The Maker is an absolutely fantastic stop motion animation by film-making husband and wife duo Christopher and Christine Kezelos that has received global acclaim and won a multitude of well deserved awards at film festivals around the world.
It is no secret that I absolutely adore stop-motion animation and as they go - this one is utterly superb! Every detail is exquisitely executed and the main character is fantastically bizarre - just look at that amazing face, how could you not love him??! As shorts go it ticks all the boxes - beautiful, quirky, weird, funny, sweet and delightfully strange, featuring bunny creatures, violins, beautiful music, exquisite craftsmanship and a whole lot of magic!
As Easter popped its happy head up over the weekend I thought it would be nice to do a facepaint marking the occasion and The Maker being in definite resemblance of some kind of bunny served as perfect - if not slightly unconventional inspiration :) The ears and the coat were made out of some canvas scraps which I painted, sewed, backed onto cardboard
and attached to myself with a plethora of Kirby grips. The painting itself was done freehand with body paints and brushes, photographed and then finished with a quick session on Photoshop to blacken out the background and blend the ears into the head.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDXOioU_OKMTo my absolute honor and delight I received a response from the makers of The Maker prior to sharing the final image with them via Facebook :)
"OH. MY. GOD. You are incredible. One of the most impressive face paints I've ever seen,
congratulations! We're truly honored that you chose The Maker as your subject. Thank you!""
For those of you who have yet to delight in the wonder of this animation I thoroughly suggest you take the next five minutes to indulge your senses in this visual mastery - and don't worry, it may be short but there's talk of a feature length Maker movie in the works. There are no words for how excited that prospect makes me!!! xxx
A couple of weeks ago I teamed up with Alysander De Djinn Photography and my gorgeous friend Jordan for a little creative play day - inspired by the delectable works of Australian artist Del Kathryn Barton. The shoot was a fun way for Alysander and I to work together, for me to finally get my amazing friend to model for me before she leaves the country indefinitely and to test out some ideas that have been floating around in my head for a while now.
I commenced work on a huge backdrop painting a week before the shoot - taking inspiration from elements of Del Kathryn Barton's amazing collection of work. Utilizing an old projector screen I happily scored in the local hard rubbish week I busied myself drawing, painting, styling and cutting a wig and making props up until 2am on Saturday morning when I realized I'd lost all sensitivity in the tip of my right thumb...which no, still hasn't returned!!!
To be frank it was an AWESOME day of shooting - one of those happy occasions where picking the final photos is almost impossible as there are just far too many you're in love with.... We're hoping to have the final photos ready, edited and printed to be exhibited at the RAW Melbourne: Revolution showcase on the 23rd April :) If you fancy popping along tickets are a mere $15 and available here: http://www.rawartists.org/elvisschmoulianoff
A few weeks ago after an an action packed day of Viking themed creativity a few of us were chilling out in Donatellas studio winding down from the day when Louise whipped out a portfolio to show us some of her drawings. My jaw dropped. Not only is the woman amazing at costume, styling and set design but good lord she can draw!!! I instantly fell in love with her gorgeous illustrative style and feeling tingles of inspiration wash over me I asked if we could do a collaborative shoot recreating one of her illustrations on our next creative play day...
Four days later we were back in Donatella's studio with the gorgeous Alessia modeling for us once again - though rather then recreating an already existing piece it was decided that doing something totally new would probably work better.
The first thing to decide on was the pose - once we had settled on exactly what position Alessia would be photographed in I set to work covering her in white paint with assistance from Lousie. Next I started the process of outlining her and adding details with black paint - using Louise's drawings as inspiration and also as a reference to ensure that what I was doing was in keeping with her style.
Donatella photographed Alessia in natural light and then used her computer to extract her from the photo and place her on a clean white background - ready for the final part of the process. Once this was complete the image was printed out and presented to Louise who set to work work with her pens and amazing imagination to illustrate around Alessia - resulting in an image I am absolutely in love with that definitely ranks amoung my favourite collaborative pieces to date!
There are definite plans in the works to do a series of collaborative pieces in this style and I literally cannot wait to get going with the next installment!!!! There are actually some rather gorgeous shots Donatella took on the day too with Alessia in different poses - fingers crossed I'll be able to share some of those soon too :)
A recent play day with the divine Miss Donatella Parisini saw us embarking on a series of head-shots for the beautiful Telia Smith at her gorgeous studio in Suffolk Park. We started off with a very simple and clean natural makeup and over the course of the day I gradually added detail and colour while Donatella styled both the photos and Tilly's amazing sun bleached hair. The shoot also provided an excellent opportunity to include a beautiful hat made by Byron based milliner Amanda Dudley whose path I've come tantalizingly close to crossing on several occasions now - and who I'll finally be meeting next week on the shoot for Satya James' amazing new collection, can't wait!!
In March I teamed up once again with my amazing friends Donatella Parisini and Louise Lassay to bring to life another of Donatella's Visions, this time - Vikings!!!
The idea behind the shoot was that of a Viking queen whose beloved went hunting - bringing her back a bleeding heart to nourish her and their child. This was a really fun day of work with two totally contrasting looks to play with. I added extensions to Alessia's hair to give it some extra length and volume before braiding it and applying a simple beauty makeup. Linus's amazing long blonde hair was also braided and then I set about dirtying him down using powders, greasepaint and smatterings of blood and bruising including congealed scratch down his cheek - a result of the ''hunt''.
A big thank you to everyone involved: Donatella for organizing the shoot and for her beautiful photography, Louise for helping with dressing and styling, Linus and Alessia for their modeling and patience, Chris for his assistance and behind the scenes photos, The Silver Lining for helping out with clothing and accessories and of course to Maria for keeping us fed and energized with her amazing catering!
Ladies and Gentlemen and everyone in-between - I am proud to say that my first stop motion experiment is finally complete!! It has been a rather lengthier process than originally anticipated but well worth the journey as I have learned a considerable amount about makeup, photography, lighting, animating and editing along the way - lessons I very much intend on carrying forward into the next installment :)
Painted is in essence an experiment that I embarked on in how to best animate body art and an attempt at giving a creative medium that I adore it's own personality. Along the way the paint started to take on a life of it's own and proceeded to lead me on a little adventure that pays homage to the many amazing artists who have inspired me over the years. The first few sequences were roughly storyboarded and went through several major changes as I started to learn more about what I was doing - whereas the latter came from moments of inspiration and developed more organically in a spur-of-the-moment kind of way.
Though I originally had a very different idea for the audio I found that the tempo of Flow Motion by my lovely friend Square One helped to give the images momentum they needed to keep ticking over happily. In the end I got so used to using the track when I showed the unedited version to friends or family that it became entwined with what I was doing and it therefore seemed fitting to scrap my initial ideas and keep it with the final cut :)
The animation has been online for a week or so now and I'm happy to say that despite it being just a silly experiment I've had some lovely feedback - including some very kind words from two of the incredible artists whose work inspired it :D
Early this year I had the vast pleasure of joining Lizzie Sharpe's team on the filming of The Presets video for their single "Goodbye Future."
Our focus was on the creation of cavemen and soldiers - two really fun grimy makeups to get stuck into - the cavemen especially being a real treat!! They came to us clean, tidy and neatly shaved and we descended upon them with bundles of crepe hair and spirit gum, laying on beards, eyebrows and smatterings of bodyhair before moving in with the dirt, grime and a topping of false teeth. This wonderful character to the left was made up by Rose Parsons, Danielle Mcleod and myself - I went in with the beard and eyebrows whereas Danielle and Rose got stuck in laying hair on the body and adding the grime :)
A huge thanks to the amazing Lizzie Sharpe for having me on board and giving me an opportunity to have some fun with a great crew of artists - such an awesome team to work with and though I started off dreading laying hair I discovered that I actually really enjoy it :) Big love to everyone involved, I hope to see you all again sooner rather than later! xxx
So here they are ladies and gentlemen: the photos from a day of paint and play amongst the rubbled remains and dappled sunbeams that occupy the vast interiors of what was once the Hoffman Patent Brick and Tile Company...
My wonderful friend Lee and I embarked on our day of creative play early(ish) one morning, descending into the cool cavernous space of the factory armed with drumsticks, various pots and pans, paints, an assortment of brushes, a go-pro, a kindly loaned SLR and a smattering of nibbles to sustain us throughout the afternoon.
The painting I designed for Lee was inspired by the creative process itself and two of the major contrasting elements which compose it: the technical skills which must be mastered and practiced relentlessly to gain understanding and control, and the organic flow that takes you in new, exciting, and unexpected directions that you become happily lost in.
This particular project was a way for us to bring together our two very different creative outlets in a building we both love immensely- mine being painting, his being the drumming. We shot the body art in stages throughout the day - experimenting with segments of stop-motion animation and filming Lee playing on his amazing treasure chest drum kit: a conglomerate of various buckets, pots, tins and bricks that he's collected from around Melbourne and the calm dusty interiors of building itself.
The black line-work and geometric patterning represent the technical aspects of creativity whereas the washes of colours, the smatterings of splatterings, the flowers that grow from them and the sun represent the organic part of the creative process that grows and takes on is own life. The words are from a message Lee wrote referencing the latter - and end next to a "clock face" with jumbled numerals - this nice little detail thought of by Lee'sy :) Lastly there is the tiny detail of the heartbeat on his left arm - this was in reference to drumming and the need to keep the beat!!!
A MASSIVE thank you to Lee without whom this project wouldn't have been possible! Video to follow in the hopefully-not-too-distant future :) xxx