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2011 FABAIC Contest for West Coast Face and Body Painters

Sponsor by: Lilly Walters of Fun Face Painting
AND: FABAIC, Silly Farm, Yolanda Bartram, Bodyfx New Zealand, Americkan Body Art,
Wolfe Face Art & FX, Annie Reynolds, ILLUSION Magazine, and the
Doubletree at the Entrance to Universal Orlando.

What made me go into face painting:

I have been a hairdresser for 20 years. Entered and won an international contest for nail art. A couple of nail customers suggested that I do face painting. I decided to try it and bought some paint and went to a fair and set up a face painting booth. The rest is history. I have been doing facepainting since 2003. I've been most serious about starting a business this year. This is my first contest to enter. I study nearly every day on the internet, I watch all tutorials on face painting and believe I have been to nearly every website on the internet to study and learn. I went to my first face painting class. I plan to attend more. I really enjoyed the class.

Ramona Wood

Wow, ….. I have never entered a Face or Body painting contest. AND I have never gone to a convention in this industry.

The big question is “Why Now?”….I guess I could use the excuse of finances and have that hold me over for another year…. Or that leaving my family for something so “extravagant” isn’t fair-.. but I’m going to be honest with myself. I was afraid.

Perhaps the fear stemmed from being comfortable in my “little world”… fear of the reactions of others about my art- which was poorly received; yet high on the expectation meter, growing up…. Or just not being ready for the BIG STEP!

Why now? Plain and simple- I am ready… to step – to jump – or to fly to my next place in this life and my industry. I am ready to break open the scare tissue that binds my art (me), emotionally, and accept all that comes from it. With the contest winnings, it allows me to release some restrictions I have placed on myself about going to the convention and yet still makes me have to plan and save for it.

I am READY, to win something tangible and big. I have many wins in my life in- my family, my courage to make the choices I have …. Though a tangible win- NOT FOR YEARS (maybe 35) !!! I would love for my family see that I accept a big win for myself and in the field that I work hard in and send all my time on!!! That would be awesome! What a pay off for us ALL! My skills and I will grow! This win would be a welcomed sundae in my life of dieting. I am grateful that I am now ready!

Karina Konupek

I believe that I should go to FABAIC because it would be the experience of a lifetime. I've always wanted to learn from the best face painters around and that's exactly what would happen if I was able to attend FABAIC. This would be a dream trip for me.

I started face painting in July of 2008, but only really professionally since the beginning of 2009. I never really thought of myself as a facepainter, and also never thought I would do it as a career. How I got into face painting is an interesting story. My husband and I were watching a face painter at a local festival and he leaned over to me and said, "I bet you could do that." I laughed and said, "Not without stencils." The next thing I know, a week later, my husband brought home a Klutz facepainting book and I started practicing. I can't draw to save my life so I thought I'd never be able to face paint. I sat down and started learning some of the designs in the book and discovered that I can do them, and that it was fun. Then, after several months of practice I decided I wanted to give it a try professionally. Then, I took my first face painting class and I was hooked. I work as a stagehand, as of now, and am working to try and face paint more full time.

I have fun every time I paint a child's face. The best thing for me is seeing the smiles and excited reactions on a child's face after they see what I've created on them. I would love going to this convention because I know that after the classes there my skills will improve even more, and because I've never been to Florida before. Going to FABAIC is something that I strive to do and winning this contest could make that happen.

Tammy Sumner

I truly have my whole hearts desire and dreams tied up in what I do for a living. Before I started face painting I never found anything you could say I was passionate about. Then I painted my first face, it wasn't very good. The thrill and desire to become better and learn more has stayed with me. I feel that I have come to a point that I can no longer expand my talent, or teach my self more with out some professional help! I know that sounds funny but its true.

Finding time to perfect my craft is challenging. I don't want to be just an OK face and body painter I want to be excellent! I have books, videos, and watch tutorials often. I practice everyday. It's difficult to explain the way I feel after handing someone the mirror. It makes my heart skip a beat every time, it never gets old. I see what others artists do and how easily they do it.

The creativity and originality that is everywhere amazes me. It's something I have to work really hard at. It is definitely not a given talent for me. I believe even without the natural talent, with a lot of extra hard work I too can become great!

This is why going to FABAIC will be a dream come true. I have wanted to attend so badly and learn from the famous artists that attend each year. Living all over the US I've had many opportunities to be around celebrities and never once felt star struck, but the thought of being in the same place and meeting face to face the artists whose talents inspire, intrigue and move me, whose work I love to follow is indescribable.

Athena Stovall

Attending the 2011 FABAIC is very important to me because blood is thicker than water and so is paint.

My veins run thick with paint instead of blood. Painting is my life, my love and my happy place. It does not seem to matter whether I am painting people or canvas or even on the computer, the joy of painting completes me.

Face and body painting is something I stumbled into at a charity event in my adolescence. My family participated in hosting a carnival for under privileged youth and no one wanted to take on the face painting both so I volunteered for the position or rather was volunteered (a mothers love in never daunted) knowing nothing about face painting and having only the rudimentary skills of an artist I painted my first face and discover a love for it.

Now and artist by trade and degree, I have painted face and body on an off for many years since that time but it was only a few years ago that I decided to get serious about it and developed a business name and turn my attention to vigorously studying all I could learn on the subject, from native practices to modern techniques my study is ever expanding. I am more fascinated now than ever, my curiosity runs a muck as I hungrily gobble in knowledge.

Having never gone to the FABAIC the chance to attend would be a dream come true, to be surrounded by ‘great’ face and body artist to soak in knowledge and swim in the paint of artistry makes my toes curl with happiness. So give me 12CC’s of inspiration and let me jump into the paint. Select me as the FABAIC 2011 face painting contest winner.

Nada Meeks

There is a preconceived notion that less is more. In many areas of our lives, that’s probably pretty on target. But there comes a time when more is better! Having the opportunity to mix and mingle with a mass of artistic, talented and like minded individuals would benefit me in so many levels. How so? Well, some of which I speak is that we interact within this industry in such a way that we tend to influence each other through style & techniques picked up through videos, workshops, classes and other media sources. We excitedly post photos of designs we tried out, some we came up with on our own, or some design we saw but tweaked to make it a bit more “mine”.

I believe that we learn so much from each other. We are all teachers and students at the same time. I learn something everyday and directly or indirectly teach someone else the same technique or style to whom ever is paying attention to what I’m doing. In doing this we all impact our community of artists and the industry as a whole. Increasing our level of artistry can only improve our chances in making money, because let’s face it, we are all in this “business” to earn a living to some degree or another. We want those that view us as “real” artists!! Then we can justify the fees we request...

This perpetuates a higher standard within our industry. I really would love the opportunity to continue on this amazing legacy. To be able to learn from some of our industry greats is mind blowing to me. I’ve met a few through the last few years at different events and workshops, I have been inspired by each and everyone of them, but to be in the midst of so many under one roof would be a dream come true. Add to that the hundreds of our peers, people I admire and respect, to have the chance to meet them is beyond my reality...

Thank you for the opportunity to even dream about it!

Anabel Rodas

When everyone else was outside playing jump rope, I sat in the shade under a tree with my sketchpad. Art has been my passion since I was very young. My dream was to be an art teacher. Growing up was hard, my parents struggled. Due to family financing I couldn

’t attend college to pursue my dream.

I married my childhood sweetheart shortly after graduating high school. I have four beautiful daughters, and a grand daughter that has stolen my heart. I worked 30 years in a factory and retired in 2007. Art never really left my side. For 25 years I hand painted woodcrafts and sold them at craft shows. Life was supposed to be grand at that point, but something was still missing, a void to be filled.

In June 2008, my life changed! I found the art of face painting. I researched safe products and made my first purchase. I began painting everyone in my house, including myself! The transformation of using a human canvas came very easy for me. When I paint clients, they look into the mirror and magic begins, not only for them, but also for me. Nothing gives me greater joy than to watch there faces gleam with excitement. It fills my heart with happiness. I know now that God had a plan for me, and a path to take. The void is gone, I am living my dream.

My goal is to make it to FABAIC Convention someday. I’ve researched the convention, viewed pictures, and watched videos. The talent that comes from all over the world is amazing. To walk through the doors of FABAIC would be breath taking for me I know. To attend classes, study with my mentors, watch artists paint on human canvas right before my eyes, to have conversations with the professionals that I have only chatted with threw Internet, would be the ultimate dream.

Life’s a gift, and I’m so thankful for taking the path that I have. All I want to do is make smiles, and paint the world in color, one face at a time!

Gina Newsum

When I was a little girl, I loved to color. I wasn’t always so good at it, but in time my colorings improved. They improved so much I wanted to color pictures for everyone I loved, and even those I hardly new. I loved sharing my fantastic color crayon- coloring book skills.

Since childhood I have learned about another art form- Face painting. It started when my kids were little and they liked to draw on everything especially their bodies. We experimented with different medias like gel pens. I was lucky enough to find some special body paint markers designed to be safe for their skin. This seemed to satisfy their craving for art on their cute bodies. They appreciated the work that I did for them more than their own work. “Mommy draw a bunny, dog, flower, race car, kitty...” The list was endless and fortunately they were easily amused by my resemblance to whatever they requested. My enthusiasm seemed to shape the art more than my pen.

Many years passed and a friend of mine was a real face painter. She had brushes, professional paints, and displays full of her work from many years of experience. She gave me my first basic lesson, like loading my brush, making lines and teardrops. The rest was up to me to invest practice time and lots of research.

I realize that becoming an artist is a process. It includes inspiration and creative ideas as well as having the right tools and getting lots of practice. One of the ways to get inspiration is to participate in a community of enthusiastic face and body artists. FABAIC is the place for me to grow my passion, learn about the right tools and advance to the level where I want to make paintings for everyone the ones I love and those I don’t know.

Lori Light

The reason going to FABAIC is important to me is because I would like the opportunity to grow in my skills as a face and body artist. Art is my passion and has been in my life as long as I can remember.

I have only received my skills in face and body art through what I have learned on YouTube and speaking with other face painters online. The products I use to paint with are bought through silly farm and are a professional grade.

I have been told by many other artists who have attended the FABAIC that this would be an experience of a lifetime for me as a face painter. I would really like the opportunity to make the most of my experience at the FABAIC and finally meet all those painters that have inspired, encouraged, and educated me this far.

I also believe I will learn new techniques and skills that will help me speed up my abilities and learn how to run my business professionally through experienced face and body artists that have valuable information that I can take with me my entire life. I admire everyone that is in the industry from the beginning amateur to the best of body artists and I believe everyone adds something new with each stroke of a brush.

I want to be a part of the FABAIC more than anything. I would love to know what it's like rather than just see the pictures; I want to say...I was there. This event runs annually but from what I can tell it is never the same. Even if I never get but one chance to go that one time would mean the world to me

Charity Moore

I have not been to FABAIC Orlando before. I started face painting about a year and a half ago as a means to generate creative income. Three years ago this month, I realized that my big city career was a beautiful detour from my core ambition. I put myself back in school at a respected community college art program and got my feet wet again. At the time, I wasn’t sure what would come of it. I wasn’t even sure if I had any talent left in my pinkie. I had buried it for so long.

To my surprise, my creativity resurfaced in an explosion of color (quite literally because of my subject matter). In an attempt to create a new life based on my talent, I exhibited my fine art and photography, made and sold

crafts and started face painting.

In the past year, I’ve become involved in WCFP. I’ve been to a local jam

session and Marcela’s workshop in San Diego. Working with other face & body painters, sharing new work on the internet, troubleshooting issues as they arise and the camaraderie that ensues is like opening a box of butterflies. Our community seems unmatched in the entertainment world, at least that is my impression.

I would love to experience FABAIC Orlando for the discovery of new materials, techniques, inspiration, and access to the expansive international network of face and body artists. I hope that by doing so I’m able to share my developing work while forging friendships from like ambitions.

As a single person, struggling financially though this transition in my life, it would be a significant boost to be able to attend and participate in this conference. 2011 seems to be the year for hope and change. My hope for 2011 is to expand my creative breadth and business so that I may achieve greater stability in all aspects of my life.

Andi Schoenbaum

I am thirty-one years old. I am a graphic designer, an artist and a face/body painter. Face/body painting was a new interest of mine, although now I feel like I have been doing it my whole life.

I started with face paint in 2008 and received positive feedback so I decided to pursue face painting as a career. I have donated over two hundred hours of my own time in 2010 to face paint for local events such as, plays for ballet companies, parties for the Boys and Girls Club and local school fundraisers. I absolutely LOVE it.

I am fast and efficient. I think outside of the box. My dream is to move further with face/body painting and apply stage make up for Broadway some day. I painted the most beautiful gold necklace on a singer at one of the plays I volunteered for. She forgot her necklace and was completely freaked out. Within 2 minutes I had a gold shining necklace painted around her neck that looked just the same as the one she forgot. Face/body painting has endless opportunities and I have a wide range of capabilities when it comes to where this talent is going to take me.

I am a mother to a beautiful five year old girl and I have been married for seven years to a wonderful supportive man. I would really like to do something for my career that will take me to a different level in my life as an artist. I have a lot to offer. My ideas are endless. Going to FABAIC is important to me on many different levels but most of all it is important to me so that I can progress as a face/body painter and an artist.

Mindy Sisemore

It’s 3:15 in the morning and I am lying in the dark going through designs over and over again in my head for my very first face painting job the next day. What an incredible feeling of excitement and exhaustion at the same time. I don’t believe I have ever wanted to master a craft as much as I do face painting and I know I have never done anything as personally rewarding.

I have always loved the arts and I have been face painting avidly for 18 months now. I currently consider myself a “mock artist” that has set my goal to achieve the skills that will give me the confidence I need to bring out the true artist in myself. I am exposed to artists through magazines and the internet that I so envy and dream of the day when I can share their talents.

I have gotten a glimpse these past months of the various people in this industry through my local guild, Facebook and blogs. It is so heartwarming how everyone openly shares their work and wisdom with such genuine kindness and consideration to all aspiring artists. In my current profession where the nature of the beast is to eat or be eaten it is a comfort to know there is a world out there that shares its knowledge, offers guidance and shows compassion for everyone’s well being. It is truly a privilege to be a part of their world.

Never having the opportunity to attend any convention it would be a thrill to attend the one most talked about. What a dream it would be to witness such talent in action and be able to share their experiences that enabled them to make such achievements. Thank you for your consideration and here’s hoping that I see you at FABAIC 2011.

Anna Todd

My first taste was on a sunny afternoon when my neighbor who worked for an entertainment company came running over begging me to fill-in for a no show face painter. I thought “really?” I work in HR and do crafts on the side. Her pleas were sobering, she offered me $200 for 3 hours of work and it was just this one time. I was handed a tackle box with an assortment of hobby store paint, cheap plastic bristled paintbrushes, and a sheet with cheesy designs. I thought “well this will be easy”. I added a few of my own designs just to ease my pain – “hey this is kinda fun” and the kids were so cute and excited just to get a small design on their cheek.

Needless to say by the third weekend of painting I was hooked. I loved seeing the kid’s faces light-up. But, I needed better designs - UTUBE was like a magic screen for me. I soaked up what I could and purchased the appropriate paint and brushes. However, I still cannot produce the smooth textures, cool swirls or hot designs. I sought someone who could help me hone my craft to no avail. I Found the FABAIC website three years ago and have longed to attend ever since - I repeatedly open the email and think how can I do this? Lacking the funds - I reserved myself to UTUBE and a few books that I bought on line.

Being able to attend FABAIC would afford me the privilege to learn how to apply the products properly, use new techniques and meet some awesome people who have honed the craft of face painting while creating new and exciting products. If you choose me I will be the one dancing in the foyer.

Crystal Knight

Why I should go to Orlando??? Better question, Why not me??????????

I come from a very small town in the middle of nowhere USA. I want to develop my skills and meet people and be in my own element. I DREAM of attending a place where everyone is your friend even though you have never seen them before in your life. No one around here understands my love for the crazy arts.

This convention would open so many doors for me and my spirit!!!

I finally found a world for me!

Ashamed of admitting this, but I had facepainted for my church when they asked, with acrylics. No I didn’t know any better and that is what they purchased and had been using for years. I have since change that!!! I then decided to do something wild and crazy and use Google. I googled face painting and vwala! It opened up a whole new world for me! I have a lot to learn, A LOT! But with just the skills I had before I have done ok. I love kids, so much I had 4!!! Woohooo! And the look on the childrens faces when I have finished painting them is EVERYTHING to me. Children don’t know how to lie and are so innocent and when you can make a child smile and amaze a parent, you have done good!!!

I am a single mom. I put my kids first ALWAYS, but when I became aware of this contest, I had to enter. I can do this!! I know I have a lot to learn and there is finally a place for me. I cannot afford the whole cost of this convention. My family is offering to help me if I can win this. This experience alone would be the greatest thing to happen to me. My children and family would be so proud of me. At 38 I am still learning and I love it!!!! I hope you find it in your heart to send me to Orlando!!!!!!

No matter, Thank you for your time in reading this.

Gina Young

“Oh, my gosh, are you ok?” a mother at the school picnic asked my son after seeing the results my first face painting– done completely with Mega-Mart face paint and little plastic brush. His goopy, smeary, full face orange leopard was so awful I swore I would never paint again.

However being a persistent, jump in with both feet kinda gal I didn’t leave it alone for long and soon had my first mail-order Snaz kit from Kim Hatch. In the last three years I’ve done everything I could to further my art…from practicing Marcela’s ‘100 perfect teardrops,’ volunteering at a children’s home, and watching hundreds of hours of you tube ‘how-to’s’. However the grand gathering of face painters, the big mama of them all, FABAIC, had remained a distant dream -- being held so far from California.

But 2010 has been a year of *big* changes. Including a 6-month lay-off (which we’re still recovering from) and a subsequent relocation to the East Coast. The one ray of light is that I’m now within striking distance of the painter’s Holy Grail -- the 10th anniversary FABAIC convention!

For me FABAIC will be a chance to connect with my ‘tribe,’ my face paint family (for so long I felt like I was painting in a black hole, devoid of other like-minded nut-balls) to soak up --like a face paint sponge!-- everything from the new and different to the tried and true. Putting one foot in front of another can be draining when you’re starting over, but at FABAIC I can submerge myself in 5 days of total art and painterly bliss. But probably the most important thing will be to pow-wow with the marketing pros to help me establish my business as we struggle to get back on our feet in this new community.

For FABAIC I’ve challenged myself to get out of my comfort zone and into the competition ring, to think on my feet and work outside the box – push my limits, live life large and give it 110% percent.

Karen Mercer

Wanting to go to FABAIC is a given, but why? I began painting faces out of need. The face painter at the Christmas tree farm where I had my craft booth was “let go”, and they asked me if I would fill in. My brain said “I can’t paint”, but my lips said yes.

I looked for face paints and found only what I know now to be inferior face paints but began to try a few designs on paper and on my skin. With the best ones, I painted faces the next weekend. Even though my tools and talent were poor, no one can prepare you the feeling you get or for the smiles on the children, when you put the mirror up to show a child what you have painted. That was it; I was hooked, and I went to where I know a wealth of knowledge is kept: “YOU TUBE”. I believe I have seen every video, not just tutorials, but anything I can find. I have also bought some videos. I would love to jam; sadly I am in an area where there are very few nearby connections to other painters.

Going to FABAIC would mean meeting others who enjoy the same passion and just as important learning more than “You Tube” can teach me. I want to take classes, watch how others are using brushes, blending color combinations and get design ideas. I’m excited to see products in person not just on the web. Oh! And meet legends in face painting. This contest would afford me the opportunity to go to FABAIC, where there would not otherwise be an opportunity because of cost. Face painting is not yet a full income for our family. But learning all that FABAIC can teach me should be a boost to me and my business.

Thank you for allowing me to share and enter.

Kimberly Nickles

I am obsessed. I have found my passion in painting and that has changed my life.

I have had an amazing year. I painted my first full body in March, had my first photo shoot for national magazine in April, painted for the Today show for Halloween in October and was filmed for a body painting documentary in November. I have gone from painting faces to pay the bills to painting to transform and heal women who have been through difficult times in their lives facing challenges such as lupus, breast cancer and eating disorders. I have met and shared conversations with painters I respect as masters in their craft and offered assistance to painters still in the beginning stages of their career. I know for the first time in my life I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

1n 1997 I left in the middle of the night and took my 2 babies and entered a domestic violence shelter- at that time I could have never imagined that I would survive let alone go on to thrive and enjoy my life so much. I was forced to trade child support for freedom. I am so grateful that I have found a way to take care of my family while making other people happy and satisfying my need to create beautiful things in the world.

I want to go to FABAIC so I can meet many of the people I have formed on line friendships with (and hug them in person), sharpen my skills and watch and learn from the best in the business. I will not be able to go this year without winning this contest. Unfortunately I am the sole support of two teenage boys and my business has not grown enough yet to support the trip. I know I need to go to FABAIC because I have found a way of doing healing work with people through paint and I need to increase my confidence and skill level so I can reach more people.

Margie Nugent

My Artistic Growth

Going to FABAIC would be a completely awesome adventure where I can expand my skills and connect with people who have the same passion as me.

I have always enjoyed drawing. In the third grade I amazed my classmates by duplicating illustrations of Pokemon from a Pokemon handbook. They looked exactly like the originals.

In the seventh grade, a family friend introduced me to the basics of face-painting such as teardrops, swirls and sponging. Over the past four years I mastered the basics with lots of practice. I advanced my skills by attending a class taught by Mama Clown and Jenny. I am applying the many valuable skills that I learned to create my own designs. Being able to create my own designs allows me to have artistic freedom. Participating in FABAIC is an important step to my artistic growth as I want to advance beyond a “copy cat” painter.

This year I taught myself how to do shadowing with the help of Pashur’s Spiders and Scorpions book. Book learning is helpful but I really want to learn the things that books don’t offer by having hands-on-experience with professionals at FABAIC.

Perfecting tribal art is one of my goals. I am certain I can learn more about tribal designs with such a variety of instructors and classes offered in one place.

By participating in FABAIC I can advance my skills even further than what I have already invested in training. I can also move closer to my personal goal; to surpass the skills of my many amazing face-painting teachers. I also plan to use the skills I learn at FABAIC to work my way through college by face-painting whenever the opportunity arrives.

Epiffany Gombart

I have just recently within the last 6 months discovered this beautiful and inspiring world of face painting. I am a mother of three beautiful children, living in Hawaii, in the middle of the Pacific ocean.

I have always desired to be home and care for my children, but have found it hard to balance a career and kids, and trying to be a good role model to them. Six months ago, I organized my son's first birthday party. After researching online trying to find a face painter I discovered youtube tutorials by Rebecca Anthony. I was mesmerized and inspired by her, and decided to paint for my son's birthday party. The children absolutely loved it, and that ignited a fire in me and a passion for art. I quit my job, and decided to do this full force.

There isn't much here in Hawaii as far as classes, or workshops. I love what I do, it has enabled me to be home with my kids throughout the week, and make a decent living doing face painting on the weekends, not to mention my kids are so proud of their mommy now as they are my biggest supporters and willing models, but to fly all the way to Florida would be much of a stretch for me on my wages, not to mention a once in a lifetime opportunity. It would be an honor for me to be surrounded by the greatest artists in the world, to be inspired by their beautiful artwork, and to give me a sense of confirmation that I am truly doing what I am meant to do. Like these great artists, I hope to one day be an inspiration to others, and especially to my kids.

Rochelle Midro

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” My answer was always simple – I want to make monsters! Later that was refined to special f/x, sculpting, puppetry, computer graphics, anything that I saw in the movies; my heroes were Stan Winston and Jim Henson. Halloween was always my favorite time of year, that was when I actually got to paint as much as I wanted and work on every crazy idea I had to turn all of my friends into shambling zombies ;) The common thread to all of my interests has always been based in makeup; how to turn ordinary into extraordinary.

Unfortunately somewhere between finishing school and “growing up” I made the same compromises everyone does, and found myself in the IT department rather than running away with the circus or the movies. That is where I was last year when I stumbled on the chance to take a Wolfe Brothers class and it was like waking up all over again. Here was a guy doing exactly what I always dreamed of – making friends and traveling all over the world teaching people how to make their friends into monsters... or fairy princesses, or exotic animals, etc... In a word, brilliant!

After that class I felt like I was just offered the choice of the red pill or the blue – and I fully intend to dive head first back into the world of makeup, airbrush, sponge, brush, and laughter that come with face and body paint! Going to FABAIC for the first time means filling in those gaps I lost when I was heads down in the mundane. I have met a ton of incredible people this last year as I have reconnected with my more youthful aspirations and I can’t wait to continue that journey at every opportunity. Now I look forward to learning everything I can to better help me share that same wonder and joy that face painting has always brought me to the rest of my family, friends and clients.

Donald McCaskill

When I think about all of the ways that going to a convention like FABAIC can inspire me to grow as an artist, I can’t help but take advantage of an opportunity that will inevitably change my life and my passion for face and body painting forever. I see FABAIC as the means to achieving both my short-term and long-term goals: to attain all the knowledge that this convention has to offer, and to be able to filter all that I learn into my new business and accomplish my dreams. I know that there is so much that I have yet to learn, and I would be thrilled to work side by side and discover the various ways to transform a face or body with paint with people who I greatly admire.

Through face and body painting, I have discovered a passion that I hadn’t known resided in me. I have always been artistic and creative, but I pursued those skills through other means, such as faux painting, murals, decorative finishes, etc. My love for this art form only manifested itself after I began to attend workshops and realized how fun the process of transforming a face into something spectacular is for me! And it is my passion that is fueling me to become the best face and body painter I can be!

I know that going to FABAIC will be an experience of a lifetime! It will be a time to challenge and open myself up to new techniques and new products. I can only anticipate how inspiring it will be to be completely submerged in an artistic environment with people who feel the same way I do about face and body painting! And I know I will be that much closer to accomplishing my creative dreams!

Claudia Adelman

It would be a dream come true to win this competition and get to experience Fabaic.

Just the thought of being there with all the fantastic artists and feeling the talent and inspiration would make my year.

The chance of meeting some of the world best and most giving artists and watching them at work fills me with excitement.

I have been painting for fun for almost 10 years, professionally for just over a year. I am obsessed with it.

I have always been into crafts- I also make cards, cakes, decorate mirrors and embellish anything and everything.

Since I started painting for a living I have hardly looked at my craft supplies. I spend all my free time painting- If I can't catch one of my three kids (aged 4, 6 and 10) or they are washed off and in bed (or hiding from my brush)-I paint my legs, arms and practice head.

I even once painted my husband while he was asleep- I am not talking a little spider-it was a sugar skull- a whole head as he is bald. That was a shock when he looked in the mirror.

The last year had many personal challenges and a great boost for the year just beginning would be knowing I would be traveling to the US to meet, learn and grow from some of the finest and most talented painters in the industry, and to also get a chance to be part of a major jam and get to know people I have only met on the forum.

This is a once in a life time opportunity for me and will help me learn new tips and techniques so I can keep growing and be everything I can be.

It is the most incredible and very generous prize and I hope that you feel as much as my heart is telling me that I should be there!

With much love to all you artists and I so would love to meet you at Fabaic this May!

Jules Pomerance

It takes me a lot of effort to join this contest. I'm pretty much intimidated by numerous genius painters out here and my English isn’t good.

I was from the IT line which in Singapore now, is dorminated by ‘foreign talents’ from the 2 emerging giants.

Face painting first started when I volunteered for ‘Make A Wish’. You know.. 'long queue, artist went for break, I picked the brush… and people praised, asked for my contact'. But I never gave another thought as I had my IT job.

Who knows one day, the company terminated the contract staffs including me during my maternity leave!

That period was the darkest for me. After hundreds of resumes within 4mths, a few interviews, I still lost to the foreign talents. With stress from a newborn, being jobless, parents and spouse kept saying that I wasn’t contributing, living in a fast pace high cost country, even my 3 yr old son tells me that I’m not working.. everything seems pushing me to end everything…

It wasn’t easy to switch and start, but I’ve never regretted it!

In Singapore, my skills are OK, I’ve received good feedback everytime, my comprehensive painting kit imported from US,UK, AUS got my clients impressed and competitors envied. Had been interviewed by local media, featured on magazine, had others copying my work and even lucky enough to be sent for oversea assignment in a Paris musuem.

BUT I'm far from good when compared to the experts out here. Full face/body painting isn’t very established in Singapore.

I want to go to the FABAIC because I want to…

  • Visit USA and meet these greatest painters from all over the world
  • Learn from the experts and upgrade my skills because I can’t get them in Singapore
  • Compete if possible to gain experience
  • Get even more painting materials
  • Further differentiate my skills from the ‘market spoilers’ who uses acrylic/cheap party paints, with lousy or no skills.
  • Bring up the level of this art in my country and educate those who only lookout for price and not quality!

Katherine Mah

I feel that face and body painting is an arrangement of colors, expressions and ideas. When I was first introduced to body painting, I perceived it only as the creation of simple designs such as butterflies, flowers and puppy dogs. Through my experiences with a wide range of diverse and amazing artists, attending jams and classes, it has become reality that body painting is a true and authentic art.

I first started my journey through the body painting world 3 years ago. It all happened by accident as I was entertaining some friends of my children in my home. I created a simple cat and dog face. I was so inspired and thrilled by the reaction of the children. Subsequently I started my research of the products, classes and artists. Face painting became a hobby then evolved into a supplemental way to earn money. Through positive encouragement from family and friends, I have always strived to become a better artist. I had no knowledge of large conventions like FABIAC but soon learned that there is an abundance of knowledge to obtain there.

My pursuit to become a better artist has brought me to this point. Attending the FABIAC convention is my next step to gaining new ideas, trying new products and meeting more fascinating artists. This is the first time I have submitted an entry in a contest. I sincerely hope that everyone will enjoy my art work and will be inspired by my story. I thank all the sponsors for this great opportunity.

Veronica Moritz

I have been face painting professionally for the last four of my 32 years and have never been to a face painting convention. Having been self-taught through books, videos and through online resources, I have really come a long way but still have so much that I would like to learn. The FABAIC convention of 2011 is going to be my first, and my family is hoping to make a vacation of it as our kids have never been to Florida. With five kids, aged toddler to teen, and living in the Midwest, we cannot afford to do much by way of vacations, so we have not gone on many trips too far from home. Typically we are forced to rent two connecting hotel rooms because there are so many of us, so if I win this contest it would be a blessing to our already stretched vacation fund and would allow us to spend our money on a day trip to Disney instead of registration and hotel costs! I see the FABAIC as being an invaluable investment in myself and my business, and it is a step I am finally ready to make. Networking with other painters and being able to throw ideas off each other is also another invaluable asset to my future in this industry. I learn best by watching, and then doing, so I am really excited about being in the same room with some amazing painters that I cannot wait to meet and watch in action. Being able to assist and jam with Yolanda and Annie would be fantastic – what a treat! Winning this contest would mean the world to me (and to my exhausted bank account!!), open possibilities not otherwise available to me, and would definitely make a family vacation a reality.

Sonya Grafft

This essay has caused sleepless nights. I’ve acquired finger calluses from rigorous, repetitive typing. However, I won’t let that be a factor in why I should be considered to win this competition. I am just as worthy as the next talented, starving artist waiting in line, with bated breath, to meet their mentor or Master of the #4 Round. I am a happy, enthusiastic pauper in the land of water-activated cosmetic paint. I have more makeup than any normal woman should have and I’m obsessed with coloring faces & bodies.

I would make my time at FABAIC upbeat and worthwhile. I’m friendly, attentive, outgoing and a willing participant. I love to laugh & have fun. People are my passion; smiles and satisfaction my goals for my business. I aspire to play by the Golden Rule and appreciate every moment in my life.

I’m not your average gal; my mantra is “do what you love.“ Never settle for mediocrity. Do your best at all times. Always appreciate your fellow man; for what they do, for what you learn from them every day. When I want something, I go for it. I walk the talk and enjoy this journey. Wonderful and tragic experiences have shaped me into a very unique, strong woman. At this time in my life, my reinvention into an artist is a dream fulfilled. I’m in love with what I do and am hopelessly devoted to being the best painter I can be. More than anything, I want to leave a legacy to my children, grandchildren, family and friends; one of a skillful life lived with passion and enthusiasm, achieving happiness through hard work, compassion, determination and a commitment to excellence.

This is why attending FABAIC is important to me. I think I would be a good addition to the party! Plus, I would promise to videotape every day and post pics in a blog to share my adventure!

Perhaps if none of these things makes me stand out in this talented crowd, just telling you that I have not wanted something this bad, will.

Laurie Phelps

It's a truth universally acknowledged that most parents hope and dream their brilliant, creative child will one day grow up and pursue their dreams to become a professional clown. What lucky parents I have! I couldn't wait to graduate from college with high honor only to pursue my career as a distinctive, respectable, face-painting, balloon twisting, magic tootin clown. This December marks a year since my career beginnings and I still haven't found a more enjoyable or rewarding job. After being asked "When are you going to get a real job?" countless times, I've realized what's better than getting paid to do silly things and paint monsters& butterflies all day?

Paint inspires me. You can tell stories with it, you can make people smile, you can horrify parents with their little angel now painted to look like a zombie. (She was thrilled.) When something inspires me, I want to get as much of it as I can and that's where FABAIC comes in!

Going to FABAIC for me means focus - no balloons, no clients, no worrying about finances - just painting, learning, and jamming with the masters of my craft. I've heard it's like a painting high!

Also, going to FABAIC means hi-wattage learning. Thanks to friends and Youtube videos my technique no longer resembles an elephant painting. But there's so much more I want to learn. I'm dying to soak up workshops from Vargas, Pashur, the Wolfe Bros and more.

Finally, going to this conference is important because it will let me explore my painting passion. My painting entry symbolized this in a way. I chose neon colors because I'm bright and optimistic about what the future holds. I chose a swan spreading her wings because this symbolizes what going to FABAIC means to me - a chance to rise above mediocracy and fly!

Regina Hager

Since I could remember I have been into wild and crazy makeup looks. After graduating college in 2008, I was able to go to this huge world art festival called Burning Man. That’s where I first tried face and body painting. The festival lasted seven days and I painted for about 6 hours per day. After the festival I became absolutely obsessed with painting people. I bought a small kit and soon was invited to start painting at a local night club for a monthly eighties theme party. It was not long before I started painting every weekend at festivals and various other events. People began to remember my work and I even began getting gigs with companies like Lucas films and Virgin America. Even the photo I turned in for this contest is from a gig I did for National Geographic. It was for Casey Anderson’s show about wild bobcats. It will air in 2012!

I love being a face and body painter! My favorite part about my job is watching people react to my work. I love how this art form is truly alive and always changing with the movement and personality of your canvass. I also treasure the intimacy and attraction provoked by this art form. For example I painted this woman at an art festival as a full body cheetah. She was strikingly beautiful with gold and brown background and black and white accents. As she danced a circle of space formed around her. Everyone in the crowd was following her every move and unable to look away. It just so happened, her future life partner was one of the spectators. He danced his way over to her and from that day on they have been inseparable. I deserve a chance to go to FABAIC because although I have a lot of talent and a unique style, I really still have so much to learn. I have never been able to afford to go to a convention and would cherish the opportunity to work with some of the great artists of our time.

Rachel Levine

A scholarship to FABAIC would mean everything in the world to me. It may be the only way I

am ever able to attend any convention. It may be my only chance to meet and learn from all the many other artists who have mastered and are constantly reinventing the art form that I have fallen in love with over the past 4 years.

I have been painting professionally for just over 4 years. I was completely self taught for the first few months. I started painting at an orchard with acrylics on the recommendation of a friend. After one month of painting and researching I bought my first kit of Paradise paints. In March of 2007 I met my friend and amazing artist, Anna. She had posted online that she would be having a class for beginners. I was overjoyed as she was only 1 hour away from me. It's still a bit of a drive but, it's closer than Florida.

I have annoyed my children with practice to the point that they forbid me to paint them. They cringe every time I pull out my brushes. I bought a practice head and learned to paint my own face. Still, I need more! I need to be in aroom surrounded by color and inspiration, if only for a few days. I need to take classes, work towards perfecting my style, the way I run my business and promote myself.

With 4 kids, a mortgage, growing medical bills from recent surgeries for myself, my daughter and my husband, attending a convention seems completely out of reach unless I were to start my own . Other than my 2 friends, I feel like I am somewhat isolated from other artists.

I truly feel that attending FABAIC would truly be the catalyst for not only making me a better, more confident artist but, also a more effective and educated business woman. What better year to start this than the 10th anniversary of such an awesome convention.

Jenni Bush

The very short version of my artistic auto-biography is that I’ve always been an artist… all thru school, college, and in my career I’m artistic. I’m a good artist and I’m good at what I do, but I only recently realized that, while I’m very artistic, I don’t have much of an imagination. It’s a hard pill to swallow, let me tell you! Now here’s where face painting entered my life…

I began my journey into face painting this past spring when I started to work at the local zoo on the weekends. I needed the extra money, and it sounded like a lot of fun. I now like to think of those few months as my “face painting internship”. IE… work really hard and make little money! But I caught the bug quick and the more I painted the more I loved it. Now I’ve been painting for about 9 months, and have turned this new found passion into a side business. I’ve watched myself get better and better with each gig, and I feel like this has woken up that long lost imagination that I didn’t realize I was missing. I’ve met some amazing local painters who have been a huge inspiration, as well as finding all of the online resources that have helped me so much. Now I feel like I’m at the point where I’m good at face painting, I’m better than people expect when they hire me for a birthday party or a company picnic, but I want to step over that edge and jump into being BETTER. I know that I need now is to be truly inspired and taught and surrounded by imagination! A chance to get to FABAIC would be more than amazing, and I think it would help springboard me into being more than just a birthday party entertainer, but a true professional who can start showing the world what a real “artist” can do. I hope that you can help make that happen!

Thank you for your time, and the opportunity!

Amanda Destro

Face painting? What was that?! I had never heard or seen it until I took a clowning class three years ago. I remember watching Sharon paint and thinking there is no way I could ever do that. Little did I know that bringing my daughter to a clown convention in 2009 would start a new passion for me. My only goal in the classes was to take a few pictures for my daughter. I had no desired to learn. I attended the JAM that evening with my daughter and asked to borrow a paint brush. That was it! I was hooked! I had stayed with a friend who happened face paint and was kind enough to let me use her supplies. I stayed up till 1 am painting on myself and got up at 6 am to sneak into the bathroom to paint again.

I bought supplies first thing that morning and returned over and over to the booth to buy more, wishing I had paid more attention in the classes given! That weekend was when I was told about FABAIC. Timing prevented me from going last year so this year I am determined to be there.

Why do I want to go? TO PAINT! To learn from the best! To be in a place where everyone will understand this insane obsession I have for painting. To go there saying to myself, “There is no way I could do that!” and leaving saying, “WHOOO HOOO!!! NO WAY!!! I just did it!” I will be in my happy place doing my happy dance! I heard the experience is unbelievable and I am so excited about that. I not only want to just paint children but eventually I would love to teach them.

Vicki Long

Hello, my name is... ah, I bet you thought I was going to let that slip, but we all know names aren't allowed. Of course, it wouldn't have mattered much if I had included my name, as most on here don't know me anyway. I believe attending FABAIC would help me change that.

I'm fairly new to the world of face and body painting, having been transforming faces and various body parts for about a year and a half now. Sometimes something pretty, sometimes scary, but almost always interesting works of something which usually resembles art. I find it exhilarating! Not only for the fact that I've spent my whole life prior to this solidly believing I wasn't the tiniest bit artistic. It's so amazing to me to be able to see something in my head and bring it to life, most times.

Now, I can't imagine my life without painting someone, something, anything! I've learned so much. I see everything in a different way. I've started driving my family a little crazy (in a good way, I hope). Suddenly, an overripe tomato that falls onto the floor (or the juicy bug that just hit my windshield) has me snapping pictures like a mad woman because, "It's a perfect splatter, you guys!". It's as if I'm seeing the world through brand new eyes.

The best part is, there is so much more to learn. There will always be more to learn about face and body painting, art in general, but mostly about myself. And where better to learn than FABAIC 2011? A wonderland of talented instructors sharing a wealth of techniques, which I look forward to putting to very good use, in both my business and personal life.

We all know that FABAIC stands for Face And Body Art International Convention, but to me it also means For A Brighter, Artistically Imaginative Career. I hope to have the opportunity to meet many of you in Orlando this May!

Angela Hewitt

Going to FABAIC is important to me because I know it would help me in persuing my passion. To have the opportunity to be surrounded by all of the talented artist and teachers is indescribable.

I can only imagine the feeling of being around all of the people that I view their pictures and marvel at their work. I would truly be inspired by all of their creative ideas. What a dream come true this would mean to me. I have always had an interest in art my whole life.

I am a mother of two young boys. I made the choice to only work part time, but with that my money was also cut in half. I want to be able to stay at home and be there for my boys and watch them grow. I know how precious time is and how fast time goes by.

I had to think outside of the box to supplement my money. That is when my passion for art came back into my life. I joined forums for advice and have had other talented face painters in my area share their skills with me, for which I am so appreciative.

Watching a lot of video tutorials on the internet as well as studying many pictures. I even purchased a book on tid bits on how to grow your business. That was very helpful and informative.

One day I would like to give back and pass on what I have learned and gained in this business. To possibly help someone one day that is where I am at now would be very fulfilling!

I love to be surrounded by people that feel the same way as I do. People that have vision, dreams and passion in their work is truly inspiring.

There is one thing that I will never get tired of and that is seeing that amazing smile that I just put on a childs face. Childrens smile's are priceless!

Thank you very much for giving me a chance at entering this awesome contest.

Karen McBride

Like most Artists, Art has been a part of my being since the day I was born. There are so many reasons why it is important for me to be at FABAIC but the most important reason is because I want to learn. Face and body art has opened windows in my mind that were closed for a long time and doors in my life that I didn’t know existed.

I am a self taught face and body painter who absolutely loves what I do. I started painting faces at family events in 2006 just for fun to give the kids something extra to look forward to. It started out doing cheek art with just store quality face paint. Eventually I bought my first small professional grade paint kit on and it spiraled from there.

I have no professional training or experience but believe I have begun a career doing something that I absolutely love.

Professional training in this art-form would be incredibly rewarding for me as I have so much to learn. I know I can grow and succeed as an artist with proper guidance.

Recently divorced and a single mom of two, I have reached a point in my life where I know I have to follow my dreams and go for it all. I want my children to know how important it is for them to follow their own dreams and do what it is that they truly love to do. My children encourage me. They let me practice on them and give me inspiration on a regular basis. I teach them what I know when they want to learn because I know what a difference experience can make and how rewarding it is.

Being part of FABAIC, 2011 would mean the world to me because this is what I love to do and I know it will show me how much more I can do. No matter what happens I will be there because I am that determined to do better, and to be better.

Alica Cobb

Going to FABAIC is a dream I’ve had ever since they started doing that convention. I started face painting in 1993 when I became a clown. It was the first clown skill I learned and is still my favorite. I love to paint faces! The moment that the paintee sees themselves in the mirror is so special! It’s magic! Now I paint in and out of clown, and it’s great either way.

Even though I’ve been painting for a long time, there are many things I want to learn. I want to take my painting to the next level. Attending FABAIC would allow me to learn from the best teachers in the world. I know that I would come away with a whole new understanding and appreciation of the art of face painting. A famous clown. Buttons McBride, once said “When you’re green, you grow, when you’re ripe, you rot.” That means we should always keep learning new things and never think we know it all. I think I have paint running in my veins. I dream, in blazing color, of new designs. When I wake up, I must try and perfect the image I dreamed. That sounds a little obsessive, and sometimes I think I am.I love being able to help someone to achieve a fantasy and transform themselves into a creation of their imagination. Whether it’s a child becoming a tiger or a grandmother feeling glamorous in a fancy mask, everyone deserves a dream. My dream is to go to FABAIC!!!

Brenda Walden

I have always loved coloring, painting, crafts, basically anything that I could do that allowed me to explore my artistic side. I had never taken myself seriously though, because I felt that it was more of a hobby and that I didn’t have any true natural talent. It wasn’t until I decided to paint faces at my daughter’s birthday party that I felt I had found something that could be more than just a hobby. The excitement on the children’s faces ignited a fire and passion within me that I did not know I had. I decided to do some research on what face and body painting was really all about. What I had found was creativity and colors beyond anything I could have ever imagined. I was truly inspired by what I had seen, and it was then that I decided to pursue this new found passion.

Shortly after I had painted my first few faces on family and friends, I was asked to paint faces for a city event. This was the opportunity I had been looking for in order to get started in the face and body painting industry, however I was apprehensive. I did not feel I was ready and I really didn’t know what to expect working with the general public. After days of encouragement from my loving husband and children, I was convinced to take on this new challenge. After the initial butterflies had passed and I was well on my way to the tenth face of the day, I looked around and realized that a large group had formed around me. I actually had a crowd of people lined up for a chance to get their faces painted. It was such a fantastic feeling.

What a wonderful and thrilling experience it would be to go to this year’s FABAIC and be in the presence of the world’s best face and body artists. After all, these are the people who originally inspired me. The opportunity to learn new skills from them that will improve my craft would be invaluable.

Rebecca Sutherland

My very first body painting was a pink ribbon that I placed over the scar on my aunt’s chest where her tumor had been removed. She was in remission and I was bored. 4 years later, she was back in the hospital – Stage 4, inoperable, cancer. I sat with her for a while in her room and we talked about things non-cancer related. She started to ask me questions about face painting. She wanted to hear about split cakes and liquid bling – jams, and jewels. After a few minutes of my excited ramblings, she said, “You are really good at face painting, I know you are going to go far with it so keep going, ok?”

I agreed.

My Aunt has supported me in my love for art since I could pick up a crayon. She’s kept every drawing, every bad piece of pottery, every poem that I’ve given to her. She also never lets me leave her presence without my showing her something new that I made. I hope to give back to her what she’s given to me; never-ceasing love and support.

Every year I see the ads for FABAIC come and go. I told myself, “You’re not ready”, and “Did you see what (so and so) did? You can’t do that.” But now I have a renewed sense of purpose in my painting. I want to go to FABAIC not just because my aunt told me to. I want to go to FABAIC to tell her more stories, show her new things I learned, and finally bling the hell out of a pink ribbon that I’ll paint on her chest.

Jasmine Starr


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This face painting contest is run by Lilly Walters, face painter, author and teacher of face painting classes