Two weeks ago I was lucky enough to attend IMATS in Pasadena and got the unbelievable chance to actually meet Dany Sanz, the creator of Make Up For Ever (one of my all-time favorite brands!) From the very moment I saw her sitting in the folding chair, in her awesome wedges, surrounded by displays of her incredible products, I was completely enamored. She has this beautiful fiery red hair, is dressed in casual yet gorgeous clothing, and when she smiles you instantly feel at ease (and for a moment forget you're actually chatting with a true visionary and definite celebrity). She was set to go on the main stage at the IMATS convention on Friday evening to give a fantastic presentation on make-up artistry, but wasn't stressed in the least and calmly sat with me while I asked her a few questions. I am so excited to be able to share some information about Ms. Sanz with you all! So, if you didn't know she lives in Paris and actually opened her first store there (which she still operates). When I asked her about how she got started she gave me a huge smile and told me that she actually came from a modest upbringing but always was an artist. Her passion for sculpting and painting perfectly complimented her love for cosmetics and she developed her first formulas right in her own kitchen. She told me that she actually had little boxes where she would handwrite the product name on them before giving to people. Of course I had to know if she kept those boxes as a memento and she told me that she still has them to remind her how far she's come. When I asked about her first boutique in Paris, she told me that it's small but it's home to her and it will always continue to operate because it's where she started it all. It was actually her students who encouraged her to take her vision out of her kitchen and into a storefront. For someone who has built a strong cosmetics brand and has opened makeup academies all over the world, Dany Sanz is incredibly down-to-earth and ridiculously sweet. I thought it was interesting that her first creation was actually eyeshadow #4 (matte black) but then when I asked her if she could only own and wear one product what would it be? Without hesitation she responded with "black eyeliner." So, really, creating black eyeshadow as a first product seems to fit right in line. After taking the time to chat with me, she calmly went up on the stage and started her presentation on make-up artistry (pic above) which was stunning and was like watching a modern-day Picasso at work. You know, if Picasso had been a beautiful woman with a successful cosmetics line and a real passion for products.