Sunday, April 27, 2014

Midwest ---> LA

Hi Beautiful People,

I have been going through my head about seizing new opportunities in the beautiful land of LA. I just took a trip last week to the sunny city to chat to several artists, producers, PR agents and beauty industry professionals about the work, opportunities, life and how to get to where I want to be! 

Here are some key things I learned and some great advice!

Terri Apanasewicz
Hair and Makeup Artist with over 20 years of experience, represented by Cloutier Remix. 
Terri was kind enough to invite me to her home! I was able to watch as she and her assistant organized and sorted through boxes upon boxes of products that were sent to her-- It was a glorious sight. She had an entire store set up! 
Our afternoon together was very chill, easy going and incredibly inspiring. I had the chance to hear Terri's story of how she came to be, as well as some great words of advice, wonderful stories, and encouragement. 
My take away: 
"Brand yourself as one or the other."
In the midwest you are told upon starting in this industry that you MUST do both hair and makeup. It is completely different on the coasts! While Terri does do both, she mentioned that if she were to do it over, she would choose just one or the other. She said that people don't value it as much, or take you as seriously. It's harder to prove yourself. I found this MIND BLOWING! 
While she does do both, and of course there are some perks to that- for instance, you can book jobs for either talent, which means more income. Another great part about this is that sometimes there are clients that want to work with just one person as opposed to two--Especially those who travel. 
While I will still continue to push myself to do hair, and learn as much as I can, I am thrilled to know that I can focus my professional energy into being JUST a makeup artist :) 

Carla Hawkes 
Producer for PopSugar.
Carla was sweet enough to take the time to meet for a little midday rose :) She was cool, sweet and straightforward about PopSugar and all it had to offer.  
My take away: 
"Just do it."
Carla and I got onto the subject of social media and building a following- creating a community. This is something I've been working on and thinking about for years! She mentioned that having that can be very valuable, not only to get work, but also recognition from cosmetic companies. i.e.; free products! opportunities! etc. 
I told her some of my ideas that have been roaming in my brain for the past couple years and why I've procrastinated on them because, "if I'm going to put myself out there, I want to brand myself from the beginning. I just want it to look and sound REALLY good. It is a representation of me and my business!" Carla came back with the point that there are so many you tubers and bloggers that started with bad sound and poor lighting, but now they are doing amazing things because they were seen and heard-- the quality wasn't perfect, but it didn't matter because they just put themselves out there and DID IT! 
Wake up call! 

Kendra Richards
Makeup and Hair Artist with over 20 years of experience, represented by Cloutier Remix. Also the creator of Heir Atelier.  
I had the pleasure of meeting Kendra back in January at the IMATS (International Makeup Artist Trade Show). Kendra graciously met me for coffee in West Hollywood--I loved chatting with Kendra-- we had a lot of similar outlooks on the industry and even shared some similar experiences. 
Kendra was incredibly encouraging and inspiring. It was fascinating to hear her story of how she really worked, and fought to be be where she is today. 
My take away: 
"It's not about you."
I think this had the biggest impact on me. A lot of times we as artists take our jobs very personally. While what we do can be incredibly challenging and rewarding, it is also very intimate. You have to be personable, friendly, confident and an expert all while trying to connect with your client. Kendra shared a story that resonated with me because I'd been through something similar. She went on to tell me how it affected her afterwards, and how she came to the conclusion that, "it's not about you." Often our clients (especially celebrity clients), have a lot of pressure and a lot on their minds and sometimes, those pressures need to be released and taken out on the closest person to them! You can't let that affect you. 
It's a brilliant reminder. 

Rachel Tung
Reality TV Producer
Rachel is a firecracker! She is someone I was thrilled to chat with. I was so grateful for her to carve out some time in her busy schedule to meet with me! I got more of an insight into reality tv culture and production as well as what it is to be a celebrity makeup artist. 
My take away: 
"Be here."
Be available and ready for opportunity- Show your commitment and dedication and do what you say you're going to do. 

Over all....
The trip was incredibly inspiring and has pushed me to really fulfill this "celebrity makeup artist" dream of mine... So I am taking action, and working towards moving out West! Re-arranging your entire life is crazy, but I can tell it will be worth it in the long haul. Very excited to see what this next chapter will bring! 

Also a BIG thank you to Carol Marshall and Jason Trotter who took the time to speak with me as well! And of course to my lovely hosts, Jason and Haven!! 
 Lots of great advice and encouragement all around-- It was greatly appreciated.