a clear concept and well-organized plan. “I clean and set up my desk with all of the products I think I’ll need and arrange them in a way that would satisfy my husband’s OCD tendencies.” The initial confidence that comes with the inception of a great idea quickly turns to frustration when, half way through the process, the
FEATURED vision is not achieved. Her frustration is always compounded by her dogs, which seem to love tracking glitter everywhere in her house. “At this point there is lipstick and paint all over my entire face, in my hair and on the floor,” She says. “One or both of my dogs have stepped in it and proceed to leave a chihuahua sized trails of glitter throughout my house. Inevitably, it’s too late not to just see the look through, so I refine and refine and refine.” But in her genius, through malfunction and tech chaos, she succeeds in producing something that she is happy with and something that measures her of her prowess. “You’d think I’d learn by now that it usually turns out okay in the end in both art and life. Ahh the artist’s struggle.”
Now, Kelly runs her own freelance makeup company called Blend Makeup Artistry. Her partner in this company is no other than her own mother who is also a makeup artist and a “force of nature.” “She has this way of calming everyone in a room and then just completely blowing them out of the water with her talent and ability,” says Kelly. Her husband is also a huge support in her career, as he loves being around people and encourages her to put herself out there, meet people, experience life and leave her introverted tendencies behind. She shares how if people had told her ten years ago that she’d be interviewed by the big dog media about painting tiny pictures on her lips, she would have spit out her sugar-free Red Bull and laughed in their faces.
“If the MAC trainers looked at your work and gave you a spirited, ‘YAASS, GIRL’ you knew you’d done something right.”
One could assume that professionals definitely have it together and the entire process is smooth and refined. But Kelly, on the other hand, takes the advice of her artist grandfather, “Pop Pop,” as she calls him, in that an artist should, “Make a mess and fix it.” Kelly proclaims that artists do have a tendency to over-think. They torment themselves over the work they do when the only people they should really be looking to please are themselves. In her own words, “Authenticity is Beauty”.
All the same, she acknowledges the struggle, participating in a medium that requires ridiculous patience in order to accomplish all that tiny detail on such a small canvas with tinier brushes. She manages to find beauty in the journey, which is important and helpful to reassure her with the reasons she does everything she does. But what else makes the journey even more beautiful? “Wine!” She winks playfully. I’m surprised how she can keep those lines straight. In addition to wine, Kelly cites MAC Cosmetics as a crucial assistant in her career. They laid the groundwork for her by giving her first formal professional makeup attempt. Not only did they show her the ropes of how makeup works, but they also introduced her to the language that exists in the beauty culture. “So, was there formal training?” I asked. “Yes and no. For years, music was my outlet. Makeup was just something I enjoyed because it was a way to express myself while I was on stage. I ended up working for MAC Cosmetics as what I thought would be just a side gig. MAC really laid the groundwork for me. That was the first time I’d ever received any formal training in art or makeup. It was also the first time I’d ever heard anyone say, ‘Yaass.’ If the MAC trainers looked at your work and gave you a spirited, ‘Yaass, girl’ you knew you’d done something right. I love that the beauty community has become it’s own culture. We have our silly little language and ways of communicating with each other. It’s become a way of life.”
She showed her grandfather her lip art once. “I think he was confused. I’m sure he later shook his head while muttering something about these crazy kids and their internet machines.”
Her grandfather also had the gift of effortlessly painting portrait and landscapes; something she was always baffled by. What he doesn’t understand, however, is the strength of Instagram and how it connects people. She picks Instagram as her favorite form of publicity because it is exclusively a visual showcase. The beauty community on Insta is truly a supportive one (minus the internet trolls). She waves, “Hi trolls!” and continues, “Far more often, what I see is artists encouraging one another, lifting each other up, celebrating victories together, challenging each other, sharing product knowledge, and collaborating. What other platform presents the opportunity for artists from different places all over the world to create collaboration pieces that support women with breast cancer or autism awareness? I see huge international makeup lines like Kat Von D and NYX finding brand ambassadors and connecting directly with their customers. Indi start-up brands are blowing up because artists now have a voice to stand behind them. How powerful is that? Social media is so often misconstrued as something that is creating a chasm between us, but I think it does exactly the opposite.” Kelly referenced many empowering female artists who inspire her, namely, Anastasia Soare, Bobbi Brown, Marla Malcolm Beck, and Charlotte Tilbury. She religiously follows makeup artist extraordinaire Pat McGrath, Lisa Eldridge, and Andrew Gallimore, admitting she stalks their profile when she needs a fix of creative juice. With that, she turns to her audience of aspiring artists and advises, “We’re sensitive creatures by nature, so it’s very easy to slip into worrying about what ‘they’ will like. Don’t create anything for anyone else and don’t create for likes.” Kelly has a simple goal for the near future, which is to remain happy and healthy, and find new ways to express herself creatively. She told us that her grandfather’s advice was, to this day, the best advice she had ever received. Maybe this time, her advice will resonate the same way to someone else out in the public sphere.
JUST BECAUSE THE WEATHER IS DRY
YOUR HAIR SHOULD BE
WHAT TO DO WHEN THE COLD GIVES YOU THE BAD HAIR DAY HAIR STYLIST MARTINS GIVES US A RUNDOWN ON HOW TO GET NATURALLY LUSCIOUS LOCKS
WRITTEN BY BECKY MARTINS
N NEW ENGLAND, the weather is constantly changing. One day the sun is beaming, the next, everyone is sporting their heavy winter coats. The article, Weather and Your Hair stated, “Cold, dry air can cause the cuticle layer of the hair to lift, and going into a warm, dry interior environment then leeches the moisture out of the hair, leaving it dry and frizzy.” Normally, dry hair simply needs a bit of shine or a few drops of oil. Tea Tree Oil is a wonderful product for this. It has many different and useful purposes to it besides treating dry hair, like clearing up acne. It can also be used as a supplement for cleaning supplies. Tea Tree Oil is sold at many drugstores for no more than USD$3 and can be found online as well. Another product that is an absolute must have is any Argan Oil brand. Argan oil work wonders on the hair. It is a great go-to for a nourisihing, deep moisturizing of any type of hair, thick or thin, long or short, course or smooth. The best part involves how most Argan Oils incorporate a mixture and blend of other healthy components that help renew and replenish your hair. Braids are a great ‘protective’ style. They are the perfect hairstyle to lock in moisture and rest. The best way to treat your hair is by putting the least amount of pressure and heat into it, allowing it to naturally shape and flow. A great rule-of-thumb to go by is: if you choose to perm, flat-iron, straighten or curl your hair, you should allow your hair two or three days of a break from any heat application. While braids can definitely be a regular style to have, try not to lock the in for too long due to the pull/pressure that is being applied to your scalp, which could hurt it. Then, after a week of styling and pulling on your hair, always remember to use those oils and treat yourself to a spa day at home to keep your hair looking fresh, young and healthy.
IMAGES COURTESY OF PINTREST
Photography by Dan McCarthy MUA, Styling & Direction by Cindy Chen BTS Photography by James Clark Modeled by Iliana Tzikas
Shenanigans and thoughts on the set of this issue’s editorial, Song of Avarice
ime is precious when you’re live on a shoot, especially if you plan on changing the looks on the same model in one go. Cloudy skies and unexpected showers are the worst nightmares. The set was simple: a tapestry I brought from the El Rastro Sunday flea market in Madrid was hung up on the wall facing the windows. We centered the table, covered the wooden chair with a beautiful geometric-patterned oversized cape. The subtle, darker hues of the fabric complemented the otherwise neutral palette of our background. Two photographers stationed their equipment, the intensity of the silence
interrupted by the shutters of cameras and the peaceful ambience broken by a subdued trance playlist reverberating off laptop speakers in the corner. THE PERFECT CAPTURE Usually, the level of enthusiasm with the team peaks at three points. First, when the model shows up and everyone sees her for the first time in person. Two, when the makeup, costumes and set are translated from paper to reality, finalized and ready to be photographed. Three, when the photographer takes THE shot that we KNOW we’ll pick even after reviewing the film roll ten times. It’s the
Photo by Dan McCarthy BTS Photos by James Clark
“DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT. DO WHATEVER YOU NEED TO DO.”
- ILIANA TZIKAS, MODEL
moment of epiphany when a model is caught at the tip of her breakdown. Two cereal boxes (thank you frosted flakes inhale, where her expression tenses in the right way; where and whole wheat grains), toilet paper rolls (thank you the light catches her facial features in just the right places. roommates for dumping them on my desk whenever we run out of paper), newspapers, one egg carton, hot glue, thin wires and gemstones from Michael’s were the THE MODEL Iliana is an ideal model. She’s petite like a mannequin. essential ingredients for this piece. The irony of She fits into everything I construct, as I am a petite designing something that represents greed for all things model myself. She doesn’t flinch when the makeup related to wealth. While I would love to bore everyone brush touches her eye. She doesn’t try to interrupt the with a step-by-step recipe, I must admit most of this was production process by using her phone to take selfies. a result of trial and error. After weeks of burn blisters There were multiple parts to the costume that defined and paper cuts, it was finally ready to be photographed the character of Avarice. We wanted to see two sides of and filmed in four parts. The head piece, face ‘gas’ mask, her: the human side, and her toxic alter ego. She kept chest piece and shoulder armor were all made separately. saying one thing when I asked her if she needed a break, “Don’t worry about it. Do whatever you need to do.” THE PHOTOGRAPHERS Dan doesn’t say much, but being a dancer himself, he’s nimble and fast, one eye on the viewfinder. Every THE COSTUME OF RECYCLED ITEMS Sitting in a non-glamorous fashion in the middle of time I turned around, he was on top of the couch, on my living room, I’ve always wondered how couturiers the ground or positioned over the table. The clicking constructed their pieces. Granted most of them are didn’t stop. We are fast workers, and we were focused on funded generously for their projects, but there are some beating the sunset and the brooding clouds that people who dare to venture into the unconventional signaled an impending downpour. While I was able architecture of costume fashion design, so I decided to to direct specific shots and switch the costumes share my process with everyone as well. So, here is the up for the editorial section, James had the creative
liberty of combining the fictional scene with the organized madness on set. This included Dan hopping on the one leg he had not injured, and then me, wobbling from one side of the table to the other with tripod and camera in hand as I try to video the process whilst directing the rest of the crew. All of us are running on adrenalin, lost in a race of artistic passion and partially starving because, well, we forget to eat (probably it’s just me). One would think that I’d be smarter considering the number of photoshoots I’ve been apart of (and the situations that I had gone through to get enough footage). Two hours later, an uber ride to the Newton forest and a hike up to a plateau of autumn leave blankets, we were taking the last few essential shots for the narrative before wrapping up the entire thing. I’m adjusting the camera to focus on my model’s face, when suddenly she uncharacteristically breaks into hysterics.
“Did you really?!” She asked. I glanced up from the LCD to realize what she was asking. Out of frame, there was Dan, crouching with his neck craned to turn his head, face flushed and a silly grin plastered on his face. Apparently, he was trying to avoid putting weight on his recently wounded knee and ended up in a half split-half lunge that ripped a gigantic hole in his jeans. I’m not exaggerating when I say the denim tear was quite impressive. Needless to say, I ended up rolling on the floor in a fit of laughter as he pointed at me and yelled, “Don’t blog about this!” I obviously ignored him, but he’ll get over it. It truly went with the motto that describes my friendship with Dan: “The things we do for art…”
RADUATED FROM Cinema Makeup in Los Angeles, California, Kelsey Weber uses both her degree in High Fashion, Beauty and Airbrush, and her own research in SpecialFx and Face/Body Painting to show that art has no limits. She aspires to be like true makeup goddesses Dehsarae Mahrae (@dehsonae), Mykie from Glam&Gore (@mykie_) and Lex (@creativeboss), all popularly searched on Instagram for glamorous visual feeds. Weber’s “Cheater” labeling inspired piece sends out the message that “as humans, we are all labeled and/ or bullied at some point in our lives.” She adds, To quickly label someone based on sex, style, sexual orientation, rumors etc, can be painful, hurtful and at times unforgivable. The damage we create, may go unseen to us, but can truly be immense. Here is a glimpse of what some of us, may have made someone feel, had insults been blasted on our skin. Labeling, branding, bullying—all of it—needs to stop.” Her makeup work combined with advocacy is a product of her dreams of working on a show as extravagant as “Cirque du Soleil.” On the other hand, she wouldn’t mind going down the road of avant garde makeup design for the runway. In the end, she makes sure to remind everyone to always stay humble, to not be inflated by the temptations of fame, and also to never stop practicing your art.
HE MOMENT SHAUNA Shanks decided to create an Instagram account, she developed a makeup artist career for herself that she hadnâ€™t known was possible a couple months beforehand. She followed the route of Mykie of Glam and Gore when she took this step and immediately tried to give the 100 Days of Makeup Challenge a shot. Her success since then has connected her with other makeup artists and gave her the motivation to compete in other contests that continued to broaden her network of artists.
“The clown look was actually part of a HallowGlam Challenge hosted by @wallflower_artistry and @glampira (two amazing artists on IG). Its challenges like these that have pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me obsessed with body painting and special effects makeup.” Besides the common sources of inspiration, namely movies, books, video games or the work of other artists, it is usually a combination of ideas that completes a look rather than one specific thing. Her Ice Queen look was a mix between the witch from Narnia and Candy Land characters, while the Killer Clown was inspired by her favorite author Stephen King’s book, “It.” However, Shanks stresses that her all time favorites are done in the mood of sitting down, a blank slate, and creating as she goes.
OME MAY QUESTION how one gets into the sort of art that Susann Grassow is into. Her fascination with both Halloween and horror movies sufficiently explains of her love of special effects (SFX) makeup. In a way, it also explains her talent. Her passion drove her to study and apply makeup on her body in order to teach herself to be a makeup artist. The process of developing skills and recognition as a self-taught artist is definitely not an easy one (as many can account for) and it is not without the many plunders of venturing into a new career. It helps to look at these experiences as lessons for the future rather than mistakes to dwell on. Grassow shared with us the relatively interesting production of her Missing Eyes Makeup Tutorial, wherein she found herself sitting in a bathtub filled to the brim with grape juice with makeup that created the illusion of having no eyes. At one point, she was about to document everything with her camera, only to find her memory card not responding, leaving her awkwardly sitting alone in the crazy setup without a functional recording device. Lesson learned: memory
cards have a “read only” mode switch that prohibits cameras from entering new data into it. Needless to say, she will not forget that little bit of info ever again. Speaking of not forgetting, another project that has been engrained in her mind (for better reasons) is her Pumpkin Tutorial. Inspired by high fashion photography and, well, a vision of a lady with a pumpkin head, Grassow spent a full five hours creating the makeup, a feat she expressed extreme happiness and pride in. She has had her youtube channel for one year now, a task she always dreamed of embarking on, but never thought she would start due to her shyness. But not letting her timidity stop her, she emphasizes the importance of being kind and persistently working hard to achieve your dreams. In continuing her channel, Grassow dreams of collaborating with some of the artists she idealizes in the industry, specifically Lex of Madeyewlook. In her wish list, she is determined to create her own makeup concept for a horror movie. She adds while chuckling, “And maybe a collaboration with Madeyewlook? Call me Lex, if you read this!”
MISSING EYES TUTORIAL
Graftobian Makeup Companyâ€™s cosmetic powdered metals is extremely refined. Adding it into the mixing solution creates an interesting bubbly, viscous consistency. Easy application, well pigmented, and easily removable with water. Watch out for the little particles floating around in the air after you use the product so you donâ€™t inhale your makeup. Beautiful colors, exuberant shine and long-lasting on skin.
IOLET REBEL WORKS when inspiration strikes. She experiments, makes a mess and tells others to be â€œauthentically you.â€? As a self-taught artist, she believes any failures are just building her to become the best artist she can be. Hours spent slaving over makeup experimentation, meticulously following YouTube tutorials, Violet Rebel began her Instagram account with the 100 Days of Makeup Challenge, where she had to create 100 different looks in 100 consecutive days. In the process, she found her style and built a skill set that not only gained her followers and fans, but also formed new friendships through collaborations with other artists. To the world she is Violet Rebel, but to her friends and family, she is Nicole Barnett, a girl raised in a small town of Indiana with not much exposure to the art scene except from her mom and grandma who fed her creativity from a young age. Both of them were just as crafty and taught her everything she knew until she was able to use the supplies and knowledge in a more self-expressive way. She is well on her way to turn this into a full-fledge career, either through social media or through the old fashioned freelance technique (ideally both!).
MADELEINE BLIND SEER
THE SEER FROM ONCE UPON A TIME
WITCH OF SNOW WHITE WITH FACE PAINT
BURNED FACE USING SCULPT GEL
HARIRIAN SWEDISH SFX MAKEUP ARTIST TRANSFORMS HER FACE INTO A STARTLING AND REALISTIC CHARACTERS 75
ZOE BUTTERWORTH STANDS IN THE LIME LIGHT AS THE FACE AND MASTERMIND OF HER ARTISTRY, WITH AN EXTENSIVE BACKGROUND IN THEATER ADDING A PUMP OF STYLISTIC DRAMA TO HER WORK. 77
T IS NO SURPRISE that Butterworth, having performed and watched theatre from a very young age, adopted a very dramatic style to her work. On Instagram she is known as ZoEllen, and with the attention she receives for her work, she always prepares herself to receive as much negativity as praise. Butterworth does not have a hard time being noticed as she is very apt at putting herself out there, always coming up with unique concepts and being comfortable with using her own (very youthful) face as the model for her brand. She mentions how she hopes in five years time she will still retain her baby face and get ID’d everywhere she goes. Born and raised in North Wales, United Kingdom, Butterworth does not shy away from extreme ideas, open to doing whatever it takes to accomplish them no matter how unconventional her methods may be. A perfect example of this willingness comes with her look, ‘Paper Flower Skull’ where she attached paper flowers cut out from Vogue Magazine onto her own face using spirit gum. The technique was an ode to her three years at Liverpool Hope University, where she had created a variety of collages and installations that involved paper as a 3D medium. She thanks her Fine Arts degree, which really helped her adapt what she learned to the world of makeup. As she says encouragingly, “The artistic techniques still apply, the only difference is the canvas!” She understands that in any form of artistry, it is important to take influence and be informed by any and all experiences one possesses. Butterworth made a point of acknowledging that the support of her parents and grandmother played a significant role in shaping her goals. What matters is sharing her hobby-turned-profession with them. They had been on her side, supporting her dancing, singing and acting lessons for years. In addition, Butterworth shares her gratitude for the wonders of Instagram. In fact, she references a community of makeup artists as being yet another source of support that she has counted on during her journey. However, on a last note, she wholly warns everyone else to “NEVER encourage the trolls!”
Moroccan photographer and filmmaker Achraf Baznani (Born in Marrakesh) carries on the traditions of Surrealism with his wild, imaginative, and wholly impractical imagery. Among his inventive scenarios, small human figures—often the artist himself—appear trapped within glass jars or the size of a camera lens; in other works, Baznani more or less dissects his body, as for example, in one, he cleanly removes his brain from his cranium, or in another, twists off his hand, much as if it were a light bulb. Imparted throughout such works are strong senses of humor and wonder, and as such, Baznani’s art offers a Surrealistic take on life experience in the digital age. A self-taught artist, Baznani has had no formal photography education. He lives and works in Morocco.
ONCEPTUAL PHOTOGRAPHY IS, first and foremost, about the concept of the photo. A conceptual photographer is trying to bring some message about to the viewer, be it a political advert or a social commentary or an emotional outcry. There is some level of abstraction, thus, in my works: the image is not an explicit example of the concept, but a general expression of the idea. Conceptual photography makes healthy use of graphical symbols to represent ideas, movements, moods, anything and everything that the photographer might want to include in the message of their photograph. For my works, there are a variety of ways a concept falls into place, most often it starts with a spark of inspiration and grows from there, whether it is a person, design, story that needs to be told, regardless, it all starts with a single point. From there it becomes simple problem solving. I donâ€™t spend very much time looking at what other people are doing. I like to stay aware and connected to what others are doing by following sites such as Flickr. But beyond that, I spend the rest of my time meeting people, creating, and really just living life. I think the best way to being inspired is not to just try to emulate others, but to find what inspires you in life and trying to capture and share it. I use Photoshop CS4 and Lightroom 4. I use Lightroom to correct and change the colorimetry pictures. Then I go on to the most important Photoshop retouching. To learn how to master these tools, I spent hours in front of my computer to study the tutorials available on the Internet.
FREELANCING Itâ€™s Not for Everyone WRITTEN BY DAN MCCARTHY
O FREELANCE IS TO EMBRACE a scenario that is both fulfilling and challenging for the same reasons. For example, being involved in several jobs of different subject matter and style is exciting and keeps you on your toes, but at the same time, trying to juggle multiple projects for multiple clients is far from the least stressful thing in the world. My work hours are sporadic at best. I can find myself filming a dance video at 2AM or waking up to shoot an interview at 8AM.
PHOTO BY JAMES CLARK
different everyday. Rather than waking up for the same 9AM-5PM in the same office cubicle five days a week, every day of my week is open to all types of opportunities that range from editing for hours in front of a laptop screen, to meeting clients in a bar at two in the afternoon to film a video showcasing a talented Bostonian bartender.
My profession as a freelancer cannot often be defined as completely stable, that is to say that it inevitably There is though freedom and a pleasurable sense of paves way to highs and lows, instead of a predictable potential spontaneity that comes with not being tied and steady trajectory. I, as a freelance artist, can have to a structured schedule. I enjoy doing something a killer streak where I am busy shooting for multiple 83
clients, to the point where I even have to turn down offers due to scheduling overload. The unfortunate truth, however, is that this streak can quickly turn into a dry spell. The worst part is when you are so busy editing productions from the peak times of a month, you forget that you have little to nothing lined up when things begin to slow down. The threat of that lull between jobs is absolutely tormenting once it truly sinks in. What I fear the most is not being busy, because for me to finally hit the end of a project is not as satisfying as much as it is a red flag—a reminder of the thin line I tread between running my own business and being unemployed.
value you have determined for yourself. Trust me when I say it is worth it when you do acquire the clients who acknowledge your value as an artist who is providing them a service. These are the people to hang on to and build relationships with. In fact, one of the most important aspects of freelancing is maintaining connections.
As the cliché saying goes, “It is all about who you know”. Although a more accurate amendment of this statement would be, “It is all about who knows you”. What I have found is that I know tons of people, but what matters when it comes to getting work is for people that I know to be in need of my services and have me on their mind when they do. Ultimately, they will ------------------------------------------------------------- have the funds to pay me for my efforts. The best way to make this a reality is to be as present as possible is The ultimate objective as a freelance artist is to obtain the eyes of the people who will need you. This means consistency. One of the biggest steps forward in my being aware of the communities that you can cater to. career is finding clientele who are not just hiring for one time projects, but rather companies or people who For me this was a community of dancers who then, require my services regularly. While acquiring clients, through word of mouth and general exposure, helped it is also very important to find and be confident in the me reach new milestones in my career. My current and value of your services. I know I have caught myself in a past clients have always been my best marketing team. state of desperation for work or overly anxious to take But if there is anything to take away from this, it is to just on a project that I began to compromise both the client keep finding and doing work. Essentially, work breeds and myself in order to justify doing something for less. more work. You need to produce as much content as I am not someone to condone doing something just possible just to stay in the endless fight that is buying for money but it is true: adults do have to pay the rent. for the attention of potential clients. Being a freelancer has tested my time management, professionalism, and In the end most things come down to balance; even my sanity, but it is a job that I am (occasionally) for example balance between financial needs and confident that I can pull off. At the very least I can say creative desires, or balance between genuine that my life is not without its interesting happenings. camaraderie and professional respect. However hard it may be, the right decision can be to walk away from the client who cannot or is just not willing to meet the
“It is all about who you know”. Although a more accurate amendment of this statement would be, “It is all about who knows you”.
RAINSTORMING, the initial stage of practically any art project, can be a troublesome process for anyone. It is similar to a writer’s block—an artist’s block might be more appropriate to say. But there are people like Vivian Wong, who have the opposite problem: having an intimidating profusion of ideas that she can’t contain. She states that she often finds herself wanting to experiment with so many techniques and subject matter that it can be hard to choose anything. She used to be an artist envious of those who had a niche to belong to and focus on.
elaborate portfolio you will find anything from animals to zentagle doodles. Wong is extremely skilled at creating animated portraits, many of which were inspired by her love for Disney films. One in particular focuses on the mystical nature of “Alice in Wonderland” that Wong found very enchanting. By combining her attention to detail and design, she was able to incorporate incredibly rendered elements of the story into the image of the girl. Within just the drawing of her hair, there are playing cards, clocks, and butterflies.
“I used to think this means that I don’t have my own style and that would really stress me out when I’m trying to come up with something to draw. But gradually I realized I don’t necessarily have to stick to one form of drawing and theme.”
Wong has been drawing ever since she was a little kid, but for years, the drawings remained untouched in her sketchbook. The day she discovered Instagram opened that sketchbook up to social media, introducing her and her work to people all around the work. What started as a platform to share images and receive feedback has now resulted in over 100,000 people viewing her work, a number that has had an impact not only on her confidence, but also in her life.
She has since embraced drawing as a medium that allows for the exploration and discovery of new approaches. Looking at her
While Wong addresses her drawing as a hobby, she continues to improve ability by trying out new techniques—techniques that are sure to help her (in at least some respect) with a not-so-easy architecture degree that she is currently pursuing. Wong’s interest in architecture was certainly tied into her background of having grown up in Hong Kong. She has taken a lot of influence from the structures in a metropolis environment. Aside from the buildings in the city, the place she lives in happens to be a hub for art, culture and technology. “The city itself has many interesting and picturesque places for a postcard perfect photograph opportunity…vintage shops, graffiti walls, markets, old buildings and the list goes on and on.” It would be hard to ignore the impressive scenery and expansive collection of galleries available for inspiration. No wonder she couldn’t pin down one idea.
Wong shares with us that her biggest source of inspiration is not the decadence of urbanity, but her art teacher, who she had the pleasure of knowing and being mentored by for the past thirteen years. “She was the one who taught me everything I needed to know about art and drawing and I am so grateful for her.” With the correction foundation and training, she seeks artists on social media and the Internet to further aspire to be even greater. At this point, we asked her to play the role of teacher and tell us what she would say to the other artists who follow her work. “As cliché or generic as it may sound, my advice to other artists is to be yourself. Don’t conform to art/style trends, find something you enjoy drawing and making. Find something that inspires you. The artists you find will be like your teachers. Their artwork can form conversations with you and teach you different techniques or something you would
FEATURED have never thought of. Practice also makes perfect - if you are a beginner artist, know that it can take years and years for an artist to master just one specific medium or subject matter! It doesn’t happen overnight so don’t ever give up and keep going with a strong passion and mindset!” She beams, “I know [art] is something I’ll never give up on.”
“...gradually I realized I don’t necessarily have to stick to one form of drawing and theme.” 88
JEWELED ARMOR ----WRITTEN BY KAITLIN ASTRELLA----
WHEN RINGS ARE MORE THAN JUST ACCESSORIES
I AM A MAGPIE HUNTING FOR GLITTER in every city I visit. This is how I collect my jewelry—plucking silver from places to make a story. The story behind each little piece makes the carefully harvested prize beautiful beyond the shine. It has been silver rings, mostly. I wear four: a pearl perched between two diamonds, a double clauddagh, an ivory cameo, and latticed band. I found the claddagh first, when I was thirteen on a trip to Ireland with my family. The claddagh is symbolic in Ireland for love (the heart), friendship (the hands), and loyalty (the crown). If you point the heart towards yourself, your heart is taken. If you leave the heart open to the world, you are free. But I didn’t want the heart to be closed or open like the traditional style because, even at thirteen, I thought I should keep my heart a secret. And I always wanted to be free. My nontraditional setting has two claddaghs knotted together at the arms like a rounded infinity sign, circling the love, friendship, and loyalty back for me to not only seek, but also emulate.
piece of that mythical country with me when I had to go home. I had been to London and Bath in the books I read growing up—Persuasion, Harry Potter, Dracula, Treasure Island. And I was finally going. We went to the city of Bath on a day trip, but I didn’t want to leave; I had seen the Roman Baths and the honey-colored Georgians and the looming Abbey. We only had a limited amount of time before we had to be back on the tour bus, so while I was scouring the city for treasure with my mother, we stumbled upon a spiritual crystal store. Here, I found my third ring. I saw it in the window, in one of those turning displays that you only see in really old jewelry stores, the kinds with doilies and dusty diamonds. It is always meant to be if you see it in a window.
When the jeweler took it out of the case for me, she told me its story. She makes all of her pieces with found stones and crystals. The face in the ring she took from another larger ivory work and set it in silver. A garnet star hovers over the cameo like a halo for the goddess face. The garnet is my birthstone (more destiny), so I asked the jeweler what properties it had. One ring felt lonely on my hand, so I went rummaging She explained that the deep, rich red stone signified in my mother’s jewelry box, where I found her pearl ring stability and abundance in creativity; the garnet from high school. It’s the only ring that fits perfectly on encourages dreams coming true. It fit me perfectly, and I my pointer finger next to the double claddagh because of had to leave the city of Bath but I promised myself I would its thin band. I always thought it was like a sea treasure come back. For the interim, I had this goddess on hand. for that reason, like the pearl floats over my knuckle and there is just a silver mermaid hair holding it all together. And I did go back to Bath. After I left with a piece of the city, maybe it had a magic pull on me. I worked in a bookstore called Mr. B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, and wandered once again along the cobble stone streets in search of silver. Predictably, I found treasure at every turn. Books, of course, and a fourth ring: a simple On another family trip, this time to England, I made silver lattice work one that I could wear everyday— it my mission to find my third ring so I could take a at once ornate and symmetrical like the Georgian I knew I wanted a third ring because three is a fairy tale number, and my left hand looked sort of bare without any sparkle as my fingers fluttered over my keyboard. I waited until I took flight somewhere new.
style house I lived in. Now I have a handful of memories that I can see every time I look down or reach up. I think I like rings best because I see them most. I can watch my hands when I am writing or typing or reading and see a memory. When I am nervous, I adjust themâ€”my talismans, like small pretty armor, protect me from worries. The best part about talismans is that they can be passed down; they are little heirlooms that last and last, hoarded in every nest for their silver but mainly for their stories that meld into the metal over time.
Old Dolls Still Play Maria Grazia, is from Italy and is proud to not only be an artist but a mother. Ten years ago she began by creating a cute website, on which she talked about skincare and daily makeup routines. She invited women from different backgrounds to contact her with questions and problems as to give her an outlet within the field to work with. After her first son was born, she didn’t have enough free time to dedicate to the project anymore. Five years later, Grazia discovered the magic of YouTube and fell in love with artistic makeup and the transformations that came with it. In following the video tutorials of famous American gurus, she picked up various techniques. Although she is Italian, she admits it is the American style that inspired her work most. When she mastered the basics, she was able to develop a personal style and became quite successful. Currently she has uploaded over a hundred original videos on her channel. She believes the video where she transformed herself in a tropical fish was one the best representations of her signature. It was an extremely intricate process and for her, an awesome introduction into chroma key. An aspect that attributes to Grazia’s unique style is her method of playing with multiple materials. She creates precious little themes for each new look, taking inspiration first from nature, flowers, undersea worlds, and then to the extremity of halloween characters. Grazia often wear fantasy contact lenses to enhance the final look, which she admits she has quite the collection of via gracious sponsors, a treat for any artist. Recently, Grazia and her work has migrated from her YouTube channel to her Instagram page, @OldDollsStillPlay, where she concentrated her passions for eyelid and lip art. She has now the ability to put a whole world on one eyelid, with the help of one magnificent mirror. In order to learn Grazia’s ways, you need only to check out her tutorials, where she passes on her knowledge of anything from homemade paper stencils to DIY creative eyebrows and lashes. Grazia wishes all artists to enjoy their artistic endeavors because, frankly, art is meant to be fun.
STAY WARM (IN STYLE) THIS WINTER WRITTEN BY: SUMMER LIN JUST BECAUSE THE temperatures have dipped below freezing doesn’t mean you have to forsake your sartorial preferences once the snow starts to hit the ground. When GQ famously dubbed Boston one of the “Worst Dressed Cities in America,” back in 2013, they were envisioning Fenway bros in backwards Red Sox baseball caps and collegiate undergrads in leggings, not the Bostonians dressed to the nines trapezing across the South End or the Financial District in shearling vests and John Varvatos suits. This winter, ditch the Canada Goose jacket and be on the lookout for some major fashion inspiration coming your way.
This isn’t your grandmother’s mink coat. Whether it’s a shearling vest, a magenta faux fur number, or pieces of minx, lamb, or fox fur woven into Prada’s double-breasted coat, there’s a reason why this season’s hottest coats and accessories come feathered and furred. Fur coats are having a moment and it’s not difficult to see why—there’s something utterly decadent about throwing on something furry over a simple top and distressed jeans. Not to mention, nothing keeps you warmer than fur during the colder months.
Strap on your heels and brace yourself for this season’s most practical (and coziest) trend. The floor-length duster coat has been gracing (quite literally) the runways since the resort collections hit last spring. Design houses such as Chanel and Calvin Klein have been sporting longer hemlines and it’s no secret why: when it comes to outerwear in the winter, the longer the better.
SWEATER WEATHER Bundle up in a woolen bask in one of winter’s weather season has finally of winter’s hottest trends.
or cashmere sweater and greatest pleasures. Sweater arrived and with it, one We’ve seen interior and 95
OPINIONS tapestry-style motifs from Mary Katrantzou and Erdem last season, but winter is when we finally put those trends into use by adding a sweater fit for a Moroccan rug to our cold-wear wardrobes.
Ditch the A-line skirts and breezy summer dresses—cold weather style is all about layering. If looking put-together once the temperatures drop seems daunting, try layering on a scarf over a sweater and consider throwing on a pair of heels to give the outfit a streamlined, modern flair (given that there’s no snow on the ground of course.)
These boots may have been made for walking, but that doesn’t mean they look stylish doing it (We’re looking at you L.L. Bean Boots.) Every Bostonian should come equipped with a sturdy pair of water-resistant snow boots come December, but on the off-snow days, try on a pair of knee-high leather riding boots for size.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF PINTREST
RACISM WRITTEN BY MAHEK TULSIANI
PHOTO JOURDAN DUNN FROM MISS VOGUE, APRIL 2014 PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANGELO PENNETTA
WHAT’S A GIRL GOING TO THINK WHEN SHE ALL SHE SEES IS SKIN-WHITENING PRODUCTS ALL DAY?
I REMEMBER GOING to an Indian grocery store with my mother when I was five years old, complaining about being dragged along for her errands. She was just picking up some ingredients for dinner that night, but I was kind of an impatient kid. To pass the time, I browsed the aisles, obviously not looking for anything in particular, and stumbled across a whole range of skin whitening products. When you’re five years old, that kind of thing gets internalized pretty quickly. So did the fact that, in the Philippines, where I lived for all of my formative years, is rampant with advertisements for skin lightening products. In America, you don’t see much of that. But it’s really not that different, in the end. People love tanning, but pretty much only on white people. When I open fashion magazines, I hardly ever have the privilege of seeing skin as dark as mine, let alone an “ethnic” looking nose like mine, or bone structure like mine. I’m not going to sugarcoat the reasons why this is the case, because it’s just plain racism. And it’s well-documented, too. British Vogue has had exactly one black cover girl in the last twelve years, the beautiful Jourdan Dunn, who herself has spoken out about racism in the fashion industry, sharing experiences about shows refusing to book black models and makeup and hair “professionals” who refuse to work with dark skin and textured hair. It’s wonderful that there are role models like Jourdan Dunn for young women of color to look up to, but even today, in 2015, it is hard for women of color to open a magazine and be able to see ourselves there.
“BUT EVEN TODAY, IN 2015, IT IS HARD FOR WOMEN OF COLOR TO OPEN A MAGAZINE AND BE ABLE TO SEE OURSELVES THERE. “
Fashion does not only belong to white people. It belongs to everyone. That’s part of its beauty, that it is an art form that everyone can take to their everyday lives. So why do magazines and fashion shows tell such a different story? Representation matters to little girls who open magazines and spend their lives thinking they aren’t beautiful because they don’t look like the girls there. It matters to young women who would like to be in the fashion industry but can’t see a place for themselves there. It matters to adults who continue to have the fashion industry tell them every day that they are not as beautiful or desirable as their white counterparts. It’s taken a really long time and a lot of work for me to embrace my dark skin, my ethnic features, and my Indian heritage, and that’s really not fair. As women of color, we deserve better. We deserve to have the world recognize that we are beautiful, too. 97
HILE MANY ARTISTS ABIDE BY a sense of minimalism, Kyne Santos readily admits to having a flare for the dramatic. With his work, he looks to create anything larger than life. The idea of any art is to catch the viewer’s eye and to make them feel something. With his dramatic styling, he executes this quite well. Regarding his piece, “Beneath the Beauty,” he wanted it to feel like seeing an optical illusion. The audience would feel a mixture of shock and amazement. We asked him to speak a little about his influences, which was heavily affected by our culture of consumerism and materialism. “Makeup is a beautiful thing, but it is truly deceiving...not because it masks an ugly face filled with blemishes, but because it can mask an ugly heart filled with greed. And I know that sounds corny, but it’s true. We too often idolize people and shame others based on shallow reasons. I wanted to challenge people’s ideas of what it means to be beautiful.” Santos is confident in his desire in continuing his makeup art and challenging boundaries. He says that he has an interest in investing more time in costume design, including headpieces and appliqués. This will serve as a step in the direction of making head-to-toe costumes, certainly the wow factor he is aiming for. He is not as much concerned with who he will end up as, as much as he is with what he is doing now and the immediate work he wants to create.
“Everybody wants to be successful, and that’s okay, but I think hustling for success with tunnel vision will cause you to see your artistry as business, and your art will be reduced to a routine. Try to remain passionate and inspired and the rest comes naturally. There’s nothing wrong with doing things for money, but I think the world is in need of people who are not afraid to take risks and think outside the box.” This is actually a trait he admires of one of his favorite artists named Ryan Burke, who he regards as a visionary that has not allowed himself or his work to be corrupted by fame. Another artist he points to for inspiring creative direction in the photography of his work is Timothy Hung. His use of angle and lighting has made him more aware of how he can use these elements, ‘not just as a tool but as an artistic medium in itself.”’ Finally, Santos tells us he loves looking at drag queens as inspiration too, as “they represent that ‘larger than life’ quality I always strive for. Like RuPaul said, drag mocks identity. It is a reminder to stop taking life so seriously, and to make the most out of your life by being the wildest creation of your imagination, beyond social norms and standards.” The larger than life quality is exemplified in what Santos describes as a “beautifully awe inspiring and humbling” talk of the cosmos, a common theme in his work. He has ideas based on both the rings of Saturn and what life would look like on Jupiter, so don’t fret, there are definitely more bonafide Kyne Santos pieces to look forward to in the near future.
D . I .Y. DO IT YOURSELF
Bejeweled and Floral Face Masks Materials: 1. Either Non-Toxic Standard Dust Mask or N95 Respirator Mask 2. Craft silk flowers (fabric is thin, be careful while gluing) 3. Faux Jewels (flatback crystals) 4. Hot Glue Gun (low heat works fine)
BEJEWELED FACE MASK: Lay the mask on a surface and hot glue the gems in a design using a spiraling motion, starting from the center outwards. This will keep you from accidentally running out of space and having to overlap the next crystal. Note that the gems are stiff and do not bend wtih the shape of the mask so make sure you do not squish the mask flat while working on sticking the pieces to the surface. FLORAL FACE MASK: Repeat the first step with laying down the face mask before cutting off the stems of your craft flowers, keeping only the leaves, buds and petals. Avoid gluing the petals because the fabric is generally too thin to cover the glue stains from beneath. Arrange until satisfied.
Photography and Art by Cindy Chen Models: Rachel Lloyd, Saima Lulu, Alexandra Wright, Genoviva Coker
FOLLOW OUR AU MAG ARTISTS ON SOCIAL MEDIA ELIZABETH PETROU................@ELIZABETHPETROU SHELBIE BARRON..................@SHELBIES_WORLD ELLIE COSTELLO......................@MAKEUPISART_X ERIKA MARIE NI BHRIRAIN....@ERIKAMARIEMUA KRYSTAL HUANG.....................WEB: KRYSTALHH.CARBONMADE.COM PARI ALEXANDER....................@PARIHELL RYAN FAHERTY........................WEB: RYANFAHERTYART.COM RYAN KELLY.............................@RYANKELLYMUA KELSEY WEBER.......................@MAKEUPBYKELFEY SHAUNA SHANKS..................@SHAUNAMAKEUP SUSANN GRASSOW..............@SUSANNGRASSOW NICOLE BARNETT....................@VIOLET.REBEL MADELEINE HARIRIAN..........@MADELEINEHARIRIAN ZOE BUTTERWORTH...............@ZOELLEN_ART ACHRAF BAZNANI..................WEB: WWW.BAZNANI.COM VIVAN WONG.........................@VIVIANHITSUGAYA MARIA GRAZIA........................@OLDDOLLSSTILLPLAY KYNE SANTOS........................@ONLINE.KYNE TIMOTHY PAKRON.................WEB: WWW.TIMOTHYPAKRON.COM FOLLOW ARTISTS UNKNOWN MAGAZINE ON INSTAGRAM:
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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Cindy Chen MANAGING EDITOR Dan McCarthy SPECIAL THANKS TO: Alvin Ng James Clark Becky Martins Iliana Tzikas Summer Lin Mahek Tulsiani Amy Chen
December 2015 | Submit to us: www.artistsunknownmag.com/submit