The Artist Summit Day I Keynote: A Career In Makeup

For both nights of The Artist Summit a group of the featured artist got together to give a Keynote. It was pretty awesome to hear each of them tell their stories of how they got their start in the industry and some of the challenges they've faced. Here's a portion of the Keynote from that night... somehow though I only seemed to get Johnny Lavoy... hmmm LOL enjoy! (sorry the heat kept kicking on so in some areas it's difficult to hear.)

Ciao... Class is dismissed!

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Artist Summit Chicago Videos - Portfolio and Web Focus with Michael DeVellis and Crystal Wright

It's been a few weeks since the Artist Summit in Chicago but as promised here is a series of videos that I shot with my small Canon Powershot camera. This paticuar seminar Portfolio and Website Focus was headed by Michael DeVellis, the founder of The Powder Group (he's gonna kill me for posting the video) and Crystal Wright, author and motivational speaker.

I could have taken notes and posted them but I thought the video would be a lot more interesting. My apologies there's like 8 or so video, my arm kept getting tired. Enjoy and please by all means leave your feed back!

Ciao... Class is dismissed!

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Everything's BIG in Texas - Professinal Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist Bridgett H.

This week's Image Maker is an ┼▒ber talented hairstylist and makeup artist out of Dallas, you'll definitely want to get to know Bridgett H.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Bridgett H: I have been in the industry 15 years. I've been a hair stylist for 15 years and doing make up for 4 years.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to be a hair stylist?

Bridgett H: It's funny I am such a tomboy the only times I would play with my dolls is to do there hair. I knew then that's what I wanted to do. As soon as I graduated from high school I went straight to beauty school.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Other than a cosmetology school have you had any additional training or education that you believe has helped you to stand out amongst the sea of other hair stylist?

Bridgett H: Yes, I have trained with Toni & Guy very nice class. Also with Patric Bradley I have done extensive training with him for the last 2 years he is awesome. Wella , Mizani, Lorel, Dudley I have done a lot I've been around a long time. My goal is to go to Europe and do some training.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You’re also an incredible makeup artist, why did you decide to add makeup to your offerings?

Bridgett H: I had a regular 9-5 and it didn't work at all! So after that I decided I need something with the same flexibility as being a stylist and it went from there.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Did you do any additional training for that?

Bridgett H: I trained at Elan's Make Up Academy, Danessa Myrics. Trucco, Mac, Toni & Guy, Last Looks, Dinar I've invested a lot into my profession I read a lot and I go to plenty of seminars and trainings.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Would you say that you have a niche, or is there anything particular that your clients or industry peers would say you're known for?

Bridgett H: They would say I am out the box I don't like normal or what ever everyone else is doing. Plus I am very business oriented, and straight to the point.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You’re a salon owner? When did you open your salon?

Bridgett H: It just kinda happen I had been in a suite for 10 years and I was looking for something more private and I found a professional building with office spaces and turned it into a studio salon.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You’re also key makeup artist for Boom Town Productions what does that entail?

Bridgett H: Of course make up, hair some times depending on the video and the leads and budget. It might sound crazy I also do casting, production assisting and what ever else they need me to do. I've been with them for a long time before the big video's we work together its like family.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You know my next question is where on earth do you find the time and what’s a typical working day like for you? Is there such thing as a typical day?

Bridgett H: Wow God gives me all the energy and my boys motivate me and when there is down time I catch up on my rest. It really depends on what I have to do video, hair or photo shoot it just depends and I plan around my sons. Being my own boss gives me that flexibility to do what I do I am truly blessed. There's not a typical day but I always have a plan.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry makeup artists and hair stylists specifically?

Bridgett H: The biggest thing is that some people feel there shoots will be successful without one or the other. When actually you need both to make the project they are working on complete.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! It seems that every up and coming makeup and hairstylists wants to work with celebrities. What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Bridgett H: You would need to perfect your craft get the best training available invest in yourself!! Put a portfolio together keep business cards a website etc... I met Mr. Boomtown and put one of my comp cards in his hand when I was leaving a beauty supply. I didn't know who he was. However, the next week I was in Houston working. Also on my free time I am collaborating with a photographer, stylist and model to keep my book updated and I submit my work to different magazines. Also surround yourself around people that are doing what you are wanting to do. Plus its nothing wrong with doing a job for free, assisting or interning. I learned a lot from different make up artist and hair stylist doing that.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! So what’s next for you? Any projects in the works that you can share with the readers?

Bridgett H: What’s next for me I am training with a company to become an educator. I'm getting my book together to be signed with an agency out side of Texas. Just to keeping on track with my goals working hard.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Do you hire assistants, provide mentoring for young stylists or offer any workshops or training?

Bridgett H: Yes I do apprenticeships. I also teach make up classes and on the video sets I am always looking for up and coming mua's to intern.

Thank you Bridgett for that awesome interview!

For more information on interning or Bridgett's workshops visit her websites: Hair, Makeup and be sure to check her twitter.

Ciao for now... Class is dismissed!

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Beauty Is As Beauty Does - Makeup Artist Kelley Epps-Woods

Some people just have "that" thing... it's in the way they walk, the way the talk... with Kelley I recognized it in her love of beauty and what she does... Get to know Kelley Epps-Woods you'll see it too!

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Kelley Epps-Woods: I have been working in the industry for 12 years, and have been doing makeup for 8 years.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to become a makeup artist?

Kelley Epps-Woods: I knew I wanted to become a makeup artist one day when I was in church. It was the summer after I graduated from college and a revelation came upon me, and I remember whispering to my mother as it hit me, 'I'm going to be a makeup artist'. That's the day that changed my life.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Did you receive any formal education prior to launching your career?

Kelley Epps-Woods: I had not received any formal training upon launching my career. However, the years prior to me doing makeup I worked for a local magazine photo studio, as a receptionist and was always exposed to makeup. My life prior to college consisted of sneakers, and sweats so makeup was not the first thing on my mind.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Okay, so that was a "transition"... What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and makeup artists specifically?

Kelley Epps-Woods: I think the misconception about the industry and makeup artist is that it comes easy. Because you have makeup brushes, and makeup does not necessarily make you a makeup artist, or professional artist. It takes years of doing faces, knowledge, and learning your craft in order to establish yourself in the world of makeup artistry. It takes very hard work and dedication.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When was your first big break, and what was it?

Kelley Epps-Woods: I would say my first big break was when I got a call from an old coworker, and he asked if I still did makeup. At the time, I hadn't even started doing makeup, but he assumed I did.. I said, 'uhhh yeah'..He said, "I have someone that is doing a pageant and needs their face done". I said okay, great. Needless to say, the client paid me to do her makeup for her. Now this was a big deal because who would have thought I would get paid, on a first gig.

With a swarm of people around backstage, not only did I do her face, but countless others paid me just to do their face. That was the night I knew would be just the beginning to great things to come.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Nice! It's amazing how things come together when you're on your "path". Kelley, you do many other things but your primary focus is Bridal Makeup Artistry, is that correct? If so, Why bridal?

Kelley Epps-Woods: Yes, I do focus a lot of my artistry on Brides. There's something about the special relationship between the Bride and the Artist. It's a complete trust that the bride has for her artist on one of the most important days of her life. I love capturing and bringing out the natural beauty in the Bride. My specialty for brides are their eyes. The perfect blend of colors and the sultry flair of lashes are what I love. Eyes, are the one thing that leads her down the aisle, and the first thing that the Groom looks into.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You also write can, you tell us more about that?

Kelley Epps-Woods: My natural love for all things makeup and beauty led me to start my blog The Makeup Loft. It first started with talking about my favorite products that I use whether on my clients, or in general. I then started receiving tons of questions, and feedback regarding the products, and or about makeup artistry. I started devoting my post to those questions alone. For my writing, over a year ago I was asked to be a Beauty Writer for a online magazine, Second City Style, where I did daily beauty articles, news and illustrations that reached thousands of women. Within a couple of months, I was asked to be the Beauty Editor, and would over see all of the functions for beauty for the magazine. So with that, I am always involved and stimulated in all arena's with beauty, and I love it.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What’s a typical working day like for you and how do you manage to keep things organized?

Kelley Epps-Woods: A typical working day for me will start early morning, with a client booking or wedding. Sometimes its several gigs a day or just one. I tend to do most of my administrative working, invoices, call backs, etc. in the evenings.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! It seems that every up and coming makeup artist wants to work with celebrities. What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Kelley Epps-Woods: Some want to work with celebrities instantly. However, most times it takes some years of work before you get your first celebrity. Learning about the business, networking and hands on makeup, is essential in gaining your clientele. Becoming a successful working makeup artist does not come overnight, and takes years and years of work . I always say, to be successful in this business you have to be a student of the business.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! I love that! "Be a student of the business..." Kelley, what would you say is the most important lesson you have learned or the greatest piece of advice you’ve ever received that helped your career?

Kelley Epps-Woods: The most important piece of advice I have received that has helped me, was to never give up. So many times, when I first started and was seeking knowledge, and may have become frustrated, were the times that I questioned if this was for me. However, following my heart, and what I believed and others believed, I kept going. And it's times like that, that I can appreciate where I am now, and it has made me a better artist.

Thank you Kelley for such an incredible interview, be sure to check out Kelley's website to learn more about what she does and follow her blog and Twitter for inside product and fashion week backstage scoops.

Ciao for now...Class is Dismissed!

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One Sure Thing - Suresh Seneviratne Professional Makeup Artist and Entrepreneur

Suresh is a Sanskrit word which means "Ruler of Gods", definitely a fitting name for this Beauty Mogul on the rise. Get to know Suresh Seneviratne...

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How long have you been in the industry?

Suresh: This is my 10th year!

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When did you know you wanted to become a makeup artist?

Suresh: It was never something that I sought out to do. It just sort of happened. I convinced the manager over a couple of months to hire me. I showed her drawings, sketches, and paintings I'd done and expressed my love for color. Honestly, it started because a few of my friends dared me to do it. But I ended up falling in love with the beauty world once I was hired. I worked at lots of different counters all across the country for many years.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Did you receive any formal education prior to launching your career?

Suresh: Not from a makeup school. I trained and apprenticed with a few different artists in New York while I was in art school. I went to FIT for fashion design. I had a very art-heavy course program with lots of figure drawing, painting, sketching using all sorts of mediums...crayon, charcoal, pencil, acrylic, oil, marker, etc. It taught me to really pay attention to people's features, where to highlight and contour, and so on. I apprenticed on weekends and after school, usually during Fashion Week and heavy editorial season. I organized cases, mixed foundations, prepped faces, did touchups, and just about anything else they needed me to do. Eventually, I was allowed to do full faces after I developed a relationship with the artist. I learned a lot!

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What inspires your work?

Suresh: The people I work on. I want to make them feel as amazing as possible, whether it be a private client or a commercial job. Confidence is pretty sexy and very inspiring.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! What would you say are the biggest misconceptions about the industry and makeup artists specifically?

Suresh: That it's frivolous and full of dumb people. I have met so many talented, educated, knowledgeable people working in fashion. True makeup artists are so incredibly imaginative and creative, humble too. The showoffs and attitudes of uneducated wannabes spoil it for the real professionals.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! When was your first big break, and what was it?

Suresh: Working with Adrianna Lima in 2000 for a Richard Tyler Couture show. It opened a lot of doors for me, at the time.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Suresh, you have your own line of glosses that’s awesome! Why did you decide to create your own line?

Suresh: I wanted to share my unique vision with the world. I'm a dedicated vegetarian and belong to many animal activist groups that bring awareness to the general public. I'm also a lifelong Buddhist and believe less is more. Among other things, I wanted to integrate these beliefs into a chic, simple, guilt-free product.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Do you think you’ll expand into other products?

Suresh: Yes, over time. Right now, I'm enjoying lip gloss. I'll let my clients influence me as to what's next.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! You also have a “ Suresh Beauty Team” is it like an agency?

Suresh: Sort of. We have artists that are sent out to different jobs when I am not available. They are fabulous and I couldn't do it without them!

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How do/did you select the artists for your Team?

Suresh: Artistic integrity and ability, experience, professional appearance, and personality. I had worked with all of them for long periods of time before I invited them to join my team.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! How do you juggle the products, your work and your team… that’s INSANE, what’s a typical working day like for you?

Suresh: Check emails, return calls, check in with my artists, communicate with my stores about the product, then see clients towards the end of the day. My schedule changes daily based on bookings and my travel schedule between Seattle and New York.

My family lives in Seattle so it's home. Suresh Beauty, is based in Seattle, all our storage and distribution happens there. I spend about half my time there, and half my time in NY although it seems like I am in Seattle less these days.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! It seems that every up and coming makeup artist wants to work with celebrities. What advice do you have for someone new who is trying to break into the industry and wanting to work with celebrities?

Suresh: Become great at what you do and develop a signature style of work. Working at counters and salons will give you experience working with all types of people, skin tones, attitudes. Freelance and test with photographers as much as possible. Leave your attitude at home, it won't get you far.

BEAUTYSCHOOLED! Do you hire assistants, do any mentoring for young artists or provide any workshops or training?

Suresh: I've had a few assistants from time to time but not many. I'm always up for mentoring and do it as I am asked. I am working on putting together workshops...it's coming!

Thank you Suresh for that great interview, visit Suresh Beauty to learn more and to purchase his FAB lip glosses and also be sure to follow his Twitter.

Ciao for now... Class is dismissed!

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Artist Summit Chicago - My Experience Part I

Over the weekend I attended the Artist Summit in Chicago as a Blogger and not a beauty pro…

In a word… the show was AWESOME. It was just what the Chicago and Midwest makeup artist communities needed. There essentially isn’t a lot of makeup artistry education in the Midwest so it was an honor for them to bring their expertise and products to Chicago. Also they couldn’t have chosen a better setting the River North Art Gallery was the perfect backdrop.

There were tons of vendors there from Temptu, Make Up Forever, Inglot, and Obsseive Compulsive Cosmetics to name a few. I had a chance to chat with David Klasfeld of OCC for a few at his booth and attend his airbrush seminar he’s a cool dude and the Lip Tars ROCK now I can say for sure I know what all the hype is about, there’s nothing like them, (I had to buy some, I bought four and David was so nice to toss in an extra) I will do vendor product reviews in a separate post.

Michael DeVellis and James Vincent were gracious hosts they could be seen chatting it up with attendees throughout the Summit. Michael is incredibly funny and James is unbelievable patient, there was an instant on they last day during the keynote address when an obviously intoxicated and frustrated attendee was essentially out of order on more than one occasion, but James was very understanding and patient with her even requesting the same from the audience. (I almost died… but that’s another post for another day).

I also met Image Maker Kat Aragon and Felicia Walker Benson Makeup Artist, Beauty Expert and editor of This That Beauty (LOVE THEM!!!) I will definitely write a more in-depth post in the coming days and I have loads of video too, I just need to check the quality and do some edits. I didn’t write a lot (I try to preserve my tweezing hand as much as I can.

Thank you to Michael DeVellis for inviting me to the Artist Summit and for the awesome spread at the W after-party.

Also, Patrice of Afrobella, Erin of Scandalous Beauty, Felicia of This That Beauty and Lianne of The Makeup Girl Beauty Blogs for inviting me to the Blogger kick-off party on Saturday night at the J Bar. I was so exhausted after a long day at school I almost passed on the event after the Blogger Preview I just wanted to go home and rest up for Sunday but thank goodness I didn’t I met some awesome bloggers that night and people think I’m nuts but I can’t stop raving about this lotion… Vaseline was one of the kick-off party’s sponsors and let me just say that if you haven’t tried the new Sheer Infusion Body Lotion you MUST… stay tuned at Afrobella.com I believe she’s writing a full post soon.

Here’s a teaser… a few pics from the event until the full post.

Ciao for now!

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