Sunday, June 6, 2010

NP Styling

I had the pleasure of reconnecting with an old friend from high school, Nick Palacios, who has blossomed into an extremely talented and driven man. Nick, a professional stylist who works between Seattle and New York, was briefly back home in Seattle pursuing the launch of his new business, NP Styling and asked me to join him on a shoot early spring 2009. The shoot took place at two locations that Nick had scouted out. The first spot was downtown at the Ace Hotel (, The organically bohemian boutique hotel, built in one of Seattle’s historic buildings in Belltown, served as the perfect minimalistic milieu for Nick’s vision. After half a day’s work we packed up and caravanned it to the next destination, the Januik winery in Woodinville. ( The second half of the day was spent amidst the contrasting cement architectural angles that made up the grounds surrounding the winery, including a sleek trough fire pit, as well as the alluring aroma of wine that lingered every room we walked through.

Another treat were the talent I got to work with that included the photographer, Dave Scheibel (, and the models. Although I didn’t know them at the time, I went to high school with the two female models, Mallory Alberts and Angel Abrigo!

Make sure you check out Nick’s website!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Finding your Muse

A frequent aspiration I hear from my clients is to be able to overcome their angst and anguish over incorporating COLOR into their makeup regimen. It’s really easy to find ourselves wedged into a makeup ‘rut’; securely falling back into the safety net of ‘neutral’ shades. Putting colors together that are flattering, inspiring, and will lend the most ‘ooohhs & awwws’ from your friends is as simple as going for a walk and taking a look at your surroundings. The world was given 6 colors to work within and the multitude of the most stunning color combinations occur all around us and translate remarkably to the face. Whether it’s a cornflower blue and icy peach winter sunrise, the opulence of a rich teal and shimmering gold regal peacock, or the blending between colors on a velvety petal from a divinely held paintbrush; let yourself be inspired by the palette of creation and take a risk.

Here are some of my favorite pics I've run across that are directly inspired from some beautiful creations in nature along with some inspirational pictures!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Bitch Kitty Racing

Continuing on with my walk down memory lane, I found some pics of the first opportunity to do a shoot on my own several years ago.

A very special man I know, John, is the proud owner of bitchkittyracing and you may visit him at his website He is a jack of all trades within his brand, proudly recording and distributing artists and musicians, producing obscure, fantastic, and sometimes downright disturbing videos.

When he launched his apparel line (mostly boyshorts, tanks, and jackets) he borrowed me to help him out with the shots. His vision was a glamorous lady of the night motif paired up with the tongue-in-cheek concept he envisioned for the shoot.

Here are some of the shots from that day almost two
years ago...

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Foundation primers: What do they REALLY do? How do they work? Do I REALLY need one or is it just a gimmick that the salespeople throw at me to buy more product? These are all great questions that I am asked regularly so I thought I would break it down.

Imagine, if you will, you are painting your old backyard fence that has been ravaged by years of erosion and exposure and is desperately in need of some attention. If you were to paint half the fence with the paint and on the other half, applying primer before the paint, what would the fence look like in a year? Which half would hold up significantly better? Just like walls, fences, cars, and houses; faces need to be primed too for the ‘paintjob’ to perform at its optimum level.

Foundation primers are all about texture and performance; some tackle texture, some address performance, some treat both texture and performance.

Let’s talk about texture. When I say texture, I am referring to anything that is causing the skin to not feel or look completely smooth; fine lines, wrinkles, acne, scarring, enlarged pores, dryness/flakiness, etc. A primer that helps with texture generally has a silicone or dimethicone base which feels very silky and slick on the skin. The way it works is it smoothes over the top of the surface of the skin, literally filling in the crevices. Used alone, it diffuses the appearance of a very textured area. When foundation is applied over the top, the silicone base underneath allows the foundation (liquid, powder, cream, mineral..anything) look smother on the skin. Foundation can actually be applied even more sparingly because it glides further over the skin. Those who are concerned with pore clogging, do not be alarmed! Generally speaking, the molecular structure of the silicone that is used in primers is too large to get into the actual pore. (keeping in mind, of course, anyone can break out anytime with any ingredient. So the concept of trial and error is imperative when playing with primers!) Because it sits on top of the skin, moisture is actually held in better; great news for our dry skin friends! A great primer everyone has to try is Tarte’s Clean Slate or Too Faced Primed & Poreless Smoothing Face Primer…goodbye crows feet and brow lines for the night!

Performance: When I say performance, I am referring to the primer that provides a certain function, aiding in the performance of the foundation. When choosing a primer with certain complexion concerns beyond texture, there are a lot of options out there that address different concerns based on skin type! If you are concerned with excess oil that makes your foundation literally shift around your face during the day, or even change color, try a primer that actually mattifies and absorbs oil! I recommend Smashbox Photofinish Foundation Primer light and Bare Escentuals primetime foundation primer oil control. It is comprised of 60% water, oil absorbing mattifiers that also smooth the skin, and light diffusers to help minimize the appearance of imperfections. If you are experiencing flakiness or prefer to use a foundation that is a powder, there are primers that will add moisture, or contains ingredients that bind moisture into the skin. Try Laura Mercier Hydrating Foundation Primer or Lorac Aquaprime.

And the last function primers can help with is discoloration of all kinds! The benefit of using a color correcting primer under your foundation is beneficial because your foundation won’t have to work as hard to cover discoloration, ultimately not having to use as much foundation, thus offering you a more natural, but still corrected and perfected look. The color corrector you choose depends on the color you are trying to neutralize. Here’s my quick guide.

If you wish to correct redness or have rosacea, use a green corrector.

If you are feeling sallow or want to brighten a natural yellow undertone, use a lavender, pink, or mauve corrector. This corrector will also help to generally brighten your complextion.

If you are fair and want to add a little radiance, try a light blue corrector.

For our more warmer/golden toned medium to darker skin, try a caramel corrector if you are feeling ashy.

Lastly, if you want to take the edge off veins, dark circles, or sunspots, use an apricot color correcting primer.

If you are interested in trying a color corrector, I highly recommend the patriarch of all primers, Smashbox Photofinish color correcting foundation primers for more subtle correcting. Makeup Forever HD Microperfecting primer has a more extensive range of colors to choose from and the green corrector is great for someone with some serious redness to squash.