With cameras pointing at me, a makeup artist working on my face and curious onlookers peering around the corner to see what was going on, you would think I was a movie star.
But I was not.
I was just having my face painted by Betsy Lane High School junior KayLee Evans.
The 16-year-old is an aspiring makeup artist, but not the kind of makeup artist who makes you look beautiful; she’s the kind who makes you look scary or creepy or simply different.
The daughter of Scottie and Misty Evans of Grethel in Floyd County enjoys art and studies art in school. She wasn’t sure what drew her to theatrical makeup, but I believe her love of art transferred to makeup. She started watching YouTube videos of others applying makeup and she got started herself.
This was the first time she had applied makeup to someone else. According to her mom, who accompanied her from Floyd County to the offices of The Daily Independent, she spends all her time painting up and making videos of herself.
The truth is, Evans is a hit on TikTok. She posts videos of herself in makeup as various characters. As mrs.derpy_12, she has more than 185,000 followers and 2.5 million likes. That requires more work than you might imagine.
I know that first hand: Evans painted my face one afternoon at work.
My hair was pinned back and I had a bare face. It needed to be covered with something. Badly.
Evans broke out her collection of makeup.
“Sometimes I use Mehron, which is grease paint,” she explained. “On you, I’ll use Snazaroo, which is a water-based paint.”
She said the design she painted on me was a simplified version of a scarecrow she found online featuring a sunflower covering my eye.
She began by working around my right eye. I decided to do as my Aunt Mae used to do after dinner; she didn’t fall asleep, just “rested her eyes” as she gently snored.
While it felt good to close my eyes, I wasn’t going to go to sleep with two cameras in my face and a small crowd gathered.
First, she glued down my right eyebrow, she said, to keep it in place while she paints.
“What are you doing now?”I asked.
“I’m making the center of the flower,” she said, making small strokes on and around my eyelid.
Next, she drew petals radiating out from what one onlooker said was my “black eye.”
I’m not real clear on what she did after that. I was relaxed and enjoying having my eyes closed, except when she asked me to open my eyes to get my stubby eyelashes out of the way of her makeup brush.
The shy artist has done much wilder and more detailed works than the flower she painted on my face. Her works range from Superman and Wonder Woman to .............
“Art makes me happy,” she said as she applied gold glitter to my right eyelid.
“KayLee, she needs some glitter on her other eyelid,” her mother said. Evans stopped working, looked at her for a moment and went back to work without a word.
Another onlooker asked if she was going to put “stitches” on my mouth. I wisecracked, “I’m sure most of my friends would like that,” but Evans just kept working, ignoring the suggestions.
That’s how I know she’s a real artist. She has a vision and won’t be swayed.
When she was done, I had a ball walking around the office startling those who didn’t know I was being made up. After the initial jolt, everyone thought it looked pretty — a big ol’ sunflower with an eye peering out from its center.
I even wore my makeup home, hoping to stop traffic and draw a lot of attention. However, that didn’t happen. I drove home without incident. Even the cat and dog paid no attention.
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