Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I Wanna Be An MUA: Kevin James Bennett Edition - Part Two

Now we get to the nitty gritty.  All you ever wanted to know about making it as an MUA by one of the bests!

If you have delusions of grandeur about being a makeup artist and think that you can throw a color on an eye, lip or cheek, or you can beat your face so how hard could it be to make it as an MUA or that it is a glamorous job - then this is definitely NOT something you wanna get into.  Kevin has done magazine covers...BIG magazine covers for as little as $100 (if paid at all) and had to hunt them down for that bit of change.  Get your mind right.  *puts soap box away and continues with class recap*

KJB explained that when you take a job it isn't about your creative outlet unless that is established beforehand.  The makeup has to be relevant to the character the client wants.  You have to have an editing eye, if you think you need to add 1 more thing, step away (I had to do this a couple of times in the class).  When working if something by chance goes wrong, no one should notice it but you.  Regroup, plan your course of action and fix it...quickly.

It is important to visualize your career in a "concrete, attainable way".  Generosity with your talent makes you not only credible but it will keep you working for a very long time.  You must possess generosity, honesty and transparency.  When you step on set as an MUA it should be void of drama.  Drama is expected from the talent, but not you as the makeup artist.  We are simply "the help"; by making the talent look good, you in turn make yourself look good.

When trying to determine your rate you need to research your market.  After you determine who your client is in your area, be honest with yourself and determine your skill level - beginner, intermediate, advanced artistry.  Once you have that figured out think about what the artists in your market are charging and based on that where exactly do you fall in that market?  Based on all the predetermining factors, from the very lowest to the highest you should put yourself in the middle towards the higher end.  Do not be apprehensive about your rate, it is YOUR rate.  When someone calls you ask them up front what the budget is for hair and makeup.  This will eliminate any confusion.

(the beautiful Kat Aragon ready for her commercial beauty close up!)

Some common myths/queries dispelled during the class:

  • All of the products listed on 'In My Kit' are not based solely on the opinion of KJB, it is a collective polling of working professional makeup artists and what they are using and loving
  • "Somebody, somewhere will be allergic to something" - this isn't preventable.  Kevin swears by silicone based products.  The molecules in silicone based products are large, too large to clog pores and therefore not harmful to the skin.  Silicone based products are water resistant, long lasting and stable.  Silicone is an inert mineral and one of the least reactive, same as mineral makeup (you know how people love to say they only use mineral makeup...) because silicone is a mineral!  Problem solved.
  • In keeping with the mineral makeup query, every foundation is made from mineral pigment. 
  • If a sun protection factor is needed use a primer with an SPF instead.
  • "If a person isnt oily, stay the hell away with the powder!"  We as humans have depth and a healthy glow to our skin, we dont walk around looking super matte, that isnt a healthy look.  To get rid of oiliness on set fold blot paper in half over a sponge to remove the oil.  This prevents you pressing all over someone's face with you fingers and tackles the issue at once
  • White setting powder - dont blame the powder when someone looks white...the setting powder has to come in contact with either moisture or oil for it not to be white anymore.  So if you have matted the skin down and stripped it from moisture then of course the skin will look white.
  • When does Kevin use an airbrush machine?  Not all the time. (his machine of choice is the Iwata Silver Jet)
    • If there is extensive corrective make up needed then the correction is done by hand application, after that THEN go back in with an airbrush with a bit more foundation to give a more natural look to the skin. 
    • For extreme highlight/contour cases, do that by hand and then airbrush over
    • Body work of course
    • Tattoo coverage - do extreme coverage/color correcting makeup first then go over with airbrush using 2-3 skin tones to return the depth to the skin
Part Three will discuss kit revamping!  I will show you my kit now as a result of revamp #2, go here for revamp #1, and also KJB's kit, which is now what I want my kit to look like when I do revamp #3!

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