Monday 26 May 2008

...crit lecteur, mon semblance...

There has been an outbreak of hennaing in Schloss Marland, and a messy old business it is too. Katie is now Very Red Indeed, while I did my usual mix of henna and indigo, with a bunch of ground cloves thrown in for good measure. It's a very satisfyingly hands-on, potion-y experience.

But we didn't get round to taking the 'after' shots, so here instead is Richard, who sent me these photos asking which one I thought was better for publicity stuff.

Richard's hair is, as far as I can tell, entirely natural.

As is his twitchiness about his appearance, of course. So I cautiously opined that the first one was sort-of-Melvyn Braggish, in a nice way, and that it was slightly too serious, while the second was slightly too smiley. But that they were both good photos.

Mind you, it's always a dangerous thing, constructive criticism. I once made what I thought were some very pertinent points about a song that a musician acquaintance had done, and she never forgave me for it.

What, never? No, never.

They're. Very. Nice. Richard.


  1. I think he looks a bit haughty in the first, but I don't know him. the second looks much more approachable, a little mischievous even. I don't mind if he never speaks to me again!

    I'm glad all I need to do is throw a couple of cammomile tea bags in some hot water and rinse. Do cloves make a difference?

  2. Yes, I don't think hauteur suits him really...

    I think the oil in the cloves helps fix the colour, and they add a warm red-brown to the tint. And the smell stays in the hair for quite a while, which is nice if you like the smell of cloves.

    There's lots of home-grown recipes for henna stuff here:

  3. You say "hauteur",
    I say "auteur" ....

    Which is definitely the word that came to mind with the first. But the second is far too "Richard and Judy" in comparison.

  4. Does the clove oil manage to override the smell of the henna? I used to use it but never liked the smell...

    As for Richard's photos I asked Jim. He said the top one looks like an author the bottom like an ex-SAS writer.

    Whereas I never pay any attention to the photos that come with publicity...

  5. Hmmm...

    Is he going to see this? I'm sure he's lurking...and needs to Reveal His Presence ;-)

    Pic 1: 'Serious Author'. Pretty bored with all this picture taking stuff, I mean dahling if absolutely you must take my picture...! Mwah.

    Pic 2: 'Regular Bloke'. Still a bit amazed I got a book deal, like you might be...which is quite attractive for someone who actually got a book deal quite a long time ago....

    (and actually like I would be, having written half a novel and got stuck!)

    Up to him. Both are good. How does he want to be? Not about what he 'ought' to look like, but what he wants and who he is (or is that just my trans perspective there?!). Though I'd go for No 2, every time ;-).

  6. Damn, Chris, a good pun staring me in the face and I didn't even notice.

    Up to a point, Caroline, though I quite like the smell of henna; reminds me of the cattle I used to help out with on the farm, for some reason. I like Jim's response. I shall think "Andy McNab" whenever I look at that pic from now on...

    You can be pretty certain that he is reading this, Jo... oh, yes, perspective. Here's Brian Patten

    ...Then try on your own face,
    try the one mask that terrifies,
    the mask only you could possibly use,
    the mask only you could wear out...

  7. Maybe its that cattle presence I'm not so keen on...

  8. I've just finished reading your February archives and thoroughly enjoyed them.

  9. Oh girls, I love the first one, it's so handsome and direct. The second one is handsome too and endearing, but I want to comb his right eyebrow for him, it's sort of blocking his eye a little.