Sunday, March 28, 2010

Working w/ Kids

I know this might surprise anyone that knows me but I actually work w/ kids A LOT for shoots! I do a lot of kids commercial style work...I'm not sure how this started happening. It's funny b/c anyone who knows me doesn't really think I'm the most maternal of ppl lol but surprisingly the kids (and their parents) really seem to like me. Basically, my theory is just treat them like little adults...I'm not really one for talking down to kids. Most of the time the kids are total sweethearts and it's not that hard at all. Plus knowing that they aren't going home w/ me at the end of the day helps too lol!

One of the most amazing things about kids is that their skin tends to be amazing...poreless, even in tone and glowing...very little foundation necessary. In fact kids are a perfect example of less is more when it comes to makeup. I've seen some shoots where the kids are wearing sooo much makeup w/ heavy blush and lipstick. Personally I just don't believe in the pageant look for kids. I want the kids I work on to look like KIDS not Prostitots! I'm all for a little bit of mascara, touch of blush, a pretty gloss some powder and go.

Of course working w/ children does possess it's own unique set of challenges. You have to work quick! Kids can't sit for long and they get fidgety after just a few mins...esp. if they are really young. This has proved to be especially true when it comes to curling their hair. Kids also only have a limited amount of energy on set. That means we have to shoot quick and get the shot quick otherwise we risk having a cranky, whiny child...something I'm NEVER a fan of lol!

When working w/ kids I've also found that it's just easier if you throw all inhibitions out the window. A lot of times they are new to being in front of the camera so we have to be there to make them feel comfortable. It's not like when I'm working w/ a model for an editorial and you just tell them to go and they do their thing. W/ kids we have to be willing to make fools of ourselves to get them out of their shells sometimes. This includes multiple dance routines to Miley Cyrus and Jonas Brothers along w/ jumping and posing many many many times lol! I'm NOT exaggerating when I say I'm hip to ALL the music of the pre-teen genre...and between you and I - I've become very found of Miley Cyrus' Party in the's my guilty pleasure song lol!

So here's a few of my Fav. shots from my Kids Portfolio

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

When Working for "FREE" is Okay

So after my last post I decided more needs to be said on the subject of "FREE" work. From reading forums, listening to Newer Makeup Artists and just being around for a bit I've realized there are a lot of misconceptions about working for "FREE".

Okay, first off working for FREE is NEVER okay but there are times when you'll do a job and there will be no transaction of money between the parties involved but there will be OTHER benefits for doing the you're not ACTUALLY doing it for free. For beginning makeup artists this is sometimes a complicated thing to understand and grasp.

All the time I hear newer Makeup Artists complaining about the costs of lashes or other products for TF* based shoots (For those who don't know TFP or TFCD means Time For Prints/Time for CD). IF you are doing a shoot and using lashes and you're not willing to absorb the cost of lashes b/c you're not sure the pictures will be worth it then you are working for FREE. Never do a shoot if you don't think it will benefit your portfolio in some way for FREE.

I know when starting out you want to do as many shoots as possible and work w/ as many ppl as possible but be picky. If you are doing a shoot and you think you'll get good images for your portfolio out of it then you're not working for "FREE" you are getting something in return for your may not be money but in some ways really good images or tears (magazine spreads) can be MORE beneficial then money on the day of the shoot and lead to MORE paid work in the future.

Before accepting a shoot ask yourself - Will this photographer's work benefit my portfolio? Is the model involved going to benefit my portfolio? If it's a Fashion shoot is there a full team involved - aka a Stylist? Are we shooting a theme or concept that I need in my portfolio? What direction do I want my portfolio to go in? Remember to always try and test want to grow not plateau!

If the shoot doesn't fit into the criteria that you need at that time then pass it up! If the model is blonde and you have a book full of blondes it might not be beneficial for you at that time to do the shoot. If the photographer wants crazy avant garde makeup and you need clean looks pass on the shoot. It doesn't hurt you to NOT do a TF* hurts you and wastes your time to do a shoot that has NO benefit for you.

If you are like me and you want to focus on Fashion & Beauty work or have hopes of representation from an agency don't do TF* Glamour Shoots or Alternative Fashion Shoots. I mention these two specifically b/c in the beginning of a Makeup Artist's career these are shoots that are frequently offered to them. I would only do Glamour or Alternative Fashion work if it was paid b/c guess what - I CAN'T use it in my book so what benefit would it do me to do it for FREE.

I, personally never do shoots that are referred to as TF* shoots - I HATE the term...this is an internet term, it sounds amateurish and it's not used in the real world. If I do a "Free" shoot it's a Creative or it's for Submission to magazines (side note a lot of my Fav shoots in my book were done for "Free" for Submissions to mags). I work closely w/ the photographer and stylist to help develop the concept and theme of the shoot. This sometimes takes wks/mths of talking and planning...if I'm going to give my time away I want to make sure it is WORTH it! I walk into the shoot w/ my whole Makeup & Hair concept planned for the day. I've seen the model before the shoot...there are NO surprises. I will NOT accept last minute Creatives b/c the other Makeup Artist canceled. For me I need proper planning time and I want to be involved from the ground up. I take Creatives VERY seriously and do them w/ the intention that this will be something to add to my book and benefit me in some way. Lately, all of my Creatives have been a lot more Hair Heavy or Clean Beauty based...I knew I needed stronger Hair Stories in my book and some Cleaner Beauty images so unless the concept fit that criteria I said no thanks.

A tip I wish I would have learned sooner when doing creatives is start to think in terms of stories early on in your career. When I started I did shoots where the model wore different random outfits and I did different random makeup/hair looks and yes I got some nice pics out of it at the time but there was no cohesion to the didn't flow or tell a story or have a theme. When you start working on stories and not just one off looks you know you're working w/ a better team w/ a stronger concept of what's going on.

Another thing that unfortunately is becoming common in the industry at least in my city is photographers trying to pass off model tests as creatives. Be wary of these things. I personally DO NOT do unpaid model tests. If the photographer sounds kind of vague about the concept and it seems like it's going to be really simple - white background, start w/ clean makeup and build from there - doing 3 looks be careful unless you REALLY want to work w/ this photographer and you're using this as a chance to meet them and talk about another idea you have or something. I say this b/c I know for a fact that many agencies these days won't pay photographers for tests anymore b/c there are so many photographers begging for models (see how ppl giving away their stuff for free degrades the WHOLE industry). What the agencies will do is say do the test and we'll make sure the model buys images off of you. Get a Makeup Artist tell them it's a creative. So basically, you're giving your talents away for free while the photographer will sell his/her prints and make money. If you think you'll get some great images from it b/c the photographer is super good and you wouldn't normally get a chance to work w/ them then take the chance if you's just not something I would do at this point in my career.

So I hope that clears up some of the confusion about "FREE" work and FREE work for some of the newbies out there.

Also, just one last bit of advice but clean, beautiful beauty work will ALWAYS get you WAY more paid gigs and attention from agencies over Crazy, Feather, Rhinestone, Glitter Beauty shots. I know when starting out you want to do Big, Crazy, Creative Makeup and a lot of times New Photographers want Big, Crazy Makeup but it's actually really hard to do that and not make it look tacky or gaudy and it takes the right model and a really good photographer to make it work. Walk before you Run...Perfect that Clean Makeup's not as easy as you think ;) Ask any artist you admire or photographer you love and they will tell you nothing sells you better then a Beautiful, Clean Beauty shot.

This shot is actually one of my most popular shots w/ Makeup Artists...all my friends outside the biz say "It doesn't even look like she's wearing makeup why is this in your book?" lol...they just don't get it ;) Photographer: Manolo Ceron Model: Jae (Sutherland)

EDIT: Oh one more big thing I forgot to mention - Say NO to Kit Fees! This is a Film Term that somehow got brought into Fashion by Amateurs. A lot of times photographers might offer a "kit fee" b/c they know the shoot might not be beneficial to a makeup artist's portfolio. Guess what if it's not beneficial to your book when you're doing it for Free then making $25-50 for the day isn't going to suddenly make it worth your time. If you accept a Kit Fee of say $50/day and the pics are going to be useless to you then you are saying my rate is $50/day...I don't think any Professional Makeup Artist wants to work for $50/day now do they?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Just Because I Love My Job Doesn't Mean I'll Work For FREE!

I'll admit it...this is a bit of a rant so if you're not in the mood for a little ranting don't read on lol. Basically, I'm just sick and tired of ppl thinking just because I love my job that means I'll do it for FREE! A Doctor or Lawyer can LOVE what they do that doesn't mean they don't expect payment for their services. Sometimes I'm worried about this industry and my place in the industry. Everyone wants stuff for free. I don't know when ppl stopped respecting and valuing their craft and giving their talents away but it really has hurt EVERYONE in the biz...esp. Newer's really sad :( Even artists undervalue themselves and undercut b/c they think I love what I do so much I'd do it for nothing. It's wonderful that we love what we do but that doesn't mean we don't deserve payment for our services.

Anyway, you may be wondering where is this coming from...I mean it's not like I haven't been witness to this undercutting and undervaluing before. Well late last night I got a text from a photographer saying that their Hair & Makeup Artists canceled and they need someone to fill in for a job tomorrow (today) and was I available.

Right away I thought this was a bit weird b/c 1. I have only ever worked w/ this photographer once and it was like 7-8 mths ago 2. Why not just call me? But I figured I didn't have anything planned beside the gym I might as well call the photographer and see what the deal was. So I called and asked about the details of the shoot. Right away the photographer asked if I was available and I said well I need some info before I decide that. So I'm told the shoot is for a new designer (a friend of theirs)- the designer's Look Book and Campaign. It will be 2 models - clean hair and makeup. Shoot 8-4:30. Okay that's great but I think we're missing ONE BIG DETAIL HERE. So then I go okay...what's the rate? The photographer then had the nerve to say it's Tip Based!...LMAO TIP BASED (WTF is THAT!)...and some clothes if I want. LOL...Um hold on let me see if my Land Lady will accept clothes as PAYMENT for RENT! I almost laughed on the's not like I haven't seen or even had crappy offers like this before but I guess I was just shocked that a Professional Photographer would have the NERVE to contact me late on a SUNDAY NIGHT to work a full day for CLOTHES!

It's bad enough when regular folk think it's okay to offer crap money for these kind of services...sometimes it's not even their fault b/c they don't know better and they've seen ppl giving it away BUT for a PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER to undervalue my skills and talent is just plain insulting to OUR WHOLE PROFESSION! We (Photographers, Stylists, MUAs etc.) are in this TOGETHER. If WE don't VALUE one another and the skills WE bring to the table we're all SCREWED!

FYI New Makeup Artists - If someone is going to potentially make MONEY off of something you worked on then YOU should be getting PAID for your services! This is a RULE everyone should live by...NEVER do Headshots, Look Books, Campaigns etc. for free w/ promises of exposure or credit b/c guess what it doesn't mean SHIT and it won't get you anywhere!

Okay end of Rant...Happy Times Now :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010 Interview!

Hey Guys,

So I mentioned the other day that did an interview on me and my little old blog. Well it's up today so here the link to check it out! Plus you know if you like my blog don't be afraid to vote a little thumbs up for me on the rating system ;) All the votes would be MUCH APPRECIATED!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Some More...Just Because :)


Here's a couple of more shots from the Zach Hertzman shoot that didn't make the cut (Alex the stylist was nice enough to send them to me :) ). I know you're probably thinking geez how many great shots were there lol. I like these ones too but I definitely think he made stronger choices for the submission...can't wait to see what mag pics it up :)

P.S. Apparently someone out there likes my blog b/c I was nominated to be interviewed by . How cool is that...someone actually liking my little old blog enough to mention it lol. Whoever did this Thank You! The interview should be coming out either today or tomorrow I think...I'll keep you guys posted!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Vintage Romance Update

So I've seen the pics from the Zach Hertzman shoot a couple of wks may remember I called the shoot "Vintage Romance". He's calling it "Her Secret Garden" which is a good title.

Anyway, I love the pics and I really hope they will be picked up somewhere. It's a tad disappointing though b/c this is a Spring story and a lot of quarterly mags already have their Spring issues out...always have to shoot so far ahead in fashion for it to be marketable. Zach actually contacted Zink Canada and Dress to Kill and they both really liked the story but already had their Spring issues disappointing. If only we had shot it a bit sooner...what I wouldn't give to have my name in Zink (whether it be the Canadian version or not it's a start). I told him since they showed interest maybe we should find out when the deadline for the Summer issue is and put together something for that...fingers crossed that actually happens.

So yeah if you remember correctly I think I mentioned how this loft was very open concept and actually had a toilet and shower right in the middle of the room. Well Zach actually isn't going to use the shots he took w/ the toilet setting. I actually really like these pics but I guess I get where he's coming from that they don't quite mix w/ the rest of the story.

Well anyway, here's two of the pics from that shoot for you guys to get a taste of it. Can't wait to share the whole things w/ you! Click on them to see full size they look so much more impressive!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Oscar Favs

Yeah, yeah I know I'm a day late on this one but I'm sick and stuffy in bed right now so please forgive me.

I swear my fav. part of the Oscars is the pre-show when you get to see all the gorgeous gowns come to life on the stunning actress' that are wearing them that night. There were a lot of stunners this year...and a few misses of course. Really loving the gold and silver trends we were seeing a lot of. So anyway here are a few of my favs.

Oscar Favs

Sandra Bullock - Whose top 10 list was this girl not on...I mean this was her night! Can you believe this woman is 45! I want her genes or I want her Doctor's name!

Cameron Diaz - She wasn't even nominated but boy did she look gorgeous!
Miley Cyrus - Probably one of the biggest shocks to me was how much I LOVED the way she looked! I'm usually not a fan of her "Southern" style but the girl cleaned up nice tonight...and totally age appropriate too!
Helen Mirren - Acting about aging well this woman apparently has the Fountain of Youth in her backyard. I love that even though she's older she still brings the glam and doesn't go all dowdy or motherly.
Demi Moore - I swear she looks better now then she did 20 yrs many celebs can say that! Gorgeous Nude colour on the dress - sometimes I find the nude dresses if they aren't the right shade can totally wash a girl out. She did it right!
Last but not least - My Personal Fav for the Night!
Rachel McAdams
- I didn't actually see this dress during the pre-show but when she walked on stage to present it took my breath away. I love colours and the water paint feel to's just so different from everyone else that night. Plus she's Canadian ;) and I love that she just seems so down to earth - like I want to make her my friend and go for coffee lol!
Of course there were a few misses too that night :(
Charlize Theron
- Normally I totally love what she wears and she's seriously one of the most gorgeous women in Hollywood...unfortunately not digging the cupcake boobs.
Zoe Saldana - From the waist up not bad...below the waist I don't know what she thinking :S

Monday, March 8, 2010

Facebook Fan Page

So anyone that has been reading my blog for awhile knows that I'm technologically challenged (like I've said before it's amazing that I can write this blog AND include pics lol). Anyway, I've had a Fan Page on Facebook for a long time and recently I noticed a few other bloggers had badges on the side directing ppl to their Fan Page. I couldn't for the life of me figure out how it was done...until today!

So if anyone isn't already a member and wants to join my Fan Page here's the badge:

It's also available in the side panel...third thing down I think.

Also I've seen the finished pics from that shoot I did a few wks ago w/ Zach Hertzman that I called "Vintage Romance" and I'm SOOO IN LOVE w/ them...seriously I think they are so gorgeous and I can't wait to share them w/ you...unfortunately I'll probably have to wait a couple of mths until they get published :(

Also I've been working on my Bridal Website lately b/c I want that to be a separate entity from my Fashion/Commercial Website. It should be done in a wk or so so stay tuned :)

If I actually build my Bridal Website w/out any help I think I might actually have to re-think the technologically challenged thing lol.