❤ MJ Valentine ❤
MJ Valentine had me at hello! I am an absolute fan of anyone who can take what life tosses them and turn it into glitter and rainbows! I also have a thing for Aussies[Full disclosure!] ;)
MJ has an awesome personality and heart! She's not afraid to be honest and puts her whole heart into her writing and art! She lives with such beautiful intentionality to love herself, others, and life! In many ways I find her radical about it! MJ purposes living life with gusto-- NO matter what! I HAD to know this girl and have a ❤ to ❤! I wanted to know how art and self expression helped her find the self acceptance and self love that clearly is MJValentine.com! Here's what she had to share:
How do you express yourself daily?
I express myself physically through the clothes and makeup that I wear. My personal style is bright, sparkly, bold, kawaii and above all, it’s fun. I believe that the way we present ourselves to the world is a representation of how we feel inside - and who doesn’t want to feel bright and happy on the inside all the time?!
How did art come into your life?
I’ve always been a very creative person, but it wasn’t until I went to London in 2008 that I realized my true calling was makeup artistry. I was an au pair at the time, and took the two little girls I cared for to a Christmas party. I got to chatting with the face painter there, and found out that she was a professional makeup artist who’d been in Paris for the last fashion week, and worked with other artists from all over the world. I was blown away! I came straight home and enrolled in makeup school. The rest is history!
What did it take to convince you, you were an artist?
I suppose it really depends on your definition of artist! I’ve always been artistic - from creative writing to singing to makeup artistry to craft, I’ve always had a creative project on the go. Nothing ever really convinced me that I was an artist - I just always have been. It was the only logical explanation for why I was such a weirdo as a little kid! (Just kidding). Having said that, it is always nice to hear people say they appreciate your work!
I went through a very dark time in my life in my late teens - early twenties. I suffered with depression, anxiety, substance abuse and a terrible lack of self worth. I knew that if I didn’t do something to pull myself out of the mess I was in, I wouldn’t make it out the other side. I started my blog and launched my freelance makeup business Darling Artistry (named for Gala Darling, who inspired this major shift in my belief system!) and committed myself to creating my own joy. I try to live love and make magic for myself and for others every single day, because love and magic are the most important things in the world.
What's your inspiration.? How do you feed/care for your artist?
I take inspiration from amazing women who are killing it every day! Other makeup artists, bloggers, performers, photographers - anyone who works hard and has a strong voice spells me on and helps me to believe that I can do it, too! I favour women with bold, unique aesthetics, such as Kimbra, Carrie Bradshaw, Katy Perry, Doe Deere and Emily Dear Heart, and makeup brands such as Limecrime, Crownbrush, Violet Voss, NYX, OCC, The Balm, Urban Decay … I could go on and on! I also draw inspiration from colour, street art, music, online stores and my Blogcadettes (fellow attendees of Blogcademy in 2013).
My art IS my day job! I quit my soul-sucking, corporate, cubicle hell-hole job in March this year, and I haven’t loooked back. The harder I work, the more bookings I take and the more my beautiful readership and community of badass women grows. My list of services has already expanded to include group makeup tuition and one-on-one counter shopping! I tell people exactly what I am - a writer and a freelance makeup artist. If they do’t like it, then too bad, so sad!
[Tweet "My work has helped me to understand that the only way to live a beautiful life is to help others live a beautiful life, too"]
How did your art help you with your love for 1. Self, 2. Others, 3. Life?
Through experimenting with colour and different styles, I was able to come out of my shell and really take on the style I’d secretly lusted after for years. I really came into my own when I committed to blogging and ‘makeupping’ full time! Through this work, I was able to see that my attitude towards others was totally warped. I was in a bad crowd and was distrusting, benevolent and sometimes just cruel. It was awful. My work has helped me to understand that the only way to live a beautiful life is to help others live a beautiful life, too - so I aim to empower young women to make their own choices and dance to their own beat every single day. As for my love for life - all I can say is that I actually *have* a love for life now, and I didn’t before.
Has your art called you to at different way of living and seeing the world? If so how?
I think most artists see the world a little differently to other people - that’s why we’re artists! My art helps me to appreciate the beauty in all things and all people. There is always good to be found in somebody - you just have to be willing to listen and look. That’s probably the biggest lesson I’ve taken away from the past twenty five years.
Has art been a form of creative therapy for you?
In a single word - yes. I shudder to think what might have happened to me if I hadn’t met that face painter all those years ago in London. Through committing to my art and my work, I’ve managed to become self-reliant, strong, capable, happy and above all, filled with love. Surely that’s the best kind of therapy there is!
TOTALLY Unbelievably Human--RIGHT!? Here is one of the first articles that I read by MJ this list to live magically. It made me really want to sit down and create my own! I was sooo impressed at how out of the box everything was yet very simple! It also resonated with me and reminded me that you get out of life what you purpose! To show you that she really cares and loves others check out her post about finding your style aesthetic it's smart, through, and EXTREMELY helpful!
I am a love in action advocate and renaissance woman! If you haven't already check out my store! Our LOVE Boxes, and other cute accessories! You can here! Check out our Unbelievably Human YOUTUBE channel and let's be social!