Episode 7: Queen Bee
This week begins with another foundation challenge in which the 10 remaining contestants must choose from a variety of over-the-top hats as inspiration. The guest judge is Lois Burwell, who you may remember from last season when she filled in as the season judge for Ve Neill.
Their 2-hour foundation challenge begins as they all scurry to find a hat that speaks to them. Some of the hats are beyond ridiculous and Stephanie, Logan, and Kelly all seem to find these crazy pieces in a huge dandelion, a large black ship, and and bright tinker toy hat respectively. Rob find a top hat to draw inspiration from and begins to create his version of a darker Pinocchio, one that was forever lost at sea. I really am not a fan of this look, it didn’t really turn out how I thought it was going to when he described it as being a dark Pinocchio, although Lois only has minor critiques of it.
Emily picks out the absolute biggest, most shiny hat there is and begins to wrap her model in an asymmetrical tinfoil dress. I cannot believe how crazy this looks. Her model looks like a baked potato just out of the oven. As she starts laying down color and adding crushed rhinestones to the model’s skin, however, her vision starts to really take shape and honestly looks pretty awesome. Lois agrees and Emily wins top look for this foundation challenge, ensuring her immunity in the upcoming spotlight challenge.
The spotlight challenge takes place with the contestants hiking out to Canyon Ranch, home to many television and movie scenes. Mackenzie is all a buzz to let them know that this week they will not be headed to the lab; much to the dismay of many contestants who just aren’t that fond of the great outdoors. This challenge will take place in only 5 hours, instead of their normal 3 days and will consist teams of two body painting both a male and female model drawing inspiration from an insect and it’s corresponding habitat. As a blast from the past, Nix Herrera will be helping the contestants during the challenge as he is known for his body painting abilities and prior experience on Season 2.
The 10 quickly team up into the 2-person teams, consisting of Jamie and Emily, Rob and Adam, Kelly and Ben, Darla and Stephanie, and Logan and Julian. The teams scramble out into the woods to find their habitats and insect inspiration. Jamie and Emily quickly find the Honey bee and start work on designing their Queen and a worker drone, utilizing the male model as a companion to their queen. Rob and Adam come across the ladybug and settle on making the male model into larva in a Sistine Chapel esque pose with their queen. Similarly, Logan and Julian get the beautiful Cuckoo Wasp and decide to also make their male model into larva.
Kelly and Ben find the European Beetle habitat and Kelly comes up with an amazing idea to paint the female model as the head and thorax of the beetle and the male as the abdomen. Unfortunately Ben takes control of the male model and is determined to used the male to blend into the background. While Kelly doesn’t like the idea, she doesn’t speak up much and concedes to his wishes. Darla and Stephanie happily take on the Jewel Beetle with it’s bright, vibrant colors and also decide to blend the male model into the background and leave focus on the Queen.
After the teams finish their designs and get started on painting, the coaches arrive! Anthony, Laura and Race take time listening to each team’s ideas and offering advice. Immediately Laura asks Logan if he knows what a Cuckoo Wasp larva looks like, and when he admits to just kinda making it up, she makes the suggestion of using the male model as the abdomen of their queen. Wait, what? Looks like they’ll be doing what Kelly wanted to do. When Anthony learns Ben is going to be blending the male model he suggests maybe trying something else as it may not be enough; but Ben is dead set on blending, much to the dismay of Kelly.
Laura also suggests that blending may be a bad idea to Darla and Stephanie, who are more receptive to the advice and go with her suggestion to make the male model the wings of the queen. After they decide to go with her suggestion though, Darla finds it difficult to make leaves into translucent wings and seriously begins to question whether they are under-utilizing the male model.
Last looks comes fast and the teams scramble to apply as much paint as they can to get their models well placed into the habitat backgrounds so the photo shoot can begin. We join back up with the contestants the following day with the judges in the studio where their models are displayed in beautifully artistic photos, posing in their habitats.
The Cuckoo wasp is crazy good and I absolutely love the colors used and how they utilized the male model’s arm as the wasp leg. The ladybug was just awful as I didn’t understand the larva or the blocky colors used. The judges; Ve, Glenn, and Neville also loved the Cuckoo wasp as well as the Honey bee,which had great texture and looked a lot like the fur-like hairs that are on a bee. The Jewel beetle, ladybug, and European hornet did not go over quite as well as Darla’s fears that their male model was underutilized come to fruition.
In the end it is the Cuckoo wasp that takes top look and the win goes to Logan. Kelly, Ben, Rob, and Adam find themselves in the bottom, but it is ultimately the ladybug that loses, sending Rob home for his blocky lines on the female’s face and the confusing larval male model. I fully agreed with the judges decisions this week and would have chosen Rob to go home myself.