I’m sometimes asked, what it’s like to work on a photoshoot. The answer is more than not, that it’s usually very busy. In fact, some shoots can be stressful – especially if you need to make up a lot of people in a very short period of time, in a small space. If that is the case, then it’s absolutely vital to be organised and to plan, plan, plan.
I will always take time to find out the following:
On a photoshoot, the skin is always key. If you get that right, then the rest falls into place easily. So you need to ensure that you have enough base product to cover all types of face that may be sitting in the makeup chair in front of you. I will often decant different foundation colours and types into a palette – so that on the day, I have options for all skin colours, as well as a base that ranges from the thickest (to cover all manner of blemishes), down to the sheerest.
I also make sure that I have the right tools with me for the job - ones that will cope well with a lot of use on the day. And I don’t just mean makeup brushes for when applying makeup. Make up artists must also always consider hygiene, so rubbing alcohol and wipes are a key essential on any photoshoot. The makeup and the brushes must always be cleaned and disinfected between use. Any makeup brush used, really must be able to stand up to a lot of wear. I find synthetic brushes – made from taklon bristles, which is extremely soft, but very durable – work best for busy make up jobs. They clean easily and dry fast.
Once the base is applied, then it’s a case of creating the look that’s been agreed. I will always time myself beforehand – so I know exactly how quickly I can add these elements to create the finished look. It’s never good to finish the makeup late – as most people on photoshoots are on a timer.
One of the most fun shoots I did recently was for a magazine editorial. The look I was asked to create was an arresting day time look. They wanted it to work for young women – so a fresh faced look was key. Added to the perfect skin was a well defined eye. This coupled with a neutral lip completed the look that they wanted. It was a more relaxed shoot than usual, as it took place outside and we weren’t under too much time pressure.
Here is the finished result. What do you think? It was achieved using a range of budget makeup.