WELL, HELLO DEER.
Updated: Nov 20, 2018
Welcome to our humble blog where we hope to share with you our accidental journey into the creative world of face painting and body art, tips & hacks for living creatively... plus the latest happenings at DEER ME! HQ. Thank you so much for joining the ride!
We are Bodhi Del Mar and Tegan Hale of DEER ME! Face & Body Art... Painters of People. Bringers of Joy :)
And this was a complete accident.
Face painting was something people did on the side.
Face painters had to dress up as fairies.
Face painting was for people who had experience with kids. Face painting was easy.
Face painting was not real art.
That was pretty much the default thoughts we were lead do believe our whole lives by a mostly uncreative, 9-5 thinking society.
And Oh How Wrong We Were.
The story of DEER ME began in August 2016, when Bodhi had began working a part-time hair wraps job to help support her Visual Arts practice (more on that another day). What wasn't mentioned in the job ad was one of the other services offered provided... you guessed it... face painting. Soon after Bodhi commenced work, her employer was sub-contracted to face paint during one of the busiest weeks of school holidays on the Gold Coast... KIDS WEEK... and Bodhi was rostered on for 5 days of 6 hour shifts! Smack bang in the middle of the Gold Coast in Cavill Ave. She hadn't picked up a paint brush in earnest since high school. *cue panic*.
Now, the one thing you need to know about Bodhi is, she has never really been known to do things in halves. And a job worth doing is worth doing well. So she researched the heck out of face painting, bought an excellent starter kit from Face Paint Shop Australia and began searching for the best artists online from which to learn.
Down the rabbit hole she fell.
And it was totally-random-didn't-see-it-coming-hit-ya-for-a-six instant love. It was something about the immediacy of the results, the instant reaction from the kids, the pressure to work quickly, the smooth feel of the brush on skin, the mixing of the paint to get creamy whites and inky blacks, the fact that nobody expected perfect results... but you wanted to go for it anyway. It was totally addictive.
Bodhi smashed out Kids Week and never stopped painting, she became the go-to face painter gal at her little part-time job and continued painting on her own face and even thighs during the evenings when she got home.
A month later, good friend Tegan, also known to not do things by halves, had a tremendously magical fort party to celebrate her twenty-somethin' birthday and Bodhi could not resist the opportunity to take her small beginners kit and practice painting on other humans. Everyone humoured her graciously and offered their faces willingly. Tegan, however, threw her for a six...
“Make me a fawn”, she said, face glistening with birthday cheer.
Bodhi scrunched her face, “A whaaaaat?”
“HERE!” Tegan exclaimed, pointing vehemently at a photo on her phone. “A FAWN! It's a deer make-up thing, very popular, haven't you seen it? Make me a cute deer. In pink.”
And Bodhi gave it a red hot go... fairy floss pink face, white dots, black nose, black top lip.
That magic night, 'twas not just a seed that was planted, but a fully mature gnarly ol' oak that impaled Bodhi's brain like a lightening bolt.
In an instant the whole concept for DEER ME! Face & Body Art downloaded into her mind in complete vivid detail. The branding, the deer uniforms, the kit set-up... Every. Little. Detail.
But this was not the plan.
There was a serious visual arts career taking shape. A vision board had even been made.... sure Bodhi was at a bit of a crunch-time in her life where she had vehemently decided to cultivate more joy and follow her bliss but... there was nothing even remotely connected to face painting in The Plan. So Bodhi did her best to try and ignore the idea. But it was no good.... it had tapped into her soul and was fully rooted.
Six months later, the hours at her part-time job dropped dramatically and this damn oak tree of an idea had seemed to have attracted a swarm of bees. The idea really started to buzz when Bodhi realised she needed something else on the side that was reliable. She crunched some numbers and discovered she could probably kind of maybe be able to support her visual arts practice by face painting for herself on the weekends.
She cracked. And it felt good. Damn good.
She sunk her meagre holiday savings into upgrading her kit and doing all the businessy set-up things that busy businesses need, built a website and within a month, launched DEER ME! Face & Body Art. She had finally landed at the bottom of the rabbit hole, and it was wonderful.
All the meanwhile, Tegan had been looking on with keen enthusiasm. It seems this face painting caper is not just addictive, but completely contagious. A visual artist as well (again, more on that another day) and working a part-time office job on the side, Tegan could appreciate the fun and creativity of it all... and really, really loved the unique branding and identity of DEER ME. Bodhi recognised the crazy eye and encouraged Tegan to give it a go at every opportunity.
A few months later, Tegan was made redundant from her job. *sad trombone* She rocked up on Bodhi's doorstep the next day with the news. However, there were no tears. Not a hint of a worry. There was actually a few snappy high fives and maybe even an happy dance or two.
“You wanna be a deer?” Bodhi asked?
“Heck Yes!” Tegan replied.
“Welcome to the herd.”
And in nine months since the launch, this is what we now know...
BEFORE: Face painting was something people did on the side.
NOW: Face Painting is a profession. Legit people.
BEFORE: Face painters had to dress up as fairies.
NOW: We can dress up as whatever we want. Hell to the yes Deer!
BEFORE: Face painting was for people who had experience with kids.
NOW: Kids are just people. And now we probably like them better than most adults.
BEFORE: Face painting was easy.
NOW: Ahhhh no. Face painting requires dedication, relentless practice and making mistake after mistake after mistake before finally nailing a design.
BEFORE: Face painting was not real art.
NOW: Face painting is the art of happiness.