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My Creative Hero: Trixie Mattel

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Continuous's Richard Pay on why he's inspired by the world famous drag queen, musician and makeup artist

My Creative Hero: Trixie Mattel

Richard Pay is head of creative of Continuous brand consultancy, part of Uniform Group. He works with clients to build brands across a range of industries including Primark, Mitre, Encona and Amtico.

LBB> Who would you say is your creative hero? 

Richard> Trixie Mattel - the world famous drag queen, musician and makeup artist.

LBB> How long has this person been important to you and what are your first memories of meeting them or coming across their work?

Richard> I’ve known of Trixie Mattel since her Drag Race debut in 2015. But, it’s everything that she has done since that which has made her one of my creative heroes. After coming in 11th place (then returning to the season to ultimately come in 6th place) my first memory was “she’s a little rough around the edges” but overtime Trixie Mattel has built a brand and a business doing what she does best. Being brave, creative and true to herself. 

LBB> How did you go about finding to learn more about them and their work?

Richard> Trixie was suddenly in many places I was already looking. Beyond Drag Race she started a YouTube series with World of Wonder (called ‘UNHhhh’) which became a Vice TV show. From this moment I was captivated by her humour, sense of self and fearless attitude to try new things. I’d watch her documentary (Trixie Mattel: Moving Parts), I’d read up on her new business ventures and before I knew it I was hooked.

LBB> Why is the person such an inspiration to you? 

Richard> It’s a common expression among drag queens to ‘paint for the back row’ (aka. make sure that the people in the back of the room can appreciate your look). However, Trixie takes it a step further by saying “I paint for the Denny’s down the street”. Because of that, she’s developed her own distinct look that can be recognised around the world (and way beyond that Denny’s).

On top of creating a recognisable look in her drag, she’s done the same across her brand and business. Massively capitalising on her success by building Trixie Cosmetics, a music career, becoming a co-owner of Wisconsin’s oldest gay-bar and most recently investing her life savings to renovate and open Trixie Motel. So, she’s not afraid of trying new things.

And each one of those endeavours shows something great about her. Through Trixie Cosmetics she turns competitors into collaborators. Through her music career she expresses her true passion. Through co-owning a gay-bar she’s supporting a community. And with Trixie Motel she’s taking her brand into a completely different industry.

LBB> How does this person influence you in your approach to your creative work? 

Richard> I want all of our creative work to have as much stand out, ambition and consistency as Trixie Mattel’s body of work. She flexes her brand where necessary - but it always stays true to who she is. It also looks like she has a blast doing it, and while the creative industry can be stressful… It should absolutely be fun.

LBB> What piece or pieces of this person’s work do you keep coming back to and why?

Richard> It’s less about any particular piece of work and more about her attitude, drive and spirit. Trixie is unapologetically herself, wildly ambitious and a perfect balance of self-deprecation and outrageous self-confidence. I keep coming back to it because, if I can live up to it, I genuinely believe I’ll be able to achieve anything.

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Continuous, Wed, 18 May 2022 07:15:00 GMT