Monday, August 17, 2015

Halloween is right around the corner..... PAINT YOUR FACE!

If you are anything like my family your kids are picking out their costume ideas for the next year shortly after Halloween is over; sometimes before.

Halloween is almost here... oh the excitement!

Costumes and Accessories are what it's all about!  Whether you're putting together your own costume or standing at party city calling out for a number off their giant wall of photos; you want to like what you are going to wear, or what your kids put on; and if there is a costume contest.... win it!

Prior to becoming a professional face painter here were a few of my personal opinions/issues:

  • Inexpensive costumes look cheap!
  • Quality costumes are expensive!
  • Masks are no fun!! Even with as far as they have come (I remember when they had the little stretchy band stapled in the side and it always snapped or ripped the side of the mask) - they are still uncomfortable most of the time, they usually look cheap, you sweat like crazy, you can't eat or drink, and hardly anyone ever keeps them on for longer than a few minutes.

Now my solution is... PAINT YOUR FACE!

Besides having unlimited options to what you can do it eliminates a lot of issues and many times you can turn regular clothes into "costumes".

This past year my daughter didn't want her face painted like she had previous years; she wanted to buy a costume.  As much as I LOVE PAINTING MY KIDS, I agreed to let her buy one last minute. She is big for her age and all the store costumes in her size were, nicely put - too risky!

Skeleton and Broken Doll Face Paint by Premo DesignsSo after searching online she finds "the one" - a $60 Broken Doll costume!  I will admit, it looked cute in the package.  I told her we could get a plaid outfit and paint her face, but nooooooo she had to have "a real costume this time".  So I bite the bullet and order the non-refundable costume... Can you guess how it was?  I should have known better but I thought for the price the quality would be better.  The costume itself was thin and had tiny pieces of velcro that wouldn't stay.  The mask was cheap, odd shaped, and didn't fit her face correctly.  We literally got the costume in the mail the day before Halloween.  Too much money spent and no time left to buy a new one.  We were both quite upset but had to make the best of it.

She ended up wearing the costume and... dunt dunt dun... I painted her face anyway!!  It looked better than the mask (even if it had fit).  For my son I painted his face like a skeleton, he threw on a hoodie and was good to go!  PAINT THEIR FACE DEB!.... ALWAYS PAINT THEIR FACE!!  lol

October is a super busy month for a face painter.  If you plan on booking, hurry up... you may already be too late.  There are birthdays, festivals, company parties and of course costume parties, and private makeup sessions for Halloween.  People book a year ahead of time for months like this.

Below is a quick face I did on my daughter and and more detailed face for a client - both with regular clothes as part of their costumes.

Zombie Face Paint by Premo Designs

Zombie Face

Who doesn't love Zombies??  They have taken over the world!  This was a quick 15 minute face paint, she threw on a hooded sweatshirt and some jeans with tears and had everyone freaking out.  She also has a killer "zombie walk".  We went to the mall like this and even some adults were a little scared.

Scary Clown Face Paint by Premo Designs

Creepy Clown Face

This was a private session that took about 45 minutes to complete.  I did this with an airbrush and waterproof makeup so it would stay on all night at a costume party.  As I was painting him he told me how his sister in law is terrified of clowns and he thought it was going to be so funny to scare her - and not be able to remove a mask.  Not sure if he owned that sweater or if he bought it for Halloween but it definitely went well with his face.

Done professionally a painted face and/or body transforms a person into something else.  

I realize that not everyone has the supplies or skills to paint a face.  Consider hiring a professional! Check out Premo Designs and Contact Us to discuss your ideas and reserve your spot!

Make sure you check out my blog post What to Look for When Hiring a Professional Face Painter.

I'm sure like me you have seen or experienced DIY face paint - not always the best.  Before I decided to invest in this career I used to paint my kids faces for fun.  When looking back at pictures of what I did before having the proper tools and knowledge... it's laughable.  You can save yourself a lot of frustration, time, and money if you hire a professional to do what they do best!  If you are looking to avoid makeup or can't get a spot with someone in your area, check out pinterest for tons of ideas on turning regular clothes into costumes!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Caricatures by Mark

My friend Mark is a local artist who dabbles in all forms of artistry.  Check out his blog and like him on facebook to follow his newest addition of Caricatures!!

Mark's Blog

Mark Brennan - caricaturist
Mark Brennan

Looking for more talents?  Check out Other Party Businesses recommended by Premo Designs

Why I'm Not Seen at Many Public Events

I have received quite a few emails these last few weeks asking why I am not out at more public events.  I don't have an exact answer for that; there are a couple reasons.

I have reached out to some events that have been using the same face painter for years, so they stick with them.  This may seem odd, but that makes me happy.  Loyalty is hard to come by and it's good to know that events and businesses show that respect.  While some parents have come to enjoy my work most, (and I appreciate that) others do a nice job and have loyal customers just the same.

The main reason I am not involved in more public events is money.  This may seem harsh but I'll explain...
·         A lot of events want free services
·         Most public events charge a "vendor" fee anywhere between $50 - $500 to be part of their event.  I don't consider a face painter a vendor; I am not selling an item.
With this there are usually two options:

We paint for tips
Even though some people give generous tips, some people don't/can’t tip at all and most tips               wouldn't equate to how much it would cost to paint a face

We charge a fee to customers to paint them
I don't like this because I decide a price based on time and supply cost - some people don't want to pay or can't afford to pay the amount

In both cases there is still a big chance the event isn't as busy as expected and I spend hours sitting and taking a loss.  Or the opposite can happen, it is so busy that is overwhelming.  Even if I was able to break even or make a profit I didn't enjoy this type of arrangement, so I decided I would no longer do them.

I have asked several artists the reasons why they do events for free or a cost...
                Most said they do it for the exposure

Exposure, this is a word I am hit with a lot in this business.  Event planners contact me and try to get a fee or free services and always offer exposure.  Artists die from exposure!  It's not worth it to me.  There is no guarantee you will increase your business.  It's more likely that most people lose your card or forget your name when they end up looking for a painter.
                Others said they aren't in this business for the money

Don't get me wrong, I got into this business because I loved it - but I intend to be successful and make money.  I invested thousands of dollars in my business when I started, I claim all income (and pay taxes); and I have a lot of expenses.  I spend most weekdays marketing and improving my skills and most weekends and holidays working.  I don't expect to be rich but I do hope to be able to provide for my family while being able to do something I am passionate about and enjoy. 

My family is the most important thing in my life; and time is precious.  To take away from them I have to be able to have something to show for it; I need to feel it’s worth it.  You can always make more money, you can’t get back time you’ve lost!

So actually I guess it's more about time than money but you get the idea.

If you would like to hire me for an event or private party please visit Premo Designs' website and don't forget to follow me on other social media! Pinterest Instagram Twitter Facebook

Family Photo
Memphis, Arianna, Me, Jake, Jacob, Ashley

My Great Dane Apollo
My Great Dane Cuda
My Shar Pei Mix Jax

Friday, February 27, 2015

Hiring a Face Painter Costs That Much???

If you're shopping around for the first time looking for entertainment you may be in shock when you find out pricing.  Don't freak out so soon, a lot goes into that amount.

What you are paying for?

Before I started my career as a professional face and body painter I had no idea what a face painter charged or what that cost included.

Here's a quick breakdown
I charge $100 per hour for private parties with face painting services.  Before you read this, I just want to say this is not me complaining.  I love every minute of my job - even the paperwork!  Let's say you book a one hour party...
  • I spend at least 10 minutes during the booking process (providing your quote, answering questions, creating a contract and invoice)
  • I spend about 10 minutes to sterilize and pack my kit for your event
  • I drive up to 30 minutes distance- that's included in your price
  • I arrive 15 minutes early to set up  - that's included in your price
That's an hour or more of work before your event has event started.  Not including practicing and creating special designs to match a theme or special request.  
  • I stay 15 minutes late to clean up - that's included in your price (sometimes I stay longer if someone showed up late or there were more guests than expected)
  • I drive up to 30 minutes home - that's included in your price
  • I spend about 15 minutes cleaning my kit and supplies
  • I spend at least 10 minutes to follow up about the event and bookkeeping
That's another hour of work after your event is over.  Not including unpacking my car and kit.
So far that is at least 3 hours of work for $100.
Besides the time directly related to your event, I also have business expenses; a huge list! All the things I pay so I can operate my business.  I won't bore you with every penny but the largest and most pertinent of which are...
  • Taxes - that's right I have to pay taxes
  • Liability Insurance - this protects us both
  • Supplies - I buy only cosmetic grade, FDA compliant supplies
  • Advertising and Internet Fees - how else would you find me
All that and I still spend hours each week...
  • practicing and learning new techniques
  • on workshops and classes (which can cost hundreds of dollars)
  • networking with other local businesses 
  • updating my social media accounts to keep people interacting with my business
I spend most weekends and holidays working, taking time from my family.  That is probably the hardest part of my job.  Other than that, the list above and the rest that I do makes me happy.  I am fortunate enough to be my own boss and do something that I love; at the same time being able to bring happiness to others.  After all is said and done I may not be making a ton but I am happy; and it doesn't get much better than that!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What to Look for When Hiring a Professional Face Painter

If you are thinking about hiring entertainment for your next event, face and body art is a great choice! 

So... what should you look for when hiring a professional?

Let me start out by saying that just because you find a face painter online or at a public event does not mean that they are a professional.  I mean they are in the sense a "professional", because they are working in a profession; but that doesn't automatically mean you should hire them.  

Back to the question - what to look for... Safety, Quality, and Professionalism! 

Do they have a website? 
Almost everything you need to know about them should be on their website.

You should be able to see:

  1. Is the artist using cosmetic supplies? There is a difference between “professional supplies” and cosmetic supplies. Professional supplies may be great paints and expensive; but they may not be for use on skin.  Anyone applying paint, ink, or glitter to the face or body should only be using cosmetic grade products. There are many brands available, but only one brand local.  
  2. Is the artist/business insured? For face and body painters in NYS there are no special permits or insurance requirements.  It is at your discretion if this is a necessity for you. To me… insurance is a must! Even though using cosmetic grade products make an allergic reaction less likely, they can occur.

  • Photos – you want to see photos for a couple reasons…

Premo Designs Tiger and Sunset Face Paint
  1. Do you like the quality of the work? If you don't like their designs or artistic ability shown on their site, it will not be any better at your event.
  2. Is their work consistent?  If you see a couple spectacular designs and others that are messy, chances are they have photos of other's work portrayed.

With social media and google images are easily available, you can find almost anything when you search.  Even though it's wrong, some artists use photos that do not belong to them to show examples of what can be done with face paint.  No one should ever use a photo that is not theirs, but it does happen.

  • Testimonials – you want to see that previous clients are happy.
*Reviews can be tricky because anyone can leave one. Check for accounts with the following… GigSalad, GigMasters, Thumbtack, PartyPop… etc. These are popular vendor sites that only accept verified reviews from clients who booked through the site.

A true professional face painter will display all the above and more:

☑  Professional demeanor
☑  Good with children and adults
☑  Arrive early to set up and stay late to clean up (without charging you)
☑  Should have their own table, chairs, and canopy if you don’t have them available
☑  Be able to deal with a crowd and adjust their time and designs according
☑  Have an ample kit that is clean and ready to go
☑  Refuse to paint the face of anyone with open wounds, skin problems, or obvious sickness

Most face painters charge between $100-$200 per hour, per artist.

Spend a few minutes to check out your local face painter; compare them to others, make sure you get what you pay for!

Find out What You Pay for When Hiring a Professional Face Painter!