What to Expect: Pro Resource Area LA
How did you get started in the industry? I was an account executive––that’s a fancy word for sales rep––at Xerox and I was looking for something else to do, when I met a photographer at a networking party in Los Angeles. I was smitten with the idea of repping him after he told me about working with celebrities and ad campaigns. That was Sunday. I went to his studio in Van Nuys California on Thursday and quit my job at Xerox on Monday.
What drove you to write your first book, Crystal Wright’s Hair, Makeup & Styling Career Guide? What key lessons do you share in this edition? Two Things. First, my assistant Judy was always after me to get off the phone with whatever makeup artist I was talking to throughout the day who needed to know how to build a portfolio or market themselves. In response to that and a little girl at a local makeup school who couldn’t get work after spending several thousands of dollars learning how to do makeup, I decided to write a book. Actually, it was going to be a sixteen page manual. Who knew it would turn out to be 400 pages and in it’s 5th edition?!
Lessons, wow. Just about everything. How to build a portfolio. How to get more out of your relationship with photographers. How to keep them from running off with your pictures. What agencies are looking for. Many artists still don’t know that there are hundreds of agencies throughout theUSAwho represent makeup artists and hair stylists. How to handle your business by submitting deal memos and invoices and credit sheets so that the magazines spell your name right. How to find photographers to test with who will build your book. What you should be charging for your services, and how to raise your rate. There’s a TON of stuff in there.
After the recession in 2008, you saw the need for educating, motivating and teaching others in how to create professional success. You have become the guru in achieving one’s personal success in the industry. What would you say to those just getting started in the career? Focus on something not everything. You can’t be an expert when you’re trying to do everything. That works professionally and personally. And don’t, DO NOT, listen to people who tell you that you can’t do this. I get calls from 27 year old women asking me, “can I still become a makeup artist, is it too late for me?” You’re not too old at 27, 37 or 47. It doesn’t matter that no one in your family has ever done it, it doesn’t matter that you live in Minnesota, it doesn’t matter that yesterday you were an engineer and today you want to be a makeup artist, it doesn’t matter that you don’t have any connections – I so dislike that reference. If you want to make connections, learn how to introduce yourself to strangers. There’s no magic––just practice. Just make a decision to do it and get in the business by taking action every day. Put one foot in front of the other and walk to your destiny.
Sooo, there’s definitely some big news to share… you will be hosting The Makeup Show LA’s first ever Professional Resource Area right?! Are you excited? What are most looking forward to as Host?!
I am beside myself. First we’re going to do an industry experts panel of creative decision-makers who look at books everyday and book artists with and without agencies. There’s this misconception that you have to have an agent to get a tear sheet and that is 100% wrong. I want to dispel myths like that one.
After the panel we’re going to have a portfolio review area where people can sign up and get their portfolios reviewed. So get those books and ipads ready for review! And get there early to sign up for the review.
I just happen to think that doing makeup is great, getting paid for it is even better, and it’s hard to get paid what you’re worth when you don’t know what the people who hire you expect from you as an artist.
I’m also doing a class on assisting. This one is not just for the assistants, but for the keys as well. I have a saying, “Lead or be Trampled, that’s for the keys.
I’m tired of the would-be assistants always being blamed for bad behavior on set, when the truth is that the keys aren’t telling them anything they expect of them except what time to show up.
What’s the main goal of the Pro Area for 2012? To empower artists to run their business from a position of strength. We are here to create beauty, fashion, and entertainment style-preneurs. You have to be able to work on set and handle your business… Successful artists like Joanna Schlip, Sam Fine and J. Roy Helland are not just talented artists but savvy business people. Those developmental skills should start early from building your book, to negotiating your fees, to knowing when you put your foot down and what to ask for.
What should the industry insiders expect?! Expect to be wowed and exposed to people that you often can’t get on the phone. Expect to learn something that you didn’t know on the 16th of March that can change your life on Monday the 18th.
How should/can they prepare? If you have some great images, get them up on the web, and I don’t mean Facebook. Facebook is not your website. Or get them into a fluid presentation and come to The Makeup Show ready to do something in addition to taking advantage of all the great deals. Come to learn. Soak up every bit of information that can transform you into the artist you dream of. Be prepared. My PYP Students know my mantra. If you stay ready, you won’t have to get ready!
Join Crystal and the rest of the pros at The Makeup Show LA 2012. Purchase your tickets by clicking here.