Ten Years of Lessons & One Year of Firsts

While I sit here thinking about why the number 1 and 10 are so significant to me right now, I think about all the million things I should be doing. Instead, I ignore the dishes that need to be put away; the piles of dirty laundry that need washing; my makeup kit that needs to be organized for this weekend’s big gig; chipped nails that are in need of some TLC; drawing smiley faces and sand castles with my 3 year old son over and over; because sometimes you just need to be in your head with your own thoughts. My last post on here was in February and I’ll admit that my want to update my blog has been nagging at me. Life gets busy and lets face it, writing a post is on the last of my priorities. But today I feel compelled to write because…I miss it.

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Yesterday was my 1 year anniversary at the tv studio I do makeup at and this past March marked my 10 year anniversary when I began my makeup career (yay me!). I think to myself, why do I feel the need to accurately timeline my career as a makeup artist/? My career doesn’t define who I am, but the experiences I have gone through and how I’ve handled them do. To freelance at anything is no easy feat; there are too many unknowns that not everyone is willing to see it to the end.

This past year is the first time in my career that I have ever experienced some stability. However, I am not naive to the fact that this sense of stability can quickly disappear. I don’t let it discourage me though; so I celebrate my accomplishments and recognize how lucky I am to do what I love and to love the people I work with. 13 years ago, I graduated from a tv production program never once wanting to have a career in it. Now I’ve come full circle working as a makeup artist in the tv industry; funny how life works.

Ten is a big number. To work at something for 10 years; a marriage, parenthood, a career; is something to be proud of. Trying to make sense of it all, I’ve fuddled my way to get where I am. Before kids, I had a clear path of how I wanted my career to go. After kids, trying to make it as an artist seemed impossible; a dream I struggled to let go of. Starting my career later in life and having a family, I had to figure out ways to do what I love, make money fast, and contribute some sort of stability for my family; more importantly to have peace of mind. Looking back on the many odd jobs while doing makeup on the side and even trying different career paths, I am both amused and bewildered. I can’t say I didn’t try! Those experiences and the many people I met along the way helped define the kind of life I wanted and who I wanted in my life. That to me is priceless. Knowing who you are and what you’ll stand for is everything in this cut throat business.

Choosing to be a “starving artist” when your a parent of two is confusing to others. For the most part, I have an amazing support system but it comes with its struggles. I was often consumed with my own thoughts of being selfish, self-absorbed, and unrealistic. Saying you’re a makeup artist is not the same as saying you’re a doctor, you’re a teacher, you’re a lawyer. We’re often asked “But what’s your full-time job?”As irritating as it is to be asked that, I don’t find fault because not all of us are lucky enough to make it a full-time career.

I love to help others, but it really is hard for me to ask for help. Starting out, I was very grateful to have the opportunity to use some very strong connections in this industry. I could have easily fast-tracked my career; would have been a hell of a lot easier! For whatever reason, I wanted whatever outcome my career would have to be because of my own hard work and dedication. A name can only take you so far; if you don’t have the skills to back it up, it’s worthless. When you’ve given yourself no choice, you make it work because you have to survive. So when you meet someone who you want to help that doesn’t really take what you do seriously, you let your emotions get the best of you. This isn’t just a hobby or some job; it’s my livelihood. Looking back, I could have handled certain situations differently, but I will never apologize for my expectations of professionalism and respect for my time.

Being stubborn for once has done well for me. For all the times I have been discouraged because of how someone made me feel, something negative someone has said, or for the lack of support I have felt, the last ten years – from every success to every failure – have all been worth it. While some artists prefer to play it safe, I believe in challenging myself and taking on new experiences. When I’ve felt that I’ve experienced a lot, I get thrown into a new situation learning something completely new again. That’s what this year has been for me; a year of firsts. I probably had less than a handful of jobs working in a television setting before this year, but I forced myself to learn fast. Because it isn’t just about the artistry; it’s about knowing how to work with a whole crew, connecting with those that sit in your chair on a daily basis, learning how to problem solve on the fly, time management, understanding how studio lighting works and how your makeup will translate onto camera, and being a creative in what’s ultimately a corporate world.

I can honestly say I’ve carved out my own path and haven’t really followed someone else’s. I have however, taken opportunities that were given to me with grateful, open arms. I’ve never been particularly good at planning; I kind of run with it and whatever happens, happens. If something doesn’t work, I am back at it thinking of another way to make it work. Something that has always stayed with me is having good work ethics and a good attitude will get you wherever you want to go in life. If your accomplishments are a result of honest hard work, your peers will never expect an apology.

To sum up the last 10 years, with all its challenges it has come with many rewards. I’m still here and I’m not going anywhere. This post isn’t about what advice I can offer other struggling artists, but it’s a reminder to myself of the lessons I’ve learned and how far I’ve come. As I’ve gotten older, letting go of the negativity and what people think has become much easier. I do this for me and my family and that’s all that really matters. I’m not saving lives, but I’m making women feel good about themselves when they may have had a shitty day. It’s a reminder of how lucky I am to be a woman and to live in a country that allows me to freely choose what I want to do with my life; to be a mom of two that make me strive to work hard; to have a loving and supportive husband that I can bounce ideas off of; to be surrounded by peers, family and friends that truly support me every step of the way. In the next little while, I will be greeted with new and exciting opportunities. I can’t wait to see what the next ten years will bring, but I will take it all in one day at a time. If you get anything from this post, having a career in something you love is possible if you’re willing to work hard for it!

As Seen On: Remark Magazine Sept/Oct Issue

New work in the latest issue of Remark Magazine! The magazine has a whole new look and feel.

Products used were from Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics and Dermalogica.

To view the entire magazine and the editorial I worked on entitled A La Mode, click here and go to pages 44-49! 

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Oh hi there! It’s been a while…A Recap

Wow, it’s been ages since I’ve updated my blog! It’s been a crazy few months with work and family life, but I’m not complaining. All I can say is I’m thankful for good clients, great friends and a healthy family.

Besides being busy with weddings, I’ve had some published work and helped organize another workshop with Blur Makeup Room (more on this fabulous pro store later) for celebrity makeup artist and someone I consider a mentor, Lucky Bromhead. Here’s a little recap!

Makeup: Lucky Bromhead, Photographer: Wade Hudson

Makeup: Lucky Bromhead, Photographer: Wade Hudson

The macro beauty masterclass with Lucky was one not to be missed. We learned some really valuable tips and techniques on how to perfect the skin for extremely close photography. So, it turns out she’s pretty ah-MAZING with a brush. Lucky is pretty entertaining and hilarious to boot, but you will be in awe of her beautiful creations. 

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One thing that really stood out for me is something I’ve always tried to practice when doing beauty work, but seeing her technique and the end results really stuck with me. Skin should look like skin. She recommended using the yaby Liquid Foundations or M.A.C.’s Face & Body. Lucky also likes to use a sponge much like the Beauty Blender to apply foundation.

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She finds with a brush you can see streaks left on the skin in macro photography. Lucky is also big on highlighters like the ones from Face Atelier. These silicone-base liquids are great for mixing in foundations. Another very important point is that working with a really good model is key. Tia was amazing because she knew there were certain moments she couldn’t move her mouth or close her eyes. If you’re doing something that is lip focused choose someone with good lips and so forth. Oh and don’t be surprised if you have to break out some Nair to get peach fuzz under control! Only in the name of beauty and the money shot. To view more from the workshop visit Makeup by Lucky’s Facebook Page!

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Wade Hudson, a highly sought after photographer and the one who shot Lucky’s macro work was also at the class to give some advice on the industry and what he looks for in a makeup artist. In the above photo, he is explaining his retouching process. He also believes that skin should look like skin. His pet peeve with some photographers is when the pores are blurred out completely using Gaussian Blur. An amazing makeup artist makes his job easier, but the skin still needs some perfecting in Photoshop. He showed us how he takes out imperfections without completely blurring out the skin.

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The workshop was hosted by Toronto’s newest pro artist store, Blur Makeup Room! It is home to some of my all-time favourite brands like yaby (Liz Yu, owner of Blur and creator of yaby cosmetics), Face Atelier, bdellium tools, Embryolisse, Glamcor, Kim Greene, and much more. If you’re a working artist in the industry, you get a 20% artist discount. Sweet right? This store is a godsend for artists everywhere, but might be the death of my bank account. I can’t help but pick something up every time I visit! I will have to share my hauls in another post. And if you’re not in Toronto you can pick up some kit essentials by visiting the online store!

If you’ve missed this workshop, don’t worry. Blur plans to do workshops on a regular basis. Yay! So get your learn on because one can never stop learning. 😉

On to the next! One thing about doing published work is that you can’t share it until it gets – PUBLISHED. I have a lot more that will be published in the next few months but here is the latest. I am so happy I got to work with these two talented twins – yes twins – of Jane & Jane who both just happen to love photography. Be on the look out for these two ladies – they are going to take the fashion world by storm!

Photographer: Jane and Jane, Hair: Emily Pike, Makeup: Joy David-Tilberg, Stylist, Joanne Jin, Model: Clhoe (Plutino Group/Chantale Nadeau)

Photographer: Jane and Jane, Hair: Emily Pike, Makeup: Joy David-Tilberg, Stylist, Joanne Jin, Model: Clhoe (Plutino Group/Chantale Nadeau)

This is my favourite shot from the editorial. The story was featured on JURIED – check out the full story here. Stay tuned for another shoot I did with Jane & Jane that will be published soon!

As Seen On: Remark Magazine!

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I’m so thrilled to announce the launch of Remark Magazine! I am one of the beauty contributors and editorial artists and I’m so lucky to be apart of this amazing team! A beauty shoot I worked on a while ago was featured in the magazine (Pg. 10/11) and I couldn’t be more excited. The beauty story features my beauty tips and products to achieve this flirty, edgy look.

The magazine covers everything from fitness, to fashion, to travel so do check it out! It also features top photographers, designers, stylists, and hair and makeup artists in the industry. Stay tuned for big things from the magazine! To view Remark’s 1st issue click here. Happy reading!

Toronto Masterclass With International Makeup Artist Julie Bégin!

 

 

 

 

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If you’re a makeup artist then you probably recognize this lovely face. Julie Bégin is an international makeup artist who has worked with major fashion designers, celebrities, and magazines. If you’re a fan of Cirque de Soleil OVO then you have definitely seen her work. She contributed creations for 50 insect-inspired characters! I first fell in love with Julie’s Annabelle Cosmetics work flipping through my favourite fashion mags.

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Julie will be holding her highly sought-after pro master classes in Toronto this Saturday, April 6! I am truly bummed out that I will not be able to attend, but if you’re available and serious about makeup artistry this is a must-attend! Please click on this link for information and to reserve your seat.

Although I won’t be able to attend, I’m super stoked to chat with her on the phone next week! Stay tuned!