I was proud to have been the Artist Guest of Honor for
CopperCon 25  


The Scene

It was truly a great privilege to be the Guest of Honor for this year's 25th anniversary of CopperCon, Arizona's annual literary oriented science fiction and fantasy convention.  The event was held on September 9-11 at the Embassy Suites in Phoenix.  I had a blast soaking up the notoriety, but it was actually a lot of work preparing for the event.  In the paragraphs below I detail several of the components involved in being the GoH including the creation of the picture for the program cover, the entry of artwork in the art gallery, and of course, pictures from the marathon body painting demonstration.

Before all of that however, I would like to thank the late Ray Gish who was instrumental in making me the Guest of Honor this year.  I had gotten to know Ray who was in charge of the art shows for all of the recent CopperCons and LepreCons that I have attended.  The CopperCon 25 committee asked Ray if he had any suggestions for the artist guest of honor and he recommended me to Lee Whitside, the convention's guest liaison.  I did have the opportunity to thank Ray at this year's LepreCon convention before he passed away later in July.  Ray will be missed and I am so glad that I had an opportunity to meet him.

As Guest of Honor I was treated like royalty and enjoyed getting the chance to meet the other GoH's and the CopperCon committee members at the GoH luncheon (the steak was awesome).  I had recently started reading The Briar King by Greg Keyes and was thrilled to chat with him about the selection of book covers and where he had lived.  Next to me sat Robert Sawyer and his wife and we discussed everything from him hosting the L. Ron Hubbard Future Writers awards to things to do while in Phoenix.  He was gracious enough to sign my hardback copy of his book "Calculating God".  Of course I had everyone sign my program book.

Another author's autograph that I collected was from Yvonne Navarro.  She had set up shop in the dealer's room and as I passed by I picked up a copy of Elektra, the novelization of the recent movie.  I had spent the past month working on an Elektra lifecast (see below) so I had researched the character to the nth degree.  Interested, but I decided to put it back down when Yvonne said it was better than the movie and offered to sign it.  I didn't realize that she was the author.  I'm now a proud owner of a signed copy of Elektra (which is better than the movie by the way).

I volunteered to be a judge this year for the masquerade much to the dismay of my kids who wanted to be contestants.  I had been part of the team that won best of show for the LepreCon masquerade so I felt it was only fair to share the wealth.  Besides that I didn't think that it would be very cool for the GoH to enter their work into the competition.  My fellow judges included Kyo, who will be the masquerade director at the upcoming Anizona Anime Convention, and Janeen O'Kerry, who is an author based here in Phoenix that writes romance novels with a fair amount of fantasy characterization.  We had a lot of fun judging and coming up with names for all of the prizes.  The top awards went to two Anime Characters, a swashbuckler, and a construction worker storm trooper.  Many of the costumes were first rate and a good time was had by all.

I was involved in several panels including the bodypainting panels detailed below.  My first panel, however, was to premiere the horror movie that I had recently completed with Webb Pickersgill called Second Chances.  You can check out the short 3-minute version of the movie at the official website, www.secondchancesmovie.com , but at this panel, attendees were treated to the new "directors cut" version which is approximately 7 minutes long.  We had a pretty good turn out of attendees from the convention and the entire cast and crew were on-hand with the exception of the beautiful actress Kayla Rei who had come down with the flu that weekend.  Actors Kevin O'Connor and Shane Stevens fielded questions from the audience and all of the participants were provided with Second Chances posters.

Speaking of posters, Elaine Carlyle did a wonderful job creating the sci-fi convention ambiance by displaying posters of all sizes including some of the program cover of Courtney Black in bodypaint (see below).  My jaw dropped, however, when I saw the beautifully vibrant blow-up of the cover image on a glossy 24"X36" photograph.  I'd love to get a copy of one of these myself but this one was earmarked for the charity auction.  I donated a print of the Cheetah bodypainting and a signed copy of a Boris Vallejo CD Rom to the charity auction which benefited the Challenger Space Center (which is a building that my engineering firm designed coincidentally).

My room at the resort was first class too!  I was glad that my wife and kids were able to stay one night and take in a little bit of the convention.  We all went to the 501st's panel to hear what they have coming up (sponsor a Stormtrooper for the upcoming walk-a-thon at http://www.az501st.com/ ).  While I went off to do the artshow walkthrough, my family went off to play Sci-Fi Jeopardy.  They were paired up with the writer Guest of Honor Rob Sawyer and ended up winning the game.  The kids were elated with a Sci-fi Channel T-shirt and keychain!

That only touches the surface of setting the scene, but it's time to move on to the detailed info from the art show, the program cover image, and the all-important body art.  So, without further adieu...


The Art Show

Every year the art show displays some of the finest sci-fi and fantasy artwork from artists all over the country.  This year it was one of my assigned duties as Guest of Honor to do a walk-through of the gallery and comment on all of the works.  I was a little worried about finding the right words to say as I walked through with a group of about 8 convention attendees, but I just started rambling and the time flew by and it turned out to be fun and conversational.

Another duty that I had was to select the GoH Artist's Choice award for the best in the show.  There was little doubt in my mind once I saw that Sarah Clemens had entered her original painting St. Labia in the gallery.  I had seen this picture previously at the Alwun House's annual Exotic Art Show and I was mesmerized by it.  It is ironic how this piece was relatively tame in comparison to the other works at the Alwun House, but here at CopperCon it was very edgy due to the nudity and the implications.  There were quite a few images that I absolutely loved, but this was my choice and it got the GoH ribbon.  Here is a thumbnail version of the painting that links to Sarah's website which includes this image and some of the other prints that were entered in the gallery and took other prizes.

Sarah Clemens painting of St. Labia

I had a tough time deciding which of my works I wanted to enter into the gallery so I kinda' cheated by setting up a laptop computer and LCD projector to have a continuously running slideshow of my works.  With this I was able to include some progress shots and several alternate images of paintings done at previous conventions.  In addition to the slideshow, I did display 13 pieces including two that were prepared specifically for the CopperCon 25 art gallery.  The first was a pencil drawing that actually drew in high school that was supposed to be a self portrait.  We were all given mirrors and told to draw ourselves and I got a little creative and made mine a cyborg creature.  This was the only representative piece of work that I could think of that I had done in two dimensions that fit the sci-fi theme so I had it re-framed in a shadow box.  I called the picture NM156 based on a song by Queensryche and here is an image of the pencil drawing:

NM156 pencil drawing inspired by Queensryche song

The next item was created just for CopperCon 25 and it is a painted lifecast of the Marvel comics (and 20th Century Fox motion picture) character Elektra.  I had started planning this project with Gullwing, the lifecasting guru of Arizona, several months before the event.  I had a pose in mind that would simulate a swan dive with arms outstretched and the back arched.  Gullwing warned me that this would be a very fragile lifecast and that although it would be difficult to cast, he was up for the challenge.  I was really impressed with a casting Gullwing had done of a little girl's hand holding a real Christmas ball.  The girl was able to pull her hand out of the mold while leaving the ball behind and this created a plaster cast of her hand with the actual Christmas ball trapped within.  Expanding on this idea, I wanted to have the lifecast of Elektra include her sais (her short sword-like weapons) molded into the casting of her hands.  I was able to buy some limited edition Elektra sais on E-bay that even sported her signature logo and matched her weapons used in the comicbooks.  Next we set out to find the perfect model for the project and Gullwing discovered Andrea.  She is a local fitness model and bodybuilder that proved to be perfect for the part.  There were two casting sessions with her and I took some pictures of the first session, but wasn't able to attend the second session in which the actual Elektra casting was made.  A significant amount of time was spent planning the session and building a platform to support her in the pose.  Add to this the time Gullwing spent pouring the mold, cleaning up the rough edges once it had set, and then applying the primer paint.  You can imagine his dismay after making all of this investment into the project when the arm broke off while he was carrying it into my garage to be painted.  The lifecast had brushed up against a dolly and that was all that it took to break the arm into three pieces.  Miraculously he was able to repair it and then I started the painting.  For the painting, I scoured the internet looking for images of Jennifer Garner in the role of Elektra and I had planned to match as much of her outfit as possible.  My search led me to several evocative paintings by artist Greg Horn and I decided that I wanted to incorporate some of his costuming in the casting also.  I opted for his loin cloth and leg straps in lieu of the movie version's long pants.  It also appears that the sais were designed based on Horn's artwork.  Here are some chronological snapshots of the lifecast being painted.

Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25 Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25 Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25
Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25 Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25 Painted lifecast of Elektra at CopperCon 25

You can see the finished Elektra at the top of this article.  It is for sale and will soon be on display at a local comic book shop.

Also on display in the art gallery were two other lifecasts that Gullwing and I had previously collaborated on and a handful of framed photographs of some of my bodypaintings.  Here are the pieces that I chose to display.

Lifecast with painted dragon of pern Lifecast of Egyptian Isis motif Alison in body paint of Phoenix bird Body painted model with Stormtroopers
Cheyenne Silver and Kalucha as Villikon characters Lynette during filming of Mystere movie Kay painted as Shaleste from Villikon Chronicles Ed painted as a pirate of the carribean
Anaiah in body painted warrioress design bodypaint cheetah from Airbrush Action article Model Dale O from last years CopperCon event. CopperCon 25 Program Cover

 

 


The Program Cover

As Guest of Honor, I was privileged to provide the artwork for the CopperCon 25 Program Cover

I had spoken to Wally Sanville about creating a cover to go along with the theme of the convention.  At the time the theme was tentatively going to be "The Adventure Continues..."  I had a space scene in mind that I discussed with Wally that I planned to paint on the back of a professional model.  I had another idea that I wanted to propose for the convention badges that would include a seductive pair of eyes staring from a copper painted face with tribal designs.  I set up the session with two models and a photographer.  The model that would have had the space scene painted on her back was not able to make it to the photo session, however the other model, Courtney Black, and the photographer, Don Crossland, and I decided to proceed with the painting for the badges.  I started with a loose plan and too little copper paint to complete any more than Courtney's face.  I was using some samples of Temptu paints that I received from them while visiting their New York office.  I transitioned to the other Temptu samples including gold, gun metal and the highly saturated Passion.  The white tribal markings are literally smeared on mud from Sedona.  Someone who was watching one of my bodypainting demonstrations several years ago had given me the mud for use on a future project and this happened to be the right time to try it out.

I was tickled with the look of the Temptu paints and the design fell into place very well.  I added a few props including the "coat rack" staff that was previously used for the Runes bodypainting at a previous CopperCon event and some brown netting.  Courtney was fabulous in front of the camera and Don was able to provide some very unique lighting and captured some really cool images.  I was so happy with the one image that I sent it to all of the people involved in the decision to pick the cover artwork.  They accepted it and I proceeded to send them a high resolution version of the picture.  I picked up the program from last year's convention to verify the dimensions of the magazine and I was horrified to remember that the covers are always in black and white.  Aaaaa!  I changed the image to black and white in photoshop and it just wasn't the same.  It was too late to try something else, so I sent them the black and white version, but with fingers crossed, I also sent the color version in hopes that they might find a way to print the covers in color.  Lo and behold they found a way.

I was ecstatic about the way "Plan B" worked out.  The space scene idea will have to wait for another opportunity to come to fruition and the idea that I had for the eyes on the badge ended up being a huge poster behind the check-in desk.  The artwork for the badges was provided by another artist named Michel Leckband and that was fine by me since the cover worked out so well.  

During the convention Courtney was on hand at one of my panels to reprise her role as this character which I have now dubbed Coppernica (see story below).

Also included in the program was my biography as follows:

Mark Greenawalt
Artist Guest of Honor

Mark Greenawalt is an artist, but it’s much more complex than that. He is driven to create and seems uninterested in limiting his genre to one art form or for that matter one subject matter. Here in the sci-fi convention circuit, we know him best for his body paintings on stunning models that are transformed into alluring fantasy characters. He has entertained audiences with his live demonstrations at every LepreCon and CopperCon since 2002, striving each time to raise the bar that he set the year before. At first he wasn’t sure how the science-fiction crowd would take to an art form that seems so unrelated on the surface, but he has always been one of us, a fan of the fantastic.

It started in childhood when even his kindergarten teacher noted on his report card that he was excelling at drawing and painting. He was especially attracted to drawing pictures of his favorite superheroes, not just the mainstream Superman, Spider-man, and Batman, but some of the less popular like Hulk, Iron Man, and even Ghost Rider. “Mom used to take me to this little used book store that sold comic books for ten cents each and she’d let me pick out five dollars worth at a time,” he says, “I couldn’t read them yet, but I studied the images lived out the stories in my mind.” As an adolescent, his mother enrolled him in private art classes in his hometown of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. He learned the basics of light and shadow, perspective, color relationships, and composition. With a little bit of knowledge and cornucopia of creativity he started painting canvases, license plates, billboards at little league fields, tire covers, and anything else that would hold paint. In middle school he assembled a team to enter a Halloween painting contest on downtown merchant storefront windows. His sixth-grade painting was the Headless Horseman, his seventh-grade painting was Ghost Rider, and in both years he garnered first place and had his picture in the local newspaper.

“Art was always fun for me and I realized that I was pretty talented for my age, but a real turning point for me was when I bought the Larry Niven novel, The Magic Goes Away, and art, specifically fantasy art, became a passion.” The cover artwork was by Boris Vallejo, who Greenawalt cites as his greatest inspiration to this day. Just like his earlier experiences with comic books he longed to dive into every sci-fi/fantasy book he could get his hands on. The difference now was that he could actually read them. There is some truth to the saying that you can’t judge a book by its cover, but if the cover didn’t move him, he had no interest in the book. The Michael Whelan covers for the Elric series by Michael Moorcock set him off on a reading spree that lasted for years, especially the cover of Stormbringer. He played Dungeons & Dragons with the big kids in the neighborhood to envelope his mind in alternate universes and he painted what he saw through his mind’s eye. He was introduced to the airbrush around this time and experimented extensively with oil paints.

The high school years proved to shift his focus for artistic endeavors to the world of music. He taught himself to play keyboards and guitar and eventually took some the money he made as an artist to buy his first synthesizer. He could play the opening part of “She’s A Little Runaway” by Bon Jovi and he was instantly welcomed into the high school garage bands. With stars in his eyes he put together rock bands for high school talent shows which eventually landed him a gig with band playing in the local night clubs. His passion for creating 2-dimensional art had nearly been replaced with the need to create music and feed off of the energy of the crowd.

“It was the 80’s and my goal in life to become famous like all of those other rockers in hair bands,” he says, “but my mother, in her infinite wisdom, encouraged me to go to college and study engineering. She said that I could still be an artist or a musician if I studied engineering, but I couldn’t do engineering if I merely pursued art and music.” These were great words to live by and that’s just what he did. He spent four years at Penn State University and earned a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. He studied through the weekdays, played music on the weekends, and somehow found the time to earn a collection of well over 300 different beer bottles from around the world. As his college days were wrapping up, he met the love of his life and the next chapter of his life began.

Lori helped him find a job with the federal government but the catch was that he would have to move to the desert town of Sierra Vista, Arizona. “We really didn’t have anything holding us there so I asked Lori if she would move to Arizona with me and that’s when our life together really began.” A funny thing happened during their first week in their new town. Mark and Lori met a few of the locals in a rock bar and the group became inseparable. Among them was Ed Clapper who had a hauntingly similar background as Mark including a Penn State degree in engineering, artistic creativity, and an interest in starting a rock band. They both also had hair down to the middle of their back which was very odd for engineers but perfect for the group they formed called Anti-M. By this time, Greenawalt’s airbrush and tubes of paint had been covered in dust, but his zest for writing songs had filled the void.

Throughout it all, his engineering career has been paying the bills and funding his hobbies. And his hobbies always tend to be a little expensive. He played three synthesizers and carried two guitars with him to Anti-M gigs and the band grew in popularity until a move to Phoenix was inevitable. Mark married Lori at the Excaliber in Las Vegas and they bought their first home in Mesa. There he invested in home studio equipment and began recording his own original songs. The band recorded a handful of songs and released a cassette tape and then exploited them in many of the now defunct clubs in Phoenix including The Roxy, The Library Café, and The Mason Jar.

By the mid-90’s changes were brewing once again for Mark, Lori, and their new bouncing baby boy. The weather seemed excruciating, the music scene had collapsed, and their families seemed too far away. The decision was made to pack up and move back East. “I wanted to pursue songwriting as a career and my wife wanted to be closer to her family,” he said, “and we really missed the changing of the seasons. After weighing the options, Nashville seemed like the perfect place.” It was for a while. Greenawalt wrote well over 200 songs and performed them in world famous places like Tootsies Orchid Lounge and The Bluebird Café. He joined ASCAP and founded his own publishing company, Future-Class X Publishing. Eventually though, the grass didn’t seem greener on this side of the fence and the home that they were now missing was in Arizona. The heat seemed more bearable after living through tornados, ice storms, and long gloomy winters in Music City U.S.A. So they headed back, now with their second bouncing baby boy.

Yet another pivotal moment came when Greenawalt purchased the book “Fantasy Art Techniques” by Boris Vallejo. In hopes of getting back into painting and being able to achieve better flesh tones, he read the book cover to cover. “I had always done my paintings using pictures from magazines as reference and it was interesting to learn that Boris photographed actual models as reference for his paintings. This encouraged me to take out an old dusty SLR camera and start searching for models to pose and photograph.” He was devastated when someone broke into his car and stole this camera, but then elated when insurance provided him with a newer model. He read Photography for Dummies and any other instructional book he could find and became accomplished at yet another form of artistic expression. Ironically he wasn’t using the photos that he took as reference for fantasy paintings, but instead he felt that the photos were art in their own right.

Back in Phoenix, he rose to the position of Vice-President for a consulting engineering firm and completed electrical designs for buildings such as the Westward Ho, Scottsdale Princess, and even had a small hand in the design of the Challenger Learning Center. His engineering profession was going great, but he felt that all of his artistic talents needed to be promoted. He contacted a publicist about representing him and was told that it was great that he could sing, play many instruments, draw, paint, and shoot photographs, but nobody was looking for a “jack-of-all-trades”. People wanted an expert at something. So what could he do that could combine many of these talents into one art form? The answer came in the 1999 Swimsuit Edition of Sports Illustrated. Renowned make-up artist Joanne Gair had bodypainted swimsuits on top models. “This was something that I knew I could do. I didn’t know how to get started, how to find models willing to do this, or even where to find paints for use on the body, but I knew how to paint and I knew how to take pictures of models. I trudged forward and it all has fallen into place.” Greenawalt had found the field where he could be an “expert.”

The ideas for bodypaintings were flowing. Photoshop had become a vehicle to take a photo of a model and manipulate it into a rough draft of what a bodypainting might look like. Eventually his best friend’s wife had heard him talk about doing these paintings and offered her back as his first canvas in this fledgling career. Then another friend, then another and eventually he had built a portfolio. Now he had the credentials to approach modeling agencies, art galleries, and sci-fi conventions. Since 2001 he has completed over 200 paintings, many of which were in front of live audiences at art galleries (Alwun House, Paper Heart, Spirit of the Senses, Mudpony), conventions (CopperCon, LepreCon, WesterCon, ComicCon, CactusCon, Vegas ComicCon), and nightclubs (Axis-Radius, Sanctuary, Jillian’s, Next, Elixir, Maloney’s). His work has appeared in dozens of magazines including a cover for Playtime Magazine and two page spread in the international ARTnews Magazine. His client list reads like a who’s who including Playboy, Maxim, Razor, 944, Bombay, Cutty Black, Bud Light, and Camel. One of the thrills of becoming an expert has been his opportunity to teach the techniques that he has learned to aspiring body artists. He taught a class in Las Vegas for Airbrush Action Magazine alongside artist Tobbi Britton and also classes at the Face And Body Art International Convention in Orlando, Florida. “I learned most of my bodypainting techniques by trial and error since it is a relatively new profession. Painting on skin has been around forever, but there is very little instructional information available on the market. I enjoy helping people who want to explore this art.”

Greenawalt has forged some great relationships with the science fiction community from his attendance at the local conventions. The crew of the Arizona 501st stormtrooper legion has appeared in several photoshoots and they have become close friends. Kevin O’Connor and Lance Dworshak introduced Greenawalt to a project that they were working on that needed some body painting. It was a promotional event for the graphic novel series “The Villikon Chronicles.” The promotions included a trip to the San Diego ComicCon where he painted celebrity model/actress Cheyenne Silver as one of the characters from the story. There was talk of a movie project in the future.

The recent flood of superhero movies has allowed him to relive his childhood fantasies along with his two boys. “It was awesome to see Spider-man, Daredevil, Elecktra, and the Fantastic Four come to life on the silver screen. Seeing the Lord of the Rings and the Star Wars movies have also been inspirational.” With his love of movies, he set a new year’s resolution to get some of his work in films. In 2005 he made it a reality by assembling a cast and crew of about 30 people to start the filming of a segment of the Villikon Chronicles with film sets in the Imperial Sand Dunes near Yuma and a Grand Canyon Caverns near Seligman. He also wrote and co-directed a short film called Second Chances that featured just a touch of special effects make-up and props.

What’s next for artist Mark Greenawalt? Even he is unsure. Maybe it’s time to go buy another book by Boris to see what his future holds. For now he is very content with his accomplishments in all of these artforms and hopes to spend more time molding his children into whatever their dreams may be…just like his mother nurtured his creativity.


The picture used to accompany the bio was a picture of me with Jill Valdisar and a lifecast by Buyr Gullwing taken by photographer O'D at the previous year's CopperCon event.  Jill's back was painted with the same dragon skyscape that was painted on the lifecast at the previous LepreCon event.  Click on the image below to see the full size image:


It was a pleasant surprise to stumble upon a little write-up by my film making friend and colleague Webb Pickersgill as follows:

Mark Greenawalt Appreciation

I've had the privilege of knowing Mark for the better part of a year.  I am a huge Star Wars fan, so there is no surprise that Mark's body painting of Mara Jade (with the lovely and talented Lynette Brooks) at CopperCon 22 cought my attention and made me an instant fan of his work.

I *was* surprised however, when Mark contacted me almost 2 years later to work on a short film with him about the Villikon Chronicles.  I am just tickled to be working with the guy who's work I had always admired.

It is simply amazing to watch him create his art with such graceful creativity.  We have since collaborated on a short film called Second Chances and I hope I have the honor of working with him in the future.  Best wishes to my good friend, and guest of honor, Mark Greenawalt!

Webb Pickersgill
Bassline Digital, LLC
http://www.basslinedigital.com 

 

Thanks for the kind words Webb.  It has been great getting to know you and I'm looking forward to working with you for a long time to come.

 

The Body Painting

I did the first live painting demonstration early on Saturday afternoon during a panel called "Meet Mark Greenawalt."  During this hour and a half presentation, I ran a slideshow and talked about many of my past, present, and future projects and then ended the panel by recreating the bodypainting on the cover of the CopperCon 25 program.  This time as I painted Courtney's face with the metallic copper, there was no fear of running out of paint.  I had contacted Michael Benjamin at Temptu, the company that makes this metallic body paint for airbrushing, and he sponsored the convention by providing the product.  This is great paint and it is the same stuff that was used to paint Mystique on the X-men movies.  Courtney had also enhanced the costume for this painting by crafting and hand painting a leather belt and designing fantasy inspired leggings.  This really added to the impact of the costume.  When we were shooting the cover, there was no need to concentrate on the lower torso since most of the photos were intended to be from the waist up.  At the convention, however, the attendees would be treated to the whole outfit and Courtney rose to the occasion.  She also spruced up the staff by wrapping leather hand grips with copper wire.  The painting was completed in about 45 minutes and then we were off to display the character now named Coppernica to the masses.  Courtney was stopped every couple of minutes in the corridors of the resort to pose for pictures and sign program covers.  She and I were both loving every minute of it!

More bodypainting was planned for my late night body painting panel which was intended to be for adults only.  My model was to be the beautiful Kayla Rei, but unfortunately she came down with the flu and was not able to attend the convention.  This left me with the task of finding another model that would be available and willing to be painted in front of a room full of sci-fi geeks like me.  I contacted or tried to contact several of the models that I had worked with in the past, but to no avail.  Courtney agreed to wash the Coppernica paint off and model for me and several other convention attendees said that they would volunteer also.  So with no definite plan in mind and enough paint to cover anyone who wanted to be painted I began a body painting marathon, winging it from start to finish.

The panel started at 10:00pm on Saturday night.  My first volunteer was an anime enthusiast that I had met during the masquerade show.  Her name is Kyo and she and I were both judges for the masquerade, along with Janeen O'Kerry, so we had plenty of time to laugh, joke, and get to meet each other.  She admitted to looking very young for her age and most of the attendees questioned whether she was even old enough to be in the room, let alone volunteer to be painted.  She took it all in stride though and built up a great repoire with the audience.  She chose to be painted as an anime character named Freya from the Chobits series.  I had to have her draw out a picture of the character and find an image of her on a laptop computer for my own reference.  Then with a sketchy idea of what the character looks like, Kyo disrobed and I started the painting.  In an effort to showcase lots of different types of paints throughout the evening, I painted her with Deviant black liquid latex with a sponge brush.  I also demonstrated the use of the stardust powder and Pam Cooking Spray to acheive certain looks with the latex.  Here is one shot of Kyo taken by Tee Morris, a science fiction writer who attended the panel.

Anime enthusiast Kyo

Next up was Courtney.  Again I was trying to show some neat bodypainting techniques so I started with a space scene that included splattered star fields and sponged-on full moon.  The painting transitioned down to a sunset scene with silhouetted palm trees that were applied with a fan brush.  At this point, I considered the painting done until I overheard one of my friends in the 501st Stormtrooper legion asking the rhetorical question of what this painting had to do with science fiction.  Not wanting to disappoint the masses, I quickly brainstormed the idea of turning the moon into an imperial logo and added the tag line "IMPERIAL DOMINATION" that was so eloquently written on Mike Kiselnik's t-shirt.  It garnered a huge round of applause.  Here are the before and after pictures (photos by Kurt Langholz, Don Crossland, and Wilgar).

Courtney in airbrushed bodypaint Imperial Stormtrooper logo Storm Trooper helmut on Imperial painting

The next volunteer from the audience from the audience was sporting a pregnant belly and requested a dragon belly painting.  We looked at a few images online, but I finally opted to freehand one.  The painting was of a sleeping baby dragon.  Next up, I painted a volunteer with a concoction of baby oil and bronze powder by Mehron.  Here are images of these two paintings.

Pregnant belly painting of sleeping dragon Metallic bodypaint in bronze

My next volunteer was Joanne who I have known for the past couple of years and never dreamed that she would be interested in doing a bodypainting.  Granted it was only her back that she bared for the live audience, but it was great getting her to do the bodypaint thing.  I had joked with her boyfriend, Lance Dworshak, earlier in the day that since my model had canceled, I was going to have to paint her, but I didn't think that it would come to pass.  Anyway, her request was to have a pirate themed painting and we settled on painting the Jolly Roger flag on her back.  Keep in mind that by this time, I had been provided with a beer from the 501st for "giving them Courtney" and another beer from The Dark Ones for providing the entertainment, these in addition to the two that I had had before the panel began.  With this in mind, you'll forgive the fact that I decided to turn the skull and cross bones into a tribute to Ghost Rider by adding the flames around his head.  Later in the week I saw Joanne on the morning news in her roller derby attire skating around the rink and I recognized that signature plaid skirt and a jolly roger flag.  Here is a shot that I took of her that I fondly call Ghost Roger.

Ghost Rider Jolly Roger back painting

Next up?  Author Tee Morris was challenging me to paint a tiger on a ravaging redhead.  I challenged him to find me the redhead and that I would find the paint.  Enter the lovely Mrs. Evo Terra!  I had actually done a quick painting with her years before at an Alwun House exotic art show, but this painting would be much more thorough.  Her whole upper torso was transformed into a bengal tiger in about 45 minutes.  So Tee had his tiger woman with the ravaged red hair.  Here is a shot of her.

After that the flood gates opened and I started painting all comers.  In fact, I didn't stop painting until it was daylight, approximately 6:00am.  Below are some of the images of these other paintings.  Some were my ideas, others came to me with an idea in hand that they wanted painted.

Mythology griffen body art Elektra outfit painted on top Keltic Knot body motif in red and purple

  Steve Jackson Pyramid logo with eye Steve Jackson Munchkin card game logo calico cat tail painted on dragon bodypainting

Here are some links to additional pictures from the bodypainting marathon:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wilgar/sets/929363/ 

http://24.221.50.197/leho/coppercon_2005.htm 



Bodyart Store

Check out the selection of books, magazines, and more on my on-line BODYART STORE, powered by Amazon.  Your purchase helps fund this site, so please buy as many as you like and thank you in advance for your support!

Bodyart Store for books, magazines, and supplies


This page has been designed and maintained by FUTURE-CLASS X PUBLISHING.
Unless noted otherwise, Photography and Artwork by Mark Greenawalt c2005
FUTURE-CLASS X PUBLISHING

Please send comments to:  mark@futureclassx.com