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Need a caricature artist? Want to learn to make jewelry? Considering a face painter for an event?
Stefanie Meade to the rescue.
The Radcliff woman does all those things and more.
“I’ve been drawing since I was 2,” Stefanie said.
When she was 16, her family encouraged her to show her artwork. She’s had exhibits and has sold artwork in Europe and the United States since then.
Offering her work through her Facebook page, Steff’s Fantastical Faces, Stefanie provides her skills at parties, festivals and one-on-one settings, among other places.
Stefanie’s husband, David, primarily takes care of the business side, arranging and scheduling jobs. In fact, she said, he suggested she start the business.
“We work together very well,” David said.
David’s no stranger to making jewelry, either. When he was about 8 or 9, David made jewelry for his grandmother, who raised him. In Boy Scouts, David learned about Native American culture and folklore and designed Native American jewelry.
“He likes to make Native American stuff and I took it and made it girly,” Stefanie said.
These days David tends to do the custom orders, he said.
Additionally, he’s the one who drills holes in items such as dice used for earrings, for example. In fact, the couple recently completed an order for 200 pairs of dice earrings for a jewelry line picked up by GameScience, a Leitchfield-based company. The earrings are sold through www.GameStation.net and that company’s shop at www.amazon.com.
The couple also creates earrings made from guitar picks, which — like the dice earrings — was David’s idea. For the most part, though, he leaves the creation process to his wife.
“I haven’t seen any arts stuff she couldn’t do,” David said.
With an innumerable supply of beads of all shapes, sizes and colors, Stefanie offers customers the opportunity to make their own jewelry.
One such customer was 14-year-old Betta Kim, who opted to create her own jewelry during a session with Stefanie and David. She selected beads and created three sets of earrings.
Along with online venues, Stefanie’s jewelry can be found at the Lincoln Museum gift shop in Hodgenville.
Stefanie’s other art ventures of caricature drawing and face painting have landed her gigs at local establishments such as Old Vault Deli and Moe’s Southwest Grill. People and pets can be captured in her caricature art, and the subject doesn’t even have to be present; a photo will suffice, even one on a cell phone, she said.
That does come with limitations, though.
“If it’s not a good photo there’s not much I can do with it,” Stefanie said.
When it comes to drawing caricatures, the most difficult part for the artist is not the subject.
The most difficult caricature she’s done, she said, was for two women who wanted to be depicted as Thelma and Louise. She wasn’t sure how to draw the car but managed it.
“I’m not good with cars or guns or anything like that,” she said.
Face painting, on the other hand, presents its own challenge because “the canvas moves,” Stefanie said. Because the faces she paints often belong to children, attention span is a factor.
“They always want designs that are more complicated than they’re willing to stay still for,” she said.
Stefanie understands a certain amount of their squirming, though.
“Face painting tickles,” she said.
Previously renting booth space at Peddler’s Mall in Radcliff, the couple hopes to open shop in downtown Elizabethtown. Until then Stefanie plans to continue doing festivals and events, setting up at area establishments and arranging lessons.
“I’ll give lessons on just about anything I do,” she said. She also mentors young artists and has even taken on apprentices.
In addition to jewelry, caricatures and face painting, Stefanie does fantasy art and murals and has self-published “The Falling Girl, Chronicles of the Closed World Book 1,” the first in a series of young adult novels.
She credits her stepfather for getting her their first gig and her grandparents for providing start-up money for supplies. But she gives David the most credit.
“Without him, the business would fall apart,” Stephanie said. “I just couldn’t do any of this on my own. He created it, and he keeps it running while I get to play with shiny things.”
Content in his role, David said their full-time business is like a rock show.
“What do you say?” Stefanie playfully asked her husband, “I’m the rock star, and you’re the roadie?”
Robert Villanueva can be reached at (270) 505-1743.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
To find out more about Stefanie Meade and her artwork, which includes jewelry making, caricature art and face painting, visit Steff’s Fantastical Faces on Facebook or call (270) 501-0811. Her young adult ebook, “The Falling Girl, Chronicles of the Closed World Book 1,” is available at www.smashwords.com and www.barnesandnoble.com.