Is Paint Me Couture the New Sip and Paint?

Hello Lovely,

This weekend, I was super happy to participate in the first Paint Me Couture Event. You’re probably wondering what Paint Me Couture is. Paint Me Couture is a new venture where fashion meets art. Although one could argue that fashion is it’s own form of art, the art in particular is painting. Guests come weekly to paint live models who are decked out in Bahamian designer wear. This new activity is the brainchild of Delano Marc and Justin Moultrie (the same people who brought you the Miasma Fashion Show from earlier this year at the Dundas Centre for the Performing Arts.)

There will be a new model and outfit on display every week for guests to paint. The garments are made by Delano, while Justin offers expert tips for step by step assistance. So if you’re new to painting, or don’t have a single creative bone in your body, don’t worry. No one expects you to be the next Picasso. You don’t even have to paint exactly what you see. It’s whatever your interpretation is (after all, that’s basically what art is). I’m not a great painter, but I LOVE this idea. Of course, this idea isn’t completely original, but don’t be so quick to judge. Like others, I wanted to know how this would be different from Sip and Paint.

Although the event started late, I didn’t hold it against them, as it was the first event with a lot of kinks to work out. But once things got started, I felt completely relaxed and content. I even suggested the event be promoted as Art Therapy, because the act of free painting and creating something beautiful without the pressures of experts critiquing your work, brings a sense of peace that is incomparable. And the complimentary beverage (included in coverage charge) will help you loosen up as well! I ordered the lavender and thyme lemonade. The drink menu may change for next week

The layout made it easy to see the model, no matter where you sat in the room. Jazzy, a small framed model took centre stage, struck a pose and we went to work. I chose to sketch my painting first. While many artists would never do this, there are some that do and I prefer it as a stepping stone since I’m not expert. I took creative liberty with her leg pose and hairstyle.

Once I had my sketch I was ready to start painting. I painted her skin first, outlined the hair and then went to work on the dress. The finished product surprised even me! Are you ready to see it?

Everyone loved my designs and I think everyone had a lot of fun.

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Just so you know, this isn’t a “Get-rich-quick-scheme”. Justin and Delano both hope to study at St. Martins in London and are using the events as a fundraiser. I will gladly support and promote causes for young people’s education (being an educator, myself) and I hope you will to! Paint Me Couture is only $25 and makes the perfect group outing or date night. The event is held Friday nights from 7-9 at Incudesk in Palmdale (directly across from Janae’s Fabrics).

Pisces Swim Event

Hello Lovely,

On Saturday, Jamaal Ferguson, the brains behind Pisces Swim hosted a fantastic fashion show at Mario's Bowling & Entertainment Palace. The line is said to pay homage to its culture, narrating the lifestyle of the people and unveils the beauty behind the 700 islands and cays of The Bahamas. Pisces Swim radiates its essence with vivid colors and prints. At an average cost of $60 per swimsuit, Pisces Swim sets out to be an affordable luxury line.

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Due to extenuating circumstances, the show got a late start, but once it started, it flowed exceptionally well. The show began with a performance from Thin Ice. She got the crowd pumped and excited after that long wait, with her colourful Junkanoo headpiece and sparkling costume. Her back up dancers almost stole the show with their moves, but overall it was a fun performance. Then it was time for the first set of looks (each model had three looks).

Following the first fashion set, was a simple yet stellar performance of smooth reggae vibes by the talented artist Judah da Lion. He hit the stage with his latest hit “Outlaw (Ride On)”(I almost know all of the words now). Then the second fashion set was underway.

There was no musical performance in between the second and third set but the third set did not disappoint. 

The show was closed with an exhilarating performance by Patrice Murrell who is quickly becoming my favourite Bahamian artist! I'm amazed at how such a powerful voice comes out of someone so timing.

I think the event was a success. Some of my photos weren't usable because I didn't capture the lighting as well as I would've liked to, but trust me, the swimwear is gorgeous! The models were spunky, which brought a lot of energy to both the fashion and the audience. If managed well, this company should be making some big splashes soon.

The 2018 Elevation Awards

Hello Lovely,

This past weekend was the much anticipated 2018 Elevation Awards. Artists from all genres flocked to the New Providence Ballroom in the BahaMar Convention Centre for the 2nd Annual Award Show. Last year I attended the show as media, but this year I attended the show as a nominee. I was nominated for Blog of The Year and this was also the first year for the category. I was grateful for this addition because while the world was quickly accepting vloggers and recognising them, there weren't really awards for bloggers. Going into it, I simply new I was not going to win because I was going against Ianthia Smith (fiancé of Farreno Ferguson of F.Dot Photography) and of course she won. I was excited for her to win. Honestly I don't know what I would've done or how I would've felt had I won, so I really think it's for the best. Simply being nominated and recognised for six years of hard work was enough for me. I went with my mum and one of my best friends Krista because they are two of my biggest supporters.

I've always thought that the Elevation Awards has the potential to be a local MTV Music Awards in terms of nominees walking the red carpet in wearable art made by local fashion designers and musical performances that are concert worthy. While the fashion was gorgeous, very little was Bahamian designed, HOWEVER, the performances were amazing! 

Possibly the most outstanding performance of the night was by Judah the Lion who gave us an a riveting steampunk drama. A very close second was a group of young Christian rappers called Christ Gang who brought a lot of energy to the Pre-Show. And of course I loved the performances by Bodine, Wendi (who opened the show) and Duchess who made her stage debut as a solo artist last night singing her new hit single, "Mr. Lover."

Here's the Complete List of Winners:

  • Best Short Film of The Year: Cinemorphesis
  • Best TV Show of The Year: On The Record
  • Photographer of The Year: Stanlo Photography
  • Blog of The Year: Mini Skirts & Microphones - Ianthia Smith
  • Vlog of The Year: Who Dat?
  • Visual Artist of The Year: Jamaal Rolle
  • New Artist: Sanjardo B
  • Bahamian Song of The Year: Qpid - Gimmie My Culture
  • Community Development: Get Fit With Smith
  • Gospel Song of The Year: Jonathan Farrington & Grace Generation - Free
  • Male Artist of The Year: Julien Believe
  • Music Video of The Year: Wendi - I ain't Missing It
  • Entertainer of The Year: Naughty
  • Contemporary Song of The Year: Sammi Star - I Iz What I Iz
  • Video Producer of The Year: Kyle Ferguson
  • Female Artist of The Year: Bodine
  • People's Choice Award: DJ Ovadose

It was interesting to hear so many new names, but of course they were really only new to me. In the moment, I thought some artists were snubbed or overlooked. For example, Who Dat? winning consecutively, Naughty winning entertainer of the year when literally anyone else in the category was a better option and Julien Believe winning Best Male Artist over Judah. The room was eerily quiet when Julien won and I'm not sure anyone really knew how to react. So I spoke to an organiser, to get some answers. Apparently, during the vetting process, nominees are asked to submit a complete portfolio along with a few other requirements; without this the nominee would not even be considered.

Of course no one likes to lose so there were mixed reactions to the award show. Some left before it was over, and some didn't bother to show at all. Then there were the ones that took to social media to throw digs. No one wants to think that awards and recognition are only for an elite circle in society, but when it's the "elite circle" mocking the establishment, you kind of begin to wonder what more could they want? I learned last night that Bahamians would rather diss your work or event before they support it. And they're really only happy to see their friends win. The tasteless comments were rather unfortunate. Sure this year was NOWHERE as good as last year's, with far more technical glitches and a lack of organisation, but the entertainment made up for it. I stayed up until the People's Choice Award because it was really late and I had to get my mother home. But something incredible last night happened that cannot be overlooked.

There was a very touching moment during the show when the host realised that a young 10 year old girl he had used as a part of a bit and buried her mother that same day. As a show of good faith and support, Demetrius not only gave the girl a brand new cellphone courtesy of BTC, $100 and offered to pay her next semester tuition, but he also encouraged the entire audience to donate to her. And the ENTIRE audience got up and gave something. It was very touching. I genuinely hope that the donations are put to good use for the girl.

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FINAL VERDICT: Last year's award show was much better, but it could also be that we were so enamoured by the fact that it was something new. I have a lot of ideas for how the entire experience can be improved on next year that I will sit down with the organisers and discuss. I believe in what Elevation Media is trying to do. Bahamians work hard and we really have to learn to celebrate one another. There are so many creatives in this country, maybe next year artists from the various family islands can be recognised as well. I don't take any part of this experience for granted and look forward to watching the show grow and expand to become a force to be reckoned with. See you next year!

And The Nominees for the 2018 Elevation Awards Are...

Hello Lovely,

Can you believe it's time for the Elevation Awards already? This year Elevation Media hosted the first annual Elevation Awards. I had a joy covering it and looked forward to covering it again next year. Last night, at The Golden House, Caves Village, the nominees were announced. It was a star studded event with live performances by Maleah Gabrielle, Ophine, Sammi Star, Eman, Charisa & Shon P and M-deez.

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You can watch the video recording from last night here, or just check out the nominees here:

Visual Artist Of The Year

  • Philese Roberts
  • Allan Wallace
  • Emerald Sands
  • Stefan Davis
  • Minolta Butler
  • Jamaal Rolle

Female Artist Of The Year

  • Lady E
  • Bodine
  • Fanshawn
  • Wendi
  • Patrice Murrell

Male Artist Of The Year

  • Dmac
  • Dyson Knight
  • Julien Believe
  • MDeez
  • Sammi Starr
  • Judah Tha Lion

New Artist Of The Year

  • Ophine
  • SanJardo B
  • Twin Dem
  • Charisa
  • Lexx
  • Patrice Murrell

Short Film Of The Year

  • Archipelago Alliance - CINE Morphosis
  • Eyes of Glass - Rashad Ferguson
  • Liars Dice - Valicia Rolle
  • Outlaw (The Prophecy) Steampunk Short Film - CINE Morphesis

Vlog Of The Year

  • Khing Kloud
  • Who Dat
  • The Click
  • The Next Face
  • Sawyerboy
  • Such A Pratt

Music Producer Of The Year

  • Sketch
  • Sammi Starr
  • Orthniel
  • Rik Carey
  • Zoltan Johnson
  • Frederick Seymour

Song Of The Year

  • Long Time - Dmac
  • Gimmie My Culture - Qpid
  • Your Ting - Patrice Murrell
  • Down Home - Lady E
  • Rocka My Cherry - Bodine
  • Red Plate - KB

TV Show Of The Year

  • The Stew
  • Happy Foods 242
  • The Rush
  • Chef It Up
  • On The Record
  • Sawyerboy TV

Video Producer Of The Year

  • Stephen Hanna
  • Carl Ferguson
  • Keirohn Farrington
  • Owen Petti (Cubes Pro)
  • Lavado Stubbs
  • Farreno Ferguson

Music Video Of The Year

  • Een Missing It - Wendi
  • Wanna Know Your Name - Ton Ash
  • All Wrong - Tebby
  • Outlaw - Judah Tha Lion
  • Away from Home - Mdeez
  • All Mine - Charisa & Shon P

Gospel Song Of The Year

  • Thank God For Life - DJ Counsellor
  • Young & Free - Rashad Rich
  • Make Me Wanna Dance - Althea
  • Jack In The Box - Stacs
  • Free - Jonathan & Grace Generation
  • Our Father - Godsent Music

Entertainer Of The Year

  • Sawyerboy
  • Naughty
  • Empress
  • Khing Kloud
  • Epic For Realz
  • Dyson Knight

Caribbean Song Of The Year

  • No Lie - Sean Paul ft. Dua Lipa
  • Fever - Vybz Kartel
  • Pretty Girl Team - Alkaline
  • Single - Orlando Octave
  • Buss Head - Machel Montano
  • Technically - Farmer Nappy & Destra

Photographer Of The Year

  • Stanlo Photography
  • Braxton Gardiner Photography
  • Churchboy Photography
  • Blair J Meadows Photography
  • Shawn T Photography
  • T Glinton Photography

Blog Of The Year

  • Cay To Style - Aneka Stewart
  • She So Major - Sherice Major
  • Kyss My Hair - Brittany Basden
  • Girl With Her Views - Ashley Bethel
  • Stylezine Magazine - Nik Barnes
  • Life By Olivia - Olivia Russell

Lifetime Achievement Award

James Catalyn

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THAT'S RIGHT!!!!! I WAS NOMINATED! I CAN'T BELIEVE IT! i genuinely don't even care if I win, it's just such an amazing honour to be recognised. I've been blogging since 2012, but I didn't get serious until 2014 and it wasn't until about last year that I really found my niche with it. Running this blog has been so therapeutic for me so it's a blessing to hear from you guys how much you enjoy everything I share. I couldn't do this alone. I've had amazing support from friends, family and various freelance artists I've met over the years. Thank you so much for the support and I can't wait to see you all in April!

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Bahamas Fashion Week

Bahamas Fashion Week

Bahamas Fashion Week is focused on propelling Bahamian and international designers to the forefront of the global fashion market. It is the Nation’s Premier Fashion Showcase. a fusion of art, style, culture, fashion, entertainment and runway. This event captures the international sensibility of the country while providing a calendar of social and educational activities. For 3 strategically focused days, The Bahamas becomes the epicenter of fashion, art and entertainment, as all eyes on local and international stage witness collections unveiled for the first time. And I was there for everything! Here's my review of the first ever Bahamas Fashion Week.

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The 2017 Elevation Awards

Hello Lovely,

If you’ve been following me on Instagram (or IG as the kids call it), you would have seen a few highlights from the first Elevation Awards Show at the Melia Resort in Nassau, Bahamas. On Saturday April 15th, 2017, the Life by Olivia team was there to capture and mingle with some of the young Bahamian artists who are making waves on the scene and changing the industry.   The Red Carpet activity started buzzing shortly after 5:30pm as scores of fashion looks graced the scene sporting various trends, cultural prints and bold coloured jackets. The talent was anything but shy! These game changers are making BIG statements with their accomplishments but still remain humble.

If you haven’t heard, the Elevation Awards is geared to be an annual award show created by The Elevation Media Group.  The Elevation Awards celebrates the accomplishments of Bahamians in music, acting, sports, community building and other fields of entertainment. We chatted with some of the big names that night, including musical artists Gary Francis, Dyson Knight, Keeya, and Jonathan Farrington. Each artist shared a word of wisdom with us. Gary advised any new artist trying to get on the scene that practice truly does make perfect. Dyson stated that his motivation for his career comes from seeing his music touch and inspire others. Keeya shared that the inspiration behind her #1 single Faded was about being a millennial girl trying to figure out the young guys on the dating scene. The video was created by an all Bahamian team with world-renowned director, Kareem Mortimer. While, Jonathan, who had to quickly jet back to Canada to perform at the Canadian Music Festival shared how placing second in the Canadian musical competition and being the only international competitor has helped his networking and boosted his determination to continue his career.

Hosted by the host of one of my favourite local TV Shows, “Chef it Up”, Ianthia Smith, kept the audience entertained with her quick wit, humour and engaging personality.   But the best part was the live performances. The Award Show provided nonstop entertainment with concert-like performances in all genres that brought the crowd to their feet and made inner karaoke superstars out of many! We were entertained by artists such as Keeya, Jive, Jonathan Farrington, DJ Counsellor, Sammi Star and Bantangy. My favourites were Jive for their performance of Rhythm, a  rap artist by the name of Eman who performed a raw piece that told us of his transformation from street life to Christian, and a spoken word piece entitled, “The Bahamian Dream”, which spoke to the realness of current events and politics that many choose to ignore; it was written by Michaela Munnings and performed by Zemi Holland.

The first of many to come, The Elevation Awards serves as inspiration to young artists to let them know that there is a place for them in society. I've heard the biggest complaint from young artist who submit their work to local competitions: "I was told it wasn't Bahamian enough." Artists should feel free to make whatever work makes them happy and sparks a change socially. The Elevation Awards is the right platform to do this and next year, they're coming back bigger and better than ever! And as always, Life By Olivia will be there to keep you covered. Because Life Could Use a Personal Touch!

XoX,

Wine & Arts Festival Review

Hello Lovely,

This past weekend, a Wine Lover’s treat was found at the 26th Annual Wine and Arts Festival held in the beautiful Bahamas National Trust (BNT) Retreat. Wine connoisseurs and newbies were greeted warmly by the Scotiabank Bahamas team into an adventurous Cultural journey of Wine and Art: glass and booklet in hand.

This year marked the first formal collaboration for the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas (NAGB) and BNT for the Festival which showcased a variety of sculptures, jewelry, paintings and photography.  These pieces captured glimpses of the Bahamian sun, sand, sea and culture in many forms.

Exciting Festival Features

  1. A selection of sips (including Sake, Chardonnay, Sparkling, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc) from around the world such as Japan, New Zealand and Spain were elegantly on display. The Birds& Bees Moscato was the talk of the town as attendees spoke of its sweet n' fruity flavor. It’s a highly recommended brand and is available by Bristol Wines (1er Cru). Buy yours today!

  2. Bewitching Wine & Food pairings – Whether dining at home or a night on the town, we all wonder how to match our food to our wine, as the best pairings can be pure magic to your palette! A few to keep in mind for your next meal are:-

  •  

  • Shiraz with Veal Parmigiana - Australia

  • Sauvignon Blanc with Fried calamari (with lemon) - Central Coast, California

  • Brut Sparkling with Shellfish - Chile

  • Ecusson Cabernet Sauvignon with Chicken (with Port and Figs) - France

  • Sancerre Les Baronnes with Seared Scallops topped (with Mango Salsa) – Louire Valley

  • Pinot Grigio with Seafood Toastado Bites - Delle Nevie, Italy

  • Pinot Noir with Rack of Lamb - Napa Valley

**Prices range from $7.25 - $63.95 . Visitors and locals can take advantage of purchasing what they've tasted at the 1er Cru locations from October 29 – November 5, 2016**

The eye-capturing Art & Artists highlights included:

 

    1. Natalia Nunez  is an acclaimed lover of dots and stripes, as clearly seen her in her photos.  Sharing her first drawing (the Dog art piece), she has a unique way of skillfully portraying clean and elegant art pieces.

    2. Christopher D'albenas is a Bahamian artist & photographer whose works feature acrylic art on driftwood and marine life floating eloquently through the Bahamian Shores.  

    3. French Artist Leo Devilles has always created art but after attending her first Paint Party in 2015, she became a painter. A native of Bordeaux and a horse lover, she specializes in soft pastel as well as acrylic and has. Her upcoming exhibition called 'Bliss' will be held on Friday November 11, 2016 at the John Watling's Distillery: 5-9pm. Here, her originals and prints will be on sale.

    4. Hennergy began in 2014 by Illeana Harvey and offers a selection of Henna tattoos, which use a mix of two plant based inks. All tattoos last two weeks and display a reddish hue.

    5. Bahamian Painter Dion Lewis shows determination throughout all of his artwork; as he had just added the final touches to his stunning original piece 'Spanish Wells' that morning.  The colorful and soulful piece entitled ‘Sunday Morning Market’ was also shown. You can view more of his pieces off Shirley St. next to Wildflowers.

    6. Kim Deveaux began her custom engraving journey two years ago and has stayed focused ever since.  Her engraving techniques were featured at her booth and also in the art case at the Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) in connection with Doongalik Studios. You can also email any requests to kimdeveaux@gmail.com.

    7. Guilden Gilbert specializes in acrylic photography throughout the Bahamas. At the festival he exhibited a powerful photo of a white tailed tropic soaring through the air in the Exuma Cays.  He is  also available for photo shoots throughout the islands.

    8. Local artists Jamaal Rolle and Stephen of Airbrush Junkies were also on site, creating grand artistic designs throughout the day.

    How can we forget the best art of all? FOOD! We can eat pretty much anything, but food styling has definitely become our favorite form of art, and a glamour styled plate makes eating twice the fun! Here's what the festival had on display:-

    1. Chef Owen of Cassava Grille conducted the Culinary Food Demo which featured one of our native food staples: conch. He created Curry Conch Rollups which were fried and given to eager audience members. The dish was in connection with BNT's Conchservation initiative which began in 2010 and is a national campaign to assist with creating sustainability in the Queen Conch fishery in the Bahamas. This will assist in lowering the threat of conch extinction, prevent illegal harvesting through laws and creating a closed conch fishing season. Restaurants and individuals can also make their pledge to be 'Conch-scious!'.  This pledge means to take a responsibility against fishing and/or eating juvenile conch. Please contact BNT for more information.

    2. There were a few vendors who were also at the Int'l Food Festival such as: Vell Monkey Foot with scrumptious Crab sliders.

    3. I was FINALLY able to grab a bite from The Batter Girls who often have long and crowded lines.  The Cajun Fried Lobster did not miss, with its chunky texture and spicy flavor!  There was also Seafood fritters and a Lobster & Shrimp basket on sale.

    4. Handcrafted gourmet popsicles such as the Marley Pop, Sky Juice, Soursop and Summer Sangria were the main attractions at Pop Stop. In local pride style, I tasted the Junkanoo Pop (a medley of fresh strawberries, pineapple chunks, mango and passion fruit juice). The freshness of the fruits was front and center with each bite and the pop delivered a tantalizing mix of sweet and tangy.

    5. There was also Dino's Gourmet Conch Stand who offered a mélange of fruits, vegetables and citrus juices to create tasty conch salad, in Original and Tropical flavors.

    The Members Only Wine & Art Festival held on October 28th,  offered a very intimate experience for attendees.  However, this isn't BNT's last event of the year as Jollification is coming up in November so you don't want to miss it! P.S. Members pay less at these events and enjoy other exclusive membership perks.  To join this ritzy listing, click here. For a ridiculously low price, you too can be a part of this eco-friendly movement.

    Because we're such winos,  we're always looking for ways to sneak wine into our food. If you’re looking for a creative way to include wine with your meals, try these Wine Butters!

    Did you enjoy this event? What were your favorite wine pairings? Do you prefer Moscato, Merlot, Sauvignon or Sparkling?

    XoX,

    Mechelle