This post is going to begin with one of my trademark rambles, so if you’d like to scroll past the text and onto the pictures I won’t blame you.
As I’ve mentioned before, my undergraduate major was Cultural Studies, which Wikipedia helpfully defines as “a field of theoretically, politically, and empirically engaged cultural analysis that concentrates upon the political dynamics of contemporary culture, its historical foundations, defining traits, and conflicts.” There’s a large emphasis on the three-way relationship between text, producer, and consumer, and it’s a field which is constantly changing and growing with new technological and cultural developments. During my undergrad I took quite a wide variety of classes, covering topics like Marxist cultural theory, semiotics, 20th century Italian cinema, and even Netflix. Yes, I got to watch House of Cards for school. It was fun.
At my university, Cultural Studies was part of the English department, which also comprised Theatre Studies and Literature, and Cultural Studies majors always felt that we got shafted in our department. Though I did get to take some truly cool classes, essentially what I have is a film degree with a few random theory and lit classes that I was tricked into taking. (Seriously: my last semester of my undergrad I signed up for a class called “Special topics in Canadian cultural studies”, which turned out to be a lit class. It was full of fourth-year lit students who knew a lot of terms that I didn’t because, although I love to read, the only lit class I’d taken prior to this was Intro to Shakespeare in my first year. I believe I used the term “bait and switch” in my course evaluation.) When I studied abroad for a year, it was in the Film and Television department. And I’ll be going to grad school for Film and Television in September. So, basically, I accidentally became a film major and then decided to just run with it.
(I’m planning on focusing on television during grad school as I’ve only seen like 12 movies in my life.)
I’ve written on this blog before that, despite my status as an accidental film student and my reluctance to accept this identity, it turns out that I really enjoy artsy foreign films. My favourite in this vague genre (and perhaps of all time) is Věra Chytilová’s daring, inventive, and visually stunning Sedmikrásky, or Daisies, which came out in 1966. I love the film for so many reasons: its iconoclasm, its stylization, its deployment of alternatingly bratty and strangely innocent heroines, its destruction of femininity and subsequent construction of a femininity that is not placed within the limits of corporeality. It’s a feminist film and a critique of the political climate of Czechoslovakia in the mid 1960s, and it has a decidedly lesbian subtext. All in all, it’s pretty great. The makeup is really a very small reason of why I love it, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love the graphic sixties makeup that the protagonists wear throughout the film. (I’ve written two papers about Daisies and don’t believe I mentioned the makeup in either, although the first paper was about the destruction and subsequent reconstruction of an alternate femininity in the film.)
Many moons ago my good friend Aisling suggested that I do some sort of series on my blog marrying film with makeup. This was probably at least a year ago, and so it figures that I’m only now getting around to it. I’m not sure if this will be a series or not, but it does seem fitting to do a Daisies-inspired makeup look for my blog.
The protagonists (or perhaps anti-heroines?) of the film are two young women named Marie who wreak havoc in their city. This havoc generally involves excessive consumption, wasting food, stealing, and going on dates with men for free food only to ditch them later. They wear a lot of bold black gel eyeliner (and there’s even a scene where they apply it in a public bathroom before making off with the cleaning lady’s money) with little else on their faces. The eyeliner does seem to get a bit bolder as the Maries continue on their destructive ways.
I’ve always been more of a fan of the fair-haired Marie #2; Marie #1 is crueller to me (at least to her friend; they’re equally as terrible to men), so I decided to model my overall look off hers. She tends to wear a peachy lipstick and blush low down on the cheeks, with flowers in her hair. The look in the penultimate image above is in a particularly vulnerable scene, and you can see it’s just a run-of-the-mill bold winged liner.
I decided to do something in between Marie #2’s little date night look and the very graphic, squared-off liner she sports at the end of the film. Actually, I suppose my finished result is closer to Marie #1’s, as she tends to stick with a classic liner shape – albeit exaggerated. Hers takes up the entire lid, unlike Marie #2’s regular flick above.
I did think NARS Brigitte was a particularly apt lipstick to finish this look off, not just because the colour was pretty true to Marie #2’s peach but because Brigitte Bardot was, of course, an icon of the 1960s femininity that the film pushes back against.
Foundation: NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation in Siberia
Concealer: NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Chantilly
Powder: Rimmel Stay Matte
Blush: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Luminous Flush
Brows: Maybelline Color Tattoo in Tough As Taupe; Essence Lash and Brow Gel Mascara
Eye primer: NARS Pro-Prime Smudge-Proof Eyeshadow Base
Eyeliner: Essence Gel Eyeliner in Midnight in Paris
Mascara: Lancôme Hypnôse Star
Lipstick: NARS Audacious Lipstick in Brigitte
(By the way, I totally love the Essence gel liner. Not much stays put on my eyelids of doom, but this stuff didn’t budge.)
Anyway, if you haven’t seen the film and are at all inclined, it’s on YouTube in all its multi-coloured splendour:
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