Junkanoo Fire Nymph
Deciding to publicly debut the Junkanoo Nymph at the 2012 / 2013 Junkanoo Parades in Nassau, I met the group leaders of one of the largest Junkanoo groups, and was encouraged by their enthusiasm and support.
For the New Years Parade, we partnered with Maria Rolle to be the Junkanoo Nymph. She returned early from her vacation in Freeport and we met at the studio around 2:00 in the afternoon. Using eyeliner pencils, I sketched the base design and roughly an hour later we were ready for the first layer of paint.
The silver provided a sparkle and a base design that accentuated her form. Incorporating her natural skin into the scheme, I painted the design on freehand. There was no taping, airbrushing or stencils. Pubic privacy was maintained with surgical tape resulting in a paintable 'strapless g-string'.
We were 5 hours into the painting by the time the base was complete, so we took a break to eat and take these photographs. And to rest!
Throughout the session, we were in constant contact with the Junkanoo Group to ensure that all was on schedule for her headset, and our passes on Bay Street. We called for reassurances six or seven times throughout the day. All was on schedule and we had nothing to worry about.
So the painting progressed. With Fire as the theme, yellows and reds were threaded through the underlaying silver design. The yellow and red paints lost their saturation and required three coats to get the depth of color that we see here. Can't say I was happy with having to re-paint sharp lines over and over....
During pauses, to let Maria walk around, stretch, eat, and use the restroom... I painted the boots.
At the last minute, the Junkanoo Group decided that a g-string was not acceptable for Bay Street. Fortunately Kristin Pedersen was able to fashion a loin cloth that covered her buttocks.
Finally, after more than fourteen hours, we were finished. All we needed was the magnificent head piece and she was ready for Bay Street. Maria's boyfriend, Anthony "AC" Coakley took us downtown to the starting point.
What a pleasure it was to see people's faces and hear their comments as Maria toured the starting area with her customary poise and self confidence! There was not one derogatory remark and tons of admiration and support.
As you have probably guessed, there was no headset and no passes...and no answer on the leader's phone. Can't say he was on high on our list of favorite people.
Fortunately, we had AC! Although he could not get us a headset, he found us passes and put us in the parade. Maria and Kristin picked up a few feathers, stuck them in Maria's hair and off we went.
We could not have asked for a better woman under the paint. Maria sashayed, strutted, danced and charmed her way down the length of Bay Street ahead of AC's fire engine float.
She was a crowd pleaser to say the least.
The Prime Minister called her over to get a better look as did everyone with a camera. He and Brave Davis were great sports as always.