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How to Become a Freelance Makeup Artist

Get tips and secrets on becoming a successful freelance artist from one of the nations top air brush make up artists.

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Secrets to Becoming a Successful Makeup Artist

Photographers are looking for make-up artists who can get the job done quickly and efficiently. My experience as a Flawless Air Airbrush has helped me land jobs working on photo shoots and weddings because of the sheer number of people I can service in a short period of time. My secret is airbrush makeup application is quick, effecient and rarely requires touch-ups.

My other tips include stocking your makeup kit with the following...
  • concealers for the rudest acne break outs
  • lipsticks in every shade from white to black with warm and cool eye shadows
  • shimmers and mattes.
It's important to understand that the kit doesn't get the job. The Make-Up Artist does!!!!

How to Become a Makeup Artist

  1. Get advanced training in airbrush make-up by finding a makeup artist school in your area. It's not enough to enjoy applying make-up. Studying face and eye shapes and complexions is essential. Understanding lighting is a must. Learning to see the way the camera sees is critical. Think about it like this, your advanced training can eliminate the need for Photo Shopping the photographs.
  2. Stock or buy a complete professional make-up kit. Professional brushes and understanding their use is vital. My motto? Use whatever gets the job done. Your kit should include plenty of disposable sponges, make-up wipes, applicators and hand sanitizer. Remember, your reputation is on the line with each job you accept; timeliness, preparedness, creativity, etc.
  3. Create an internet presence and social media presence announcing your services. But don't stop there. Remain relevant by offering regular tips about the beauty industry careful not to accidentally promote a product. Promote Yourself. Include pics of your work.
  4. Network by introducing yourself to photographers. Discuss your availability and most importantly, what you charge per model.
  5. Don't work for free. You will dig a hole for yourself if you do.
  6. Train an assistant so you don't have to turn down large jobs.
  7. Expand your makeup portfolio by pushing the envelope. Don't get stuck in one look. If you're good at Glam, try Goth. Super at bronzing? Perfect avant guard? Great at natural? Practice elegant and retro. Know your products. Add to them. Create. The photographers you'll work with might provide tear sheets but don't count on it. The creative muscle comes from you.
Most important, you should always consider finding a beauty school in your area.

Article written by:


Valorie M. Taylor

Professional Airbrush Makeup Artist
CEO of Flawless Air Cosmetics
Serving Northern California
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