"Maude..I love you!" - "Oh, Harold... That's *wonderful*. Now: Go and love some more."

"Maude..I love you!" - "Oh, Harold... That's *wonderful*. Now: Go and love some more."

"As long as there's no price on Love, I'll stay. And you wouldn't want me any other way."

Photo of Martina by Ignazio Nano - all rights reserved

Sunday, 28 February 2010

* Milan AW10-11: Les Copains, Just Cavalli and Emilio Pucci.

My Milanese season has started well with a great lip-look by Charlotte Tilbury @ Just Cavalli... perfect and expensive luminous skin and a rockabilly red lip with tons of bright red glitter pressed into it and in some cases a twist with a touch of purple glitters mixed on the red...it was love at first sight and i'm very happy to see glitters back in action, they've been used at John Richmond, Roksanda Ilincic and more shows i can't think of right now as i'm practically falling asleep on my own two feet. I feel like Mr. Bean in his latest film, with matches to keep his eyes open...
but here it is...my make up for Charlotte's uber glamourous look:

and the make up demo:

Then one of those good days that hit us once in a while...this morning Les Copains with Lloyd Simmons which i love endlessly and to conclude the day the right way the cool Lisa Butler for Emilio Pucci.
 Lloyd is in my top 5 of favourite make up artists ever which includes Topolino, Val Garland, Ida Montanari and Pat McGrath... and today @ Les Copaines he showed us all again the wizard he is when it comes to beauty: His approach to make up is extremely technical, nothing is left to chance, not even mistakes.
His precise application is à la certosina, his hands move around the face as if they were going through water... Basically one of those artists that make everything they do, look easy.
Then of course there is the personality factor...which to me is as important as the art itself: how many of us have come to hate a marvellous make-up look because of the stress it created backstage? The list is long.
Lloyd has created the digital version of the 60's this morning: his steady hand made me wonder if he had his caffeine dose for the day already, given that we were all an army of zombies with brushes and black pencils in our hands.
My first model unfortunately has not stopped moving AT ALL, not for one second, which made this very enjoyable look a total nightmare for me..It was taking me longer to fix the mistakes caused by her sudden movements than it would to have done three of those looks.
Oh well...it could have been worse i guess: always look at the bright side: I could have NOT be there, for instance, and not have experienced once more the old school tricks that Lloyd pulled: blending a base of eye pencil into the socket and intensifying in all the right places with the same colour but in  powder texture.
Here is Lloyd at work (j'adore...) and my make up for him: not bad considering the two hours sleep and the "ballerina" in my chair, huh? ;)

Then...Lisa Butler finished off my day in total beauty and cool make up:
Despite the fact that 15 of the most important models at our show were going to be delayed by Gucci's clash in schedules and that we had less than an hour to get them all ready in hair and in a tiny backstage area...the show was still a great success: the clothes were to die for, as sexy as it gets.
Lisa wanted the girls to be made up the DIY way: a mineralised skin allowed opacity without heavy textures, the blusher was as close as it gets to a sudden compliment thrown the models way and lips of the same colour granted a "twist", as Lisa sarcastically pointed out.
tons of black mascara on super curled lashes and a greeny-musky eye pencil on the waterline finished off the look. True to the diy effect that's also always slightly worn in, we then added more green on the inner and outer orners of the waterline...basically what happens to non make-uppy people trying to do make up.
Of course, when the models casting looks like a massive tribute to the campaigns of the last few years it become easy-ier to be slightly messy and play with artistic licence.
Total highlight of my day: doing Freja's make up, which i believe is one of the most beautiful women walking this earth. Freja seems to wear this look as a black velvet glove. Certainly even a pie on her face would manage to look glamorous and feline on her...but that's another story.

Tomorrow my last show of Milan Salvatore Ferragamo with beloved Tom Pecheux. Stay tuned.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

* Richard Sorger look book preview

I'm sitting in Richard's beautiful flat and outside is "grey as a dead pigeon" - my friend Michel would say.
It's been raining all day, our hopes to take some photos for Richard's look book outside are slimmer by the hour.
But lovely Bella Howard is definitely determined to make this day work and she goes around the house finding cool spots to give justice to Richard's amazing outfits. And what better place than this beautiful home that Richard and his partner have done up to designer's standards. The wallpaper in the lounge is just to die for...And the Marylin-red kitchen is no second best.
As I enter the room where the clothes are kept I feel like i'm entering a little hidden heaven in Angel. Richard tells me abut the hand made work, the embroidery, the Damien Hirst-esque skulls he made on vests and dresses of which i'm already a massive fan. I've been promised one and that made my day so much so that i have a smile turned into a cramp while i touch them with my own two hands.
Bella is a multi tasking talented girl, as well as one of the loveliest first impressions i had on someone: I talk to her about her life and what she would like people to know about her.
Without hesitation Bella tells me about her fanzine called Bellazine: she hand makes it and hands it around at gigs, it features her thoughts about music, fashion, art and interviews to bands. As she said to TimeOut she makes 100 copies which makes them collectible items already, really, and i'm so curious to get my claws on one :)
Bella also writes a few blogs/websites:  http://thefashionisto.com/blog/category/photographers/bella-howard-photographers/ and http://bellahoward.blogspot.com/ aaaand http://bybellazine.blogspot.com/.
If it wasn't enough she is also a Dj and a film maker: one of her favourite things is to go through a film frame by frame and take the frame that's in the exact moment in space and time. Which is a very documentaristic approach of someone trying to catch the perfect moment, the one that tells a story more than any other.
It comes as no surprise as she LOOOVES travelling and her ideal life would be to have enough money to travel and take pictures, she gets restless if stuck in one place for too long...typical of a soul that's always searching and needs visual stimulation to feed her inspiration. Bella is from Yorkshire and she loves going back home to see her family and friends, going to punk gigs, admiring diversity and coolness all around her. She started off in Paris where she took her photography course and then knocked at I-D's doors where she started interning for them...next up for her is...modelling for Matt Irwin! As i look at her attention to details and curiosity towards everything that surrounds her I have a feeling that this girl will always have amazing stories to tell... :)
While we chat, our model Frankie has changed into another great outfit and stylist of the year 2009 Grace Woodward is ready to see Bella's magic happen.
Grace has got something in store for us... She will be part of the judging panel for Britain's next top model! Grace IS the fashion expert and it's only due that after years of practical fashion (hands on every amazing outfit in the fashion world) she would move to the next level of the Intellectual side of fashion. Grace has got a lot to share with the world, a lot of knowledge to entertain us all with so i'm really looking forward to seeing her on the telly. Let's not forget she was head of press for Agent Provocateur! Ok, now i'm officially jealous...and even more so when i hear of a possible collaboration with Stephen Jones for a summer fashion story on theme of "english eccentric"... Stephen Jones has approached her for this and i reeeally hope it happens because that'll be something to look forward to, big time.
On the collaboration with Richard she says she's extremely happy: she considers him an artist of "cutting egde, for cool connosseurs and people who have an interest in fashion rather than following the mainstream".
Oh. And she's lip-sincing all of The Smiths songs: definitely a cool chick. ;)
here is a link to Grace's website: http://www.gracewoodward.com/
As if it wasn't enough...the beautiful american singer Wafah Dufour walks through Richard's door to make a special appearance on the look book. She did her own make-up and it was flawless, all i had to do was add a red lip and with those lips wow didn't she look amazing. She's a pro, you should have seen her posing for Bella, i can't wait to see the pics.
I will be at the show this sunday and after all this talent in one room i must say...I can't wait.
Thanks for sharing all this with me folks!

 This is going to be mine!!! but in Black and the grey skull...can't wait!!
our lovely model was Frankie@Profile

Richard at work

You should see this in real life...just STUNNING piece of work.

Grace's attentive eye at work

Bella at work with Frankie

Beautiful Bella with Wafah Dufour: Wafah is Richard's special guest for the Look Book.

:((( This was one of the flags from the first look book i shot for Alexander McQueen: I couldn't afford the one i wanted at the time and i had put it on my short list of things that would have held a place in a wall in my living room. I guess that's never going to happen now... When Grace walked in with THIS i gasped. Bless your soul Lee McQueen. Another masterpiece.

* Everything with wings is restless.

Dedicated to Drew and Whitney Jasmine

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

* The world of Ellen Rogers

Photography is my real passion. I do make-up for a living and i love doing it but photography is my total love. So much so, in fact, that i chose to leave it as such and not make a job out of it.
This is the one area where i decided to stay free to "be", to take my time, to be inspired, to have a break from it if needs being. It is also the area where magic happens and on certain days it just flows from my heart...More than that: "photography is shooting your eyes, your mind, your heart on the same line of fire." like one of my idols once said: the supreme Henry Cartier Bresson...Henri was once laughed at for forgetting to put a film into his camera before starting to shoot: "You are becoming a conceptual photographer now huh!" ...Well, HELL YES.
A very few people have been SO able to capture the moment, to trust their instinct, to ignore the technique in favour of a great scene to document right there and then, as much as he did. One fraction of a second later to regulate the focus and that gaze is lost forever. Henry knew that. Some of his pictures are technically a bit of a mess...nonetheless: masterpieces of the truth behind the most beautiful imperfection of going with the flow.
A conceptual photographer, therefore...It definitely sounds like it...and if i can guess He probably laughed back at the person who said those words, knowing that those images were in his head without the aid of a camera and that the camera is the way for him to share them...like Isadora Duncan once said: "If i knew how to say 'IT' - I wouldn't need to dance 'IT'."
So we dance with Henri, we dance with Isadora, we learn to love our mistakes and to ignore the technique at times in favour of the beauty of the moment, we learn to let our art go from our bodies and we see it embrace the universe...sometimes chosing to not care for the effect it provoques because for some people like Isadora and Henri it was a matter of catching that beauty and let it out of their system for god knows which amazing reason.
Along these lines i feel i can introduce to you Ellen Rogers: I asked her how did she feel about her art and she said she sometimes wouldn't even recognize her works once they were "out" of her system - like this - "oh? did i take that picture?!" i thought this was really cute...mainly because it's part of that need to let go of our art, to let it out of our body...some people instead have a tendency to keep it inside, doodling with their own visions, this is their need. But Ellen lets it out instead...and as she calls herself  "a tormented soul" she says it with a smile and i don't see her dark alleys: i see a ray of light standing in front of me, a refreshing approach to being one's self, having the courage of one's feelings. Which of course MUST be a tormented place, i know that too well, but also one that's always worth visiting. As dear Lee McQueen said once "beauty can come from everywhere, even disgusting places".
And i deeply respect people that are not scared to feel and to go deeper than what's technically needed.
So here is Ellen Rogers, a link to her website, which you must visit, love it or hate it (you crazy people) because it's art whatever you think. Ultimately art IS free expression.
The pictures below are some that i took while she was working at Charlotte Olympia's look book while she was shooting the real deal. That day was one of those days of mine where i have been able to let ..the river flow with my own camera, thanks to the Sets she'd make, the poses she'd choose for the models, the atmosphere she created on set, the freedom she allowed to Morweena and Sophie to "be".
Thanks to Ellen i could not leave my camera alone...and i had to force my self to take only a few pictures in order not to look annoying! In all fairness i made them sepia-tone so that you lovely people couldn't see the clothes too well, mainly because i have to wait for Charlotte's look book to hit the fashion world before i can reveal too much ;) but that's gonna happen next week, so Ellen's beautiful pictures will be up here soon.
Ellen only shoots on film and then works on the printed pictures. Her world seems a tribute to "pic-nic at hanging rock" with a feeling from the 20's and 30's and Fellini-esque earthy creatures that end up in woods or dark cabaret clubs... Imagine this in the style of the silent movies and let those faces tell you a story and just...Listen.

Moi, J'adore.




And this is Ellen. You can't see her. But what did you expect?

MODELS: Morwenna Lytton Cobbold and Sophie Nielander @ Premier agency
Styling: ValentineFillol Cordier, Make-up: Martina Luisetti, Hair: Paul Donovan. All shoes by Charlotte Olympia.

Friday, 12 February 2010

* This is a promise with a catch.

("i will never love you more than Daniel Johnston himself: to me he's more than god so I will never love you more.")

Thursday, 11 February 2010

* The day Lee Alexander McQueen died.

with all my love and respect.

Lee McQueen on the latest issue of LOVE, before he died: "I'm 40 now, but I want this to be a company that lives way beyond me, and i believe that customers are more important to making that happen than press. When i'm dead, hopefully this house will still be going. On a spaceship. Hopping up and down above earth." ♥

* DANSK magazine - issue 23. Photos by Malcolm Pate

Malcolm's approach to beauty is unique and contagious: here he is, photographing as well as being photographed <3
Kimi O'Neill was happily styling the whole thing with a pink Katy Eary mummy, brought to life by model Oliver Welton. He could barely move in it but he loved it! And we were all jealous of it, actually. 
Then we have the duo, possibly my favourite photo of 2010 so far... Miss Marshall and Miss Martin look like they have superheroes telepathy powers here...and judging by their friendship behind the camera i'm pretty sure they do... like in the Edward Monkton's friendship cartoon.

Photos: Malcolm Pate, Fashion Editor Kimi O'Neill, Make up Martina Luisetti, Hair Koji Ichikawa, Model Oliver Welton @ FM, Fashion assistant Coquito Cassibba, Make up assistant Love Ticklemouse, Photo assistant Jenna McIvor.
(here is the Ed Monkton friendship cartoon!)