"Talent is good, practice is better, passion is best."
What a fantastic quote by Frank Lloyd Wright. What It Takes is highlighting this in all aspects. I have met countless artists who have the talent, but the passion just wasn't there. To be honest, I think passion and practice mesh together, just from my experiences. Typically I have found that when certain artists are passionate about what they do, they practice all the time...and I use the word "practice" lightly. Most of us don't feel like it's "practice" so to speak, we just truly enjoy what we do so we naturally push ourselves to do more.
When someone is passionate, they practice. When they practice, there's talent. Where there's passion, there's talent. It all almost just goes around in a continuous circle. Like I said before, I have come by many artists who don't really have that passion; that drive that pushes them to their highest limits. It's unfortunate to come by. I've met people who show up 20-30 min or more late 5 days in a row, artists who gossip like its their job, someone who always say they want to do huge things and turn down a big job to go to Burning-man. I'll never understand it ha! Maybe it's because I'm a workaholic...
Bottom line: Be passionate! Anyone can see a person who is ambitious and passionate a mile away! I know this documentary is targeted towards hair and makeup artists, but this goes for any profession...or life experience in general. Find what you're passionate about and let it free! (oh gosh have I turned into a hippie now that I have been in LA for 5 years?... nah.)
Today, I want to talk about inspiration. What inspires you? What inspires me are other individual's success stories, encouragement from my peers, and setting goals for myself.
I want to share an experience with all of you because I think a lot of you can relate and I'm not afraid to call myself out or share my journey- both ups and downs. My documentary will be exposing it all so you will find out these things regardless of me blogging about it now or seeing it later haha
The past two weeks have been TOUGH. And I mean the toughest months I have experienced in my career thus far. Starting early December, I started not getting much work. I thought, eh it's the holidays, I'm sure it will pick up soon! Well that turned into January.... Mid January.... End of January... February... You get the picture. This brought me to being behind on not one, but TWO months of rent, two months of car payment and threeee months on my car insurance. It was a disaster. I felt helpless, stressed, and completely overwhelmed.
Even though it was tough... Really tough.. I tried my best to not think about it, not let it get to me. Don't get me wrong- there were a few jobs. But those few jobs literally only gave me money to eat! All while I am trying to create this film- I was a mess. Crying all the time, being cranky...
After I heard some inspiring words during an interview- I thought to myself, "My gosh, what's my problem! I'm doing what I love! I knew going into this industry that there would be days... Well months... Like these. Cheer up and start pushing myself even HARDER." So I did. I emailed previous clients asking if they needed a Mua, sent my resume to a few places, and then started really kickin butt at organizing this documentary. I called these companies about my late payments that I had been avoiding for months, and it felt so awesome to just do all of that. I felt so accomplished. And guess what happened....
In one day. ONE day.. I got 4 calls for work. It was the best feeling haha and the previous week before that, I was hired to be a freelance artist for a cosmetic company. I can't even explain the relief I had.
By sharing this story, I want to show that even though I post about all of my fun experiences and successes, I still have bad days, months, etc. We all do. But we can't let these days get to us! Remember why you're reaching for your goals and dreams. Never let that get away from you in hard times like these. If you're having a bad day, week, month, just know that when you believe in what you're doing, and you are persistent, it will ALWAYS pay off and you will see results when you least expect it.
I know this blog ended up being very long, so if you're still reading, thank you for taking time out of your day to read what I have to say!
Cheers to you all and have a great week!
Walt Disney once said "Do what you do so well and uniquely that people can't resist to tell others about you."
I was on a shoot today and this was the quote that stood out to me. I wanted to share this experience, and let me tell you...it was one hell of a day...
Something that we learn as artists over time is how to deal with all different types of people. We have good days (mostly!), and then we sometimes have bad days. Well today was one of those bad days for me. To make a long story short, I'll just say that I not only was told how horrible of a job I did, but belittled and humiliated. Funny thing is, I was told to do one look...I did it...and the client didn't like it. I asked what they wanted once more, and They told me again the same thing...so I went back and tweaked the look and polished it up a bit. Well my oh my, "why in the world" did I get hired for this job? Clearly, I am "not a professional makeup artist," and please replace me "as soon as possible." Some how, the 2nd model I did was "FLAWLESS" and "absolutely stunning." so I was atleast praised for one of the two models.
I could go ON and ON about this particular experience, but I don't think it is necessary to sit here and whine or gossip about what happened. What I do feel is that I want to share this experience with my peers, family members, aspiring artists, and anyone else reading this. I have had very very few experiences where someone made me want to cry...and this was for SURE one of them.
Knowing how to deal with situations like these is incredibly hard. I had to keep telling myself, "Don't walk out, don't walk out. Don't cry, and don't get upset." I honestly sat there with a smile on my face and said, "Okay! Well I am here if you feel like we could try another look." even though I was shaking of anxiety and holding back my tears. The words said to me were hurtful and in some ways degrading. I felt so small. Funny thing is, the photographer thought what I did was great, as did the model.
The reason why I chose this quote for today was because, at the end of the day, the client LOVED everything I did with the 2nd model (phew!) and told me she wanted to send more work my way. Walt's quote is exactly what I did- I made sure that I was more on top of it than ever and I truly feel that because I handled it with the biggest smile on my face, I stood out. I think A LOT of people would have walked out, or atleast lashed back out toward the client who was verbally attacking me. This business can be soooo incredibly hard when you come by these situations. At the end of the day, you have to make the experience for everyone memorable in the best way possible. Whether that be a positive attitude, creating laughter, being open to criticism, always staying on top of it, not leaving when situations get miserably hard, etc.
It's okay to make mistakes, it's okay to be told your work is horrible. Make sure before you get in this industry that you know this! It's a learning experience, My learning experience was that I need to practice men's hairstyling more. I'll admit..part of me still wants to cry. haha! But that's the experience of it all! It comes with the territory. So all of you ladies and gentlemen out there, prepare yourselves! And as for all of you who are reading this that are not in the industry: KNOW that this industry is NOT easy, its not glamorous, and these artists who you see working on movies and magazines have gone through hell and back with similar experiences. Never under estimate what we do behind the camera.
On a positive note, at the end of the day, the client raved about how much she loved my work. Plus I got to work with one of the most sought-out photographers from Milan. Even when times are hard like these, I always remember why I got into this career. Never let your ego get to you
All of you ladies and gentlemen out there who are considering this career, please do not take this photo lightly. I am probably on that second loop that you see up there; just coming off of the backwards loop, dipping down and getting ready to hike back up the even BIGGER loop. This isn't to discourage anyone by ANY means. I think this photo is probably accurate for nearly every creative job there is out there. Someone actually told me a few years ago that freelancing as a hair/makeup artist is by far the hardest career to sustain and only 3% actually stay freelance. That's pretty crazy.
If there were a poster for this film...This would be it! It's only missing one thing. Me on the left side, all happy and joyful. And then me on the right in real-life...Crying because I can't pay my bills...
The next time you see a major hair/makeup artist in TV, a movie, or in a big magazine...Remember this photo. Every artist has their own personalized roller-coaster.
This is the start of something very exciting:
My name is Amber Talarico. For those of you who do not know me, I am a freelance hair and makeup artist in Los Angeles, CA. I work in both film and fashion, mostly in film. I am from Indiana, and decided to take the big move back in February of 2012. I knew this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I researched, stayed up countless hours to read or watch how the big artists do what they do, and I networked like crazy. I wanted to do so many big things in my career! I was willing to do whatever it takes. To make a long story short, I graduated from cosmetology school in 2009, stayed in Indiana for a grueling 3 more years, and then fled to California in 2012 and attended makeup school.
Since I graduated makeup school, I have accomplished many things in my career in which I am thankful and very, VERY grateful for. But let me tell you one thing: it is NOT EASY. I still struggle, work for free, and have weeks where I have no work at all. With that being said, a year and a half ago, I came up with the idea of showcasing these hard times to give a truth to what we go through as artists. There is no easy answer or way to get your "big break" ....unless you are Steven Spielberg's niece.
My goal with this film is to bring light to the true ups and downs. Not only that but inspire those who truly want to do this as a career. Some of you may be reading this and have a big dream of doing hair or makeup in film/fashion, maybe some of you just think it's super cool what we do and are interested in the process of it all-- How is it that we do a 30 day film shoot with zombies and shoot it all completely out of order according to the script? How do we make someone who is naturally beautiful look like they're cracked up on heroin? What is it like at Fashion Week? What is it like being the department head for a major television show? Do you have to go to school to become a hair or makeup artist for film and fashion? And most of all: What exactly does it take to be a successful artist in this industry?
For the past year and a half, I have been directing/producing a documentary that not only answers all of these questions, but films the reality of it all. My goal with this film is to unveil certain aspects of this industry to aspiring artists who maybe didn't think about it before, and also to give ANY one in general a better understanding of how we do what we do. This industry is TOUGH. Trust me, it's not fit for everyone.
I can't express my excitement for my documentary coming to life. I can't wait to share with you this amazing journey that we all go through to get to where we want to be! I will be posting updates of the film through this blog pages as well as tips and tricks, progress videos, inspiration, and fun makeups. I hope you all are excited and eager to see what's in store!!!
**Keep your eyes out for our promo video coming soon!**
"All your dreams come true if you have the courage to pursue them"-Walt Disney