10 March, 2012

300 Words

...it's a mystery, wrapped in an enigma, wrapped in bacon...mmmmmmm....

I'm embarrassed to even post this as an entry, but I've been delinquent in posting at all. Go on, give me a D+ for it, if you like.

A website asks for a 'writing sample', one that 'demonstrates ability to write concisely on a topic', which, as a matter of fact, I CAN. I just usually don't. Unlike some other writers of my acquaintance, I actively enjoy the process of writing, the language, the mechanics and the unfolding progression of thought as I write. On occasion, I need to write about a thing before I am able to understand how I feel about it.

However, the assignment is 300 words that demonstrate...yadda, yadda. So I must choose a topic, first of all. "Write what you know" is a great idea, unless you're writing science fiction, which by definition is something the author doesn't know. But at this point in my life, I know so much stuff. And a lot of it is purely boring. Also, I am obviously stalling. I'd like to write about something other than cooking or child-rearing or knitting, something that will capture the attention of the site's editors. What do I know that other folk don't know?

whiteface makeup application
stilt walking for beginners
how to build a fire-eating torch
I-Ching readings at parties
preparing for a gig
how to write a murder mystery
sewing a pair of stilt pants

Make sure your hands and face are very clean. Oils left on the skin will interfere with the application of the greasepaint. Place a small amount of the greasepaint in the palm of your non-dominant hand, and rub it gently until it is very soft and pliable. With fingertips or a makeup sponge, apply greasepaint evenly to your face, working symmetrically so as to avoid streaking. Crusted blemishes on your face will be a problem at this point, so simply dab a little glob of makeup on them, and leave them until later. Be sure to work the makeup well into your eyebrows and the 'corners' of your nose- the crease where the sides of your nose meet the lower edge of your cheek. Cover to your hairline, ears and chin, or some predetermined edge. Scrunch your chin up to ensure that you're all covered even when grimacing.

When your face is evenly coated, with your ring and middle fingers covered in white, gently pat all over your face. This works the makeup into your skin and hides your pores. Your makeup should feel tacky, but not thick or goopy. If you've left any blobs of makeup on your blemishes, now is the time to gently and carefully cover them, blending the edges of the makeup blob without disturbing any scabbing you may have. Check the mirror. Do you look good? If so, it's time for powder.

Classically trained clowns like a powder sock, which is a deceptive term. An old gym sock isn't the thing at all. A trouser sock, made of pantyhose material is better, but what you need for a good powder sock is a densely woven material that permits the powder to seep out, without leaving textural marks on your makeup. A child's dress sock is often a good choice, but be sure to only use white socks, as sock dye can bleed onto your powder. Some clowns avoid the sock entirely and simply shake powder onto a puff and pat their faces with the powder-coated puff, or dip large fluffy brushes into a powder box and brush the powder onto the face. These are more wasteful and messy than the sock method, but a novice will wish to try each method to determine personal preference.

Once your face is completely powdered, (tap or stroke your face all over with your fingertips- any stick spots require more powder), you will use a large soft brush to remove the excess. When you make faces in the mirror, you shouldn't have powder flaking off- if you do, brush again.

Check your face again, turning side to side, up and down, and brush your eyebrows back into place. Now you are ready to paint on your details.

Okay. My word processing program says this is 458 words. But it's a start.