When it comes to mas it is all in the details for Analiese Ferreira from choosing a costume to the arsenal of products she packs for on the road this Goddess is prepared for virtually everything. Designer and producer of Titivate Bags, one of the most memorable events of 2013 was seeing Rihanna at Cropover with a bag personally created by Analiese. Brains, beauty and an abundance of creativity wrapped up in this petite powerhouse, let’s get to know more about this week’s featured Goddess Analiese Ferreira
1. We know a woman never reveals her age but, what’s your date of birth?
I’m an 80’s girl, so I’m in my 30’s now 😉
2. Besides looking amazing, what’s your occupation?
I’m a Geophysicist at a major international oil & gas organization, with a background in Physics and Computer Science.
3. In what year did you start playing Mas, can you list the bands you have played with over the years?
I’ve been playing mas since I was a little girl; I think the first year was 1985. I was a Section leader (in an awesome Red Indian costume) and Queen of the Band between 8 and 11. My first adult band was Poison when I was 16. Once I started playing on my own it was with Harts, then Tribe, Yuma and Bliss. I’ve kept all the costumes I’ve worn since 2001 and donated my oldest ones to my aunt who decorates her garden statue with them come Carnival time.
4. Have you ever missed a Carnival? If so what was the reason?
Yes, once very unwillingly. I was at Uni and the semester was in session. So while catching up on loads of assignments, fellow Trinis and I drowned our sorrows listening to soca and checking out photos (not such a good idea). Between 12 and 16 I didn’t play, but followed the bands instead and limed with friends & family.
5. Do you participate in Carnivals outside of Trinidad and Tobago? What was the experience like?
I’ve played Notting Hill before, in a “party girl” costume, which was a unique experience as the atmosphere felt a little like Trinidad but you’re in 12 deg. C weather! It was the best decision though, I thoroughly enjoyed it! I’ve wanted to do other Carnivals, but my love for travelling usually overrides additional costume purchases 🙂
6. Which was your first Frontline costume experience and have you done Backline since?
In 2008 Tribe’s Goddess of the Chase had a larger headpiece version which I took, but no real distinction for FL that I can recall, so Tribe’s Osage in 2010 would be my first officially branded FL and I haven’t gone back since. I LOVE a big headpiece, the more feathers the better! My dream is to do an individual at some point, as I’ve had major costume envy with a few of them over the years.
7. Favourite Carnival costume of all time?
I have two, Luxor Premium Frontline in Yuma 2012, ‘cause it’s the only costume I barely second guessed the moment I laid eyes on it and Queen Cobra Frontline in Bliss 2013, for the beauty in its simplicity.
8. What do you love the most about Carnival and playing Mas?
The excitement and energy you feel in the air, especially the week before Carnival. I love that, it’s electric! Waking up on J’Ouvert morning, hearing the trucks & people coming home and knowing you’ll be out on the road soon, it’s indescribable. I get goosebumps thinking about mas! And of course the costumes, being able to dress up and become a more fabulous version of you 🙂
9. I have seen you meticulously photographing costumes at band launch and at the Mas camp? Is this part of choosing your costume? How do you make the final choice?
I am all about the details (as if you couldn’t tell), so for me, it’s better to have my own personal collection of photos to assess ad infinitum! Plus, it comes in handy to design and decorate bags and Monday wear with Titivate. I also do it to help out friends who are coming in from abroad, as I remembered how much I was in a panic the year I had to choose a costume while I was away and no-one had any detailed shots! That was awful!
Really though, my choice is made in two parts: I usually fall in love with a costume on stage, and I then spend hours scrutinizing at the camp imagining how it will look in natural lighting, against my skin tone, how it would photograph and whether there are any bits I think won’t go with my body type. On many occasions my friend Tricia and I have had Dean pass us in Tribe’s camp saying “Allyuh still here!?”
10. When does your Carnival preparation start and what does it include? Diet? Exercise? Sketches for boots and bags?
I previously was of the” watch your diet and exercise 2 months before Carnival” persuasion, but in the last year I’ve made a concerted effort to exercise at least 3 times a week, although it hasn’t always worked out that way :(. From November though, I’ve amped up my game, eating better and putting in more work at the gym.
Monday wear planning starts around September, as I scour the net for makeup ideas and enlist the services of designers as needed for tiara/ headpiece/ swimwear. I don’t often sketch out designs for the stuff I decorate, I usually start with an idea in mind and adjust gems and trim till I have something I’m happy with.
11. Single or taken?
12. Solo Superstar or plays Mas with a crew?
I play with a small crew but I’m usually in my own little world enjoying the revelry.
13. If you could only choose ONE Carnival fete to attend at Trinidad Carnival which one would it be?
Beach House, always a good story comes from that fete!
14. On a scale of 1 to 10, how was your Carnival 2013 experience? Highlights and low lights?
For Trini Carnival, I’d say an 8. I didn’t party as much as I would have liked leading up to it; it’s just not economical anymore! It always feels bittersweet going to your last fete of the season, knowing it will all be over soon. In spite of that, I enjoyed the effortless service I experienced in Bliss. My costume choice came down to sheer chance and I was so glad in the end that it turned out that way! Monday and Tuesday I had a ball!
15. Give us a run-down of getting ready Carnival Tuesday morning before hitting the road.
Prep for Tuesday starts Monday night, I soak my feet in a warm Epsom salts & Peppermint oil bath for half hour to help revitalize my feet for Tuesday. I’m awake by 3am to shower and wash my hair, then head off to my makeup appointment. Back home, douse myself in sunblock and prep my feet while it dries. I wrap my toes with lamb’s wool and use large plasters at the back of my heels to safeguard against blisters.
Then it’s into stockings (trimmed at the toe and waistband), costume, fix my hair, feel even more excited as everything comes together. Glitter sprays, boots etc. are next. I yell to everyone that’s getting ready that we need to leave 🙂 while I pack my bag and grab water for my cup. Headpiece & backpack are the last to go on before a not so leisurely stroll to meet the band. If we have time I’ll stop to take photos of other bands we pass ‘cause I love seeing the costumes in that fresh morning light. I feel excited just typing all this 😀
16. In 2009 you saved a run in my tights by loaning me clear nail polish on the road, so what else do you carry in your pouch?
Everything imaginable and all organized! Plasters, bobby pins, safety pins in various sizes, Tums, single dose Advil & Gravol, extra pair of contacts, eye drops, Wet Wipes, small packet Kleenex, nail polish pen, camera, spare camera battery, me2 phone, ziplock bag in case it rains for electronics, money in small notes, bandana, oil blotting sheets, mirror, lip gloss, loose glitter, double sided tape. I’ve never needed to touch up my makeup on the road, so no need for powder etc. and I use ladder-resist tights so no need for extra pair.
17. The one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I am much better communicating via the written word. Speaking off the cuff has never been my strong point (I actually get quite nervous!) but I can prepare a pretty mean speech or letter if you give me the time.
18. How do you deal with the fans, being asked to constantly pose for photos on the road and competition with your Carnival business Titivate?
Well my bf always complains he feels like my personal photog and security especially on Tuesday! Ha! Spectators’ admiration of our mas makes me love it even more, so I have no problem giving a smile for a photo. Being frontline or individual is partly about the splendor after all! The only thing I don’t do is give away parts of my costume, I love it too much! With respect to the Carnival businesses, I think there’s room in the market for all, especially as our creative tastes will vary across the board, so I’m taking my time to build a solid base with new clientele and grow from there.
19. Your top tips for anyone wanting to look like a Carnival Goddess? You look perfect all day, honestly what’s the secret?
Aww thank you! A fabulous MUA you can trust is the secret! 🙂
On Monday I do my own makeup and I’ve invested in waterproofing liquid (along with a steady hand) for my shadows and decent quality products that I can use year round.
Otherwise, my top tip would be stay true to you and don’t just run with the pack. Choose the costume YOU’LL be comfortable in, footwear that YOU can manage throughout the day, complement with the right accessories and lose yourself in the spirit of Carnival! Your enjoyment will attract the smiles.
20. Which band are you gracing your presence with for Carnival 2014 and what can we expect your costume to look like?
Bliss, you already know and everyone else will see when I pick it up! 😉 My Monday wear will be completely different, I want it to be as costume as possible, so fingers crossed it turns out how I envision it! Excitement!!!