Archive for May, 2010

May 31, 2010

Positively Plus Suave Gent Profile: Redell Drakeford of Take Axshun Marketing Promotions & Management, Inc.

by M Stagg | The Voluptua Project™

Redell Drakeford

Redell Drakeford - Promoting Positive Music

Positively Plus/Suave Gents features the men and women of the curvy community doing something to better the lives of others. Anyone is eligible for a feature. All that is required is a desire to uplift the community in which you live. Please provide the information below to be considered via the contact page:

Name | Business Name (if applicable) | Location (City/State/Province) | Contact # (Optional) | Primary Business Email Address | Your Background/Why You Started Your Business | Product/Service Offering (if applicable) | How are you/will you be of service to the community | A Brief Bio – Please Limit to 300 Words | 1 Full Body Image (3/4 images are also acceptable)

This week, TVP is proud to present Redell Drakeford of Take Axshun Marketing Promotions & Management, Inc.!

Redell the Individual

This Chicago native always dreamed of being a hip hop artist. In pursuit of that dream Redell took to the road and relocated to sunny Palm Springs, CA in 1995. Three months later he was whisked off the LA by a husband and wife management team. This collaboration eventually lead to his first single Steppin’ being played on The Beat, a local urban radio station showcasing new talent.

Redell the Professional

In 1997, after being unsuccessful in securing a record deal in California, Redell moved back home to the Windy City to promote his single. There was only one problem: he didn’t know how to promote his music on his own. To overcome this obstacle Redell began working with Pure Promotions in 1998. Since that time he’s gone on to launch his own company promoting artists like Chicago’s beloved Eddy “Precise” Lamarre; his single, It’s On Me, recently won him a mention in the Chicago Red Eye via Kyra Kyles’ Track Off.

Redell in the Community

The airwaves are packed with rappers belittling women, making the “thug life” appear glamorous and, whether they admit it or not, influencing youth to less than desirable lifestyles. Redell knows this and as such, refuses to promote artists who only seek to spread negativity. “I will not sell records that talk about selling drugs or killing one another,” says Drakeford. “I want my artists to be known for their positivity, not negativity.” Well, thank goodness for that! If you want to find out more about Redell or Take Axshun visit the links below. As always, remember to mention you read about him on the TVP blog! 😉

Twitter | Podomatic | Facebook


May 29, 2010

Who Are You? Pt. Deux

by Donya B

In the words of one of the most renowned military dictators, Bienvenue mes amis! What was it that made Napoleon Bonaparte such an imperial pain in the arse? He was brilliant and knew no one would dare tell him otherwise.  Last week we looked at everyone’s favorite personality type, The Butterfly.  This week, we look at its nemesis, the one least likely to read this, but most recognizable…

The Dictator:

Pros – logical quick thinker, solution-oriented, very secure in his education, abilities and goals, a take-no-prisoners kind of person who is very proud of her accomplishments, a problem solver, a jack of all trades who advances quickly in the workplace.  A stable and reliable provider and protector.

Cons – not a good listener, short on patience, doesn’t want alternate suggestions – just wants you to follow her directions, not terribly romantic (romance is illogical), but knows how to use it to manipulate others, not much of a family guy – his or yours – and can be socially awkward. This Ultimate Control Freak may have a tendency to be emotionally abusive, but physical abuse is “beneath him”.

I spent six years as a Doormat to a Dictator.  Hard to believe, I know.  Actually, it was four years actively placid, two years navigating Pleaser to get to Butterfly.  He was a high ranking Marine, so I guess that explains it all. His job was not to listen, empathize and come to a conclusion, it was to observe and react with direct orders that were not to be questioned. Unfortunately, he brought that mess home.  Even worse, I followed suit.  What is tragic is that I absorbed his ways and tried to be a Dictator to the unsuspecting sap that followed in his wake.  That was a very short-lived relationship because I sucked at it.

I don’t have to tell you that a Dictator – Dictator relationship will never happen, do I? Good. Dictator – Butterfly is a flash paper relationship.  She will suggest he choose who his loyalties are with, his people or their home, but let him know it is in his best interest to choose her. The sex is great because she’s aggressive, but he will not be controlled and leaves quickly.  It’s pretty obvious that Dictator – Doormat goes the long haul.  They’re settled and there aren’t many arguments.  Don’t expect to see this couple holding hands strolling through town, but a nice dinner in a quiet corner of a restaurant of his choice isn’t unheard of. He does love her deeply; he shows it by providing everything she needs. It works; it’s just hard to stomach.  Dictator – Pleaser has durability simply because Pleasers don’t make waves and they stroke egos like a pro. He demands her attention and she readily gives it.  She makes herself an integral part of his small social circle and he appreciates it because she bolsters him.  This would probably be the healthiest Dictator relationship, as oxymoronic as that sounds. Now, I’m not saying Dictators are bad, they just need real love.

Today’s Truffle: Control, Love and Respect are three separate things.  Know the difference.  Live the difference.

Next Week – Pleasers!

About Donya: Donya Vaughn is a So Cal native, collegiate of San Diego State University and graduate of the University of Life, mastering in “Wow, That Was Harder Than It Needed To Be”. Known to her close friends as “The Walking Encyclopedia”, Donya prides herself in being helpful, knowledgeable and ready to serve. She uses these traits along with unwavering optimism and Christian good spirit regularly as owner and consultant of As You Like… Wedding & Event Services.

May 28, 2010

Tricks of the Trade: Celebrity Makeup Techniques to Achieve Stardom At Home

by Elegance Makeup: Looks By Uhuru

Ever wondered how some celebrities achieve that ‘perfect face,’ flawless glow or natural looking high cheek bones when they walk the red carpet? What’s the secret? Highlighting and contouring! Although it takes some practice to master, it creates a sense of balance and adds definition. Here’s how to achieve that perfectly defined look at home.

Uhuru – Elegance Makeup

Contouring

HIGHLIGHTING & CONTOURINGmonique-golden-globes

To highlight & contouring is to utilize shades lighter & darker than your skin color to sculpt, change & even alter the appearance of your features. It creates the illusion of fuller or narrowed features. Professionals like to utilize contouring for film or photography effect. Lighter contouring during the day & intensify slightly for evening. Always remember to apply regular foundation before contouring makeup.

HIGHLIGHTING

WHAT YOU NEED: A color that is one to two shades lighter than your foundation.

A shimmery white or beige eye shadow or a lighter foundation

works fine.

WHERE:

* Front of the forehead
* Along the bridge of your nose
* Right above your cheeks
* Inner corner of your eyes
* Brow bone
* Center of your chin
* Lips

CONTOURING

WHAT YOU NEED: A color that is one to two shades darker than your foundation.

Brown eye shadow, bronzer or a darker foundation works fine.

WHERE:
* Under your cheekbones
* Along both sides of your nose
* Bottom of your chin
* Jaw line
* Creases of your eyes
* Temples

Contouring the Nose: For a slimmer nose, apply the darker contour shade along the sides of your nose & the lighter highlighting shade down the center of your nose. With a finger or fine brush, blend until there is no visible separation.

Contouring the Cheekbones: Apply the lighter highlighting foundation to the top of your cheekbones & the darker contouring foundation just under the bone. Blend well, then with a light blush brush, apply blush to the mound of the cheekbone & along the hairline. Blend well. The resulting appearance should look subtle, yet uniform & not that of stripey cheeks.

Contouring the Chin: Apply and blend the highlighter foundation along to the center of the chin, directly under the center of the lip. To soften the appearance of a double chin, apply your deeper contour shade just underneath and along the chin & jaw line and blend down, towards your neck to your shirt line to avoid a “mask” look.

Contouring the Forehead: Lightly apply the darker contour shade to each temple of the forehead, blend upward along the hairline. Apply the lighter highlighting foundation along the forefront of the forehead and blend upward along the hairline well. This will create a shadow effect causing the head to look more rounded.

Contouring the Eyes: For droopy eyelids or puffy eyes, use neutrals to create a natural smokey eye by apply the darker shade all over the lid & blending. Use the lighter shade – such as a gold or butternut – along the brow bone & blend. When complete, your eyes should have a natural uplifted appearance. Add a few coats of volumizing mascara to the top lashed & you’re done.

About the Author:

For over 14 years, Chicago native Uhuru Freeman has been a face of many artistic and creative ventures such as dancer, singer, competitive beauty model & more.  Currently, this face and founder of Elegance Makeup has made it her mission to not only beautify others from the inside outside, but to encourage and teach beauty from within. Visit Elegance Makeup at www.enchanted-elegance.com for more information or to book your very own elegant experience.


May 25, 2010

Phatshionista Tuesday’s First Suave Gent: Heavy D

by M Stagg | The Voluptua Project™

Heavy D

Image Credit D-Nice Photography

Greetings TVP Fam!

I’m switching up a bit this week and giving the spotlight to one of my favorite Suave Gents – Heavy D!

Not only is this man responsible for the early development of my own sense of style (because big boys can dress stylishly too) but he was a great hip hop artist as well. Indeed, his music encouraged me on many levels. Today, this Jamaican American hip hop marvel is still in the game and recently released a reggae album called Vibes
(available on Amazon.com and iTunes).

I’m happy to have grown up during the 90’s to enjoy my favorites like Now That We Found Love, We Got Our Own Thing, Blue Funk and Truthful
(My FAVE!) – and these timeless tunes still receive heavy rotation on my MP3 player. As he said in Is It Good To You, many are called but the chosen are few and I’ve chosen Dwight “Heavy D” Myers as the first Suave Gent Phatshionista because of all that he has inspired in me and in others around the world.

Still craving a Heavster fix? Visit him using the links below.

Heavy D on Twitter | Heavy D on MySpace

May 24, 2010

Positively Plus Profile: Chastity Garner of Garner Style

by M Stagg | The Voluptua Project™

Chastity GarnerPositively Plus features the men and women of the curvy community doing something to better the lives of others. Anyone is eligible for a feature. All that is required is a desire to uplift the community in which you live. Please provide the information below to be considered via the contact page:

Name | Business Name (if applicable) | Location (City/State/Province) | Contact # (Optional) | Primary Business Email Address | Your Background/Why You Started Your Business | Product/Service Offering (if applicable) | How are you/will you be of service to the community | A Brief Bio – Please Limit to 300 Words | 1 Full Body Image (3/4 images are also acceptable)

This week, TVP is proud to present Chastity Garner, MPA of Garner Style!

There’s only one thing I like more than a voluptuous woman and that is a well dressed one! Thankfully, Chastity Garner exists to help curvy ladies everywhere infuse their wardrobes with a healthy dose of style!

Chastity the Individual

Chastity GarnerIn 2005, Chastity worked as a signature model for JIBRI and was immediately captivated by the stylish clothing made available to her. Due to a knee injury, Chastity’s runway career was cut short. However, as this chapter or her life ended another was just beginning…

Chastity the Professional

As fate would have it, Chastity’s love of clothing would grow into a passion and then a career as she transitioned from modeling to wardrobe stylist. She coined her new venture Garner Style and focused not only on the size 14 and up full figured woman but also the boutiques that cater to them. To date she has penned articles for Dorothy Perkins and SKORCH Magazine, worked with such notables as Lip Gloss Magazine
and Nikki Walker of NW Public Relations, and she’s just released a new book entitled The Curvy Girl’s Guide to Style (available for $13 – click the link). On top of all that, Chastity holds a Master of Public Administration degree from Kennesaw State University. Guess that makes her an Intellectual Phatshionista! 😉

Chastity in the Community

While her passion is styling, nothing is more important to Chastity than helping others. Garner Style isn’t just about styling. It is about empowering women with curves with the ability to look and feel their absolute best. If you’d like to have Chastity give your style a makeover connect with her using the links below – and be sure to mention you read about her on the TVP Blog! 🙂

Email | Garner Style Site | The Curvy Girl’s Guide to Style Blog | On Facebook | On Twitter

May 22, 2010

Who Are You? Pt. 1

by Donya B

Hey y’all!  Last week I touched on a personality spectrum and how we tend to find ourselves on the extremes instead of balanced toward the middle.  I told you we would explore each one so we could all see who we are and how we fit into our relationships.  As I started to break down each category, I realized there was no way it was going to fit into one piece.  So let us now begin the 4-part series, “Who Are You?”

Reality Note:  I have been each personality type at some point in my life so I’m not pointing fingers; I’m looking in the mirror.  Overstand, I am not telling you there is something wrong with you that you have to fix. These are just guideposts on the healthy relationship journey.  Also overstand that this matrix applies to everyone, not just us lean-challenged.

This week we focus on The Butterfly.

Pros: Gets along with everyone, open to new ideas and ways of thinking, confident, refuses to fail, possesses glowing inner beauty and strength, has an infectiously positive personality, makes everyone comfortable, can handle any situation with poise and style, quick thinker, makes great arm candy.

Cons: Can’t sit still long enough to solidify anything – including a thought process, overshadows their mate, always thinks they’re right (and usually are), comes off cocky or outspoken to the unfamiliar, talks a lot!, has low levels of humility/modesty, doesn’t know when to let go.

Are you wincing reading this like I am?  It’s painful to look at yourself sometimes, isn’t it?  90% of the time, I am a butterfly.  This explains why it’s been difficult for me to stay in long relationships; I bore easily and shiny things distract me.  This is also explains why when I’ve been hurt, I’ve been hurt hard.  A Monarch butterfly can lead a rabble hundreds of miles, but if you touch his wings wrong, he’ll die.  The Butterfly is just the same.  It may not be a big offense, but the wrong one cuts to the quick.

Fortunately, my beloved is a Pleaser, so he continually gives me intangible “shiny things”.  That is, he shows me love in different little ways every day.  Nothing extravagant, it’s the little things.  And since it is in his nature to coddle and nurture, he goes out of his way to make sure I don’t get hurt; by him or anyone else.  Even in his dreams!  (I told you I wasn’t going to smother you with my sappy stuff, so I’m done now.)

In any relationship, two Butterflies aren’t likely.  Self-esteem turns into ego and (not one to share the spotlight) one of them will take off.  Butterflies can be unintentionally abusive to Doormats (short attention spans miss the clues) and are likely to butt heads with Dictators (they both can’t always be right). The Pleaser is the Yin to The Butterfly’s Yang.  The Pleaser delights in the boldness and accomplishments of the Butterfly, and The Butterfly finds comfort and peace in The Pleaser.  Now, these are not cast in stone or the only way a relationship will work, so don’t go breaking up with your girlfriend cuz she’s a Dictator. Love is love, go with it.

Truffle: Finding the balance between your strengths and weaknesses is the key to finding You.

Next week – Dictators!

About Donya: Donya Vaughn is a So Cal native, collegiate of San Diego State University and graduate of the University of Life, mastering in “Wow, That Was Harder Than It Needed To Be”. Known to her close friends as “The Walking Encyclopedia”, Donya prides herself in being helpful, knowledgeable and ready to serve. She uses these traits along with unwavering optimism and Christian good spirit regularly as owner and consultant of As You Like… Wedding & Event Services.

May 19, 2010

Gimme Gimme Gimme the ANTI-Gimmick

by peggyvreeland
Peggy Vreeland

Peggy Vreeland of All About Balance, LLC & the Melting the Mirror Series

This is a guest post written by Peggy Vreeland, MSW of All About Balance, LLC as part of the Melting the Mirror Coaching Series.

This is the first of many future articles on the many aspects of health and fitness that are shared in my Melting the Mirror program. Let me first introduce myself. I am a 46 year old single mother of two adult children. I’ve been involved in the health and fitness industry for almost 20 years. You can find more information on my background at www.meltingthemirror.com. I believe you will find that I have a very uncommon view of fitness.

However, in today’s article, I’d like to focus a bit on some common views of fitness and share a little bit about how society can affect our own personal definition of fitness. I was talking with a client today who has been yo-yo dieting for the past 15 years. I’m not kidding, she was like the poster child for every gimmick and fad diet that’s been advertised. The results? She gained about 50 pounds over that span of time. One thing you will eventually learn about me, is that I’m not big on using the scale to measure progress (or lack of progress). I tend to gauge progress by how a person feels about herself, both physically and mentally. But when she described her experience, I couldn’t help but think about why we believe these promises, made by complete strangers. What really IS happening with the ‘gimmick’?

I think it happens from two sides. First, the industry, in order to survive, must make impressive promises and must have measurable results. Because we are a ‘quick fix‘ society, it must also provide those results in a relatively short amount of time. And so, the gimmick is born. “Lose Twenty Pounds in Twenty Days.” “Lose Three Inches off your Waistline in Three Weeks.” We are then flooded with images of bikini-clad women who probably, for many of us, look better in their “before” pictures than we have ever hoped to look. Their suntanned, airbrushed, makeup enhanced “after” pictures dazzle us, and (because we WANT to believe this is really possible for us), we jump on the bandwagon and start the starvation diet.

Then, (and here’s the REAL kicker), we actually attempt the diet. We go shopping with a long list of foods that we would never normally purchase, cook up a week’s worth of whatever the gimmick calls for (cabbage, anyone?), and vow to suffer through the next 6 weeks in hopes that we, too, can see the kinds of changes that were advertised. Unfortunately, these gimmicks simply aren’t anything any NORMAL person would do over the long haul; so, we either fail miserably, or (worse yet), we actually succeed in dropping a substantial amount of weight, either through virtual starvation, or through doing a ridiculous amount of exercise.

I would venture to say that the person who ‘failed’ is actually in a better place than the one who saw some amount of ‘success’ with these gimmicks. I will allow you to let that sink in for a bit, and in my next article, we will talk about why that is true.

May 18, 2010

Phatshionista Tuesdays: Joy Tanksley

by M Stagg | The Voluptua Project™
JoyTanksley

Life Coach Joy Tanksley of Joy Journey

Greetings TVP Fam!

Today the spotlight is on someone who would not necessarily be considered voluptuous at her current size yet her story and the impact she has on the lives of others is no less potent and is unquestionably worth sharing.

Joy Tanksley is a woman with a fabulous spirit and, like her name, seeks to milk each moment for every ounce of happiness and pleasure she can. It wasn’t always this way however. Joy once waged a war with an unrelenting adversary – food. Additionally, this war was filled with small, but no less painful battles with body image and self esteem. Thankfully she has new found acceptance of her body and overcome her obsession with food. Now she counsels others on how to break free of their limiting beliefs and connect with the joy and laughter inherent in each of us.

She is a personal inspiration to me and I know that if you spend ¼ of the time that I do checking out her blog you too will find your own inner joy and peace. So, what are you waiting for?! Go and pay Joy Tanksley a visit and get your daily dose of happiness; you can thank me later for the hook up! 😉

Joy Tanskley’s Blog | Joy Journey on Facebook

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