30 October 2015

Creating an Album Cover Illustration - 제주바람 '어쩌면 아티스트'

Hi everyone!

As the last few posts were all beauty-themed, I wanted to shake things up a little with this album jacket illustration I did for the Korean indie singer '어쩌면 아티스트', which translates roughly to 'Maybe an Artist'...! (She surely is one, though!)

The song is called 'Jejubaram', which means 'Wind of Jeju'. As I live on that very island, I was all the happier to create the illustration! It's the perfect music for peaceful traveling (on Jeju or anywhere else), so if you're curious, you can give the song a listen here:

'Jejubaram - Jeju Wind' by Maybe An Artist on iTunes

'Jejubaram - Jeju Wind' by Maybe an Artist on Soribada (only a quick sample there, but hey, for free! ;)

K-Indie is a genre I love listening to on long days in the Cafe, and Maybe An Artist does sing in that lovely, laid-back style I personally really enjoy.

As for the illustration itself:

Jeju Island is famous for its 'Gyul', aka mandarins, oranges and clementines in all kinds of variations. They range from walnut-sized to roughly the size of a large grapefruit and come in all kinds of flavor variations, too! The song's lyrics evoke the scent of mandarins carried by the wind, so the choice of a mandarin tree motive was quite simple! (though we did some other sketches first...)

Some quick studies done during inktober (while traveling to the south of Jeju with my parents) were the basis for the mandarin trees, as well as some pictures I took.

The album illustration was then made with a light pencil drawing as a base, on which I layered watercolors. I didn't want to make the colors too saturated, going for a more 'milky' look. You can have a look at my watercolor collection here - I mostly used Cobalt Green mixed with Cobalt Blue, both giving a slightly muted color. For the mandarins themselves Scarlet Lake, Neapel Yellow and Cadmium Yellow were mixed, and some additional shadows added with Burnt Sienna.

The little sketch I did previously has now been hurled at Photoshop to form this mess:

As I'm currently preparing a lot of little printing projects (stickers, postcards, hand mirrors...) I'll maybe use it as some sort of background pattern. We'll see!

Something like this. Looks kind of christmas-y already, doesn't it?? (...panic!)

I loved working on this simple illustration and hopefully more is to come! As for now, I hope you'll check out 'Maybe An Artist's Instagram or Maybe An Artist's Facebook - she's a lovely person, talented person and deserves more attention! :D

More illustration projects will follow! I'm in the middle of several commissions, some of them spanning months already, and can't wait to share!

Have a lovely weekend and thanks for reading!

19 October 2015

Korean Autumn Days Makeup - Innisfree Real Fluid Rouge in #8 Review

I'm on a review roll!

This one is for a new discovery: The 'Real Fluid Rouge' liquid lipstick by innisfree, re-launched just about a week ago. It was love at first sight! I've been using this color every day because it's just so versatile and fits the warm Jeju autumn days perfectly.

Find it. :D
These mini illustrations are for a sticker set I'm planning to print soon. Autumn version up first!
As I've said, the Real Fluid Rouge line was re-launched this October. There was a previous launch (with different colors and product texture) last spring during my several months long no-buy phase, so that kinda passed me by. All the more love to give now!

The Real Fluid Rouge is a liquid lipstick product (since last spring, a variety of other Korean brands have launched their own versions of liquid lipsticks. Etude House comes to mind.) and it's available in 12 different shades.

I got shade number 8, a slightly muted pink color. 분홍 사과꽃 한 잎, which translates into something like 'One petal of a pink apple tree flower'. Soft pinks have a tendency to make me look kind of dead, so I was happy to find upon swatching that this had just the right amount of color in it to look neither nude-ish nor like a hot-pink. I absolutely love it! It goes well with nearly everything - an otherwise bare (sunscreen) face, natural makeup or even light smokey eyes. It's the perfect pink for me, seriously.

The texture is hard to describe: A thick liquid that seems sticky upon applying but settles into a nice lipstick-like texture. It reminds me of the Mellow Lipstick line with its buttery finish. I haven't loved a texture and finish this much since those lipsticks came out - you go, innisfree! Take all my money!

It does a decent job at moisturizing, too, and fades prettily (loosing the glossy effect first) over several hours. Neither transferproof nor staining, but still not that much of a high-maintenance product as it's easy to reapply without messing up the previous layer.

The packaging is super prettyyy. Seriously. It's much bigger than I imagined but looks sleek and elegant. From the outside, the shade looks a bit cooler than the actual product on my lips.

As I've been wearing it every day, I thought I'd show you my daily makeup look recently. Keep in mind that my makeup skills are non-existant, though. I SUCK at eye makeup and literally everything that's not foundation. Applying my makeup next to a small window in an otherwise dark room with a propped-up hand mirror certainly doesn't help. But anyway, it's what works for me on most days, and on all other days I can just give up and relie on my fringe to at least cover up my eyebrows...

The products I've used most often recently.

There's my old (...three years and counting) 'Choco Eyebrow Powder Cake' from Skinfood. I just can't bother to buy a new one, as my brow game is a loosing battle anyway. It works just fine, the shades fit, and I still haven't used it all up. It also smells like chocolate, seriously!

For eyeliner I love the Mamonde Soft Melting Liner in black. It's precise, doesn't smudge, doesn't drag and doesn't irritate my eyes. Mostly I just use this to tight-line my eyes.

(Mamonde is a secret love of mine anyway, taking second place behind Innisfree. It's not a really well known brand internationally, but I've loved every product I've tried so far!)

... which is evident in my current foundation choice, too. I've replaced my Iope cushion with a Mamonde 'Moisture Mask Cushion' refill. That's what I love about cushion cases - buy one, then put in whatever refill you currently have. Korean brands do seem to want me to buy more cases, though, as they're releasing special edition cases left and right. This is one of the reasons I want to print some stickers - at least I can decorate my basic cushion cases myself! Hah!

I chose a darker shade than usual for this one: #21 Peach Beige.

I look like a ghost most of the time, but with this on I actually look like I've seen the sun in recent months while still looking natural overall. Also tricked my parents into thinking I wasn't too pale this time around.

It's a very moisturizing cushion foundation and perfect for autumn. I still prefer my (ghostly white) Innisfree 'Ampoule Intense Cushion' in #13, though, as it applies more thinly (less coverage, but nicer finish) and I personally prefer the color.

As for eyes, if I actually make the effort, I'm using these two Mineral Single Shadows by (take a guess) Innisfree.

One is new, one is old. Again, take a guess.

The 'Fondant au Chocolat' shade is pure love in an eye shadow pan. Buttery, matte and just such a pretty warm brown. Innisfree came out with these new versions of their Mineral Single Shadows so during the sale event, I quickly grabbed this one. It's #9 of their 'matte' line.

The other, beige color (#22 of the old Mineral Shadow lineup, though after the recent relaunch it seems to be the #3 of their 'matte' line) has been used extensively over the last year. It's the perfect base shade for me, a matte yellow brown slightly darker than my skintone. I can also use it for shading, though I'm mostly too lazy for contouring of any kind...

That's it.
Like I said, I'm terrible at makeup despite loving it. For some reason, drawing skills don't translate into makeup skills.

Also, sorry for taking pictures with a messy fringe like that. *crawls into hole because awkward*

So bored. So, so bored. :'D
Instead of a resting bitch face I've got the resting bored face.
See what I mean with the muted pink but still-not-pale-pink-or-nude-pink? It gives just the right amount of color without being over-powering. And it's shiny without being all gooey like a lip gloss. I really love everything about this.

Also visible: Putting on slightly darker, yellow-ish foundation on the face without blending towards the neck. Well done.

Fringe will never do what I want it to do...
I really love everything about this product! I'll definitely go and buy at least one more shade of this range - maybe the red one (#6) or a coral shade (#3). The texture is so good I'd take any color, really.

You can have a look at the shade selection available here. Nearly every shade is named after some form of 'apple' color, like 'apple juice'. Doesn't the red one look gorgeous?

Thanks for reading! Say 'hi' to Hedwig the cat! :D

What are your favorite products for autumn? 
Did you try the spring version of the Real Fluid Rouge lipsticks? 

You can find the illustration motive from this blog post

13 October 2015

REVIEW: Aritaum Color Lasting Tint in #13 THE RED ONE

Hello, I'm back with a review - for a product I'd introduced once before and recently got my hands on another color! It's the Color Lasting Tint by Aritaum in the shade aptly named 'The Red'. How red is it? How long lasting is it? Let's have a look!

(That has to be the cheesiest blog post introduction I've written so far...)

First off, EXCUSES:
My parents were visiting me here on Jeju, Korea, which is why I haven't been posting in a while. 

Also, they kind of attacked Innisfree stores for presents (even my grandmothers use Korean skincare by now haha...) which was my excuse for buying way too much stuff.

So of course I tagged along and gave recommendations and used my customer card to reduce prices and collect points and whatnot... which escalated into hauling literally EVERYTHING I'd had my eyes on over the past year. I've got so many new products that just reviewing them on a weekly basis would fill this blog for the next few months, though that could get quite one-sided and boring.
This Color Lasting Tint was an impulse buy from before though.
I was in the mood for something really red and noticed that I actually don't own anything that isn't either orange or pink. I wanted something easily wearable during the day, something long-lasting that doesn't require touch-ups and as the Fuchsia shade of the Color Lasting Tint that I reviewed last time was blindingly pigmented as well as nearly indistructible on my lips, I decided to play it safe and choose something from the same line. 

As shade #13 is actually named 'The Red' it seemed perfect. 

Same packaging as before, with the sleek long black tube, the appropriatly red details and the very convenient doe-foot applicator. As with the Fuchsia one, this applicator really works well for pigmented lip tints, it just makes the application and blending easy, even for a clutz like me.

It picks up the perfect amount of product for one full layer, which in the case of this shade is already enough for a really bright and intense color! I've tried to put another layer on top, and the color blends in nice and evenly while building up the pigmentation. 

I tried to keep the lip swatch as true to how the color looks in reality as I could. It does have the SLIGHTEST cool undertone once the shine goes away (which is after one or two hours) though for some strange reason it looks warmer when first applied. 

On the lip swatch, the top lip was 'tapped' on with my finger, so there's no shine and you can see the underlying berry-hue. The bottom lip was a full-on layer of color applied with the doe-foot applicator, and the shine looks a bit more orange, right? The overall effect is a nice red that could suit both warm and cool skintones as the differences are so subtle. It really suits my skin, being bright red while neither looking too vampy nor artificial.

It's a bit more evident here in the swatches on my hand: Freshly applied it's a bright, slightly warm red, while after blending and rubbing and drying (...it is crazy long-lasting at that stage) it gets pinkish.

Speaking of long-lasting and fading, I do like this shade less than the Fuchsia one when it comes to its lasting power. The stain is there and stays there alright, but it has a tendency to cling to chapped spots and the inner parts of my lips, giving off an effect similar to what I get after drinking red wine. It's not too bad, and if you don't have chapped lips (who doesn't? seriously??) it might not concern you at all. As I wanted something that lasts me through the day without touch-ups, I was a bit disappointed though. 

After about three hours, it looked like this. It's not too evident in the photo, but it settled in patches and in lines, too. Can be saved easily by reapplying something like tinted lip balm on top of it. I actually loved it when applied as a base underneath other lipsticks - just tapping on a bit of the tint for a red hue, then put whatever less long-lasting product on top. Works well with coral or pink lipsticks! The tint doesn't settle into lines and patches when it's applied thinly like that...

As for a full-on picture for comparison:

THE RED is ... red! Very bright! I really love how it doesn't go too dark despite being so pigmented. 

For reference (if you want to compare your skintone or something) I was wearing the Iope Air Cushion XP in the 22 shade that has shimmer in it - I got talked into buying that by the sales assistant last year. She insisted that it would be a better match than the more yellow-toned, darker shades. After using it several times I have to disagree: It's way too pink for my skin (look at my neck for comparison...) and it has actual shimmery particles in it, which I hate with a passion. The finish is gorgeous though, so I use it anyway sometimes. 

The crux of that little story and the whole review:

The #13 Color Lasting Tint "The Red" shade goes well with both the cool-toned pink-ish Iope Air Cushion, my other one (Innisfree #13) and my bare skin/sunscreen. It's really versatile! 

It doesn't look over the top during the day, as there are no dark/burgundy undertones, and the shiny finish makes it look summery! 

The lasting power is, as mentioned, long, though it stains differently in dry patches which doesn't look too pretty in the long run. 

Still looking for the perfect red (I may have found some in my recent hoarding of Innisfree products!) but this one is a nice base color and can look great on its own when properly taken care of!

As always, thanks for reading and I hope to see you soon for more illustrations (I've finished another project~) and whatever review I feel like next. If you're curious about certain products (lips? foundations? skincare?), tell me in the comments! Also, if you have any recommendations for a true red lip tint, I'm all ears! Thank you!