Shannon Fennell's Blog

My life, art, travel, make-up, cooking and the occasional rant!


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A Retrospective

I was looking for a post on this blog about one of the competitions I had won… couldn’t find anything about it. Then realized… this blog started in 2009. My major award winning was prior to that!

So, here goes… to document some of the conventions I’ve attended, competitions I’ve done and awards I’ve received. Some images will seem familiar.

I started with online photo contests at Snazaroo USA Inc. This is a list of awards received from 2001 through 2013 (56 of them):

QUEEN OF THE HILL: July 20 to September 19, 2005

First Place: Sesame Street 2008 (Kermit); Dragons 2005 (Winged Dragon)

Second Place: Brian Wolfe Contest 2013 (Dragon); Halloween 2012 (Evil Jester); Birds 2009 (Penguin); Birds 2005 (Green Bird); Best of the Best for 2005 (Winged Dragon); Dolphins, Sharks and Other Ocean Creatures 2002 (Shark)

Third Place: Autumn & Fall 2005 (Chipmunk); Fish Faces 2005 (Jaws); Unicorns, Rainbows and Balloons 2005 (Rainbow Helmet); Painting with Powders 2004 (Holly); Working with Electric Colours 2003 Winter Tree)

Finalist: Halloween 2005 (Winkie Guard); Halloween 2005 (Full Face Burn SFX); Halloween 2004 (Alien in Space); Summer Free-for-All 2004 (Wolf); Summer Free-for-All 2004 (Lion)

Honourable Mentions: Halloween 2012 (Blue Ice Fairy); Halloween 2012 (Zombie Spidey); Butterflies 2009 (Blue Butterfly); Butterflies 2009 (Purple Butterfly); One-Stroke 2008 (Peacock Crown); Halloween 2008 (Bat); Summer 2008 (Green Cat); Flag Butterflies 2006 (Canada); Silhouettes 2006 (Bison); Silhouettes 2006 (Star); Halloween 2006 (Pinky & The Brain); Best of 2005 (Water Dragon); Painting Hands 2005 (Handgun); Halloween 2005 (Circle Monster); Halloween 2005 (Raptor); Halloween 2005 (Evil Clown); Halloween 2005 (Skull); Halloween 2005 (Cowardly Lion); Halloween 2005 (Evil Smile); Summer 2005 (Mutant Bunnerfly); Summer 2005 (Half Tiger); Summer 2005 (Rolls Royce); Summer 2005 (Phoenix); Summer 2005 (Fire Breathing Dragon); Power Rangers & The Like 2004 (Autobot); Holidays 2004 (Flanders Field); Halloween 2004 (Purple Dragon); Step-By-Step 2003 (Latex Burn); Painting Your Own Face 2003 (Butterfly with Flowers); Painting Your Own Face 2003 (Daisys); Halloween 2003 (Exotic Tiger); Dogs 2003 (Bull Mastiff); Butterflies 2003 (Purple Butterfly); Working with Electric Colours 2003 (Winter Moon); Summertime 2002 (Frog Catching Fly); Accents to the Face 2002 (Swan Mask); Out Of This World 2002 (Flying Saucer).

I also won a few other sponsored contests from different forums and companies.

In 2004 I attended the Face and Body Art International Conference in San Francisco and participated in the Face Painting competition. The theme was “Space” I didn’t place but my score sheet had very high marks for originality and technique. And my costume was very popular. I bought a reaper rob and about $300 of dimensional fabric paint and spent most of a week decorating it.

I did get a couple of uses out of it. It won the costume contest at the local library fundraiser later than year – I had the hood up and my face completely blacked out, with a miniature Enterprise 1701 hanging in front of my face. I called it Space, the Final Frontier.

In 2005 this dragon design, painted on my brother (Neil died in 2006) won me Best Face Painter in North America from Snazaroo USA Inc. and also International Face Painter of the Year from the UK Face & Body Art Convention in the UK.

At the 2006 UK Face & Body Painting Convention I was teaching, I wasn’t competing live but won a special award for making the judges laugh. I’d let my friend, Anne, dress me and do my make-up (I was NOT involved in the design nor did I have knowledge of it in advance!) She dressed me up as Super Painter, complete with lettered t-shirt, utility belt, cape, etc. so I just went with it!

Also in 2006 (I flew over after the UK Convention) I participated in the Fantasy Worldwide Face Painting competition in Putte, Belgium. This was a live competition, the theme was “Movies” and we had two hours to paint and accessorize our designs. I won with my Lady and the Tramp design.

In 2007 I entered the US Body Painting Festival’s Body Painting Competition in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The theme was “Halloween” and we had to paint two designs, one each day of the two-day competition. We were allowed six hours to paint and accessorize our models prior to judging and a stage performance. I won Second in the Sponge & Brush category.

These are my design sketches – the final versions after several ideas were scrapped.

These are shots by the professional at the show. Day one was The Headless Horseman and day two was Bats.

In 2007 (yes, I travelled a lot that year) I attended the UK Face & Body Art convention and we won best costume. We meaning my friend Anne was body painted and dressed up by me, and she worked the room! I was a shrubbery.

In 2009 I was an instructor at Living Canvas, a convention held in San Jose, California. No competition but took part in the jams and had a wonderful time.

My mom had a stroke in January of 2010 so I stopped travelling for competitions and conventions. I still entered wearable art shows and participated in local competitions and collaborations, but no overnight travel (unless mom came.) I had planned to attend and compete at the World Body Painting Festival in Austria in 2010, but family first.


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I’ll be back soon

Sorry for the long absence. I’ve always posted at least once a month since I started this blog but this summer has been very different for me.

I will be posting about my trip to South Africa, Swaziland and Mozambique back in May/June hopefully by the end of this month. I have lots of photos and stories to tell about my volunteer experience with VESA and the wonderful things I saw and did.

I got home from Africa late on June 6 and immediately had to leave again for my summer job as a cook/baker at a camp at the south end of Algonquin Park. I’ve been working 13-16 hour days since June 8, and in that time I’ve only had 2 days off… so when I’m not working I’m sleeping. My last day of work is August 25, then back to college on September 4.

Once I’m home I’ll have a chance to rest and start posting again.

Here is a photo of a sunset in Tofo, Mozambique – we were high up at a lodge overlooking the estuary.

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And… That’s a wrap for Halloween 2016!

Another year of Halloween appointments completed.  This year was a bit rough for me as I am still struggling with my gallbladder pain (surgery is scheduled in EIGHT MORE SLEEPS!) As I wasn’t driving I was able to take my pain pills so it was reasonably tolerable (most of the time.)

This was the first year that there were no no-shows, so thank you to my clients – and the ones who called to cancel.  It made planning my day and filling open spots so much easier!

My first appointments this year were on Thursday afternoon, then all through the day Friday, solid on Saturday until 10 p.m. – thankfully Sunday was free from appointments but spent prepping for a special effects job – and then Monday, Halloween, with more bookings.

There were a lot of skulls.  Every year there are skulls. This year most of what I did was skulls… sugar skulls, half-skulls, full skulls, demonic skulls… with a few other things.  And one special effects zombie.  Five years ago it was the other way around – lots of special effects zombies and a couple skulls.  Guess tastes change.  Or overexposure on social media.

So here is a selection of what I did this year.

This first one won Scariest Costume (client emailed me to let me know!)

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These next ones were a few of the ones done at at Muskoseepi Park for their annual Halloween Spooktacular.

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And a sampling of the skulls done over the weekend:

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kirsten

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sam

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And some of the usual suspects…

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Vinny’s ides this year was Cruella DeVille who had been bitten by were-dalmatians and was morphing into one… LOL…

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And the last one to share today, a little raccoon ready for trick-or-treating!

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It has begun…

My first Halloween clients of the year were tonight.

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And I put my Mummy up in the window.

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Another client dropped off his prosthetics so I can get them painted and prepped for Halloween Day.

Tomorrow my first appointment is at 7:15 a.m.

Saturday is fully booked at this moment.  That seems to be fluid though as Saturday has been fully booked about four different times since the end of September, then I’ll have a couple clients cancel, fill-up the spots, repeat… LOL.  A wait-list has now been started.

Skulls are the most popular request so far – both the Day of the Dead variety and the skeletal ones.

I acquired a great piece of artwork today – a friend is doing a drawing a day and this was her work from yesterday.  I loved it so I bought it!  Framed and hung it in my studio this afternoon so she is on the wall to supervise all the skulls I will be painting this weekend!

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My studio is all set-up and  organized, including a photo backdrop. I am ready!  Bring it on Halloween!

 

 


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Halloween is Coming – part four

HALLOWEEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This weekend is going to busy, busy, busy!  The party night, which is when my services are in the most demand, is Saturday.  As Halloween is actually next Monday, the bookings on that day are kids on their way to school and my regular special effects client in the early morning.

This year I have appointments booked on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday.  As always, it is a tiring weekend, but I look forward to it every year.

I am booked solid on Saturday but there are always cancellations at the last minute – and unfortunately no-shows.  I keep a waitlist and will call people if a spot opens up, so you can still contact me (message me through my Facebook page which is linked to on the right.)  I just can’t guarantee you will get in.

Here are some of my favourite costumes and make-up design combinations.

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comicconman

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I love what I do!

Next week’s post will be all about what I did this year for Halloween, so stay tuned.


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Halloween is Coming – part three

Oh oh oh… Halloween is getting closer!!

I work at a few Halloween themed events annually – I do up the haunters and staff at the Muskoseepi Park Haunted House every year; face paint at the Rotary Stompin’ Scarecrow Festival (will be there on Oct 23rd!) and have painted at the GP Museum’s Haunted Hayride for the last several years.

It is always fun to match the costumes people are wearing!  It is my favourite thing to do –   whether it is a Princess or a Death Eater!  And I love a challenge.

Here are photos of make-up/face painting done over the years for different events and Halloween.

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MadScientist

kidskull

zombiecleo

Fennell-1-AG

Spurs3

Firstever
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Littlezombie

Sprites

yellowskull

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They can drive!!!

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Painted up for a night of clubbing!

I don’t always have an opportunity to take photos while I am working if it is busy, so it is nice when I can access those taken by the photographers from the newspaper or official event photographers.

 


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Halloween is coming!

The most wonderful time of the year!

I am going to do a weekly post featuring past make-ups and costumes I have done – for fun and possible inspiration.

I am still taking appointments for Halloween make-up for this year but am filling up fast so if you are my area and want to book I suggest contacting me ASAP!  You can message me through my Facebook Page – the link is on the right of this page.

These make-ups are from one of my favourite appointments – a group of friends would come regularly for special events (not just Halloween, but birthday pub crawls and theme nights.)  This particular event was a Dead Pirates theme.

Christine4

meaghan1

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wench3

scruffy

Ho1

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parrott

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Well, 2014, it’s been swell…

Let’s have a look at the major highlights in my world, of 2014:

January 2014

We had a massive amount of snow to deal with last winter – had to pay a guy to clear the roof, and it kept coming.

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I was hired to do some body painting for a couple of club servers for a theme night at their club – the theme was “Safari.”

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Private customers for Mardi Gras themed fundraisers too.

February 2014

The body painting continued with painting a statue for a play at GPLT, “The Shape of Things.”  It was a great gig as painting the same thing so many times usually doesn’t happen.  Each night was a little different.

Statue Mar 2014-page-001

Also face painted at Family Day at Muskoseepi Park, and at the Timbits Jambouree.

March 2014

I took a henna workshop with Michelle Forrester of Fairie Girl Henna in Beaverlodge.  It was fun, but I won’t be adding it to my own business.

Was getting ready for “Macbeth” – I got to create the head for the final scene.

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And do the make-up and hair – I concentrated on the Witches and my crew handled the rest.

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April 2014

Macbeth wrapped up at the theatre and I was busy with Easter face painting and the Swan Festival.

Marilyns granddaughter

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She’s crying because she wanted mustard on her hotdog.

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May 2014

At GPLT we were doing “The Wind in the Willows” so designs were created and painted for each performance.

Badger

Badger

Mrs. Churchmouse

Churchmouse

Groundhog

Groundhog

Also did some fashion make-up, contouring and age make-up for a disguise for private clients.

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KimB4 medium

June 2014

In June mom and I drove down to Calgary for a week to see Cher & Cyndi Lauper.  It was a nice trip, fairly straight line too.

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These two theme cars were at the dealership next to our hotel in Calgary.  I am partial to the Spider-car.

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July 2014

Painted some dinosaurs for the Canada Day Parade, then spent a lot of the month building a dinosaur myself.  Even booked a week off from the day-job to get it built.

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It was a long hot summer so the garden looked nice.

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Painted at Muskoseepi Park for Canada Day with a crew of ten.

August 2014

Finished building my Pachyrhinosaurus, and body painted for the Amber Ball.

Got my photo with Dan Aykroyd!

Dan Ackroyd

And with Philip J. Currie!

Maj Photography (49 of 220)

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September 2014

Painted at the Wembley Demolition Derby. Then built a Tyrannosaurus Rex to match with my Pachyrhinosaurus for the Wearable Art Show at the Centre for Creative Arts.

They were left on display at the Centre for Creative Arts.

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October 2014

Ah, October… my favourite month.

This year I had back-to-back Frozen themed birthday parties.  I don’t mind the princesses but I never, ever, ever want to see that snowman again!

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And, of course, Halloween!

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Always fun!  This year my clients won three contests: Scariest Costume, Best Male Costume and Sexiest Costume.

I face painted at Muskoseepi Park’s Halloween Spooktacular, and the GP Museum’s Spooks and Stooks.

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November 2014

The weekend of the 9th our hot water tank flooded our basement – as of today, STILL waiting for the restoration company to show-up to assess the damages.

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Christmas party bookings started up and planning for upcoming shows.

Encana Nov 29 crew

December 2014

Christmas parties, and more Christmas parties. And getting ready ourselves.

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And for the first time I will be face painting on New Year’s Eve down at the First Footings Celebration at Muskoseepi Park.

As usual there were lots of birthday parties and events booked throughout – by this time of year it is all a blur.  I enjoy all of them a great deal – I am very lucky to be able to do what I love do and get paid for it!

On the home front lots of frustration – we have had to replace mom’s full time aide repeatedly.  We are on full timer number six in 2014 right now.  Things are good so we hope this one will stay.  Our part timer is coming up on a year with us in January.

In the new year mom is having cataract surgery on both eyes and she hopes to be reading Stephen King to herself soon, again.

I’m planning to get a store set-up online to sell my e-book and other items – there is a learning curve so it may take a bit of time for me to figure it out.  I’ve got the site but need to populate it and figure out the processing side of it.

Happy New Year to everyone – all the best for 2015!

 


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Snowflakes

I’ve gone a little snowflake crazy this winter (and by “winter” I mean Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec… and it will continue until probably April…)

I’ve always done snowflake designs in the winter – when you have snow on the ground, typically, six months of the year it is a common motif.

I’ve usually done them freehand which can be a bit time-consuming, or done the cheater type with just flicks of the brush so they are more of a six pointed star.  This year I got smart – with inspiration from a friend (well, more like completely copied her idea with her help, I might add) I made stamps for snowflakes.

The actual reason for this was Frozen.

All of those little girls wanting “Frozen” or “Elsa” designs… which in face painting circles means a blue base and white swirls and snowflakes.  I was booked, back-to-back, in October for Frozen themed birthday parties… the snowflake stamp saved my life.

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And we will NEVER mention “Olaf” again…. EVER!

My crew loves the snowflake stamps too!

Using the stamps also guarantees all snowflakes are PROPER snowflakes with SIX arms… not eight, not four, not ten… SIX!  As shown here in this gorgeous photo a friend and local photographer, Marilyn Grubb, took and captioned:

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I got stuck in the rut myself when painting myself for jobs – it is just so easy.  Just vary the base colour, change the layout…

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This is one of my winter masks with my “old” snowflakes – I’ve been doing it lots with the stamps instead.

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And I have several different snowflake shapes – I just have the one in my stash that I paint myself with – I should probably change it out for some variety.

 

 

 

 


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My Annual Halloween Round-up

Another Halloween is over and done.  I am exhausted and so sore from standing and/or sitting for multiple hours over the last week.  This getting old thing really sucks.  Last night after a marathon 14 hours with only two 15 minute breaks, I had to take two Aleve and three Extra Strength Tylenol just to be able to sleep my legs and feet were so sore.

Then, after sleeping like the dead until the alarm went off this morning (as I had my first appointment at 8 a.m.), I awoke with my right arm completely numb… sigh… it isn’t completely back yet and it is after midnight now.

But enough about me… oh, wait… it is always about me.  Never-mind.

Here is a selection of work I’ve done over the last week or so for Halloween…

First, one of my regular customers – this year she won Scariest Costume at a local club!

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And next a selection of Sugar Skulls and Skulls… the most popular request this year.  Last year was Zombies (remember? Check it out here to see last year’s photos), this year skulls.  I did quite a few more as well.

SugarSkull2014 Romneyskullblack Leachskull Skull2014

Then there were the kids… Frozen and Monster High top the list there!

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This next one was a first … My first bearded lady.

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And the normal Halloween type stuff…

A Witch

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A Face Peel…

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A Creepy Jester…

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The Joker… and some sort of Anime character he had on his phone (I have NO idea…)

Joker WTF 2014

And my only special effects requests this year.  They were dressing as “army zombies” (promised me a photo once they got into costume.)

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This next was a mash-up – He called it The Angel of Death.

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And this guy was hilarious… he wanted a Velociraptor so I narrowed the T-rex design and made sharper teeth. He seemed thrilled and was taking selfies of himself continually.  His friend was giggling about it.

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And this was a copy of a design she found on the internet – pretty much exactly as that is what she wanted.

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So that is some of what I’ve painted over the last week or so.

I also painted staff and Haunters at the Muskoseepi Halloween Spooktacular on the 25th, and at the Grande Prairie Museum’s “Stooks and Spooks” on the 29th – got my picture in the paper painting there (won’t get my hands on a copy till Monday.)