Posted in: Lifestyle



Starting Friday April 29th-June 4th, I will be out of office and out of the country during the entire month of May.  Friday/Saturday I work on a lovely wedding on both days, and Sunday I’m flying out to Spain!  I will have no phone access and limited email access.  During my hiatus, my administrative assistant Stacy will be responding to inquiries, and I’ve taken care of most of the last minute details for upcoming weddings that #TeamSkylaArts will be working on in May and June.  Please expect delays in response rate.

Your emails and messages are important to us.  All non-urgent emails, and phone calls will be returned during the week of June 6th!  Thank you for your patience & understanding!  

Since starting my business, I’ve never been away and disconnected for more than a week at a time, so it will certainly be new and interesting :)  The truth is, while we’ve taken vacations, my husband and I had decided to delay our honeymoon until a later time.  Well – it was between going on a honeymoon, or starting my business.  It was hard at the time because there are certain places I had wanted to visit, but I felt I made the mature decision of choosing “delayed gratification” (ugh! how fun it is to be an adult!!)  It’s been almost 8 years since we signed those papers – and now we are finally going!  It took a while to save up and plan for this.  I can barely believe we’re leaving on Sunday!

Did everyone survive Tax Season? :) Admittedly taxes was not so much fun, but it’s done and over!

I’m sharing some of my most favorite images of all times that I worked with Matt Edge of The Edges Wedding Photography!  The magic is highlighting the beauty of San Francisco, and – the fun is all in making San Francisco and Marin look like the streets of Europe and the Mediterranean!  Weddings and Engagement sessions are part of the ‘lifestyle’ category.  This was our “Engagement Inspiration” shoots – creating timeless images!  In a nutshell, in the past when I think about “going to Europe someday” I think about these images!  Of course, my husband and I are far from this good looking (Appearing in order, Connor and Sarah, and Jillian and Alex) but we so look forward to living this lifestyle, albeit just temporarily!!

I look forward to: brushing up on my Spanish, strolling and discovering cute little cafes, getting lost in side streets and shops, being cheesy tourists and taking photos in front of fountains and then making a wish, eating Gelato (possibly every day while in Italy), all the museums/architecture/churches, the lavender fields in Provence, shopping for makeup and checking out European brands not easily accessible here (I’m trying to limit my work to just that! haha!) stuffing my face with great food & wine, and lively conversations.  Hopefully be lovey dovey with my husband – it IS our super belated honeymoon after all!  :D  We’re more like an old married couple by now.  If you may be interested in following me on my adventures, I will be posting them via my personal Instagram @skylabooboo {Originally I had one just to have a place to post all my cat pictures, but later on as I started separating all of my entities, I decided to just keep my personal life there, and on my personal facebook!}.  Speaking of Instagrams, thank you for all the Likes and Follows on @Skylaarts!  Also, if you want to see latest publication links, and newer bridal photos from our past brides via photographer’s blog, head on over to Skyla Arts Facebook Page!

Until June…. Hasta la vista!











Styling (For Jill & Alex) :  Brianne Binder - BBStyle
Models (Jill, Alex, Connor) :  Stars Management SF
Makeup, Hair, Grooming :  Liz {Skyla Arts}


Happy Holidays!!!

I’ve been delighted opening up Holiday cards from friends, vendors and clients! And moments of joy later, I am filled with panic because I haven’t gotten around to making/printing custom holiday greetings.  Even worse, I didn’t get around making custom holiday E-GREETINGS.  I start feeling guilty, incompetent, and above all stressed out!  Not a single card written or mailed out.  I’m just praying that everyone will magically see this post, and know that I didn’t omit you, but rather I didn’t send any!  *ducks under the cover*  I am praying that this blog + warm energies I’m sending out to the universe will suffice due to my time constraints.  Apologies to all!!

Even as I write this post, I am looking at the clock, as I have not yet finished packing, and I have a client consultation this afternoon (I’m looking forward to meeting my client!), and then I am catching a midnight flight to Taipei!  In my head, I am trying not to get distracted about my last minute packing list, gifts for family, reminders, etc!  Last year my husband and I went to a brief trip to Tokyo as that’s all his scheduled allowed…I’ve never been to Japan and I was dying to go.  Which made me feel guilty because I didn’t stop by Taipei to see my family.  Nor Seoul to see his family.  I decided to do it that way instead of making 1-day pitstops (that is just too crazy…) and that would make it fairer so neither set of parents feel left out.  I haven’t been back to Taipei nor seen my dad in person since 2011 – and the last time I was in Seoul was probably 2011 yes yes…I’m just going to drown myself in the ocean of Guilt now.  :P  It’s not as easy to go across the Pacific Ocean with the time difference, and an erratic schedule being a self-employed small business owner…BUT I am excited for the trip + hope to get fat eating all my favorite foods in Taipei + Seoul.

I will be out of office from 12/17-12/30, and I’ll be sure to get back to all emails & inquiries by 1/03!

These images are from 2013, for client RedEnvelope ! But never got around to sharing it other than on my commercial/print portfolio

I had a great time working on this 2-day shoot (talented team listed below!!!) in Sonoma! Special shoutout to my friend & colleague Melissa Hoffmann for being a wonderful assistant/team member! <3  This cast was so much fun to be around.  I enjoy the deep conversations, especially this one with Delana (she is the gorgeous brunette here featured).  She is a globe-trotter, and shared that she had a Dharma teacher while in India. I don’t know why, but I had a feeling she would know the answer to this question I had on my mind.  I asked her how I can acquire more patience. She looked at me funny at first, and said she loved this question! Her answer paraphrased below:

“Patience start with oneself. The other side of patience is compassion; if you are not compassionate to yourself, you cannot be patient with others. Forgive yourself first, and then forgive others. I would say start by taking deep breaths to be patient with yourself and your body. My dharma teacher said that we can only change ourselves, and have no control over other people’s actions or the situation itself – it just ‘is.’ And having more patience means accepting that.”

I want to send a big thank you for all the wonderful vendors, creatives, clients & friends & family in my life for making 2014 so magnificent!  I am so grateful for everyone in my life :) :) :) 

So I’m gonna sign off now – and practice just that.  Slowing down, de-stressing, having compassion and patience for myself + others.  And survive the Holidays! haha!  :)

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Photography :  Sheila Menezes
Creative Director :  Beth Ruggiero
Art Director :  Meredith Peck
Makeup & Hair :  Elizabeth Chang (Liz)
Stylist :  Peggi Jeung
Prop Stylist :  Leigh Noe
Changing it up this time on the blog! :)  This video idea came about when I get asked by my bridal clients: “What do I do with my hair extensions? Is it 1x use only, or reusable? If it’s reusable, how do I use it?” Lara from Sealed with a Kiss Events is our model here, but she was also one of my bridal clients last year! She left her hair in the original box after herwedding, and it’s the first time we’re taking it out!  (Ps: Check out her wedding hair in my bridal gallery here!)

I usually direct my clients to purchase real hair, which means you can treat it like real hair: you can wash it, comb it, and apply heat as if you would your own hair! As long as you don’t change your hair color, you can re-use it. It would be a pity for it to just sit in your closet!

If you can use a donut to create a sock bun, I am 100% confident with some practice, this look will be a breeze to recreate yourself! This look is meant to be organic, textured, and beautifully messy – so you don’t have to worry about messing up & have fun with it! I hope this video inspires you to be creative with what you can do with your wedding hair extensions! This is one way to get you started.

For this D.I.Y. video, you will need the following equipment:

1) Your Clip-in Hair Extensions
2) Bobby Pins
3) Hair Pins
4) Elastic Bands
5) Sectioning clips
6) Combs for teasing and smoothing (use whichever is comfortable)
7) Detangling comb
8) A curling iron of your choice to curl your hair to create texture
9) Hair Spray/Heat Protectant Spray/Emollient Spray

Watch the video for step by step instructions, but for easy review, it’s listed here for reference:
1) Use Emollient Spray to detangle & comb through to prepare hair extensions
2) Clip the extensions together and on to each other. The goal is to create 1 bigger braid fishtail braid with 2 smaller/skinnier regular braids.
3) Curl your hair however you like to create texture
4) Braid the hair (fishtail, or 3-strand braids) & secure with elastic. You may want to enlist a buddy to hold the other end for you. One of the challenges I face myself while doing my own hair is braiding it. I start to lose patience if it doesn’t look right and I have to start over! Pre-braiding the hair and preparing it makes the process of attaching it to your head so much easier.
5) Loosen the braid with your fingers
6) Section your hair into 4 sections as shown in the video.
7) Tease the hair on the crown if you desire volume; secure with bobby pins by crossing the bobby pins. If you don’t want volume, just secure it with bobby pins.
8) Use an elastic to create a pony tail; the height of your pony tail depends on how low or high you would like your bun.
9) Tease your ponytail, but leave the top layer smooth! If your hair is super healthy and slippery, use a texturizing powder or spray to help you create texture
10) Clip the fishtail braid, the widest braid, on the top of your pony tail; secure with a bobby pin
11) Now take your real hair, and twist to the right and wrap around the elastic, secure with a bobby pin. It doesn’t have to be perfect – we will adjust the shape with hair pins later. Be sure to tuck-in the ends, and make sure the elastics are not showing!
12) Next, take your fishtail braid, and twist to the left (or opposite direction) in a circular motion. Again, don’t worry about it looking perfect as we can adjust any wonky looking pieces towards the end!
13) Now it’s time to add in the braids on the side. Place the clips in the direction of the section. The front sections are meant to help us hide the clips, so before moving forward, make sure to see if your hair will hide the clips! If it shows, simply readjust the clips
14) I am loving the braid the goes on the top of your head, so for one of the sections, I am going to wrap it over the top, and for the other braid on the other side, I am using it to wrap over the bun. Secure the braids with bobby pins and hair pins.
15) Now it’s time to see if any pieces are sticking out or need adjusting / perfecting. If you want to use hair spray to tame some fly-aways, it’s up to you! I love having the wispies and texture. Any stray hair, simply use hair pins, and tuck any strands into the bun. Preferably, the hair pins should lock with the ridges of the bobby pins for optimal security. But do not stress! One way to know whether or not the strands are secure is to gently shake your head, jump up and down. If nothing is moving, then it’s secure!
16) And Voila! A great looking up-do that you can wear to parties, attend other people’s weddings, and get great mileage and usage out of your investment on your hair extensions!

I hope this tutorial was helpful! Let me know how it goes, and leave me any comments or questions! Good luck!!!

Makeup & Hair :  Liz @ Skyla Arts
Videography :  Low Tek Studios
Photography: Matt Edge
Makeup, Hair + Men’s grooming: Elizabeth Chang (me!)
Styling: Matt + Allison
Models: Conrad @ Stars, Sara @ Scout
Last summer I posted the teaser for the “Behind the Scenes” from this shoot and discussed some of the Fall Trends on the runway.  Even though the photos were up on my portfolio (wink wink…I have updated my bridal website’s slideshow + commercial print portfolio) but I post more images on the blog! Enough babbling!!
We were going for a Parisian vibe, but it was shot in the beautiful windy San Francisco!
I am so pleased with this set! All of the photos were shot on film photography – the colors and richness!      To my knowledge, most film photographers do not spend a lot of time in photo shop, so I try to make the subjects look as perfect as possible for every frame. I love the film look and I am thrilled with how the hair/makeup/grooming turned out too! Woohoo!  ^.~ The middle to last part of 2012 I had a lot of men’s grooming jobs, either working on CEOs or for print work on male models ages 20-40.  I am quiet enjoying it more than before!  While men ‘take less time’ or could be thought of as ‘easier’ compared to woman, I have to say it’s definitely a balance making it look like they are not wearing any makeup at all, and their hair natural but ‘well groomed.’ It’s actually a lot of fun styling men’s hair – it kind of feels like ‘molding clay’ or something into a mini sculpture, but it’s actually hair! Fun!
Matt posted the photos on his blogs – I selected a few different ones to highlight because I’m trying to showcase my makeup/hair work but I really love how he put it together! The wonderful thing is Matt moved from LA to the SF area, and so we’ll be working together again! Very excited to work with Matt again!  Previously I had to go to LA to work with Matt, or wait for him to come up to the SF area en route to work a wedding in Napa/Sonoma!
P.S – Matt shoots beautiful weddings as well as fashion/commercial/lifestyle work {Matt Edge Wedding Photography} so if you are a bride-to-be for 2013/2014, please check his work out!


Photography: Angie Silvy
Styling: Peggi Jeung
Makeup & Hair: Elizabeth Chang
Models: Cameron Lee @ Look SF & Hanna @ Scout SF

Here I go again – blogging out of order! I just settled for the fact that I will probably not be able to blog about everything I do, because there’s so much to do, and I want to be able to enjoy everything instead of viewing it as a chore or some task I must do!  I just got back from a brief week-long vacation in Kauai, HI with my husband. We have not gone anywhere together since we tied the knot – not even on our honeymoon.  Definitely a huge reward for us to save up and go somewhere! I have to say it’s really hard to go from working 60-80 hrs to less than 1 hr a week – to leave your cellphone alone and not touch it – but I think I was doing pretty ok on that! ;) ;) While away, I was just laying by the beach or the pool reading frivolous books – and I mean these historical regency romance novels! As I was organizing the latest images from my portfolio, I couldn’t help but notice that these photos from a series titled “Young Love” by photographer Angie Silvy can totally fit into a hilarious & entertaining narrative that summarizes into a romance novel.  :P So I’ll be providing these funny captions for your entertainment! Or you can ignore it and just check out the lovely photos! :)   I was thrilled to work with such an awesome team of professionals! Can’t wait to work together again some time in the future! xoxo
Here goes..the story of Lord Cameron and Miss Hanna…(LOL)

The “season” just began, and the noble/worthy “ton” who were fortunate to receive an invitation to Lord Cameron’s  month-long soiree at his Golden Gate Estate, arrives and participates in a game of croquet.     

Of course – all of the ladies wanted to capture the attention of the young & handsome, wealthy successor of the title, and of course – the most eligible bachelor, Lord Cameron! Always impeccably dressed and dashing, it’s no surprise he is always surrounded by the ladies.  However, if you notice carefully, his usual confidence always wavers subtly as his childhood playmate, the stubborn and stunning Miss Hanna, walks into the scene.

C: “Do you even know the proper position of handling a mallet? Do you need me to show you again?”

H: “I can handle it just fine! Don’t touch me!” and she thinks – how can he be a bigger pompous ass than he was last year? Despite their facade of antagonism, they soon realized they were attracted to each other…so they planned a stroll in the forest… 

And a picnic on the lawn – without a chaperone! How scandalous!!!! If anyone found out about it, Miss Hanna’s reputation will be utterly ruined, and she can only settle to be someone’s mistress!!! 

Still, the battle of wills persist, as the free-spirited Hanna never enjoyed being a proper “Lady” – but if she were to marry Lord Cameron, she would have to follow the strict social etiquette as befits her new status.  

Or… she continue to be her free-spirited self, but risk being a *gasp* spinster and a lasting shame to her family! Faced with the pressure to produce an heir, and admitting his love for Miss Hanna, on one fine afternoon, they decide to enjoy each other’s company during a picnic!

And..came to decide that they indeed loved each other, and that they shall elope…! And! create a relationship / marriage that’s reformed and will work for the two of them! 

The End~~~ :D :D :D 

*one more of beautiful Hanna!

Have a lovely week ahead! ;) ;) 

Is summer really over??

Makeup & Hair: Elizabeth Chang 
Photography: Sasha Gulish
Models: Amanda & Chloe from Stars SF

I am definitely feeling the fall coming, especially in the mornings and evenings!  Don’t let these sunny photos fool you – it was a little chilly by the beach!  I think this was Feb/March time.  
It was amazing that Amanda’s natural hair texture was exactly what we were going for so all I did was just smooth it out a little bit with a tiny bit of cream to prevent any frizzy fly-aways!  Beachy hair is supposed to be more loose/undone, but we still want the ‘mess’ to look intentional and not just simply…mess!  Chloe (in the polka dot bikini) came in from Arizona (OK…if it wasn’t Arizona it’s close by!) and I did her hair in the car!  
I was using my trunk as a table, and I pulled out my makeup chair for them to sit!  A pair of older ladies drove by and asked Kelsie (Kelsie is Sasha’s studio manager) and myself: “Is that a REAL makeup chair? Where did you buy it?” And after I said: “Los Angeles” they just drove off!! At this shoot, we had a special visitor! Kristen, their agent from Stars, stopped by and said hi!
It was challenging to select the film from this shoot, but in the end, I ended up with these 4 images that I love!  The girls were bringing it! Running down the beach, doing some cart wheels, and even interacting with strangers while modeling (not shown here obviously lol…!) 
I used Stila’s One-Step Primecolor in “Kitten” on Chloe’s lids, and “Pop of Pink” on the lips and cheeks. On the cheeks it was followed by Yaby Blush BL0015+BL001 for a natural coral/pink color that shows up nicely against the blueish-colored sunlight.  If you don’t balance the color, it will wash out!  
In October, my husband and I are finally going on our first ‘real’ vacation! That means, the trip is JUST for relaxing and resting…no agenda (ie: attend a wedding etc etc)!  In fact, we have not gone on our honeymoon yet….but we’ve already been married 4 years (since 9/19 last week!) so it’s too late to call it a honeymoon! lol…
Next week is action-packed for me! But I’m grateful to be working for sure!!! Hope everyone had a lovely weekend and an awesome week ahead! 
*dreaming of sunny beach days….~~~~ our vacation cannot come soon enough!*

Um! It’s now Summer – but why am I posting a fall/winter shoot?  :) I am getting senile (yes yes…my birthday is coming up so I have legitimate reasons to say I this) and of course I haven’t been posting everything in order!  This past weekend was my second time shooting in Santa Cruz, and it reminded me that I have yet to share these images on the blog! 
Photographed by Sasha Gulish, I did makeup & hair for the 9 teen models from Stars Model Management!   They were all so sweet and energetic!  These are just a few of my faves! 

Super super cute!

Makeup & Hair: Elizabeth Chang
Photography: Sasha Gulish
Styling: Peggi Jeung
Model: Sarina @ Stars Model Management

I was super excited to work with the Sasha & Peggi again!  This shoot starred Kelsie’s baby pug dog, Jewel.  
At each photo shoot, something fun usually happens, but this one I enjoyed in particular! Jewel (the adorable pug) was a bit of a diva because Jewel’s loyalties are with Kelsie and Kelsie only! The whole scene was super hilarious because Jewel’s eyes will follow Kelsie wherever she went, and her face screamed: “Help me help me! This girl I don’t know is kissing me!!!!” – That was the face the whole time!! Scroll down to the bottom to see an outtake shot – the GOLDEN moment that Jewel let go of her reservations, and gave Sarina a KISS – from afar! Sasha caught it all on camera! :) :) I laughed so so hard when I saw the film!  Jewel did it unwillingly – you see, her eyes were even closed to block out the emotions – like a kid’s first kiss or something!  So adorable! 
Another “lol” moment is the look with the heart-shaped sunglasses…! Sasha turned around to the three of us {Peggi the stylist, Kelsie the studio manager, and myself} and said: “I can see your reflection…you look like the 3 mean girls with your arms crossed.”

Makeup & Hair: Elizabeth Chang
Photography: Sasha Gulish
Styling: Peggi Jeung
Model: Alex @ Stars Model Management

On a warm sunny day…All I wanna do is lay on the grass and lounge around.  Meet Alex – she has a really beautiful smile and a sweet personality! Her southern accent is adorable! ;)  Immediately upon starting her makeup, I was like: “Doesn’t she look like Alexis Bledel?!” After the first few looks, I knew the plan was to do a picnic theme, so then…I kept pushing for the red lips – knowing how gorgeous it looks on Alexis and how it will pop from the lush green colors of the grass.  Unfortunately I had to leave the shoot early to make another appointment.  Sasha thought maybe they would switch into a more neutral lip for the picnic, so I handed them a wipe and a empty jar with a tiny bit of lipstick. 
When I got the photos back, I was ecstatic to find that they decided to keep the red lips towards the end and I loved the results. There were many other favorites from this shoot, but I selected 5 of my favorites! Out of the five, my favorite is the first one above! It’s such a happy photo…and I love the polka dots against the grassy fields! One of my photography friends pointed out that I seem to be fond of back-lit images – YES it’s true!! I like it when the subject looks like they are glowing! ^.~

Peanut, the cute dog featured, belongs to Peggi. As I was doing Alex’s hair, Peanut was pacing around the apartment {a very cute studio apartment that Alex was renting out for the duration of her stay in SF} – and Peggi said: “Peanut! Come back! You are in the hair spray zone!”  lol…and Peanut obediently marched back to the safety of the other side of the studio. that was my favorite quote of the day.

I hope everyone is having a good day/good week so far!

Summer is here indeed!!

Makeup & Hair: Elizabeth Chang
Photography: Sasha Gulish
Styling: Ali
Model: Diana @ Stars Model Management

As usual, I am posting out of chronological order! I figured the last post was wedding related, I shall mix it up with some fun in the sun! 
It wasn’t actually that sunny that day out in Marin, but you wouldn’t have known because Diana from Stars Model Management brought it with her! 
There were some other great ones, but these are the few that I loved for the blog/website! ;) Actually…..I had SUCH a hard time deciding what photos to use.  Even now as I’m looking at the photos that Sasha (the photographer) chose, the ones that Stars (Diana’s agency) chose, and then look at the ones I chose, I’m like..Should I have picked a DIFFERENT one? Oh oh …! I cannot go through this again! lol. Diana dances a lot in school, and it certainly shows! She moves so well in front of the camera, and just bangs out the poses – click after click it’s a good shot.  I guess this has to be a good dilemma to have!!!!  Maybe next month I can post the other beach shoot I did…Actually, expect to see some great “fun in the sun” blogs (or you could take a peak at them on my website…? )

One of the challenges I had to face was doing the hair without the hot tools.  To create the stringy texture, I wanted the stickiness and stay-power, so I went with Aquage Working Spray in order to manipulate the hair without heat & work with her natural texture!

Always a pleasure to work with Team Sasha (which is Sasha and her studio manager, Kelsie) Enjoy some of the photos!