When we are young we all have dreams and aspirations in life, whether that is to become an astronaut or the next president, we think no dream is too big. Unfortunately, As we get older we have to decide whether to turn our dreams into reality or to leave them as dream that dance in the clouds. This is how I’m following my dreams, one step at a time.
I haven’t always wanted to become a makeup artist, when I was younger my dream was to always be on stage singing and dancing, but as I got older I altered that dream more than a few times. From wanting to be a professional field hockey player to wanting to go to business school, it's been varied. When I first started getting into makeup I didn't want to like it, just because everyone else loved it. It wasn't until I started playing with it more I began to loved makeup and playing around with it. Then I was just starting to watch youtube videos about makeup and generally just discovering that side of beauty. One day I was watching a youtube video by ‘Pixiwoo’ who mentioned they do makeup as a job, it was then that I realised this could be turned into a real job. I instantly decided that's what I wanted to do. Although, with all of the amazing makeup artists I was very discouraged at first and decided to only tell my best friend who was so supportive and would always let me just play with makeup on her any time we got a chance.
During my first year of my studies for my GCSE’s in Hong Kong. I was taking film studies as one of my subjects which is where I discovered my love for film. This class really helped open my eyes to the film side of the entertainment industry. It was about this time I discovered the tv show ‘Face Off’. This is a great tv show to watch if you are an aspiring SFX artist as even just to see the process of how it all happens and familiarise yourself with certain products it's great.
I was always practising and playing around with beauty looks just for fun. I’d sit in my room with my makeup and just try different things. After about 6 months into year 12 at school my mom decided to relocate us back to Ireland after 3 years in Hong Kong. At first I thought about going back to school, but felt it would've been too difficult to get back into certain subjects therefore, my parents decided we would look at college as an option. We chose LA College of Creative Arts simply because of the reputation it holds in the industry. After an interview process and a tour of the college, I was enrolled into their 1 year makeup course.
I remember the first day, walking in at 16 years old after moving back to something completely new, to something I've always wanted to do, it was daunting and I felt way to young to be doing something like this. It was a strange class as we were a large age range but we were all completely different to the next person which I think is what really helped us all grow into the artists we are today. My time at LA College turned out to be the best decision to take my course early and skip out on school. I met so many amazing people and learned so much from beauty makeup, body painting, airbrushing, right through to how to market myself and made loads of contacts which I still keep in touch with today. The tutors were amazing and insured all students reached the highest level of tuition. The most important lessons that I learnt during my course were that you are not going to get given everything in an industry like makeup you have to work for it, work is not going to find you - you have to find the work, you have to always be networking and meeting new people, give your business card to anyone will take it and never pass up an opportunity because you're scared or nervous because you never know what could come out of a simple job. It's a small industry where everyone knows everyone and you can’t afford to not be putting your best work forward.
During my time of my first year at LA college, I spent the year commuting between Drogheda and Dublin everyday. It was hard but once I received my cert it was all worth it. Although, I began to realise that every opportunity I got to gain some work experience was happening was in Dublin. I ended up spending most of my time commuting and it became very expensive. Therefore after getting a christmas job at Charlotte Tilbury, I decided it was time I moved to Dublin and at 17 I found myself a house share and instantly cut my travel time by half, which means extra time in the mornings! Dublin is always buzzing, especially where the college is located since it is just off Grafton Street, where you will always see people busking, dancing, performing or just doing some retail therapy.
In January of this year I decided to go back to LA College Of Creative Arts to pursue my dream of being and SFX makeup artist and really bring back my interest in the film industry by starting the one year SFX course in February. I’m loving the course so far, there's is a great mix of people in the class and we all get along and have the same passion for the course. I’m really looking forward to the body painting and prosthetic modules of the course, which are yet to come. In the same month I also gained a job in a studio doing makeup and hair for photoshoots at Mi Studio in Dublin where we can have up to 20 clients a day, I do this alongside my freelance work and retail work in Arnotts.
Now, after just turning 18 years old I’m about a quarter of the way through the SFX course, and working in the industry doing mainly beauty things. The dream of becoming and SFX artist on films has in no way been achieved yet but I keep dreaming and keep trying to work hard and meet as many people in the industry to help me along the way. The key is to keep trying and build up your confidence and be critical of your work and try find ways to fix the things you don't like. I'm trying to follow my dreams and you should too!