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For booking information please email me at iamginaw [at] gmail.com

Go to: www.FacesbyGina.com for my full website
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Contact me for all kinds of children's birthday party entertainment and party planning in San Luis Obispo and surrounding areas.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

15 Things you need to know if you move from LA to the Central Coast

1. DO NOT ever say you're from "The Valley" These silly people think that phrase means the San Joaquin Valley (AKA Central Valley.)  They'll think you're from Fresno, Bakersfield or somewhere near one of those and you don't want to be from anywhere near one of those.

2. If you ever use the acronym CSUN (pronounced "sea-sun"), you will be met with questioning faces and "What's that?" Instead, learn to say Cal State Northridge.

3. No one stays for the credits at a movie. My theory is that in LA most people know someone in the credits but here on the Central Coast they don't care what stranger's names roll by.

4. There's only ONE freeway. You take "the freeway" or you just simply "get off at Grand Avenue" P.S. There's are actually two Grand Avenue exits on the Central Coast off "the freeway". One is in AG (Arroyo Grande) and one is in SLO.

5. DO NOT EVER call SLO "San LOUIE Obispo" They hate that. Call it SLO or San Luis. Period.

6. One does not simply drive over the grade. It is like the iron curtain. You only drive it if you HAVE to.

7. You won't drive 20 minutes with a beautiful view the whole way to get somewhere? HA! People from LA have to drive 20 minutes to get to the local grocery store! Here, you get spoiled. I know, you don't think you will, but you will.

8. You will have to get used to strangers looking you in the eye, smiling and making conversation. They don't want something from you, they're not trying to steal something from you, and they're not crazy. That's just a culture difference here.

9. If you're pulling into a metered parking space and someone gets out of their car and comes up to your window to talk to you, don't panic. They're not going to scream at you or shoot you. They're probably just being helpful and trying to save you a few quarters in the parking meters. Yeah, they're nice like that.

10. They have this thing here I like to call "rush minute." Traffic slows down a bit at the 5:00 hour for about 15 minutes. People slow down, especially where you can see the ocean from the freeway. They don't know "sig alert" or "stop and go" traffic. They have no idea what it's like to stare at a piece of graffiti or the same Herbalife building for an hour while you sit stuck in the middle of 5 lanes of parked cars on the freeway.

11. The way you learned patterns of traffic and complicated mazes of freeways is how you will learn times of year and microclimates. For example, you drive 5 miles North to SLO in the summer and prepare to get 10-15 degrees hotter.

12. The people driving 80+ miles per hour on the freeway are passing through. The people driving 50 miles per hour or less are locals.

13. The beach sand is so fine it will not only permeate your pores, it will get inside your electronics, your clothes, your bags: everything.

14. You can wade out miles and miles from shore and still be only waist deep in water. There's no drop off at these beaches.

15. Even your gas station attendant has a Bachelor's degree from Cal Poly. People go to college here and stay. It's a college town and your degree is not impressive here.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

My dragon



I'm proud of this one because it is my own original design and because I have gotten such great feedback on it. There is a Facebook group for face painters that hosts monthly challenges. There are actually quite a few places on the internet that have face painter contests or challenges. This one was for a detailed work like you would do at a private appointment. 

I wanted to do a dragon this way for a long time. Last year I did one that was gray/silver. You can see it here: https://scontent-a-sjc.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/45986_459712724079964_1398533210_n.jpg It was not as dramatic as I had hoped and I really wanted to make the look of glowing eyes. 

It was quite a process. I didn’t just sit down and whip it out (like I’ve seen the Wolfe brothers do.) I gathered and printed many pictures of dragons, studied different parts of them, sketched it out on paper, and sketched it out on my face first. I can’t say exactly how long it took, because I was taking my time just “watching” TV while doing it and took several “breaks” when I made myself something to eat, got the kids a drink of water, etc. I started sketching it out on my face at about 9:00 and started taking photos of it at about midnight. I joked on facebook that I sure hoped my kids didn’t wake up from a bad dream calling for mommy with me in that state! 

Dragons I printed up for reference


Sketch with pencil on paper

I honestly meant to take step by step photos but got so into the painting and everything else going on (like the TV shows I was watching) that I forgot to take any after the first one. But, here's the first one where I sketched out the shape on my face.
Sketched out on my face and filled in some white areas.  I knew the yellow would need white underneath.

Here's one before I took out the side horns and put in the pupils. In other words, it was the first time I thought I was done. 



Thursday, October 17, 2013

Locally Available SAFE Face Paints

Locally available SAFE face paints on the Central Coast of California (San Luis Obispo County and Santa Maria)

Snazaroo
Snazaroo face paints are high quality water activated face and body paints. The company that makes them emphasizes quality and safety. They are probably the least likely brand to cause any kind of allergic reaction. They are very easy to wash off, but their colors aren’t as vibrant or opaque as some other professional brands. Also, their colors tend to become a little dull or "powdery" looking once dried. It is very easy to blend colors and easy to get good details. Some people find it difficult to get a good base coverage for all over the face with this brand. There is no perfume in their face paints. They are available in small kits (as pictured) that include the paint, a sponge, a brush, and a book filled with example designs and are available in mini-kits and larger volume single colors. The kits are available at Michael's Crafts and may be available at Beverly's and/or JoAnn's.

Tulip Body Art
Tulip Body Art makes safe water activated face and body paints. They are easy to wash off with soap and water however, I have heard many reviews stating that many of the colors stain skin very badly. They come in kits and larger volume single colors. They are available at Michael's and JoAnn's and may be available at Beverly's.
Wofe FX
This is probably the best brand available to the general public. Unfortunately, I only know of one way to get it on the Central Coast. That is to buy the small pallet that comes with the Klutz book called Face Painting. You can find it in the craft book section at your local craft stores. I know that Michael's carries it. Since it is part of a book, that makes it more expensive if you just want the paint. Look for the book pictured here.

Wolfe FX is a professional face and body paint that is wax based instead of glycerine based like Tulip and Snazaroo. That means it has very vibrant colors, it is great for details, and one color does not bleed into another. It also means that it is a bit more difficult to blend colors than the others. I highly recommend this brand.

WHAT NOT TO BUY:
There are many cheap alternatives out there that are actually labeled as "face paint" or "Halloween Make-up" that I recommend avoiding. First, if you ever see Palmer brand face paints avoid them. They have a reputation for causing bad skin reactions and for being incredibly hard to apply. I have found a similar type of "face paint" at Walmart made by Kids Craft. I do not know about safety, but feel free to read the terrible reviews here: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Kids-Craft-Face-Paint-12-Pots/19515665#Product+Reviews

Halloween novelty paints are not recommended for fun everyday or special event face painting. This is the kind of make-up you see packaged for Halloween for very little money at stores like Walmart, Kmart, Target, etc. It is usually safe to use on skin and resists sweating, however, this type of make-up contains ingredients such as mineral oil and petroleum. That means it is likely to cause acne break outs if you are at all prone to them. The colors go on smooth and creamy with no water necessary. They will never dry completely because of the oil base so they can smear at any time after they are applied. The colors are not nearly as brilliant, vibrant, and opaque as water activated face paints. It is very difficult to get details with this type of make-up.

Never use craft acrylics, poster paints, tempura paints, or any other product that is not specifically labeled as safe to use on skin. For more information on face paint safety see my website here: http://facesbygina.com/face-paint-safety

If you are interested in buying professional face paint on-line please contact me for information. I would be happy to help! I know that not everyone can afford to hire a professional face painter for parties and fund raisers, so I am happy to help make sure the kids (and adults) out there are getting safe products!

call or text: (805) 550-2218
email: IamGinaW (at) gmail.com
website: www.facesbygina.com
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/facesbygina



Halloween Make-up

I know I don't blog very often. Ok, I almost never blog. I usually do updates on my face painting on facebook page to be honest. But, with Halloween coming up, I have a lot of information to share about Halloween make-up and face paint in general. This is the time of year in the US when more people will be using more make-up or face paint than any other time.

USE SAFE PRODUCTS!

The most important thing is to use products that are specifically made for skin. Many people think that it is safe to use "non-toxic" paints on the skin. This is a misconception. Many ingredients are non-toxic to ingest, but can be harmful if applied to the skin for long periods of time. The ingredients can be safe to swallow but may be highly likely to cause allergic reactions on the skin. Also, your skin is an organ and it needs to breathe. You can harm yourself or, worse a child, by applying something that will not allow their skin to breathe. Here are a few steps to be sure what you use is safe:

1. Never use craft acrylics, poster paints, tempura paints, or any other product that is not specifically labeled as safe to use on skin. For more information on face paint safety see my website here: http://facesbygina.com/face-paint-safety

2. Never use glitter on the face unless it is specifically labeled as "cosmetic grade glitter." The wrong kind of glitter can cause damage if ingested, inhaled, or if it gets into the eyes.

3. Check my reviews of locally available face paint here: http://facesbygina.blogspot.com/2013/10/locally-available-face-paints.html


4. Read the FDA information about "novelty make-up" here: http://www.fda.gov/Cosmetics/ProductandIngredientSafety/ProductInformation/ucm143055.htm

TRADE-OFFS: Types of Halloween make-up, advantages and disadvantages

There are many different kinds of products out there to use as Halloween make-up, here's a little guide to help you decide which one to use.

Cake Make-up/Water Activated:
This is what professional face painters use. It is a "cake" type make-up that is activated with water and applied with a brush or sponge. (Note: latex make-up sponges commonly sold do not work with water-activeted make-up, you will need to use a high-density sponge.) It dries quickly, won't smear after it is dry, and will wash off easily with soap and water. It can be used for fine details, it can be blended, is safe for bases (all-over coverage), and does not contain pore-clogging oils. This type of make-up has the most bold, bright, opaque colors.

The disadvantage is that a lot of moisture can "wash" it away. So, tears, drinks, excessive sweat, spilled or splashed water, can make it run or smear. There are professional barrier sprays available to help keep it in place. You should never have to scrub this stuff off! It should wash off with just soap (any kind) and water, however, there may be some lingering color staining with some colors. This can be removed with oil-free make-up remover. Please visit this link for instructions on the best way to remove this type of face paint: http://facesbygina.com/removal-instructions

As far as I know, there are only 3 brands of this type of face paint that are locally available. You can find them at local craft stores. Please see my reviews of them here:

On the Central Coast of California (where I live) I know you
can buy Snazaroo and Tulip Body Art at Michael's. You can also purchase a book called Face Painting by Klutz at Michael's which includes a small palette of Wolfe Brothers brand face paints. I'm not sure what is available at Beverly's and JoAnn's.

I have heard that some areas have Wolfe Brothers brand Halloween kits available at big stores like Walmart. I recommend buying them if you see them!

If you would like to hire a professional to do some awesome make-up on you for Halloween, most face painters take appointments. You can contact me here: http://facesbygina.com/contact Of course, I feel that's the best option because you can get better results and the face painter will provide the right products as part of the service.


Novelty Cream/Grease Make-up:
This is the kind of make-up you see packaged for Halloween for
very little money at stores like Walmart, Kmart, Target, etc. It is usually safe to use on skin and resists sweating,
however, this type of make-up contains ingredients such as mineral oil and petroleum. That means it is likely to cause acne break outs if you are at all prone to them. The colors go on smooth and creamy with no water necessary. They will never dry completely because of the oil base so they can smear at any time after they are applied. The colors are not nearly as brilliant, vibrant, and opaque as water activated face paints. It is very difficult to get details with this type of make-up.

There are some types of cream/grease make-up that are better than others. If you purchase professional stage make-up or clown make-up in this form, you will get much better results. It is usually recommended to set the make-up with a translucent setting powder. This type of professional quality make-up can be very expensive, of course.

Crayons/Sticks:
These are a type of grease make-up that is in the form of an easy-to-use crayon or stick form. See "Novelty Cream/Grease Make-up" above for advantages and disadvantages. For more information see: http://www.snazaroo.us/faqcrayon.htm

Professional Pancake and Stage Make-up: 
Well, you are probably not going to want to spend a lot of money on this type of make-up which is available only at costume shops as far as I know. They can be very expensive and do not come in small sample/Halloween packs. These also come in greasepaint type and "pancake" type versions. As stated above, greasepaint or cream based professional make-up is great for lasting through sweat and should be set with a powder. Please see your local costume shop for more information. I have found the people at Costume Capers in San Luis Obispo to be very helpful when it comes to stage make-up. If you would like to hire someone locally to do professional stage make-up, I recommend MJ Johnson at Ethereal FX. She is a trained expert in stage make-up.

Brands to Avoid:
There are many cheap alternatives out there that are actually labeled as "face paint" or "Halloween Make-up" that I recommend avoiding. First, if you ever see Palmer brand face paints avoid them. They have a reputation for causing bad skin reactions and for being incredibly hard to apply. I have found a similar type of "face paint" at Walmart made by Kids Craft. I do not know about safety, but feel free to read the terrible reviews here: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Kids-Craft-Face-Paint-12-Pots/19515665#Product+Reviews


Of course, there are other products out there but the above information is about the most common types for the general public.

If you want to make sure you have an awesome, safe face painting for Halloween, consider hiring a professional who uses safe cosmetic grade products and is experienced in creating artistic characters with face paint - like ME. :)


call or text: (805) 550-2218
email: IamGinaW (at) gmail.com
website: www.facesbygina.com
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/facesbygina





Monday, April 15, 2013

Wouldn't it be cool to win a professional camera? I've already taken a class in using a DSLR camera, and would love to go out and do some photography, not to mention taking great photos of my face painting!

Anyway, I'd like to enter this contest:
http://www.sleepyshimmer.com/10k-black-tie-giveaway/
@sleepyshimmer.com
@sleepyshimmer

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Crafts from Pinterest

Although face painting is picking up again, I'm still obsessed with inspired by the cool crafts I've been seeing on Pinterest.

This is a headband I made from satin. I'm pretty excited about how it came out. I'm going to be making more for sure!

Here's the tutorial I used: http://www.makeit-loveit.com/2010/08/blog-post.html

If you want to follow me on Pinterest, I'm here: http://pinterest.com/iamginaw/

Monday, March 5, 2012

Crafts!!! - ID Bracelets-

I've been wasting all kinds of time on Pinterest.com during this slow season for birthday parties and festivals. It has inspired me to do a lot of crafting so I thought I would put some of those projects here, on my neglected blog.

Here's my best idea by far!
If you are going to a place where your children might get separated from you, make them a duct tape bracelet with your phone number on it!! It's great for amusement parks, fairs, festivals, anywhere there will be big crowds.

Here's a simple version:
 ...and you can get fancy with it if you like with duct tape that has a cool pattern or color.

This is how I make them:

1. Measure your child's wrist. You will want the bracelet just a little loose so it's comfortable to wear but can't fall off. Add about a 1/2 inch for overlap.

2. Tear a length of duct tape a tiny bit longer than the length you want it to end up. Hint: if you cut it, you'll get sticky stuff all over your scissors so at this point, tear it.  Place the tape sticky side up on the table.



3. Fold it in thirds length wise. The side that is up will have a seam so this will be the inside.

4. Trim the ends to be the right length with scissors and round off the corners with scissors.


IF THIS IS FOR FUN/LOOKS:

6. You'll want it to be removable and re-usable so add a bit of sticky-back Velcro or other brand hook-loop to the ends. You'll probably want the side facing the arm (stuck to the inside of one end of the bracelet) to be the soft side of the Velcro and the ruff/scratchy side facing out (stuck to the outside of the other end of the bracelet) Notice how the pieces of Velcro are actually stuck to different sides of the bracelet so when they are wrapped around the wrist they'll stick together. Note: I did have to trim the Velcro's width a tiny bit. Cut it before you remove it from the backing.


-OR-
IF THIS IS FOR ONE TIME USE WITH A PHONE NUMBER:

6. You'll probably want to tape it on. In that case, cut a small piece of tape about 1/4 to 1/2 inch. At this point, you can put the tape on some wax paper and use scissors to cut it and then peel the piece off of the wax paper.


7. Wrap the bracelet around your child's wrist, overlap 1/2 inch. Put the small piece of duct tape around the overlap.