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Makeup artist

Being a makeup artist is an amazing, exciting and rewarding job. But it is one of the hardest industries to break into. It takes drive and determination and of course skill. But it also depends on which area of makeup you are most interested in. The world of makeup consists of many avenues and there are many different routes one can take to get there. First and foremost you need to have an understanding and a general idea of what area of makeup you want to do. Do you want to be a film MUA and get to create characters and do special effects? Do you want to be more a beauty focused MUA and focus on weddings and print work? It’s ok to want to do it all, but that requires a lot of training and practice. I originally started at the age of nine wanting to be a fashion designer or a hairstylist. My parents however wanted me to go to college and get my degree so instead of going to cosmetology school I found a four year school that had a BA in Fashion Design and went to college for that. But it wasn’t until about my second year in college that I realized how much I like the artistic side of the fashion and the makeup that went with it. I started researching makeup schools. I was lucky enough to have supportive parents who let me stop college after my junior year and attend makeup school out in CA. I left everyone and everything I knew and picked up my life and started at the Makeup Designory in Burbank, CA. It was such an exciting experience. I got to learn all aspects of makeup; Beauty, Television, Film, Character, SpFX. Once I graduated from my classes it was time to start putting my knowledge to use. Let’s just say that there was a lot of free work being done. It’s called Trade for Print (TFP). This is how many people in this industry build up their portfolio. I was working four jobs over the next few years and was the epitome of the definition of “starving artist”. But I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything. It taught me how to be strong and learn how to take care of myself. I have gotten the opportunity to work with some great photographers, actors and agencies. If I can give any advice to that is that you have to just keep on trying and create connections. The film industry is all about who you know and the right timing. NETWORKING is key. Get your name out there, find a great photographer you like working with and build your portfolio. Apply for all jobs out there and don’t ever stop. This is a career that is all about keeping busy because it’s not your normal 9-5 job. I personally still work a “desk job” that allows me the flexibility to do my makeup jobs as they come. I am not the type of person who wants to work at a beauty counter at SAKS or Nordstrom’s, but that doesn’t mean that’s not the route you shouldn’t take. It has taken me a long time, but I now freelance with a few agencies, which keeps me busy. I will end on this, being a makeup artist is a very hard road, but it can lead you on so many amazing adventures and allow you to meet so many interesting people. If you have the passion and drive for it, then follow your dreams. As the old saying goes “do what you live and you’ll never work another day in your life”