Makeup for Fun

Makeup For Fun coverMakeup For Fun

Submitter: Wow. This one is really something else. I don’t know exactly what “Quat Bulles” is referring to here, but it translates to “Four Bubbles”. The original title was “Quatre Bulles, Maquillages Pour Enfants” or “Four Bubbles, Make-Up for Children”. Makes sense, right? Non? Maybe you have to be French.

What really makes this book stand out are its truly bizarre photographs of kids in makeup and costume. Some of my favourites include: a dead-eyed child in goth clothes and a pin-up pose, a truly terrifying photo of a child in a lion costume, a child with a disturbing butterfly image, and one girl who looks none too pleased to have a cottage in the woods painted across her face. There are more too that I didn’t include, like a rather serious child in “Indian” make up, and a boy made up as a combination lizard/detective.

In another surprise move, the book claims to have “some blank faces for you to plan your own make-up” and even has a page that says “use these drawings to plan your make-up” but the page is blank. Challenging!

To be fair, not all of the photos are terrible, some are even kind of cute, but it’s hard to get passed that creepy lion pic.

Holly: Creeee-py!  Sure, there are neat ideas here, and truly artistic in some cases.  The children’s expressions are the creepy part.   I don’t think that I would weed this one since it’s so unique and there’s nothing really wrong with it, but it’s definitely creepy. They could honestly be corpses under the makeup.  I never thought I would look at pictures of children in costumes and be so horrified.  There is amazing artwork here, but maybe they could have asked the child to smile, or even close her eyes (and mouth…). They’re probably cute kids underneath it all! Sweet dreams!


mime? clown?


artistic face

  1. Well, isn’t scaring the behoozits outta kids the whole reason for Halloween? These Facepaint makeovers would be just the ticket.

  2. My first thought was that “Four Bubbles” was Patric Parmentier’s “clown name”, or something similar. Hm. I’m not feeling sufficiently intrigued to dig deeper, though.

  3. That is just creepy. I hope I don’t have nightmares tonight. I wouldn’t like if any of them crept into my room.

  4. I’m pretty sure that Parmentier is quebecois and not french, but either way, Chanterella is probably right. many francophone countries, like france, treat mime/clown acting as seriously as other branches of theater, with loads of study involved, etc.

    anyway, just snagged this on amazon for a whopping $.01. thanks as usual for the rec!

  5. I’m pretty sure I’m scarred for life now, I will also dream, and they will be under my bed and I will not be able to go to the bathroom,now.

  6. Actually Quatre Bulles seems to be a team of three make up artists, based right here in Brussels. They have some international fame in artistic make uo/bodypaint, apparently. The recent photos on their website are nowhere near as scary, though

  7. I think the white eyeballs are painted on the kids eyelids… why else would they add that picture?

  8. Theater major overload!

    That is some epic makeup. Puts my mascara flick and lipstick dab to shame.

    Must have taken a lot of time, too. I’m amazed that the little girl in the last two pics could sit that long.

    1. It looks like they drugged her to make her sit still. There’s probably someone behind her propping her up for the photo.

  9. I’ve taken a couple of theatrical make-up classes and they probably told the kids to deadpan it so you can see the make-up properly. If they smile, it causes wrinkles around their mouth and their eyes, and could spoil the make-up… or at least make it so you couldn’t copy it properly. I think it’s a neat book, I would have been crazy excited about it as kiddo.

  10. On the whole, I wasn’t nearly as creeped out as the submitter and you folks. Regarding the “dead-eyed child in goth clothes and a pin-up pose”: 1) I think that may have been supposed to be a sort of a pierrot figure rather than a goth (the ruffled collar gives me that impression — plus, as a super-theater-geek in high school, everything I owned from purses to bed sheets was decorated with pierrots); 2) the first picture looks to me like the child is looking up and towards stage left, as a coquettish pose, rather than rolling her eyes back in her head. But it kind of failed due to lousy photography.

    1. yes, the ‘goth’ kid is undoubtedly a Pierrot. it’s just that americans aren’t so familiar w/that….but the whole thing is a Euro aesthetic; which seems a bit off-kilter to us yanks.

      it’s why i don’t dig cirque du soleil.

  11. I guess it’s just the entertainer in me, I find nothing creepy about these kids – nor drugged. They’re little performers putting on makeup for performances and taking their craft seriously. Only one slightly creepy is the lion and that’s only because he’s obviously hamming it up.

  12. Absolutely chilling. Someone ought to contact the NFL, as the book could be used in lieu of an icepack for sports-related injuries.

  13. Actually, I think the makeup on the lion is pretty amazing, and if you were doing a stage production of Wizard of Oz, it would be very useful.

  14. Well I like the book! There are LOADS of pics that are great that are not shown, so if you’re into make up it’s well worth getting as it definitely shows a different style from the normal books around now.

    It was written/produced in 1986 so really advanced compared to the UK & US at the time!

    Alex is right Quatre Bulles is a Belgian/Brussels based troupe, which in 1986 had 8 members of which Patric was one….

    Songbird….I’m not sure if Patric worked for Cirque, but one of the troupe did (Olivier Zegers) & Cirque is from Montreal, Canada not Europe!:-)

    from the UK