And The Good Times Keep Rollin’

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Day 36: September 29, 2014
I don’t understand why more people aren’t working at TIM. It’s always busy in there and the wait it super long. I’m just thankful that we were able to get service. I spent the night drawing my last butt before my critique. Note to self: don’t drink two cups of black coffee so close to each other – heart pounds way too quickly.

Day 37: September 30, 2014
Happy 62 Months JP <3
I had my very first critique of the 2014/2015 school year and I felt that it wasn’t the greatest nor was it the worst. Some people could relate to it I guess. I didn’t get too much feedback so I can’t tell you much unfortunately. I think my favourite piece was done by my friend, Amy. she drew these beautiful Mandellas that represented her feelings. Can you believe it was a seven hour critique!? Boy, was I anxious to get out of the studio towards the end!

Day 38: October 1, 2014
Hello October! I had an 8:50 a.m. appointment for my Permesso… they were not running on time at all! But hey, at least we got it done. They had to take our finger prints and I thought they were going to use the good old ink pad. They used a machine. Oh technology, you’re taking over. To be honest, I don’t like how technology is taking over because even though it may help us to a certain degree it also makes us lazy and too dependent on it. When Alesha, Jen and I came home from class there were all these workers working on our roof (damages from the hail storm). Thank goodness they were able to get all the work done within the day.

Day 39: October 2, 2014
Today was not the best day for me. I was not in the mood for anything. We had to wake up early for class. Class is already set for 8:30 a.m. and we had to meet earlier. I was not impressed by that. If anyone knows me, they know that I am not a morning person. Not only was I exhausted, but one of my contacts was irritating me. Anyways, enough complaining. We went to Ognissanti and Santa Croce. Both are very beautiful churches. Check out my YouTube channel for a video of the day! It was so difficult pay attention in Italian class… more rest is needed.

Day 40: October 3, 2014
Happy Birthday Mom!
In the morning Alesha and I went with Jen to visit her artist (we are all assigned one to interview). Vincenzo makes plates and bowls. He also paints them. He doesn’t consider himself an artist but a maker. I found that interesting because I would consider his work art and him an artist. In the afternoon we went to The Florence Studio where we sculpted objects out of clay. I could not get into it at the beginning and wanted to leave but after about a good 15 to 20 minutes I got into it. I didn’t want to leave in the end because I was enjoying myself so much. We had the choice to work with oil based or water based clay. I used water based but I honestly have to reason as to why I picked it other than Jen handed me a slab of it.

Day 41: October 4, 2014
Today was an absolutely AMAZING day!!! Why? We went on a day trip to CINQUE TERRE! Even though I woke up at 3 a.m. for this trip, it was totally worth it! I would love to go back. If you ever want to have the best sea food, you must go to Cinque Terre! So fresh! I had shrimp, fish and calamari in a paper cone for eight Euros. It was the BEST calamari I have ever had! We went on a two hour hike and ended off swimming in the Tyrhenian Sea! The hike was great even though it had a good amount of uphill it was totally worth the view!! I can’t even describe to you have beautiful it was. So much greenery and overlooking the sea was just flat out stunning. As for the beach, it was very rocky… There wasn’t any sand. Just rocks. It was uncomfortable to walk on buy hey, it was still beautiful! The water was so refreshing to swim in, especially after that long hike. I wanted to stay longer but we couldn’t because we had to catch a train back home. Oh, and I can’t forget the lovely dinner we had. The view was gorgeous! We sat outside at a restaurant that overlooked the beautiful sea.

Day 42: October 5, 2014
In the afternoon we all went to the Picasso exhibit. Honestly, I didn’t enjoy it. I could not relate to the work and I did not find the majority of it capturing. I found myself trying to force myself to connect to the work and try to enjoy it but i just couldn’t. When a piece of art captures my attention I will spend a good amount of time with it. It’s sad to say that I couldn’t do that with this exhibit. But that’s the thing about art. Not everyone is going to like it. Everyone has their own opinions. I think that’s beautiful. The fact that our minds, our likes and dislikes are all different. It’s unique. We are unique.

Life is an adventure!

- E

September Is Ending

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Day 29: September 22, 2014
Another lazy day = another butt drawing. Butt number four to be exact.

Day 30: September 23, 2014
Two artists came to our class today to talk about their work. I found it difficult to relate to their work because my work is different from theirs; however, I really enjoyed Amanda’s scarf design. She collaborated with a clothing company to have her work on put on scarves. But what is really exciting is that when she searched her name up on Google images, a picture Anne Hathaway wearing her scarf showed up! Nick’s work was more architectural and digital. It reminded me of work that my design friends do. After class was over, my roommates and I went to Gusta Pizza. Gusta Pizza is my favourite pizza so far!! So delicious! I parted ways with my roommates to do a little shopping. When I went to get rain boots from Segue, the lady gave me a discount even though they don’t have student discounts. It was so sweet of her!

Day 31: September 24, 2014
No class = relaxing day.

Day 32: September 25, 2014
For Art History class we were supposed to go to Uffizi but unfortunately we couldn’t go in; however, we went to the Bargello. I loved the Bargello! We didn’t get to see all of it because we didn’t have enough time, but I do plan to go back :). I am so happy that I was able to see Donatello’s David and Michaelangelo’s Bacchus! Crossed those two off of my Bucketlist. I still can’t believe that I’m seeing works in person. I used to see and learn about them via Powerpoints, textbooks and Google images but now I’ve seen the real deal and it’s incredible. It really is a different experience seeing art live than in resources. After the Bargello we went to visit the Church of Orsanmichele. I found it so interesting that back in the day they used to get their grains from the church. The grains would come down these drains. Later in the afternoon, Jen and I had Italian class and I think it’s getting better each time we go. Our teacher, Susana, is great because she is so enthusiastic and makes us want to learn.

Day 33: September 26, 2014
Today marks exactly a month since we arrived in Florence. I can’t believe a month has gone by! It went by so quickly and I can only imagine how fast the next seven months will go by. We visited two Restoration Labs. I was sad that we couldn’t take pictures at the Panting and Ceramics Restoration lab. Obviously we couldn’t because the flash could harm the artwork and the owners don’t want to share the works. The Ivory Restoration lab was sweet! Ivory is so beautiful, but it is no longer used to create art. There was a huge letter opener that looked like a sword that I wanted to keep but I couldn’t :(.

Day 34: September 27, 2014
During breakfast my roommates and I shared stories about our families and it was really nice to get to know more about them and where they come from. I love sharing and listening to stories because it makes me feel closer to them. I spent a good chunk of the day editing and uploading another Vlog and drawing another butt drawing. I was so happy that I was able to Skype with my best friend, Tiffany, because I haven’t talk to her in so long! She was telling me about school and dance. I really hope she gets into the group she wants! Also it was so nice Skyping with JP while I was drawing and he was working on his assignment. It reminded me of home and how we used to Skype and do homework together. :)

Day 35: September 28, 2014
Alesha, Jen and I spent a good chunk of the day talking about art. I actually love the fact that I am able to talk to people on a daily basis about art. When I’m home from school I feel like I can’t talk to a lot of people about art and it sucks because it is a big part of who I am. When I come back home I want to be able to continue to talk about art more with people.

- E

Another Week Goes By

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Day 22: September 15, 2014
It was an early morning for us because we went to Il Bisonte. It is a print studio and for those of you who think it’s like computer printing, it’s not. When I say print I mean this whole printing process. Google lithography and etching :P It’ll give you more of a clear idea of what it is. I’m only saying to do this because I myself do not know much about it.

Day 23: September 16, 2014
We had class as usual and then I just spent the rest of my afternoon and evening drawing… a butt. Yes, a butt. If you want to see a picture check out my Instagram.

Day 24: September 17, 2014
Today’s class woke me up for sure! It finally feels like I’m not on vacation anymore and I’m actually here to study and do work. We were given the rundown of how Thesis works and the whole process of it. If you think I’m talking about a Thesis statement for an essay, you’re wrong. Yes, I will have to write a paper in the end but the Thesis that I will be working on will consist of cohesive bodies of work that all relate to one topic. I’m very excited to start this because I have a general idea of what I want to focus my Thesis on. I won’t give you any details because I want to keep it a secret until it’s all done (I don’t like people who steal my ideas). The class consisted of a lot of self reflection which I really enjoyed because it really made me stop and think about who I am and what I love.

Day 25: September 18, 2014
Another art history class. We had a short lecture then made our way to a nearby church. We also went to the British Institute library. The library is absolutely stunning! Sooo many books! My mom would love it there.

Day 26: September 19, 2014
We had such a crazy hail storm! Apparently there hasn’t been a flood since 1966 so I just witnessed history! My roommates and I were just hanging out in the kitchen and we could see the clouds getting darker and moving very quickly. The Duomo then disappeared and we could see the rain quickly approaching towards us. It was so windy and there was resistance when we were closing the window. Shingles fell from the roof, water leaked in our kitchen, in Jen’s bedroom, and the pipe over the stove and the first layer of my skylight cracked. It was so exciting to witness the storm but also scary. We went to the studio to help our fellow classmates clean up and on our way there we saw a bunch of broken trees and hail on the sides of the streets. People were also sweeping water off the floors of their stores. I think it was the most exciting thing of the week.

Day 27: September 20, 2014
On our way to Mayday Bar, my roommates and I spent a good half hour just listening, dancing and singing along with the live band that is always playing beside the Duomo. It was so fun and so surreal. At that moment I couldn’t help but think and appreciate how much I love my life and how beautiful life is. It was perfect. Alesha actually sang with the band while Jen and I danced for a little bit. Something to look back on and remember with a smile across my face. We got lost going to Mayday but thankfully our neighbour and fellow classmate, Aaron helped us out. It was a fun time hanging out with the other classmates and eating the free food haha.

Day 28: September 21 2014
I spent my entire afternoon and evening drawing another butt and listening to Mariah Carey’s Fantasy and drinking wine. I regret nothing. That song actually helped me focus. My roommates and I went to walk around for a break and had some Venchi’s gelato. I don’t think I will ever get over how beautiful Florence is at night. It is so romantic and it makes me think of JP.

- E

It’s Starting To Feel Like Home

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Day 15: September 8, 2014
Alesha and I did laundry for the first time here (with the washing machine) and it was a bit confusing, but we managed to figure it out. I also hand washed a few things to try to save money. After that was done, Alesha, Jen and I went out to buy art supplies at this art store called Salvini’s. After that we went to the studio to finish setting up our spaces. We were there at the studio for quite some time and decided to go to the market to get some pizza and gelato.

Day 16: September 9, 2014
The roommates and I hung out for a bit in the morning while we had breakfast then went to do groceries. For some reason we were all quite tired after we got back home and I’m pretty sure itis kicked in after we ate lunch. We had planned to go to the studio after our nap but we all overslept and decided not to go to the studio because it was already late. While Jen made dinner (backed chicken and ghonnci with pesto sauce… yummy!) Alesha and I went to this store called Tiger to get some supplies.

Day 17: September 10, 2014
It was a rainy, sad day. My combat boots are not waterproof so my feet were wet. We took a train to visit the Gori Collection in Pistoia and the work was amazing! Some of the work was time based which I find interesting because it is on going work without the artist actually having to be there since nature took over. The property was huge and I could not image the amount of time it must take to maintain the place, but it was beautiful. Very peaceful and surreal with lots of tress. It was a nice change from being in the city where grass barely exists. On our way back home we stopped by this pizza place and I have to say that the pizza slice from there was the best tasting pizza I have ever had and the best part was the fact that it was only two Euros! I was so burnt out from the day that I was having a hard time trying to follow along in a conversation with a couple of my classmates.

Day 18: September 11, 2014
We had our very first in-class lecture and it was hard to follow along because there was a lot of text on the slides and our prof was taking quickly and going through the slides quickly. We had a guest come in a teach us about Fresco. The best part was that we were able to make our very own little Fresco paintings! The first thing we did was create a cartoon which we used to transfer our image with a dabber (red powder in a pouch). After that we painted. Jen and I also had my very first Italian class and it was pretty basic but good because I need to learn the basics haha.  After Italian class was over we went back to the studio where I stretched three canvases. On our way back home we stopped by a store called OVS (similar to H&M) to see if we could find some rain boots but we were out of luck. While the roommates and I were making and eating dinner we watched The Hangover and I edited my fourth Italy Vlog for YouTube.

Day 19: September 12, 2014
We went to visit La Specola Museum and it was awesome!! My favourite part was the bones collection. I did three sketches while I was there but first drawing I did was the best one… it just went downhill from there haha. The museum also had taxidermies. I was disappointment that the human bodies were made out of wax because I wanted to see the real deal. Later on in the day Alesha, Jen and I went to the studio and I finished stretching more canvases. In the evening our neighbours hosted a party and it was a nice time to bond with my classmates. :)

Day 20: September 13, 2014
We had a lazy Saturday and really didn’t do much to be honest. Everyone needs one every now and then.

Day 21: September 14, 2014
Slept in, did the groceries and went to the studio. No need to fluff it. I was originally going to do my first assignment inspired by architecture but that changed after I drew a butt. If you want to see a picture, just check out my Instagram.

- E

Two Weeks But It Feels Like A Month

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I seriously feel as though I have been here for a month and not just two weeks. I think it’s because we have done a lot in the past two weeks.

Day 8: September 1, 2014
For most of the day we just hung out and it was actually the first time I had the chance to sleep in since we arrived. Alesha, Jen and I went for a stroll and ended up in this store called Coin. Coin is what I would consider the Bay of Florence. To end the day we played a couple of games of Scrabble with our neighbours and had some wine. I had to leave the second game mid-way because I was just way too exhausted.

Day 9: September 2, 2014
It’s always nice to have a relaxing morning and just hang out with the roommates. We watched a few old high school videos… embarrassing videos but hey, we had quite the laugh. Of course we had to go to Conad to buy bread (we are addicted). After we came home we tried to come up with a plan for groceries and it just stressed us all out. Dealing with money can be stressful and in this case it is for groceries. That’s not even as stressful as dealing with rent and what not. Us three just got way too overwhelmed and took a nap haha.

Day 10: September 3, 2014
Cheers to a new school year a.k.a. my fourth but not final year. It was our first time in the building. It is quite close to our place which is perfect. We were also able to meet our fellow classmates again (we met them in the summer). After our mini lecture and lunch break we were able to pick our studio space. I am so happy with mine because I am right next to a huge door with lots of natural lighting! I will also be sharing the space with my friend, Crystal. She is super nice and her work is beautiful. She does a lot of landscape and figure paintings in oil so I will be able to learn a lot from her. She also has working habits like myself so I think we are going to get a long just fine. We both are able to critique each others work and have conversations but also know when to be quite and to really zone in and be quiet to focus on our work. After the quick studio set up we had to go to the post office to send in our documents for Permesso Di Soggiorno. I had to pay 16 Euros for a stamp! 16 Euros! Bloody expensive! The most expensive stamp I have ever had to pay for… On a positive note, it was the most beautiful post office I have ever seen with the high ceilings, stained glass and architecture.

Day 11: September 4, 2014
No school. I wrote my first blog post for school (it’s not this blog of course) and it felt odd not posting in my personal account. I couldn’t figure out how to change the time zone because there is no option for Florence. For dinner we went to our Art Historian’s place and it was absolutely stunning! There was a Fresco painting on her ceiling that she discovered. How amazing is that!? It was so sweet of her to welcome us all into her home and that was the very first time she met us. There was so much wine because each of us had to bring a bottle and the food was on point! I also got mulled by her dog towards the end of the night. The dog came out of no were and pushed me over. I did not see that coming but I’m okay! We ended up missing the train to go back home so we took the bus back which was okay.

Day 12: September 5, 2014
We had our very first Art History class and it was not in a lecture hall nor was it in the OCAD building here. It was mainly outdoors. We went on a hike! Who gets to say they went on a hike for their first Art History class of the semester… in FLORENCE!? How awesome is that!? It was not too bad of a hike but it was really hot out. I don’t mind the heat at all. I love the heat! When we got to the top of San Miniato everyone was amazed by the view. At that point we also visited the Basilica, which was also amazing! I seriously felt like I was in a textbook or in a postcard. We also visited the graveyard which was interesting. It was quite beautiful actually. 

Day 13: September 6, 2014
Happy 21st Birthday to one of my oldest and dearest friends, Alysha!
Today was quite a chills day. My roommates and I tried to buy art supplies but when we got there unfortunately the store was closed. In Florence a lot of the stores close for about two to three hours. This is what I call nap time. I wish Toronto had that because I could really use the nap time mid-day. We decided to get our cleaning supplies instead so we wouldn’t waste the day. Along route to go to the Supermarket we stopped by a store called Subdue. I think this may be my favourite store so far. It’s similar to Brandy Melville. I ended up buy a skirt and tube top which I wore that night to an art gallery, Villa Romana. The  gallery was not what I expected. I was a little disappointed to be honest BUT I did really enjoy the band called Above The Tree. There were these three guys that wore bird masks. The drummer was super into it as he had his eyes closed and was just moving to the beat. It’s so great to see someone so passionate about what they are doing. There was a buffet after which we waited a while for but was worth the wait! It was dark outside so every bite was a surprise for the most part. 

Day 14: September 7, 2014
Some of us went with our Prof to see a Joust (Giostra del Saracino) in Arezzo. It was similar to Medieval Times but the crowd was a lot more into it, especially the teens. I was surprised that Jousting is such a big deal. There was tons of cheering and shoving. I was a little scared that it was going to turn into a mosh pit or something. We didn’t stay for the whole event because it was going to go all the way until 8:30 p.m. and we arrive early afternoon. By the end of the day Alesha, Jen and I were way too tired to see the lantern show. It was not the kind of lanterns that you release in the air so that was part of the reason why I didn’t want to go so I don’t think we missed out on too much.   

Cheers to another week!

- E           

A Week Away

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It has been exactly a week since I arrived in Florence, Italy and it has been nothing but amazing! I was planning to post every day or every other day but I have realized that’s a wee bit too much since there is so much to do here and I don’t really have the time for it. So with that being said I have decided to aim for a post a week. Here’s a glimpse of what I have been up to for the past week…

Day 1: August 25, 2014
We departed from YYZ to AMS which was a six hour flight with a three hour layover. The airplane food was pretty good and the portions were quite big. Usually they are small and not very good so that was a plus. There were also TVs on the flight which was awesome with a rather large selection. I watched Frozen and part of Mr. Bean. It was the first time I watched Frozen and to be honest I do not see why people love it so much. There was so much hype so I was exited to watch it but I was disappointed in the end. Oh well. We all have our opinions.

Day 2: August 26, 2014
We departed from AMS to FLR and it was only an hour and a half flight which was fast. I was asleep for 98% of the time. I guess I was super exhausted from the previous week, weekend and whatnot. I was not getting much sleep (I think I have caught up now). The taxis in Florence are different from the ones in Toronto in the sense that there are designated spots for pick-up. We were amazed to see a huge door to our apartment with a beautiful door knocker. Want to guess how many steps it takes to get to our flat? 100! I kid you not. We had to carry all our of luggage up 100 stair steps. There are no elevators. It was quite the workout I’ll tell you that. We are going to be so fit by the end of these eight months… well hopefully (so much delicious Gelato everywhere!). In the evening we were invited for dinner at our prof’s apartment and it was lovely, especially the view!

Day 3: August 27, 2014
We did our groceries and adventured around the city. In the evening we went to MayDay bar. They do not have food there but they do serve popcorn (really good popcorn!) with your drinks. Interesting. The bar felt so ‘artsy’ in a sense that I felt that ‘art people’ would really enjoy the decorations and the environment. I don’t really know how I would describe it other than there are a lot of random things up on the walls and ceilings.

Day 4: August 28, 2014
Another day just tooting around the city. Every time I see the Duomo it never fails to amaze me. It is so majestic. The pictures in textbooks book do not do justice to it. It is still so surreal that I get to see it from our kitchen window and we get to walk by it every day. The Duomo is like the CN Tower of Florence. I also think it is pretty amusing how one can drink on the steps of the Duomo and not get in trouble. One is actually allowed to drink in public unlike Toronto. Rules are different here for sure. 

Day 5: August 29, 2014
We did a little shopping in town. I did not buy much because I am picky and cheap when it comes to shopping. Be prepared to pay more if you ever decide to visit Europe. Some stuff is reasonable while others not so much.

Day 6: August 30, 2014
My roommates and I tried going to a swimming pool with our neighbours but it did not work out so well because it was closed. We were told it was going to be open but when we got there signs said that it would be re-opening in September. It was a bummer because it was a 40 minute walk from our apartment. We tried to see if we could make it to Viareggio beach instead but we realized that it would be too late to get a good spot at the beach. It is not like the beaches here. One would have to pay for a train from to and from (it’s about an hour and half from Santa Maria Novella train station), entrance, the use of a chair and umbrella. If you didn’t want to pay for a chair and umbrella you could go to an area of the beach where it is just the sand but you are not allowed to bring your own chair and umbrella. Silly. I know. Regardless of not being able to go to the pool and beach it was still a good day with the fellow classmates. 

Day 7: August 31, 2014
Happy 17th Birthday to my baby bro, Adam!
The roommates and I did some more groceries, as usual. I am eating a lot more here because I am burning the calories a lot faster due to all the walking. There is A LOT of walking here so if you ever plan to come here you better have some good walking shoes with you. My feet swell up by the end of the night. I kid you not. We went for a cappuccino in the morning and it was delicious! In the evening we went to a carnival where. I would say it is like the CNE of Florence but a much smaller scale. They have this ride where two people get sling-shot in the air. I was going to do it but I do not like knowing that the ride gets taken down and put up. I like rides similar to the ones at Wonderland where they are not taken down. They stay up all year round. Two of our classmates did go on the ride and said it was thrilling. I do not trust those kinds on rides even though I witnessed them do it and survive. There was also Salami being given out. One would pay one euro to play and whoever’s number was called won. There was a wheel one would spin to decipher the winning number. At the end of the carnival we all danced and it was sooo much fun! I used to dance so of course I loved it hehe.    

Talk to you in a week!

- E 

Leister Award!

Thank you sonalhira’s for nominating me the Leister Award!

Rules are: Answer 11 questions given to me by the person who nominated me, list 11 random/fun facts about myself, nominate 11 bloggers with under 200 followers to answer my own set of questions, and let them know they’re nominated (I don’t want to leave people out so I nominate anyone who reads this)!

sonalhira’s questions:

  1. What made you start your blog?
    After I started my YouTube channel the idea of starting a blog was always an idea.
  2. What are your goals in life?
    I have many ambitions but one of the biggest ones is to be a positive inspiration. I want to be a leader and set a good example.
  3. Would you rather have 4 MAC lipsticks or have £50/euros/dollars to spend on drugstore makeup?
    Neither. I would rather use that money towards my traveling funds or food.
  4. What is your go to colour for eyes and lips?
    For my eyes, neutrals and as for my lips, nudes.
  5. Are there any decisions you’ve made that you would go back and change if you could, and why?
    I have had my fair share of good and poor decisions and I am sure I will make more. But without the poor ones I would not be able to grow and make better ones in the future. So no, I wouldn’t go back and change anything.
  6. What was the last thing you learned, makeup wise?
    I really haven’t learned anything new for a long time and I don’t remember what I last learned because it’s been that long.
  7. What product do you think is overrated?
    I haven’t found one yet, but if I were to take a guess I would say expensive mascaras.
  8. Dream holiday?
    Do you mean vacation? If so, somewhere tropical and with my family, family or lover.
  9. Best makeup tools that you use/need?
    Eyelash curler.
  10. What’s your take on wearing makeup to the gym?
    Wear none or minimal.
  11. The thing you want to improve the most, makeup wise?
    I want to be able to do my make-up faster. I take forever because I am a perfectionist.

 

11 Facts about me:

  1. I have never gone to a salon to get a pedicure.
  2. I do not workout.
  3. I love my hip bones.
  4. I love my collarbone.
  5. I am a perfectionist.
  6. I do not sleep much.
  7. I would rather be busy than bored.
  8. I have poor eyesight.
  9. I am not afraid to go after what I want.
  10. I want to skydive.
  11. I used to dance competitively.

 

My 11 questions:

  1. Who or what inspires you?
  2. What is the most difficult thing you have overcome?
  3. What are you afraid of? Why?
  4. What are your thoughts on social media?
  5. What is your view on society?
  6. If you could have any power in the world what would it be?
  7. What is your favourite makeup product?
  8. Do you believe in love?
  9. What is the one thing you wonder most about?
  10. What is your definition of success?
  11. What do you find beautiful?