Makeup artist is certainly one of the most vivid and creative professions. We draw inspiration from everything that surrounds us, we use the textures that surround us, we change the person completely, create a new character, or emphasize the natural beauty. Human being is our canvas.
Everything you learn in makeup school is about techniques and, sometimes, if you’re lucky enough, about how to find inspiration. It is certainly not enough, there are so many aspects of this profession that you will have to learn by yourself. I will try to tell about them, based on my personal experience.
1) Thirst for knowledge. That’s basic! The work of a makeup artist is associated with constant training, improvement of your skills, testing various textures, mixes. You will have to learn the colors, light effects and to master the human anatomy. When you are left alone with the client, you have a couple of seconds to understand what textures, what colors you should use, where the shadow will fall and where will be partial shade. So if you think your makeup school will be enough then… don’t even try to be a makeup artist. Yes, you will have to invest your time and finances in your training.
2) Sociability. You have to constantly communicate. We are not just makeup artists for our clients, we are psychologists. How important it is to calm down the bride before one of the most important events of her life! Our customers are very sensitive to intonation, way of talking. Do not be familiar, be extremely polite, but friendly.
But our clients are not only brides and girls who have an important event, our clients are photographers, editors of various magazines. Be able to listen to the customer, their job and be able to explain how it is possible to perform. Communicate with photographers and videographers, because they are one of the foundations of being a makeup artist.
3) Respect for your work. Know how to say no when you need to. I had to learn it on my own. Set prices and keep them. Everyone wants it cheaper, but no one understands how much you invest in your tools, cosmetics and knowledge. The make-up artist’s work is truely work and worth its price.
Unfortunately, in our age of digital technology, our profession is almost devalued. Why? Because there are a lot of tutorials on youtube where you will be taught makeup tips for free. Most of the professional cosmetics become available to anybody!
That’s why many makeup artists feel the urge to get trained in an additional profession, manicurist, hair dresser, cosmetologist, etc.
Sometimes a client do not want to pay, well, it is also an experience. If possible, of course you should get paid for your job, if not, then wash off the client’s face !
While studying at school, you are already studying with your competitors. Now there are a lot of makeup artists, so you need to offer something that others cannot do. You need to be different from the others, so you have to invest time and money in your training, in your cosmetics, in your advertising (website, social networks, flyers…). Think of your name as a brand, even local brand.
5) Individuality. Feed yourself.
Our little secrets, our super tricks. This is what can set you apart from other makeup artists, from your appearance to the technique you use. Find the small thing in which you can be the best, in which you can express your talent at its best.
6) Stress and lack of affect.
This is important. Do not let emotions overwhelm you, be able to control yourself. No matter how capricious the client is, smile and keep working. No matter how extravagant the customer is, behave in a relaxed, friendly and open way. It may be a good opportunity to learn something!
If you show yourself irritated, then believe me, it will be an extra reason for your client to find something negative in your work.
7) Self-defense and security basics.
No one is safe from an aggressive client. It could be a Perv photographer or a hysterical client. Be ready for anything and fight back if anything happens. Sometimes your job can end late at night, but you will still need to come back home, so take any security measures. If you have any doubt about the client, tell all the details to your family or friends and ask them to call back within half an hour when you expect to arrive at the client.
8) Self-feedback. You must invest yourself in your work. You should follow the important events of the year, such as Oscar, Met Gala, etc. Watch all the fashion shows, cruise collections, bloggers, top makeup artists, because they dictate the fashion trends.
Read articles, go to the Museum, be inspired by art. Draw, create, think about makeup! Give most of yourself to your profession.
9) Good photographer. I hope no one thinks that right after school all the famous photographers and magazines are waiting for you with open arms. Of course no. In order to have a beautiful portfolio, you have to find good photographers and talented models. To do this, you will have to choose your target audience. If you plan to work as a wedding makeup artist look for a wedding photographer, models, dresses, participate in various wedding projects, etc. Believe me it is unlikely that a professional photographer (and model) will agree to work with a novice makeup artist showing a portfolio made of training pictures. Exercise your eyes to distinguish good photographers from bad ones and start networking. Ask them if you can help for collaborations and reassure the photographer regarding the quality of your work (and be sure you can do it !), you can even come to them with creative ideas.
Or be ready to invest money, for a good portfolio. Or be ready to marry a talented photographer like I did!
10) The most important from the most important, it won’t be taught anywhere. That’s basic! Love your profession, breathe it, live it. Being a makeup artist is great!
Website: http://www. charlottekh.com
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Banner Image Credit
Kasia Struss Photographed by Victor Demarchelier