“Using the beauty of the human body as a canvas for art.” – Olivia Brownell
Olivia Brownell (facebook page HERE) the owner of VibrantVixen Design has opened up to FASHIONSIGN Magazine about her history of growing up with Art. After recently buying her airbrush painting tool, she has been collaborating with many people in Calgary doing great projects on human bodies (models). We decided to jump into her world for a bit to find out some juicy information and photos!
How and when did you start out as a budding artist?
I have always been involved in art since as long as I can remember. All of my high school extra courses were Art and Art was my favorite subject in elementary school.
That’s a good start! How was being raised loving Art? Did your friends and family support you?
My friends and family supported me for sure I have really great parents who have been my biggest supporters. It wasn’t until about two years ago that I woke up and wanted to start doing make up art. I love fashion and beauty and I used to want to be a fashion designer. But I honestly love doing this much better because I am a huge people person I love connecting with people.
So you grew up in a positive and healthy environment doing Art. What have you felt strong about and learned the most? Professionally, what’s your goal?
I have grown in technique because I am not formally trained. I wanted to go to school but I could not afford it so I decided to teach myself and I have been chasing after it hard!! My goals are so many and big!! I want to do makeup for TV and film and I want to have a studio. I also want to make body painting a mainstream thing for me whether it’s teaching it or doing events. I mostly want to do a lot of body painting because something about it really appeals to me about using the beauty of the human body as a canvas for art. I WOULD LOVE TO OPEN A STUDIO, that’s a big dream of mine. I want to create a name for myself and I want people to think of me when they think of makeup or art. I definitely want to embark a brand for myself out there.
Great! You sure have a dream. What is the best advice you have ever had?
Yeah, and I am bound and determined to make those dreams a reality. I am prepared to work hard for it. The best advice for me was something a photographer told me, ‘that when you are coming together to create a great TFP project make sure everyone is on the same wave length and that you have a signed agreement about what the project is and what you are doing this for. If it’s a benefit for everyone’s portfolio and people are bringing the same effort to the table you can create magic. If you are not, you are wasting your time, products, and effort because the end result will be lacking. So I always try to be clear in what is being arranged and put 110% percent of myself into any project I am involved in.
Seems like a lot of that is happening in our industry. What do you think about Calgary’s art and fashion industry these days?
Yes it does. I love Calgary and the fact that there is so much talent and potential to really create a culture for fashion and arts. HOWEVER, there are people out there using and abusing the system, not paying artists, models or designers. Everyone wants everything for free and I believe it’s destroying the industry. People need to be paid what they are worth or have the product used paid for since supplies are very expensive. I love the art and spirit behind TFP and if this was a perfect world I would do what I love for free. But it is not and I have a family to support. I think this is holding the fashion and art culture in Calgary back because of it.
Yes, that truly makes sense. What’s the most memorable thing that anyone ever said about your work?
A photographer said once that my characters stood out and blew everyone out of the water and said they were impressed with my high energy. That always has stuck with me and I think as the artist you help set the mood, so I try to be in the zone and in the “on” position with a good attitude and ready to work.
Thank you, Olivia for your time!