Since moving to Asheville four years ago, 37-year-old Sarah Jordan has set out to prove that art can stimulate mental health and help people express themselves emotionally, physically, and spiritually. She named her business “Henna Power” to signify the idea that allowing oneself to creatively embrace body art can transform self-perception and enhance power and confidence.
In college, Jordan had a hard time deciding what to study. Stuck between psychology and art, she chose the former, eventually graduating to become a case manager for adults with mental illness. After suffering a head injury, she was unable to work and turned to art as a form of emotional relief, unwittingly edging into a new career.
A few years into social work, Jordan attended a cosmetology school for makeup artistry. She began doing makeup professionally for weddings, face painting for kids’ parties, and other entertainment events. Her gigs as a face painter made her the happiest, so she ran with it. Now, 10 years later, she’s represented by a professional marketing company.
One time, she was hired to work a corporate event where they requested that she provide temporary henna tattooing. Not knowing anything about it, Jordan got an all-natural henna recipe from a friend and taught herself how to make the substance, roll her own cones, and hand paint popular designs. “I knew how to paint on skin, but henna is not applied in the same way,” explains Jordan. “When painting, you drag your brush, but with henna, you drape it. It’s like icing a cake.” The henna then dries, peels off, and reveals an image underneath that will last up to four weeks.
Jordan expresses her edgy style through henna and glitter tattoos, face and body gems, and face painting. “I want to combine my psych background with art,” she reveals. “The subconscious mind sees life through symbols, and I want to help people reach personal goals by designing their own unique power symbols that help them see who they are.” She promotes emblems as encouragement — showing folks it’s okay to transform into their true selves.
“My heart is really with art,” says Jordan. “It always has been.”
Sarah J. Art, Henna Power. Jordan will lead a workshop, “Power Symbols, Henna Tattoos and Tea,” at Asheville Raven and Crone (555 Merrimon Ave., Suite 100, ashevilleravenandcrone.com) on Sunday, July 28, 4-6pm. Cost is $25. Jordan will also vend at “A Very Jerry Birthday Bash” at Salvage Station (468 Riverside Drive, salvagestation.com) Saturday, Aug. 3, 2-10pm. Tickets are $10. For more information and to register for these events, visit sarahjart.com or e-mail her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Instagram: @hennapoweravl.