Category Archives: Portraiture Tips

Make-Up Tips From Make-Up Artist Wayne Chick


Wayne Chick Copyright Carla Coulson

This is my gorgeous friend Wayne, super make-up artist and generous soul. Waynie is a Renaissance women in every sense, she can turn her hand to anything with great style and you may recall she whipped up this newspaper ball gown when last in Paris.

When she’s not making newspaper dresses she is doing make-up for Drew Barrymore, Elle Macpherson, Hugh Jackman, Liam Neeson and a slew of gorgeous models. She is the queen of ‘glam natural’, you know, ‘the make-up you’re having when you are not having make-up’.

I am always bugging her for natural make-up tips so she has kindly offered to share some of her secrets with us today!! Whoop, whoop Waynie..

Wayne Chick

Wayne Chick Copyright Carla Coulson

So over to Waynie..

Hello Ladies! I want to to offer you some insider tips on natural makeup. Especially as there seems to be a lot of trickery going on with celebs claiming to be wearing none!

I would like to explain to you what ‘NONE’ actually means to celebrities, it means that they have not sat in a hair and makeup chair for 2 hours which is what they are used to…..

Makeup can be a great antidote to feeling that you look tired, or to help you feel like the best version of yourself.

My philosophy has always been that it’s best not to look too make-uppy in real life (ie unless you are on stage, runway or in a publication) its best to keep it nice and subtle!

Skin should look like beautiful fresh skin, not a makeup product, even if you do have problems to cover, which is the norm.

Carla Coulson Wayne Chick

 Wayne Chick Copyright Carla Coulson (yep we are taking things really seriously here)

Let me give you a few insider tips:

1)An under-eye wand such as YSL Touche Eclat..has a light reflective quality to bring forward any hollow, and most importantly it doesn’t crease! You need to get the color right..If you are olive skinned I would use number 3, as the peachy tone is what is required to counteract greyness and brighten the eye. If you are paler I would mix number 2 into it..Look for brands that make a peachy tone like the YSL #3..You don’t want it too light or you’ll look white under there! No good! Obvious! It should be completely undetectable! I also use the YSL number 3 if i encounter pigmentation spots, the peachyness also neutralises the brown.

2) Sneaky blush..a powder version will have lasting power for the day ..a pinky peach looks natural. Cream blush is lovely only if you don’t need foundation cover, as creams can eat through or accentuate what you are trying to conceal. They also tend to require re application.

3) Subtle mascara application is easily achievable by combing through immediately after application with an old mascara brush you have washed and dried..or you can use a disposable mascara wand. This will reduce any clumping and distribute evenly. And go waterproof if doing sneaky beach makeup! Otherwise I like regular formula as it’s easy to remove. Using dark brown is an option to  black if you want subtlety. Use of a curler before applying your mascara will definately make them look more luscious.

4) Tinted moisturiser can do wonders to even out’ll be surprised. Go for a yellow toned one even if u are pinkish’ll help neutralise any redness. There are many SPF you can use as you would use a moisturiser. I’m personally very fond of Laurer Mercier tinted moisturiser or the Dermalogica one, nice and dewy. Clinique make some lovely ones as do many other brands..choose one that has no shimmer quality in it. If you really want to add a sheen or luminiser  product, read below.

5) Conceal any further red or problem areas with a thicker liquid foundation in your exact skin tone, or a concealer like MAC select cover. I have never put foundation all over my face! It looks make-uppy in real life. No No No! And I have areas that need cover! Pop it where you need it and avoid any wrinkles! A small brush may help if you like. Look for beigey yellow tones rather than pinkish or orangey tones. If unsure, a good idea is to put a dab of the tester on your jaw and some at your cheek, let it dry and check it in a mirror preferably out in the daylight before you make the investment, as it will dry darker than when its still wet.


 Wayne Chick Copyright Carla Coulson

6) This is not necessary but if you wanted to use  a luminiser, choose a fine textured don’t want one with fine chunks of sparkle! You can apply to cheekbones, eyelids  and jawline..even a little to the nose if you like, but otherwise avoid the middle of face as this would give a sweaty or greasy look … especially in a snapshot!

7)For the lips, I love vitamin E oil in a liitle squeeze bottle (eg. In Australia Invite E) Keeps lips youthful I do believe! And what you ingest is nutritious! I get it straight onto every models lips first thing,especially if they are cracked. Its brilliant! A little lip pencil smudged over the top with your finger if u want a natural lip color that doesn’t look obviously lipsticky.

8)Eyebrow tricks..the easiest way to thicken subtley,or darken if required is with a very fine, firmish brush and good old eyeshadow.I have never bothered with special eyebrow kits.. unless you like the color it offers.A favourite is MAC eyeshadow in Brun. I use it on most people. If u are very dark, go for a coffee color. U want to avoid regular browns as they tend to look  gingery at the brow. Greyish taupe for blondes.

9) If the eye wants subtle enhancement, the tiniest touch of dark brown shadow smudged into the lashline with a little brush, and then perhaps a finger. I personally might dot a teeny smudge of dark brown pencil then smudge into the lashes with a (clean)finger.

10) Blot the shine from the middle of face if necessary..between the brow, at sides of nose and the chin. I like the MAC Blot powder compact in medium (dark if you are very dark skinned.) It’s not powdery looking, it just blots! This is essential if you want to look good in a photo! De-shine down the middle, but leave at the periphery.

Wayne Chick Carla Coulson

 Wayne Chick Copyright Carla Coulson

Wanna look fab when you are out and about??

Smile a lot where u can!..It defies the perils of gravity. And don’t stand under downlights when someone points a camera at you..If you see any, run!  (Downlights that is..they are not a good friend to the mature woman! (Note the lovely natural light Carla has shot me in!)

Final Note! This sounds a lot for a no-makeup look, but I’m covering off here for various general requirements across the board. The idea is that this should personally be no more than a 2 or 3 minute exercise once you have it down pat!

Wayne xx

“The only way I’d be caught without makeup is if my radio fell in the bathtub while I was taking a bath and electrocuted me and I was in between makeup at home. I hope my husband would slap a little lipstick on me before he took me to the morgue.” Dolly Parton

LOL (quote from Carla)

Private Portrait Shoot – A Mediterranean Beauty and Her Cool Kids

Carla Coulson portrait shoot paris sydney

I had the pleasure of photographing the heavenly Julie in Sydney this summer and there is nothing more I love than hanging out with great women, hearing their stories and creating beautiful photos together.

carla coulson portrait shoot paris

Julie is beautiful inside and out and what a treat to find another amazing woman and have the honour of photographing her.

We started off in these first images with a light eye and the accent on her beautiful mouth…

Carla Coulson private portrait shoot sydney paris

And as the afternoon wore on out came the smoky eye and the va va voom within!

Carla Coulson private portrait shoot sydney paris

At times when I looked through the lens I could see in Julie classic Mediterranean beauties like Monica Bellucci and Penelope Cruz. The camera and I adored her!

carla coulson portrait shoot paris

The beautiful Julie is also the talented owner/creator of Juniorbrands and for those that love fashion like Paul Smith and Jean Paul Gaultier, Juniorbrands is all of that and more for the little ones.
Carla Coulson private portrait shoot sydney paris

I also had the honour of photographing the fabulous Solei

Carla Coulson private portrait shoot sydney paris

And the ever so cool Flynn

If you love Jean Paul Gaultier, Paul Smith and Hugo Boss you are going to lurve Juniorbrands where you will find these labels for your kids, nephews and nieces and grandchildren.

Check out her fabulous site here or on Facebook here.

Eternal hugs and big thank you to Julie for allowing me to share these photos with you.

“There is no definition of beauty, but when you can see someone’s spirit coming through, something unexplainable, that’s beautiful to me.” Liv Tyler


Portrait Inspiration – Retro LA Style and Lighting Tips

All images of Model Angela Lindvall for Elle by photographer Nicholas Moore

I have always loved a little LA Style it kind of reminds me of Sydney. This shoot recalls as whole lot of things including the  fab Julianne Moore in Tom Ford’s film A Single Man.  Throw in some beautiful light, a wonderful caftan and I am gonsky. Just missing an up-do!

Lurving the styling and that beautiful hat, oh and put a pool in any photo and Carla’s in love. The model has her back to the sun and is creating her own shade. Wonderful trick to do in full sun.

Most magazine shoots are made up of a variety of shots. Environmental shots where the model is a part of the location but the environment is almost the hero, tighter full length shots of the model, plan Americain as they say in Paris which is a classic crop just below the navel of the model and then tighter portrait shots like this one..

Loving this environment pic. Just missing the gorgeous Colin Firth on the set of Single Man..

Now if you are around my age you will probably remember the ‘Banana Lounge” that beautiful model Angela Lindvall is reclining on. I see a ‘Banana Chair’ and I am a sixteen year old kid in a floral cotton bikini with sun streaks chatting with my best buddy.


1. My guess is and I maybe wrong but this shoot was inspired by Tom Ford’s heavenly styled movie A Single Man.

2. I loved these sun flooded images. You really feel like you are on holidays looking at these pics and I love how the photographer hasn’t avoided the sun he has played with it.

3. I use this ‘get out of jail’ technique on bright sunny days. I turn my subjects back to the sun which creates their own shade. You then simply expose for the skin. You will notice the highlights are blown out on the left but the lighter shade part of the pool  is also correctly exposed which is a similar exposure to the shade created on the skin.

4. Photo 4 has been taken in direct sunlight but in my opinion not at the hottest part of the day. Probably in the morning or in the afternoon judging from the shadows and the relative softness of the direct light. Always a great time to shoot people in direct light.

5. Love this last pic of the beautiful Angela smiling. This pic has been taken in open shade with a little mixed light probably because is this was taken in direct light as per the previous shot the white would have been bouncing off light and would have had too much flare.

“Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.”   Maori Proverb


I hope you enjoy these little tips. If you think they could help someone please feel free to share.

Portrait Inspiration – Monica Bellucci

All Photos Copyright Signe Vilstrup

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend full of love and light. It’s a little gloomy today in Paris and the weather boys are predicting -5 later in the week (brrr)  so I thought we needed a little sunshine in our lives and a little Italian glamour inspiration to kick the week off.

These photos by fab photographer Signe Vilstrup are some of the most beautiful portraits of Monica Bellucci I have seen and being a huge fan of MB I have seen my fair share of pics – these are just exquisite. Love the flashes of gold, black and a red lip.

Love this portraiture angle  and the emotion created with the faraway look in her eyes.

Hubby cruised by screen this morning and nearly fainted when he saw this pic. A devoted fan of Monica this pic rocked his world!! ha ha..

An exquisite portrait of a woman in her late 40′s.  Love the interference in the front of the shot.


1. Location, Location, Location. In the 1st shot Signe Vilstrup has chosen a beautiful rustic location as the backdrop of the glamorous Monica. Wonderful contrasts of elegance with a grungy wall and hints of just gold, black and red.

2. I love so many of the poses in this shoot in particular the 2nd shot where all the textures and beauty meet and the angle that Monica is looking back to us. Wonderful positioning of the body to show off the lace sleeve, divine hair and to create a beautiful, interesting portrait angle.

3. Light! There is exquisite kind light in this shoot and any woman would look her best in this light. In the 3rd shot it looks to me like window light and her skin is illuminated softly and evenly

4. Love the pose and the mood in 4th shot. Muted colours and a red lip. Wow. Oh and one of the hottest cleavages on the planet. Love the interference on the right hand side that creates so much atmosphere.

5. Break out the wind machine and put a piece of bevelled glass in front of your lens and you may just come close to he 5th pic. That is if you have a Monica Bellucci look alike on hand.

I love this shoot, warms my portrait photographers heart and is a wonderful inspiration for middle age woman. Rock on Signe and praise to the lovely Monica.

“I know many beautiful people and their lives are just so terrible. They feel uncomfortable with themselves. Being comfortable is not about what you look like, but how you feel.” Monica Bellucci


Portrait Shoot – 7 Shots 6 Different Hair Looks

I am blogging to day as super proud Aunty and photographer! Super proud Aunty probably will outdo the photographer today so let me introduce this divine creature, my beautiful niece Isabella.

Many Italian Joy fans will know her as the deliriously happy water baby sliding down the water slide on page 232 and the cute little munchkin with the gap in her teeth off to the pool in Chasing A Dream on page 146 (pic at the end of this blog post).

My nieces and nephews are some of my favourite subjects and as long as I have had a camera in my hand we have donned our togs headed to the beach, pool or Mediterranean to take pics. When I look back through my negatives, I see little sea creatures with their funny goggles and toothless grins, and a long line of brightly coloured pool toys that have witnessed their transformation into fine men and women.

This year we took pics all the same but stayed out of the water and had some grown-up fun. I called my dear friend and make-up artist and had ourselves a little gal time. You can see Eliza my other adorable niece’s retro Hawaiian look here.

We started with barely there make-up and my clever make-up artist friend created these 4 hair changes with a flick of her hair brush, tucking hair behind her ears, adding a little plait, bringing a piece of hair  forward and then going for the messy look.

She of the mesmerizing look. Isabella has always had the ability to look right into the camera and I can’t get enough of it.

We couldn’t resist a little dive into the vintage wardrobe for a new look, a stronger lip and a low bun.

And a little Frida Kahlos inspired moment is always a heartbeat away with me and super cute niece chose it on her own.. Be still my beating heart!  A high ponystail and bright scarf, another bright lip to accentuate her gorgeous mouth and voila a new look.

Shooting Notes:

1. The first four shots were taken using window light. I had Isabella stand very close to the large windows in my sisters lounge-room and used the light fall off so as not to see details in the background.

2. I asked Isabella to choose some images from hundreds of photos where she liked the hair and make-up and the styling and that’s where we started.

3. The make-up artist created a ‘natural’ make-up in the first four shots that accentuated her natural beauty and has a no-make-up look. If you look hard you can see eye shadow on her eyes and a beautiful rose lip colour.

4. I wanted to create simple portraits that were all about her beauty so in the first four shots I simply moved her in respect to the camera to create different ‘shapes’.

5. In photo 5 we stepped outside and used a covered verandah to achieve this light. I exposed for the left side of her face. You will notice the light quality is totally different to the window light used in the top 4 shots. .

6. I used F2.8 for the first 4 shots on my 24mm-70mm lens. Shot on my Canon 5D Mark II

 Isabella full of music Copyright Carla Coulson Chasing A Dream

I love my nieces (and nephews) to pieces.

 ”Why should I marry? One marries to have children, but I already have children! My nieces and nephews are my children.” Salman Khan

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