I had such a wonderful time last night at RAW in Portland, last night.
It was such a great experience and something I am very proud of, especially for my first self-produced fashion show. I realized two weeks before my show that I could not do this by myself. I have been so focused on trying to create and self promote and I thought I could do this by myself. But I realized that this show was bigger than just me, and if it was going to be any good I would need to get a lot of help. Jonathan Boys gave me a name that has now changed my life! Carrie Woomer of Vault Model and Artist Management has now become a good friend not to mention my show hook up! Carrie worked so hard to fill in my modeling gaps, and found me some really great people to work with. She has so many wonderful ideas and I know will help me in any way she can. She is also going to do the hair and makeup for the Flux magazine premier in Eugene on June 2nd.
After I found all my models and was nearing the end of my work on the looks I called in Mac McGowan to supply all of my goggles for the models. I gave him specific colors and style and he created goggles just for my show! No other goggle compares to his and it was a true honor to have my models wearing those.
Just a few days before the show I finally nailed down my music and choreography. I emailed Captain Robert from Abney Park and asked permission to use his music in the show. He gave me the all clear and I picked 3 of their songs, "The Secret Life of Dr. Calgori", "Victorian Vigilante", and "Until the Day You Die." I then asked Jonathan Boys if he could mix the songs so they would flow in order and I could time my show without any dead air. He followed my instruction beautifully and my show went so smooth because of that track!
After we got my van packed with costumes and models we drove from Salem to Portland. On the drive up, I got a few phone calls and lost 2 of my leading models. I talked with my amazing models/friends and they offered to put a call into their other local friends to walk last minute for me. My saving angels James and Danika just so happened to be available to walk, were gorgeous, fit in the clothes and knew how to please a crowd. I can not believe my luck and am so grateful to them because those looks would not have been seen.
When we arrived at the Bassanova Ballroom I was taken to the basement in one of the rooms with lots of mirrors to get ready for the show. Kelli was there ready to start on hair. We discussed styles and looked at the clothes and she took over. Every one of my model's hair turned out so great for such a short time notice. Kelli was so amazing and knew what she was doing, she was even done with hair before I managed to get everyone dressed!
I started dressing everyone at about 5:00 while other models trickled in. As with any backstage environment, it was hurry up and wait! Everyone was so patient with me and helped out so much. This was the first time I had seen everyone in the same room at the same time. With some models half dressed and most still in street clothes we jumped on stage to do a run through of the show. Since it was not quite a runway show but more a performance I sat in the background and directed the whole thing. I was still missing a model and she never showed so I had one outfit that was not seen and I had to adjust the choreography to work with out her. We ran through the show twice and everyone felt comfortable with it.
George Anthony came in just before and so well prepared. I had emailed him once with a few photos, ideas and descriptions of the outfits. He came with full color drawings of makeup plans for everyone! I was not prepared for his organization or genius. He made everyone glow with artistic radiance.
I was called away from dressing my models a few times during the night for RAW meetings and photography sessions, but for the most part I was left alone to get everyone ready. I did not have the last stitch of clothing on my models till 10:15. That's right it took me over 5 hours to get everyone laced and layered into their outfits. My arm, fingers and back muscles are really sore from tieing so many corsets last night.
We were told we were to go on at 10:30 so I got everyone up there in line and ready to go. The DJ cued the song and we started the show. I started my stopwatch and off they went. The performance artist came out in everyone. I knew my models were good, but my jaw hit the floor when they went on stage.
Kirt was first up with the cream colored linen outfit and mechanical wings. When he got to the end of the stage and bowed the audience went crazy! Angelique was next wearing the Steampunk Bride outfit. She had my white silk art corset on with all the watch bands and the new parasol I crocheted on an antique brass frame. She walked slow but with such grace and I heard later impressed the audience with her outfit and walk. Next was Nikki, wearing the purple outfit with mask and hood. She worked that skirt and the hood in such a bold confident way, I had many compliments on her stunning performance. Once those three were on stage, Andrew came from behind the audience to really showcase that dragon tail. I gave him the cue to drop the cape and the girls started bustling the tail for the next act. Andrew walked with the authority only a Dragon King could do.
Kosar started the next song as my Dragon Queen. She had a beautiful headdress on with a warrior like corset and a full bustle skirt. She walked like a queen with an authority and grace that made everyone want to submit. Angelique and Nikki finished bustling the tail and strapped it to her belt as she waited for the King to come escort her off stage.
James and Erandini were next. I sent them both on stage at once and they worked with each other, showcasing the other's outfit. They took turns walking and making eye contact with each other and the audience. I called them off and Laura walked on in the Steampunk Absinthe Faerie outfit. She blew me away by her walk that was so posed, entertaining and full of energy. She walked down the stairs and around through the shocked audience. We were a few seconds late getting Kosar into her change but once she stepped on in the Aviator outfit she owned it! She was like the captain of this ship and she got such a positive reaction from the audience!
Danika was next. Her look was one of my favorites in those amazing pants and plaid silk corset covered by the black silk coat. When she went on stage the audience gasped. She snapped into performance mode and made that outfit come alive. She knew exactly what I wanted from her and that was to preform on stage.
Amanda was my last look and I saved her for last, on purpose. She wore a corset dress with over 600 grommets set in it and deer antlers. When she got on stage I was not prepared for he pure genius. She let the inner animal come out and did some amazing moves. She was my grand finale and brought more to that outfit than I even imagined.
For the final walk I made everyone go back on stage with Danika and I coming up last. We took a bow and then one by one stepped off stage.
We went out back and took some pictures then most of the models stayed in costume and went to mingle. We slowly got everyone out of costume and I went to mingle.
I talked with Peter Greene and some other artists and they were telling me about a future steampunk movie they were producing. They asked if I would be interested in helping with the movie with concepts and costuming. I am so thrilled to have been offered something I have always wanted to do. So looking forward to our future meetings and conversations!!!
I traded a journal for a beautiful mermaid painting from Corrin Lee. She was so talented and very sweet. Her work is extraordinary and so well done.
We packed everything up, cleaned up the room and headed back to Salem. We dropped off two of my models and went home. When I got back home, it was back to reality. Dishes were piled, the house was a wreck and the dog needed to be fed. With your 15 minutes of fame, shouldn't that come with a maid?
Photos coming soon from Mercy McNab...check her out, she was amazing!