Q: Is it ever anything but torturous watching a parent (and best friend) slowly dying? Answer: NO!!

I have been avoiding this post for some time now.  I guess i just did not feel it right to write about someone who i know is going to read a post about themselves and it is about dying, but this is just too big of a topic in my life right now to ignore any longer.  It is also something that is being discussed openly now between ourselves so i suppose it is time to talk about it here.

I always would ask, which would be worse, being like my grandma on my moms side who passed away earlier this year, having dementia and losing your memory but still healthy as a horse?  (She would take long walks but often not know where she walked once she got there!), OR be like my great aunt on my dads side (and my dad just the same), to be sharp as a tack up until the very end but have the body TOTALLY break down in the process.  So, is it better for your mind to go or your body to go??

I have gone back and forth with this over the years.  I used to say that severe pain would impact the choice of body breaking but there is something to be said for having your wits till the end.  It is a hard choice to make and thankfully, fate or the gods are the ones that decide that for each of us if we are lucky enough to grow old and die from it.

I know life is an ephemeral and fleeting and nothing lasts forever, so why are we so hard wired to not want those around us to ever leave us?  We all know logically that we are only guaranteed 2 things in life.  1.  We get a ticket to planet earth when we are born, and 2.  we get a ticket home when its time to go.  I like to see it as “vacation on planet earth”.  Your vacation can go one of two ways… really good or really bad.  It can be influenced by where you have to take your vacation but it does not make it a guarantee that you will have a fabulous or terrible vacation simply due to location.  However, if you get chosen to “soul up” a body in Darfur, your chances of having a super fun and easy vacation are probably going to be hard to come by.  But, that doesnt mean that you can not hopefully change the location and improve your trip.  On the other hand, you could be “souled in” to a body of a multi-millionaire’s baby and be brought up with all of the luxuries that one could imagine and be isolated or treated so poorly that it does not matter because your vacation on planet earth is just one nightmare walking amongst priceless artifacts and long cold hallways.  I think that is why happiness has much less to do with economics than it does with community.

Anyway, back to my original issue.  The thing that is so tough right now is… well, several things… But, one of them is that there are questions that can only be answered by them and this is your last chance to ask them.  What is it that i need to ask?  Once they are gone, the information they hold in their brains goes too.  You only have this chance to ask all of the questions that only this one person can answer.  AND you can not think of the questions that should be asked.  (i think this is one of Murphy’s laws (btw… who the heck is Murphy anyway?? Poor bastard must have had the most frustrating life!!).

The other thing that is so tough is letting the sick person see that you are effected by their sickness.  I do not want to cry to their face because i am so gutted that i am losing one of the most important and influential people in my life.  I want to appear strong so not to scare them.  I do not want them to see how hard it is for me because i can only imagine how hard it is for them.

I feel like time is going in slow motion, yet it is blazing past me and with each minute that ticks by, is one less minute i am on earth with them.

I think it would be so much easier on our psyches if we knew what happened to us after passing.  If you are religious, you probably automatically believe what you are told to believe.  However, since we have other things that we experience here on earth that we have no explanation for that could possibly tie into our souls local’s upon vacating the body (such as remembering past lives, old souls and ghosts) that it adds a variable of the unknown and hope i think that something is in place for us.  I do not think we are comforted by the thought that after dying our soul just evaporates and vanishes.  How could something so strong as a soul which assisted our will to live while in life, and is invisible anyway, just disappear.  I think (maybe just for convenience) we like to think that there is a place for our souls to go after this life.  The not knowing is the tough part, but also i suppose the part that keeps us as simple people and not as the mighty “God” which i think in life, we forget sometimes.

I know i am not really making any specific point here, but i just need this to start the conversation that i have on loop in my head.   My dad is dying.  He is my best friend and probably the one single person that influenced who i have become more than anyone else so far in my life.  We all know it and we are talking about it (which is very strange when it is with the person who is doing the dying!)  I thought it would be more uncomfortable talking the hard real truth’s with him but now that we are here, it is not hard, it is just so scary and sad.

I know that this is just the natural cycle of life and that if it did not happen, then we would have something really to worry about!  But it doesnt make it any easier at all.  This is a game changer for me.  It is usually for most of us even if we do not have a very good or any relationship with our parent.

In what way my life and personality will be affected is unknown to me at this point.  In fact the impression will be so huge, i dare not even speculate, but i do know that it will change my life.

I suppose when we experience loss, in a way, the gods are clearing out our lives and throwing us out into the unfamiliar world again to start anew but with newly found or understood skills to make the next path taken with a slightly different approach or a different set of desires.

Usually when i find myself in these types of places of rebuilding after major loss, i have found that when it is time to get up and go after those things i want out of life, the wants and the things and the needs have changed.  Always they have simplified and become much more basic of wants and needs.  It allows you to appreciate all that you were unable to realize while spoiled and familiar with the past experiences.

I am not (obviously) not looking forward to the soon future without the protection and love and friendship of my dad, but i embrace who i will become and what he has taught me once he is gone.  I am just so lucky and blessed to be able to have the time now to ask those last important things as well as getting some things sorted out and understood which will make our job after he goes a lot easier and a lot less stressful.  For that i am eternally grateful!

Regardless, it sucks how much we miss the ones we love once they are gone!  At least, hopefully for me, the pain will help to create new art.  And i can say that it is because of my dad that i made it on this occasion!

I love you dad!!

My dad this past year. Love you Pops! (sorry for doing a post about you:)

The sky was on fire tonight with even a double rainbow!

San Francisco was host tonight to the most electric rainbow i have ever laid eyes on!  In fact it was a double rainbow!  I did not know that that was actually anything other than ice cream!  It looked like it was on fire.  I have not seen a weather event bring more people out of their houses to witness.  They were everywhere… at least the smart ones were!  It was just spectacular!  I hope you enjoy!

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San Francisco was host tonight to the most electric rainbow i have ever laid eyes on!  In fact it was a double rainbow!  I did not know that that was actually anything other than ice cream!  It looked like it was on fire.  I have not seen a weather event bring more people out of their houses to witness.  They were everywhere… at least the smart ones were!  It was just spectacular!  I hope you enjoy!

Check out these make-up transformations! One of the things i loved most about doing makeup was the transformative aspect. So do these drag queens!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This next one quite scares me!

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as does this next one!

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This one has a good chance getting a job at Asia SF Restaurant.

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I am starting to think i maybe should have posted these picts prettiest to scariest because… Be prepared!  A bit bear is next!
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And finely, tiny but mighty!

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Just because it is a color wheel, doesn’t mean that it is a good (accurate) color wheel! You would be surprised how many bad ones that are out there.

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THE GOOD…

Just because it is a color wheel, doesn't mean that it is a good (accurate) color wheel!  You would be surprised how many bad ones that are out there.

These are fairly good examples of a decent color wheels.

 

THE BAD…

 

 

 

 

For the untrained eye, all of these color wheels look, well, like a color wheel does… or maybe we think should look.  However, not all color wheels are alike.  Infact, it is a lot harder to find a really good color wheel than one would think.

It may take actually making a color wheel yourself for one to understand just how tough making a really accurate one can be.

The places that i find get into trouble the most are between the yellow and yellow-green first.  It is really quite difficult to get yellow to step smoothly into green due to it being the lightest color in value on the color scale.

So, not too surprisingly the other place i often find gets botched is in yellow to yellow-orange. Again, it is so easy to just take it from yellow into a much more valued yellow-orange.

Sometimes they do great throughout the whole green to orange section but then comes blue and it goes all choppy again.

In a color wheel, no one color should look largely different in value to either color next to it.  There should be no big steps from one color to another and no big blocks  that stand out apart from the whole wheel.

This is my little lesson on choosing the right color wheel.  You never know when you might need this kind of in depth color wheel knowledge!   Go ahead… show up your friends now that you know what a good color wheel should look like!  It can become a game like it does me… the search for accurate color wheels… Like spotting a dodo bird almost!

:)

When you feel silly getting all dressed up to impress the one you are seeking attention from, you are not alone!

I often like to see examples of animals doing animal things.  And knowing that the reason they are doing it is a universal drive we all do.  Then i like to see how much of us (humans) really are still just animals.  There may be more plastic and paint in our species, but it happens all the same.  Beauty is beautiful whatever species you are, and for some strange reason, every single one of us are drawn to beauty.  Maybe we are not the only ones.  I personally think that no one can ever EVER do it better than Mother Nature and this is my example.  Birds of paridise… aint no joke!  So f@*^%ing beautiful!  I think they know it too ;).

Wow. Another BEAUTIFUL lil film!!

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This little gem is well worth the time! I did not realize it was a Disney production until the end. I was surprised. It is so good, if it happens to be a full length film, i might pay the 10 bucks to see it.

I just realized that i do not think that i have shown one of my paintings to you.

I am a fine artist.  This blog has taken a new lead for the moment but when i think of myself, i think of myself as an artist.  I have studied in a lot of mediums.  Some of them being ceramics, ceramic sculpture, sculpture, color, drawing, painting, print making, mixed media and paper arts etc.

If i am going to be exposing who i am to you… the world, i think it is time for me to share some of my fine art works with you.  It is what i identify with the most so to know it, helps you know me.

I will also give you a little bit of background on what influences my art.  I was a makeup artist for over a decade.  I used to be OBSESSED with beauty.  I didnt and still dont understand it.  It is a real love hate thing, but i loved using makeup as the paint and the face as the canvas.  Kevin Aucoin HUGELY influenced these early years.  His untimely death changed me a little bit.  I lost my idol.  He was the one that took it out of magazines and into fine art.  (check out The art of Makeup, Making Faces or Face Forward).  I also had some really bad tastes in my mouth regarding the dodgy-ness of the beauty industry in SF at the time.   I got tired of busting my balls to get screwed out of $ and prints. I am a 1992 high fashion addict that watched corporate buy up all the great cosmetic brands and turn the industry into a cattle heard.  I was pretty heartbroken.  I wont go into all the reasons i moved out of makeup and into fine arts, but the influences that drove my makeup art, i believe, still transfers into the new mediums.  So much to the point that i have done 2 paintings using cosmetics as their mediums.

But when it comes down to it, i am really just a big color pusher.  I am not great at drawing at all.  fine line work is really tough for me. However with practice, I have found that it does get better.  Color pushing never needs practice. :)  It is like going into a candy store.  It is NEVER a bad thing.  There is nothing wrong that you can buy in a candy store.  Candy is great.  Color is just as great.

So, beauty, color, early 90′s high fashion and emotion as well as texture texture can usually be seen in some form in most of my pieces.  However i do try and do pieces that are outside of my comfort zone here and there. Not successfully always, but it is still an important exercise to do i think.

Anyway, here is a few of my pieces.  I hope you like them!

30x40"

Oil on canvas.

Watercolor and nail laquer on paper

Resin and copper mounted on Redwood.

Hydrocal mounted on redwood.

You can see more of my stuff if you want by following the links below…

http://www.fine-art.com/artsearch.asp?keywords=emelie+koshland&priority=1&artistStack=n&ynLimited=m

http://www.artwanted.com/emelie

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I came across this cute posting about makeup storage… it led me to write about my experience as a professional makeup artist and what worked for me.

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I came across this cute blog posting,

http://bewitchery.wordpress.com/2012/03/03/my-new-make-up-storage-drawers/

which had the little tiny Phrase “What do you think?”.  This is regarding makeup storage.  Clearly i felt i had more to say than even I realized and so…

This was my response…  

I find that you will thank yourself for having everything consolidated so you know what you have to work with. I did makeup in San Francisco for over a decade until i took a turn to fine art. I learned a lot about makeup, how to handle it (all those little different shaped pots and compacts), what was needed and what just cluttered my kits and threw me off my vision etc. I learned the hard but probably most natural way. I adore makeup and can not resist buying new things that would catch my eye or were seasonal. I would spend a lot of money on makeup. And would end up with tons of it everywhere.

I found that there were certain staples in my kit that i needed every job. I needed tints to be able to custom match any foundation or powder. I needed a good spectrum of shadows and colors to chose from. In the end, what i found is that less is usually more.

It was a really smart thing for me to make all my (say for instant eye shadows or lipsticks) together in one or two pallets. In the begining i could not afford to purchase an entire kit of say MAC Makeup which after you get established as a makeup artist and apply, (If you get approved you receive 40% off (when i started it was free, now there is a $40 anual fee) so you can really actually afford to stock your kit with their fantastic paints.) before this i took a piece of thin wood board and velcro dots and attached my individual pots onto one board so when you are working you can see and quickly and easily access your makeup. Taking a look at what your choices are always somewhat defined what i chose to use, along with my mood and of course the desired effect of the look we (the photographer and i) were trying to make.

I found there were things that it turned out that just never got used. It either didnt wear well or apply well or the color just didnt work,. I held on to these in the beginning fearing that i might just need this at some point. You dont. If you havent used or wanted to use it in a year, put it into the deeper storage drawer or like i usually did was give it to a friend.

Years and years later i still work like a makeup artist but just only on mostly myself and not even every day… But… my kit is maybe paired down to match only my own skin tone, but I would grab just that and maybe another bag for things like q-tips and lashes etc. that are not needed for home beautifying. I have 4 pallets of eyeshadow, 2 large (3″x6″ or so) that hold15 pots in each, 1 Nars and 1 Laura Mercier. All but one of them are nutralls and then a few individual compacts that have either a fantastic color (ie:Nars Santorini and Habanera) and another that has simply black and white. I have about 3 blushes, , concealers, powders, mascaras (about 3), 3 pencils (taupe, brown and white. these are used for all lips, eyes, and brows depending on the look.) If i want a specific colored liner i always use shadow and wet it if it is needed to be liquid. I find you have much more control over the color, intensity and placement if using powder. You also have the luxury of then picking the brush that will be able to accomplish what your desired effect is going for.

When i really got good, i started learning about color theory. It may seem to most a simple subject, but it is something i could probably study for a lifetime and still be learning it can really be complex.

After i got good with custom blends (which is what i would have to do almost every time when i had a hodge podge of misc. makeup to chose from, i decided to go and get pigments. Lip pigments i got were Red, Yellow, White, Pearl and Black. I did not end up getting the blue because i was doing pretty much editorial hi fashion or natural looks and blue was just not needed, but also because Mac’s lip pigment in black has a lot of blue in it. It is clearly a blue based black and was able to do all of the beautiful lilacs and lavenders with that. Then i got a lip balm, a chap stick and some Mac LipGlass and that would allow me to make every single color i ever could possibly think of needing. I got rid of every tube of lipstick shortly after.

I found that with three colors, white and black and texture, you can make everything (except for maybe mascara) to just what you want.

I became more time efficient and felt much more focused. I no longer had to stress over not having anything that is gonna work for this person and this look. Yet at the same time, i could actually cary in one decent sized bag my entire workstation including hair styling and towels and drapes etc (tip: next time you are at a public bathroom, grab a couple seat covers and fold them up and stick them in your kit. They make great impromptu drapes to keep your models clothes clean. I know it looks a little silly but it works!)

I wish you luck with your future ventures if you continue to chose makeup art as a career. Just make sure you always still enjoy doing it! When it is no longer fun, change before you hate it. Or at least that is maybe just what i did. But i didnt ever want there to be anything negative associated with beloved MAKEUP!

I hope i am able to share some of the fond memories of my years of makeup and hopefully pass on some of the tricks that took a lot of trial and error to figure out, but enjoyed every minute (mostly!) of it!

Thanks for asking Bewitchery.wordpress.com!

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It is time… I would like to share with you some of my own photography.

I hope you like my slideshow.  All photos were taken as is on a digital point and shoot camera.  NO photoshoping of any kind.  What you get is what you see.  I am just one lucky girl to have such a beautiful canvas to live within!  Enjoy!!  Any comments are surly appreciated by the way… :).