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War Paint

October and November has been full of much so that we haven't been able to keep up with our blog posts. No worries though...we figured we would catch you up for the remainder of the year by posting 2 blog posts per week! Pray for me....

First up....Who thinks to create an exhibit with no background in curation? I do…that’s who! Some of you may already know that I earned my Bachelor’s degree in History. I know…how did that translate in to a

career in make-up? I will leave that for another blog post! But…anywho…I absolutely LOVE History,

especially studies in the African Diaspora and African American History. And, as I studied more I came across African ceremonies and cultural experiences that incorporated face and body painting…that we would now call make-up application! Eureka…I think she has it! What better way to mesh my love of History and my passion for make-up then to showcase both in an exhibit. Now…how, when, and where I was going to do this was another story. This idea came to me last year and it took a full year and a half for me to actually get it together and obtain some funding to get it done.

We called this exhibit War Paint because it spoke to the trueness, both present day and historically, of our definitions of face/body painting. I have heard many times, usually by men, that women have on their “war paint” when describing women who wear make-up. And this is not usually meant in the greatest of terms. However, historically, both men and women did actually have on “War Paint” as both genders would paint themselves elaborately in times of war. Just like present day “war paint” elaborate face painting/make-up designs would be applied to celebrate marriage, births, as a part of rights of passage ceremonies, to court the opposite sex, and as a way to hang out and connect with friends. Isn’t make-up worn for the same things today? And, I wanted to highlight that fact.

So it began…what makeup looks should I create and why? Who should I get to be the models? Will any photographers be willing to donate their services? Am I good enough to pull this off? All of these questions and many more ran through my head as I attempted to curate an exhibit. Thank God for my friends and family…and Amazon Prime (LOL) because this girl knew not what she was doing….But we did it! On Wednesday, November 2nd we opened our very first showing of War Paint! Over 150 Faculty, Staff, students, and community members on the CCBC Essex Campus joined us as we showcased amazing paintings done by students at REACH Partnership school in Baltimore City,

pictures of my artistry as captured by Andre Dunston of Epic Media Photoghraphy and Dia Caster of PhotoArt Photography, and to learn about the GLAMBULOUS Models and their personal “War” Stories. Each painting and portrait was created to highlight the wars that both women and men face daily and our interpretation of them. Needless to say…it turned out better than I could ever imagine!

Special thank you’s go out to Michelle Wright, Coordinator of Africana Studies at the Community College of Baltimore County for believing in my vision and helping with marketing. Sakina Ligon, with the Office of Student Life for supporting us. Paul Mericle….my Mericle…for jumping on board and allowing his students at REACH Partnership School to participate. To the amazing students at REACH Partnership School for taking time to create “War Paint”. Thank you to the amazing dancers of Keur Khaleyi Dance Company

for bringing us African Dance and song. My GLAMBULOUS Models: Lakisha Ellis, Jearlean Taylor, Michelle Johnson, Brandi Lewis, and D’Amrique Justice for sharing their stories and allowing me to be creative. Chenire Carter of That Someday is Tonight and Memory Maker, Inc. for doing double duty...stylist and helping with the event. Thank you Rosheda Harrell of Eclectic Edge for coming through in the clutch. And last but certainly not least…my leading Ladies Cache and Cayla (my babies) for putting up with me and the setup, break down, day of photographers, and everything else I needed! Stay tuned...we're traveling and War Paint may be in a location near you....

It's all LOVE....

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