Friday, 31 October 2014

Hooray it's Halloween!

Happy Halloween, dear reader! I must declare that I am a fan of festivities around this time of year. I welcome any excuse to play dress up and eat a lot of sugary snacks.

Trick or Treat Halloween Goodie Bag from Dealz

This year, I'll be celebrating the spooky day at my new job! I started at Boots this week, and so far I love it. It's great working in a store with so many amazing health and beauty brands and products... No doubt, I'll be making a few purchases and perhaps I'll blog about them too!

The fun thing is, we're allowed to dress up today for Halloween! I didn't have enough time to find an intricate work-suitable outfit, so I've decided to go for a slightly random, but undeniably Halloweeny combination!

Green devil horns Green devil horns casual Halloween costume Green devil horns

Because I was pushed for time, popped into Dealz where I was able to gather my whole outfit, picking up some sweets for the trick or treat-ers along the way. I'd be working in the outfit, so I wanted something that wouldn't be overly awkward to wear. The electric green devil horns caught my eye, and I coupled the head gear with glowing purple spiders and purple hair.

To make my hair purple, I decided to try out Urban Colour hair chalk. It's really simple to use, you just rub it directly on to your hair and hey presto! I'm pleasantly surprised that you don't need blonde hair for it to work, it came out in a lovely vibrant shade on my ginger hair!

Purple Hair Chalk

This is my tame Halloween outfit... I'll be out tonight as a freaky nurse, which will be substantially more creepy. Even the thought of me being a nurse is scary, I'd be a terrible one! Anyway, wishing you a spooky Halloween! Stay safe out there! x

Friday, 24 October 2014

Podcast Love

Podcast Love Graphic courtesy of Technicolour Dreamer

Now that I'm faced with a long commute, and hence a lot of time with phone in hand and headphones in ear, I've developed a love for podcasts. I find that plugging in my headphones and popping on a podcast helps me to check out of my surroundings and actually enjoy the trek into uni. It's important for me to make the most of every second this year, since I am extremely busy, so my journeys by bus are becoming a time where I indulge in some much-needed chill-out time.

Plus, when my late nights are spent walking home from the bus stop, cowered under an umbrella in the unrelenting rain, distractions are very much welcomed.

Umbrella and Rain at Night courtesy of Technicolour Dreamer

* Scott Mills Daily - Hands down the funniest guy on radio, along with his sidekick Chris. It's absolutely outrageous that he's never been the Radio 1 Breakfast Host.
* Cracked - Boils down pop psychology and culture into a lighthearted chat with some funny people.
* NPR: Pop Culture Happy Hour - Delves into popular culture, and comments on what's hot in the world of books, television and films.
* Radiolab from WNYC - Radio documentary as it should be: utterly engaging and always surprising.
* An Irishman Abroad - Fascinating interviews with successful celebs who 'made-it' by flying the coop. Expect to be inspired by the likes of Dara O'Briain, Laura Whitmore, the IT Crowd/Father Ted creator, Graham Linehan and others. Not only relevant for the Irish, scroll down the feed and find someone you're interested in and discover their story.
* The Infinite Monkey Cage - Hosted by the ever-charming Brian Cox and comedian Robin Ince, the two delve into all things sciencey. I need to don my thinking cap for this one, and I'll only put it on when I'm in a particularly nerdy mood. Bonus: Brian Cox's voice is quite dreamy!

Well there you go, my favourites from my download list. With many more hours of commuting ahead of me, I'm certainly on the hunt for more audio gems, so please do share if you are a fellow podcast enthusiast!

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Show & Tell: My Room Divider

I've gone a little home decor crazy over here, my most recent endeavor being the transformation of my room divider. Before, it had a dull and poorly painted white and brown appearance. And after? Well keep on scrolling to see the transformation.

Violet Room Divider Landscape

I couldn't make this post into a DIY, because I failed to take in-process pics (tut tut bad blogger). So it's more of a show and tell... Showing off what my room divider looks like since I got my grubby paws on it... The opposite sides are both absolutely different styles:

Violet Room Divider Room Divider Purple Parrot Decoration

The violet, cutesy side is the side facing my bedroom. I like it, but the pattern is perhaps a bit too busy, so I'm going to keep my eyes open incase I find some other suitable papers. That's the good thing about this little transformation, it'll be so easy to switch it up when I get bored of it. Or I can simply make a change by turning the shutters around, since it's reversible. The above right picture shows the other side, where I went for a loud parrot print and spray painted the frame a dark shade of purple.

Paperchase Cute Bird Wrapping Paper

Just a note on how I did this: I spray painted the frames violet on one side and purple on the other. The inside panels were decorated with sturdy wrapping paper, which I picked up from Paperchase. They were having a great sale, so I stocked up on lots of cute stationary stuff, including this paper.

That's what I've been getting up to recently. Have you been doing any decorating? Let me know, I love reading your comments and coming across new blogs (and old favourites) in the process!

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Using bareMinerals for Acne Prone Skin

Hello, dear reader, and welcome to my first ever beauty post! There's a reason that it's taken me this long to get share my thoughts on a beauty product: It's simply because I've never been a make-up person. Bar the overuse of eyeliner when I was 15, it wasn't until I was in my late teens that I started exploring make-up, and since then I've always felt behind in the beauty world. However, that's not to say that make-up isn't important to me. It's just that with my acne prone skin, I've got to be extra careful when choosing make-up, especially when it comes to foundation.

For Christmas last year, my Mum gifted me the bareMinerals Get Started Kit for light skin, and I haven't looked back since. According to WebMD mineral-based foundations are the way to go for acne prone skin. And from my own experience, I'd have to agree. Foundations I have used in the past may have made my skin look pretty while I wore them, but in the long run they clogged up my pores. Whereas I can wear the bareMinerals foundation everyday, and no extra spots seem to pop up because of this. Plus, buffing on powder feels so much lighter on my skin than the mousse and liquid foundations I have tried in the past.

bareMinerals Make-Up Set bareMinerals Make-Up Brush

When I'm going out for the night, I'll put on primer first, to ensure that the foundation sits in place for the duration of my escapades. Having said that, I don't wear the primer on a daily basis, because applying it feels quite greasy. Plus, you have to apply it using your fingertips, and if you read my Tips for Acne Sufferers you'll know that you should avoid this when tackling acne.

Prime Time bareMinerals Primer Being Used Fairly Light bareMinerals Foundation
Notice the slight tinge of purple on my nails? That's due to a DIY that I'll be sharing online in the future!

I wear the Fairly Light N10 shade, which matches my skin tone perfectly. I top it all off and seal it in place with the Mineral Veil, which is also provided in the Get Started Kit. The amount of bareMinerals in this post makes it look like I'm being sponsored by them! But no, it's overloaded with bareMinerals products because when I find a product that works for me, I stick to it. I'm experimental with my style, but not so much with my beauty regime.

bareMinerals Final Look

Here's my final look. My spots are still noticeable, because I don't wear concealer at the moment... Gosh I really am slow on the uptake when it comes to beauty! Clearly, I'm in need of advice, so please do let me know what products you use to cover oily/acne ridden skin! Also, have you tried bareMinerals? Let me know what you think in the comments!

Saturday, 4 October 2014

My Internship with 2Fik

Last month I had the pleasure of being the 'Photo Clicker and Photoshop Wizard' (yes, that was the official title!) for the performance photographer, 2Fik, as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival. 2Fik creates amazing images, in which he plays multiple characters within the frame. For this particular project, 2Fik's mission was to reimagine the Irish painting entitled 'The Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife'. And I was happy to help! Below is the final image.

2Fik Does the Marriage of Strongbow (and Aoife)

On the day of the photoshoot, I acted as a photographer's assistant, I released the shutter when told and kept track of the different parts of the frame that 2Fik had posed in. As we shot the images, 2Fik got countless strange looks from the public. I suppose that was to be expected though, since the characters he played ranged from a child wearing a crocodile onesie to a bearded lady-priest in an Irish dancing dress and leather hijab. I don't understand the significance of all the costumes that are worn in the piece, I'm not going to pretend I do. However, I do believe that this piece of art encourages the viewer to question their understanding of identity and gender roles. Deep, huh?

While the overall message may have been serious, the same could not be said for the overall atmosphere of the day. Sure, we had our stern faces on every now and then, as we concentrated on getting the prefect shot, but I also was giggling and enjoying myself, as the team were so lovely to work with. Plus, I made friends with Chutney, the laser-eyed prop horse!

Laser-eyed Fake Horse
Chutney and I. Follow me on Instagram for more of my face!

Another one of my responsibilities as an intern on this project was to use Photoshop to cut out some of the characters, so that 2Fik could incorporate them into the final image. This took hours upon hours to do, and I only had to do around fifteen! I can't imagine how time consuming it must have been for 2Fik to cut out all of the other characters and combine them all together to make one final coherent photograph. Bravo to him! It was completed in time, and the final image was exhibited at Filmbase in Temple Bar.

Gillian and Claire at the Launch of 2Fik's 'The Marriage of Strongbow (and Aoife)' as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival, 2014
Jillian (the Costume Assistant) and I, in front of the final piece.

So that was glimpse at my short stint in the performance art world. I loved it, I'd jump at the chance to be involved with something like this again. Have you ever worked on a similarly wacky art project? Let me know in the comments, I'd love to hear what you've been up to!