Monday, December 3, 2012

Christmas Golf Course Brunch 2012

Sunday morning and afternoon I had the opportunity to paint at a Christmas brunch event that I've been doing for several years now with Santa.  My mom has joined me for the last few years too, as they definitely require at LEAST two painters!  We both paint with a steady line from 10:00-2:00. It was a lot of fun and I enjoyed the chance to paint some more of my new designs.  I used some red Liquid Bling for gingerbread man eyes, and that ended up being a very popular design! 

Here are some photos...

A few more Christmas cheek art designs that I didn't already show in my last post

Mom painting

Santa Carlucci and Mrs Cheryl Claus

Our area, before the kids started to pile in! The velvet ropes were a life saver this year!

Santa Carlucci talking to the ladies
Many thanks again to Santa Carlucci for bringing us along again this year!  I have a little break in the action now, but next weekend will be busy painting more Christmasy cheeks so stay tuned!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

"Mendota Lights" 2012

Tonight I had a fun time painting at the Village at Mendota Heights' "Mendota Lights" Christmas event!  It was very busy and we were both painting non-stop from 4:00-7:00!  This year we had the most mild weather we've had for the event, so I think a lot of people came out.  It was perfect for the horse drawn hayrides!

Hayrides going by the building we were in

This year I totally re-did my Christmas design boards, so I had quite a few new ones to do which was really fun.  Some of them I simplified so that I could handle the crowds better, like Rudolph and the angel which I turned into just wings and a halo.  Here is a little montage of a few of the designs painted tonight:

Simplifying a few designs allowed me a little time to step it up a bit by adding a few acrylic rhinestones and using some Liquid Bling.  I used the star rhinestones on the tops of the Christmas trees, attached with Spirit Gum, and they were a HIT!  The Liquid Bling was really cool for the Grinch's red eyes.

Christmas tree with a rhinestone star

The Grinch and a fun Snowman eye! I used a white StarBlend for the snowman eye which worked great.

Liz working her magic!

Had to get a shot of this little cutie with his stuffed Rudolf and his Rudolf cheek!

We really love it when the roaming carolers come in our building for a few songs!

Liz with Santa and Mrs Claus!

The Wicked Witch of the Western Suburbs!

Friday night I had a blast painting a sweet 14 (and a half) year old girl to look like the Wicked Witch for her school's Wizard of Oz play.

Her fabulous mom picked up the great nose and chin at a local theater shop and had them attached with spirit gum and ready to go when I arrived.  Which is a good thing, because it ended up taking twice as long to paint as I thought!  The reason was mainly due to the Kryolan UV Dayglow paint I was using for the green base.  Don't get me wrong of course, I'd highly recommend using the fluorescent green for the wicked witch!  It was such a nice, bright green.  But, being that it goes on very thin and transparent (unlike the standard Kryolan Aquacolor basic colors), it takes a few thick layers with dry time between each one to get good coverage.

I wish I had a clean "before" shot but above you can see it in progress at the beginning.  I started by painting the nose and chin, knowing that the paint would take longer to dry and layer on plastic vs skin.
To get the dark wrinkles and creases in the correct places, I had her do her most wicked witchy face and then painted in her natural creases.  The black is Wolfe black, the blackest black out there, which worked great for the eyebrows!  I used a mix of the UV Dayglow green with some of my other darker greens for shading and dimension.

Once I was done with the wet makeup, I dusted it with some Kryolan transparent setting powder, then blended all the greens with a dry green StarBlend.  This really helped to smooth and blend the various greens together.  It also gave the whole face a nice, soft finish.  I used some of Mehron's INtense Pro Pressed Pigment Powders for the green that went up to and around her eyes, and some bright lime green for highlights.

To finish her off I did a little black eyeliner and some bright red lipstick, which was requested by the school play's organizers. Here are a couple photos that her mom took at the school after she was all in costume! (I did some editing to black out the background...)

All in all I think she turned out pretty cool! I wish I could have gone with to watch the play!

Tonight I'm off to the 7th Annual "Mendota Lights" Christmas celebration at the Village at Mendota Heights with the friendly and talented miss Liz!  Come on out to get your free face painting from 4:00-7:00 tonight, and enjoy a visit with Santa, as well as free hayrides and's going to be a gorgeous night to enjoy the festivities!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Get out the VOTE!

Just had to try an election related face painting this week, and here it is!

I used Wolfe Metallix red, white and blue with a BAM star stencil for the background.  The reds and blues are Kryolan makeup and the black and white outlines and highlights are Wolfe.

Check out my how-to tutorial over at SnapGuide!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

New BAM Stencil "Winter" Package Deal!

I'm excited to announce another new BAM stencil package deal available only at Paintertainment!  We have a great assortment of 5 winter themed stencils for just $18.00.  That's $2.00 less than you'd pay if you purchase them individually! Snap 'em up now while you still have some time to practice for your upcoming Christmas gigs!

Winter christmas bam stencil deal set

This set comes with BAM #'s 2005, 1040, 1011, 1038, and 1036. They can help you achieve great wintery textures of snowfall and cool winds!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Smile Painter Set Now Includes Wolfe Brushes

I wanted to announce a little update to my Smile Painter Set face painting kit, which I put together about 6 years ago to help out those who have been asked to volunteer face painting for their local church or school. 

smile painter set professional face painting kit instructions supplies
Smile Painter Set - Available now for $64 (you save over $8.00)
I have just decided to swap out the previously included sable brushes with two Wolfe synthetic brushes, in a round #1 and #5. While it is true that sable bristles are the highest quality and most long lasting bristles you can get in a brush, I have come to the realization that they are not necessarily the best choice for the beginning face painter.  Sable brushes are finicky and do require a little more TLC to keep their tips nice and pointy, and without the proper care can soon become "fluffy," making it hard to be precise when painting cheek art.  I personally own several sable brushes which have "fluffed out" on me, and I now use them for things like blending colors and creating textures like fur, where a fluffy brush comes in handy!

I personally have found myself using my new Wolfe synthetic brushes more and more as my go-to brush for all my main painting now.  The synthetic bristles are still of a great quality, and they really hold their shape nicely even if they have been used and abused.  High quality synthetic brushes are more likely to give you a steady and predictable outcome every time, and I think that by swapping these out, new painters will have less frustration with stray bristles!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Now Booking Halloween Sessions!

Halloween is just two and a half weeks away!  What?!  You've been invited to a party and you don't have a costume yet?!

It's okay! Don't cry!  A professionally done makeup job can turn your last minute costume idea into the hit of the party!  You may remember one of my posts last year, where I painted Father Frost and Mother Frost...they ended up taking home the GRAND prize in the costume contest they were entering!

I am currently booking a limited number of private Halloween sessions this season at my home in Mound, Minnesota.  Sessions start at $20 for up to 15 minutes of painting.  The amount of time required depends on the design you choose, but we can go as simple as a cat face or eye design, to more complex designs like a mask, to full-face designs like this comic girl that I painted on myself.  Check out this previous post for ideas of what costumes face paint would be perfect for!

Contact me today to discuss how we can help turn heads with YOUR costume this year!  Email me at Gretchen[at]Paintertainment[dot]com.  Be sure to check out my Halloween page and my private session page for more photos!

Friday, October 12, 2012

New INtense Pro Pressed Powder Pigments Now Shipping!

If you like the smooth, velvety coverage you get from Mehron's StarBlends, You're going to love their new INtense Pro Pressed Pigment Powders!  Many artists love to use dry pressed powders for the base coverage for full face designs, and especially for designs that go around the eyes and over the eyelids...especially for children who don't like the feeling of cold, wet paint around their eye.

From Mehron's website: "Mehron’s INtense PRO™ Pressed Pigments are super long-lasting matte finish shadows that are edgy, bright, and sophisticated. The pigment rich, high-performing shadows offer an essential range of intense hues and a velvety matte texture. Formulated without shimmer, these completely matte shades have an incredible silky finish which allows for amazing color payoff."

Samples of WIND Palette colors shown on skin
The INtense Pressed Powders are available now on in three different sets, each including 8 colors ($50.00 each).  Above are some samples of the "Wind" palette brushed on my arm, and below, the "Fire" palette.

"Fire" palette samples on skin

Earth, Wind, and Fire palette colors
Each palette comes with a makeup brush! I find that the sable brushes that we sell are also great for applying powders. Sponges also work well for covering large areas.

Closed palette box shown in my hand for scale.  (On the right is a black Starblend.)

New INtense Powders & StarBlend

Monday, August 27, 2012

New Brushes and Fixing Spray Now Available!

I've recently added a few more new items to my online shop!

We are now carrying two new synthetic flat brushes, Kryolan Torey brushes made of synthetic Japanese fibers, in 1/4" wide ($4.00) and 1/2" wide ($6.50).  Synthetic bristles hold their shape well, making them great for crisp lines! 

After painting a few pregnant bellies lately, I realized that the moms I've painted would have liked to keep their designs on as long as possible.  So, I've also added some Kryolan fixing spray to my assortment!  Apply it thinly and evenly and allow to dry, to help prevent smudging and protect your work from perspiration and cold water.  Removes easily with warm water and soap.  I'm not quite sure where to put it in the shop, but for now it sits at the end of the paint section!  Check it out, available in 2 ounce spray pump bottles for $10.00.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Dakota County fair 2012 Recap

I recently completed my 15th year at the Dakota County Fair with the help of my fabulous mom!  My mom painted Monday through Thursday and I painted Friday through Sunday.  12 hours of painting and 2.5 hours of driving every day does have a way of wearing you out!  But, we made it and I'm happy to have done another fair.  It's so fun to have kids come back year after year, and to see college kids whom we've previously painted as toddlers!

This year the fair allowed a vendor to offer face painting as their free giveaway to help draw in people to their booth, which was a bummer.  Let me just say though, folks, the phrase "you get what you pay for" definitely applies to face painting!!  ;-)  But, we still did well and I hope that this sort of thing is not tolerated next year from more vendors, so that we are able to come return for a 16th year!

Here are a few photos from this year's fair...

Painting my favorite customers, my boys!
Mom and Dad!! It was weird not ever seeing each other at the fair this year!  In the past we've split a few week days, where Mom took part of the day and I took the other part.  This year we each took full days, so we never crossed paths.  Mom did a great job holding down the fort...and I mean literally!  The new banner system caused some headaches for her on one really windy day...the only downfall of being right inside the big doors! (Thanks Mom, and thanks Dad for the extra clamps!)

I always LOVE it when my husband brings my boys to visit me at the fair!  He did an awesome job taking care of them while I painted Friday through Sunday.  He took them to an indoor trampoline park, did a movie night, and went camping in the back yard just to name a few of the fun things they did!

Here are some of the paintings done during this year's fair...

Batman mask

Love these requests that aren't on my board: cow!

My first eagle eye

White & Gold Mask. This is the niece of the lady in the booth next to me...I traded this face painting for one of the pretty bracelet / cuffs she makes!

I always love the chance to sit and paint something detailed on my own arm during slow times at the fair.  Since I wasn't there during many week days this year, I had less down time to paint myself.  But, I did manage to get something on my arm each day...
Lacy heart done on my arm

Dragon done on my arm

Rose done on my arm - been working on some tribal stuff lately!

It was definitely the most gorgeous weather of all my 15 years at the fair.  In the past we've always had at least one really rainy day with major storms that caused huge mud pits around the fair!  But this year it was just beautiful every day.  The last day, Sunday, it was overcast all day and then we had some small sprinkles on and off, so it wasn't too busy.  But, luckily we got the booth torn down without getting drenched!
The last day: Sammy helping Daddy haul out the last piece of my booth: the carpet!
Huge thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth this year!  We really love to see you all every year and are honored to be a part of your annual Dakota County Fair tradition!!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

2012 Dakota County Fair Booth Re-Design!

The 2012 Dakota County Fair booth is UP! 

A funny thing happened this year.  The day after I had all my design boards complete and ready to go, I was struck with a totally new idea for displaying designs, and decided to completely re-design it all 10 days before the fair.  Nuts, huh?  It involved many many hours of work and a lot of rush shipping charges, but luckily it all came together just in the nick of time.  And I really mean the nick of last banner arrived in the mail yesterday and I had to set up today!

The booth empty! (almost...just the carpet square)

The booth done!
This afternoon I had a company picnic gig about half way between home and the fair, so I decided to go straight from there and try setting the entire booth up myself this year, sparing my hubby and kiddo's from the whole ordeal.  I did it in 1 hour and 40 minutes, but I expect it to go much quicker in the future.  This was the first time doing the new display setup so it took me some time to figure some things out for the first time.  I'm betting with this new layout, we'll have it packed up in a half hour or less come tear-down day.

I'm on an outside corner spot.
 This is my 15th year at the fair in this same spot!  I love my spot...being in a commercial building I don't have to worry about weather or security.  I'm right inside the huge main door, so you can see this banner (above) from a good distance outside.  Being on the end I get visibility from two sides, and plenty of sunshine and breeze.

The new banner display system
 In the past I've had boards that sit on the table.  I had them anchored down really well, and never had any problems.  But, it always made me nervous when a strong wind would come into the building, that it might knock the whole works over.  Thankfully it never did, but this year I don't have that worry at all.  I took advantage of a banner sale at Vistaprint and designed a bunch of banners that hang from the booth structure.  I then found some adhesive backed clear sleeves that I stuck on the banners, and now I am able to slide the designs into the sleeves.  I love how they turned clean and simple, yet still eye catching, and easy for me to change on a whim!

I've only ever done cheek art at the fair, until last year when I experimented with a little tabletop booklet of full face designs and masks.  This year they have graduated to the $10-$15 banner.

Photo collage banner & Mirror Stand
I printed a large photo collage banner and hung it in the side, which eliminated my old system of another table with a large tabletop sign.  Hooray for less stuff to haul and set up!  I made this mirror stand years ago out of plywood.  It has a hinge in the back so I can fold it up for easy transport.  The arms attach with bolts and wing nuts, and they hold the giant mirror that I bought at Ikea.

All in all I think the new design came together nicely!  Time will tell how the banners hold up...but I'm constantly working on ways to improve my booth.  After 15 years, I think it's becoming quite the well oiled machine!  (Of course, being a retail display designer helps a lot with booth design!)

I hope you've enjoyed this little sneak peek at my 2012 booth design!  Feel free to stop on by the fair and visit usMy mom, Rollie Brandt, will be painting Monday through Thursday, and I will be there Friday through Sunday.  Want to follow what's going on at the fair this year? "Like" us on Facebook to get all the latest updates!