Last night in New York City François Nars launched his new book, Makeup Your Mind: Express Yourself, at a cocktail party full of beautiful people like Alexa Chung and multiple models and designers. And also regular people, like yours truly. Regular people, prominently featured in close-ups on every page, are the stars of his gorgeous new makeup tome.
Express Yourself is a sequel to Nars’ 2001 book Makeup Your Mind, which showcased his makeup artistry and photographic skills on models of the moment. In his latest endeavor, women from every walk of life are the stars. They are shown with bare faces, then shown on the adjoining page with a full makeup look. The best part? An acrylic overlay with diagrams shows you exactly which color was applied where, and how.
A meaty introduction and a summary of application techniques and tips leads you into the heart of the book, which is page after page of unique beauty looks on women of all ages. Truly inspiring.
Fashionista: Why regular people this time, instead of models and celebrities?
François Nars: The concept was always three books, like a trilogy. The first one models, the second real people, and the third one will be done on celebrities. Artists, singers–as long as you’re famous–from all different backgrounds.
Do you already have people lined up for that?
Well, I can’t say yet because it’s really a project that will happen in the next couple years. [At which point we asked if Lady Gaga might possibly be one of them, but he just gave me a laugh, denying us a scoop.] We’re just trying to put a list together of people that I would love to shoot and I feel would want to show themselves naked to the world. It’s not an easy process.
What’s the difference between shooting regular people and models or celebrities?
I have to tell you they were so extremely professional. I was very shocked and very surprised; they were a dream. They were not too shy in front of the camera, they were very still, it was extremely easy for me. Almost easier than with models or movie stars.
What are the top two mistakes you see regular women making w/their makeup?
Not blending enough, whatever it is–not blending your eye shadow, or putting too much blush. And picking the wrong color foundation, so there is a difference between the neck and the face.
Do you see the orange makeup trend sticking around for a while?
I love orange. In the book we have a few looks with orange. It’s a very flattering color, especially for summer. It looks beautiful on very pale skin and if you’re tan. Again, if you do orange [lips or blush], then you have to keep your eyes more subtle, otherwise you start looking like a clown. You have to be careful to balance.
*Photos: David X. Prutting & Neil Rasmus/BFANYC.COM