The World Bodypainting Festival, or WBF, is the most prestigious event in the bodypainting industry, often referred to as the “Olympics of Bodypainting”. For the past 22 years, it has taken place in Austria, attracting competitors from all over the world to compete in categories including bodypainting, face painting, special FX and makeup.
Because of the Covid19 pandemic however, 2020 was the first year the WBF opened up the contest online, calling it the WBF 2020 – COVID Crisis Edition. Well-known bodypaint studios all over the world were asked to participate as local “hotspot” locations, for artists to safely gather to compete with Covid protocols in place. As the premier bodypaint studio in the region, Skin City was named the WBF hotspot for Las Vegas!
On July 5-11, 2020, 15 artists, 14 models and 5 photographers came together at Skin City for one of the most memorable weeks in our company’s history. For days, the studio was filled with colorful creations based on this year’s “Psychedelic Circus” theme. Our “hotspot” even scored a First Place USA win in the Makeup category for local Skin City artist Caitlyn Young and her model Aly O’Brien! Among our competing artists, we had the huge honor of hosting South Korean champion Moona Jin, who won First Place in Special FX at the WBF in 2019. She traveled from her home in Los Angeles to create a masterpiece on Vegas model Lora Kelsey during the competition.
The response to the WBF online experiment was enormous. Skin City was spotlighted worldwide on social media and was featured on several segments live-streamed across Europe, collectively reaching over a million impressions. Our studio was also visited by several reporters and bloggers over the course of the event, including the Fox5 MORE morning show and the Channel 13 news. Local photographers also supported the event by purchasing photo passes, enhancing their own portfolios with gorgeous captures of the event, and providing lots of fine art images for the artists and models to post on social media for months to come.
Overall, our local Vegas artists were thrilled with the opportunity to compete on a world stage. We hope, even after the pandemic ends, that the WBF expands its program to always include an online component.
This video will give you a taste of all the WBF fun we had at Skin City!
COMPETING ARTISTS: Ariana Throne, Cristina Paulos, Benoit Beaufils, Ashley Fox, Madeline Hake, Hyun Yong “Moona” Jin, Caitlyn Young, Suzanne Lugano, Claribel Tovar & Elena Pineda
COMPETING MODELS: Kaitlyn Bussen, John David Givhan, Ross Gibson, Gina Clark, Lora Kelsey, Liss Wheeler, Kaitlyn Bussen, Amanda Dodge, Shell Brewer, Aly O’Brien, Erica St. Evergreen
GUEST ARTISTS: Robin Slonina, Caitlyn Young, Letty Lopez, Tara McDade, Jessica Recinos
GUEST MODELS: Lena Grzegolec, Giovanni de Hamilton, Cherokee Edyn
PHOTOGRAPHERS: Gil Hagen, Terry Helms, Stan Kaules, Claus Schmidt & Ken Elsner
VOLUNTEERS/SUPPORTERS: Georgia Carter, Jimmy Slonina, Lisa “Sparky” Tabor, Cameleon USA, MAC cosmetics