Fashion for Artists- What to Wear on the Job
A Fashionable Artist
By Marcela Murad
When working an event, the most important thing to remember, is that YOU ARE THE ENTERTAINMENT. Your appearance speaks volumes about the way you view your business. If you want your clients to see your value and consider you a professional your wardrobe is as important as your painting abilities.
20 years ago most of the entertainers offering face painting services were clowns. It was common to dress in full clown and face paint at birthday parties. As the industry evolved so did the dress code. Face Painters created their own eclectic style that include custom aprons, glitter adorned shirts, themed outfits and anything colorful that makes you stand out.
You were hired to add life and magic to the party! This involves thoughtful preparation and attention to detail. How you deliver your services is very important. When you walk into the room, the guests need to recognize you as someone special. Therefore, the first decision you must make, is how are you going to visually present yourself? Start by thinking about your favorite colors, fabrics, designs and characters, and choose one or a few that fit your personality and make you feel great. It’s important to remember that if you can look at yourself in the mirror and love what you see, others will, too. Here are some options to consider:
THE CLOWN LOOK - It is not necessary for you to become a professional clown or even to follow the traditional clown look. A colorful outfit complimented by a fun wig, with or without a clown nose, will do the trick. If you don't have training or clowning experience, do not sell yourself as one. Refer to yourself as clownish, colorful or cute.
CASUAL - Comfortable could be another word for this look. Nice fitting pants, complimented by a matching vest and hat, is a great, practical look. A doctor’s coat, or a pair of white overalls decorated with splashed paint and a painters beret, make a colorful costume. Aprons are not only practical, but they can be worn over pants, dresses or skirts, and themed for any occasion. When working as a group, matching pants accompanied by T-Shirts with the logo and name of the company, makes for a clean, uniform, and professional look.
ELEGANT - For older kids or adult parties, black pants with a colored shirt and apron that has “Face Painting Artist" or something similar embroidered on the bib, is a good choice. For adult cocktail parties, our face painters wear black pants and a sequined vest or apron. In this type of setting, the more elegant you look, the more respect you will command as an artist.
WHIMSICAL - This look encompasses many characters, such as princesses, fairies and wizards. Chantal the Fairy from Australia, and my dear friend Suzy Hammer, have created looks that fit their unique and beautiful personalities. As they walk into the room as their fairy characters, the children are mesmerized by their personas. This makes it easy for them to attract little customers who may otherwise be apprehensive about getting their faces painted. Their costuming serves as a great marketing tool, because they are giving their client and other guests, who are also prospective clients, a visual image that will make them memorable and easy to remember for next time.
THEMED FOR THE OCCASION - When our Face painters go out to the stadium to face paint at sporting events and games, they wear an outfit matching the colors of the team they are painting for. If you have a sports gig that is ongoing, you may want to consider having an apron made of fabric that has the team logo as part of the print design, or wearing an official team jersey.
For other events that have a theme, how about dressing up as a pirate, cowboy, or in a Hawaiian attire for a luau? Or maybe, a not-so- scary monster or witch, depending on the party theme? Don't forget the holiday season, when face painting elves are in demand, or even a face painting Mrs. Claus!
UNIQUELY YOURS - To me, this is the best look possible, one that says "this is ME"! It could be a combination of the above, or something out of your imagination. Lorie Flannery, a friend from Arizona, wears a ballerina tutu, her hair in pig tails with lots of ribbons, and fake buck teeth. These components fit her comic personality perfectly, and the kids love her goofy look.
Ultimately, when it comes to playing dress-up, have fun and USE YOUR IMAGINATION! You only get one chance to make a great first impression so make it colorful!