Deadly Ever After

Archive for the tag “Writing inspriation”

What Inspires You?

Today’s Brew:  Vanilla Caramel Creme.  Two thumbs up.

by Kristen

It’s convention season!  Last weekend, I traveled to New York City for The Makeup Show.

I’ve been doing makeup professionally for seven years.  Most of my work isn’t creative or even very noticeable. You’ve probably seen it and don’t even know it.  I do a lot of work with men, making sure their bald heads don’t shine or they look like they actually got some sleep.  Even when I work with women, nine times out of ten, it’s natural looking makeup.  It’s a treat for me to really glam someone up.

So as you can imagine, I needed some inspiration.

The speakers in attendance are at the top of their game, working in high fashion and celebrity.  I get an occasional celebrity, but the fashion is in New York and Europe.  What’s a girl in the ‘burbs to do?  (Besides move, which isn’t the most realistic option for everyone.)  I got great new techniques and advice from everyone, but not all of it applied to me practically in my career.

Dick Page (l) and The Powder Group founder James Vincent (r)

Until Dick Page started his talk.  Dick Page, for all you non makeup types, is an icon in fashion makeup.  He works top fashion shows and his work is all over the covers of Vogue.  This seems contradictory to what I just said, but what endeared Dick to me was Dick himself.

The first thing that struck me was how humble and soft spoken he was.  He didn’t even do his own talk, he had a moderator do a question and answer session to him.  Many of the presenters at The Makeup Show over the years have believed their own hype, but Dick was no nonsense and down to earth.  That’s what made him inspiring.

Hailing from England, much of his early inspiration came from the 70’s and 80’s glam, punk, and metal scenes.  So already I was in love with him.  But what else he had to say is what really stole my heart.

Dick doesn’t believe in trends.  A fashion makeup artist who doesn’t believe in trends.  He said people are doing many things, a trend is just mathematically what the most people are doing at any given time.  It doesn’t mean you aren’t fashionable if you aren’t in the majority.  He also believes that fame is mathematical as well. More people know who you are than you know yourself.  It’s so simple it’s genius.

Context is important to Dick.  Since makeup is a collaborative art, it’s not always about the makeup.  You have to be a team player. The clothes, hair, and environment are just as important. He can do a similar makeup more than once, but depending on the face and the time he does it, it will look totally fresh and different.

You might wonder why I am telling you about a makeup artist in a writing blog.  Any time I used the word makeup, replace it with writing.  Funny how the advice seems to apply, isn’t it?  We’re all creative, and many times I’ve based my writing career decisions on what has worked for me in my makeup work.  This conference really made it clear for me.

So what inspires Dick Page to do  makeup?  He likes to go for walks, go swimming, and get out in nature.  He loves museums.  He says the best money you can spend is on a membership to your local museum.  Just get lost in the art and sculpture.  He also is inspired by other art forms.

Notice he never fashion or past makeups.  I loved this.  His advice is universal, even if you are an accountant.  Get out in the world and appreciate that nature and art is all around you.  Let it inspire you in ways you never expected.

This may not surprise you, but Dick doesn’t believe in rules, and neither should you.  Just create.

If you’re interested in checking out Dick Page’s amazing body of work, click here and let him inspire you.


Another Country Heard From

Today’s Brew: There is not enough coffee in the world to keep me awake today. It’s 6:30 and feels like midnight.

If you are here as part of the #gutgaa blog hop, welcome! Click here for our pitches and first 150 words.

Immortal Dilemma didn’t start off as much of a dilemma at all. It started as a simple paranormal love story. My only dilemma was how I was going to make it interesting. I needed Callie to find Tristan. I had no intention of making it easy on her. Realistically, how could it be? She has little money, no close friends or allies, and has no idea what she’s up against trying to infiltrate a paranormal rockstar underworld.

Like Janelle suggested, Callie needed a few practice runs out in Vegas before she tried to approach Tristan. When Callie, Janelle, and Amanda went to the party after going to the Bite Marks night club, my only real intention was to show the gritty underbelly of the rock scene. My friends never wanted to go home after the club closed, and I found myself at many strange impromptu parties in the early hours of the morning when I was Callie’s age. The after parties were usually the best part of the night, where the action really happened.

That was true for this party as well. I had no idea Blade would show up and sit down next to Callie. But boy, am I glad I did.

Blade is just as pivotal to Immortal Dilemma as Tristan is. Tristan may be Immortal Dilemma, in every sense of the story, but Blade is the one who added the real conflict. He gets overshadowed by his undead opponent, just being a mere mortal mechanic from Canada, but he is the one who shaped the plot and solidified Callie’s inner conflict. Sure, Tristan isn’t what she expected, or how she last saw him, but without Blade, she might have been able to accept more easily. Blade is the one who shows Callie what she really wants, even if it’s not hers to have.

As feedback on Immortal Dilemma comes in, many readers have questions about Blade. What does he look like? When I first pictured him, I was thinking of him in more Bill and Ted terms. Just a goofy, nice, fun guy Callie met at a party.

But as Blade revealed more of his personality, it was clear he was more than that. I had such a crush on Blade as I wrote the book. I started to picture him more as Casey James from American Idol. Casey never particularly excited me on the show, but he was all I could picture while writing. He just happens to be playing in Boston tomorrow night, and I can’t go because I’m working on a movie this week. The hours are way too brutal to squeeze in an extracurricular trip to the city in the middle. Even if it’s for my book boyfriend.

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