I’m usually cool with my hair, my job, my wardrobe, my (hidden) talents, my life…and then I met Charlavail Effron. Internet sensations come and go, but this painter/baker/traveler/entrepreneur is here to stay. She’s got ‘em woodland creatures with her, too.
“Try as I might, I cannot keep my workspace tidy. So it’s safe to say my studio is in a constant state of disarray. It’s an organized mess.”
Hey, Charlavail. Thanks for taking the time to talk to us. What were you doing before answering this?
Hi! I spent the last eight hours or so doodling my previous hair styles on my now pixie haired self—with the exception of making a grocery store run to grab some avocados.
This may sound like a stalker question, but we love your style. What are you wearing right now?
I haven’t left the house all day so I’m dressed for comfort. I wear the same pair of harem skull pants almost every day. Also wearing an oversized heather gray v-neck and no make up. Eep, I’m not very good at being stylish on a day-to-day basis [laughs].
What happened to the bakery?
The bakery was a dream of mine for over four years. I went to pastry school, did loads of research, filled pages and pages with concepts and sketches. It was all I thought about. When I created my Tumblr, I never hesitated with sharing my dreams on it, and I think this was something people admired, but it was also something that created a lot of backlash when I changed “career paths.” In my mind, I could see how I wanted the whole place to look, and when I started scouting Orlando for a potential location, I became so discouraged. It’s a huge city, but it doesn’t have the same vibe or demographic that I thought the bakery needed to succeed. So I’m not saying no bakery forever; just no bakery for now.
Describe your workspace at studio.
Try as I might, I cannot keep my workspace tidy. So it’s safe to say my studio is in a constant state of disarray. It’s an organized mess. I’m trying to discipline myself and clean up after every project especially since I’m going to start creating time-lapse videos of the creation process.
What’s a medium you haven’t dabbled in but really wanna try?
Music is a mystery to me. It’s not something I can ever see myself dabbling in; I’m terrified of it [Laughs]. The idea of fashion kind of freaks me out, but it’s a lot more appealing if I approached it as an art medium. I will be doing a little bit of fashion design as an element of the confectionery, and if all goes well, maybe I’ll attempt to market to the masses one day. I’m incredibly anxious to start working with more sculpture-related materials. The confectionery will be made up mostly of dimensional elements that I’ll be building and I know there are many mediums to be explored.
“…in the meantime, I kind of take advantage of being able to make a bunch of different things that don’t necessarily match.”
What do your paintings, pastries, skull accessories, woodwork have in common?
I don’t know if my current portfolio has too much in common. When I have the confectionery, I want everything to stick to a strict theme and color scheme, so in the meantime, I kind of take advantage of being able to make a bunch of different things that don’t necessarily match.
Just curious. How did you and Paramore’s Hayley Williams meet?
One time we talked about how glorious it would be to have a Doug Funnie wardrobe.
How’s it like touring with and dating a “rockstar” like VersaEmerge’s Blake Harnage? How has that inspired your art?
Blake is the most dedicated and passionate artist I know. That’s the cheesiest thing I’ve ever said, and if he sees this, he’ll probably be embarrassed, but it truly is insanely inspiring. I’ve shared my plans with so many people who have had only negative things to say and tried to convince me to choose a more practical career. I try to surround myself with people who dream as big as I do and only encourage me, and Blake is definitely one of these people.
“As far as to how to prevent myself from being an “overnight internet sensation,” I’m clueless. If you had asked me this five months ago, I would say, ‘Don’t shave off your waist-long pastel hair.’”
What’s the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?
In April of last year, Sam DeSantis texted me asking if I would spend a month in Alaska with her and some of her extended family. We had only hung out a couple of times and were more acquaintances than friends. I had no idea where we’d be staying or what to expect, but I started dancing and said yes without hesitation. We spent the month of June hiking, four-wheeling, campfire-building, smore-making, bear-watching, moose-stalking, friendship-building and all-around-falling-in-love with Alaska. On our second to last day, there was a man outside of the local grocery store trying to find a home for a two-month old golden retriever. I’m not a dog person, but it was love at first sight. I took her home. A puppy for a carry-on for three flights—that was an adventure all on its own.
What do you think about all these bloggers being so influential right now? How do you prevent yourself from being just an “overnight internet sensation?”
The power of blogs and the internet is incredible. I love being able to share and market art worldwide. As far as to how to prevent myself from being an “overnight internet sensation,” I’m clueless. If you had asked me this five months ago, I would say, “Don’t shave off your waist-long pastel hair.” I guess just creating a constant flow of new artwork and new products and hoping people don’t grow tired of them.
“I do take advantage of living in theme park heaven.”
Other than Disney—which is the “happiest place on earth”—and the rest of the theme parks in your town, what is the happiest place for you?
I do take advantage of living in theme park heaven. I should probably be ashamed to admit that I go to Islands of Adventure by myself pretty often. If I’m having an off day, I’ll treat myself to a butterbeer in Hogsmeade and use the single rider line on Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey as many times as I can without puking. I also find a strange amount of amusement in laying at the bottom of a pool, blowing bubble rings for hours.
Best theme park ride ever?
Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey! By a long shot, in my opinion. It combines all ride elements and takes them to the extreme. The creator of that ride also designed the Spider-Man ride. I’m a huge fan of his work. Massive source of inspiration.
Best thing to munch on in theme parks.
Cotton candy. Lots and lots of pretty colored cotton candy.
What should you wear in theme parks?
I was thinking about how I was going to answer this question, and I realized someone needs to invent cute sunglasses that strap to your head like goggles, so you don’t lose them on roller coasters. I try to wear clothes that are comfy and will dry relatively quickly so I have no excuse to not go on water rides. And the most comfortable shoes you own. And maybe a fanny pack or visor if you want to fit in.
For the full story, grab a copy of STATUS August 2012 issue