top of page
  • Writer's pictureAshanta Artistry

How to get away with NOT booking a professional makeup artist or hair stylist.

Lesson Audio Narrated by Ashant Morris

“I wish you could come to my house

everyday and do my makeup for me!”

If I were paid every time a client or random person said, “I wish you could come to my home every day and do my makeup for me,” I wouldn’t have to work anymore. As grateful as I am for the accolades and desire to have me around, I know these statements are hyperbolic at best. However, it does not detract from the innate desire for many to want to not only look but also feel as beautiful and confident as they do when they leave my makeup chair. Most wish for this on a daily basis or at the very least, for special occasions when hiring me isn’t in the budget or simply just not an option. This is what my client, Karah, needed following her move to South Carolina but found herself without her arsenal of photographers and favorite makeup artist, me ◡̈

While Karah was an actress in Los Angeles, CA, I had worked with her a couple of times to create the perfect headshot looks within her casting. We were a great team. She put trust in me, and I was drawn to her energy and spirit. It made our time in the studio enjoyable. No matter the project, I don't care how beautiful the model is, or how cool the project is, or how fun and satisfying the art direction of hair and makeup is, to me, my most favorite shoots are and will always be all about the team and the people on board. If the vibe is right, it’ll be the best and my favorite kind of shoot. So, with Karah, it was always a good day. I really appreciated her confidence in me, and our collaboration was always on point. Karah’s move to South Carolina was the best decision for her family, but man could it have been a bummer professionally.

As an actor, the decision to leave the city of angels can be a jarring experience. LA is where artists bet on themselves and take a giant leap toward their biggest dreams. So it can feel like an abandonment of a part of themselves when they make the decision to leave. Could Karah really pursue acting to the fullest in South Carolina? For many, a move to any city other than New York, Los Angeles, Chicago if you’re a comedian, and only recently Atlanta, meant moving away from and giving up on the dreams that at one time defined them. For Karah that could’ve been the case. She had cozied into her beautiful home and even emerged from the pandemic with a beautiful, perfect baby girl. Did being “settled” in the south mean she had chosen her choice and acting was off the table?

“Over the years,Karah and I worked together to create the perfect headshot looks within her casting”

Absolutely not! Like most women, Karah is resilient and resourceful. She knew with the right team of support, resources, and the unrelenting belief in herself she could continue the road toward her dreams. It wouldn’t be easy, but it would be possible. Post-pandemic resurgence into the acting world was chaotic for everyone, even for those who had every resource at their fingertips in the acting hotspots. For Karah, being in South Carolina could have proved to be a challenge, but as the saying goes, when there’s a will, there’s a way!

As much as Los Angeles is THE SPOT, it is not the ONLY spot. Production companies like Tyler Perry and Netflix are making MASSIVE studios and sound stages all over the country, including New Mexico, Nevada, Atlanta, New Jersey, and Texas. These new lots are creating opportunities for actors like Karah from all over the country to pursue their dreams without making the move to the city of angels. Karah has an agent that is based in Atlanta and represents her throughout all the southeast and handles any Los Angeles requests. Armed with the headshots from LA she was working with for over 5 years, it was time for new ones, and unfortunately LA still held the template for actor headshots. So, how was this new mom living in South Carolina going to get her LA shots in the southeast corner of the US?

If there’s a will, there’s a way, and my girl is RESOURCEFUL, and she did her homework! After scouring the internet and cross-checking websites and social media profiles, she settled on a photographer that resonated with the aesthetics that aligned with the high quality she was used to from the heavy hitters in LA. So all that was left was replacing ME. How would she get me to South Carolina? Yes, there are talented artists everywhere, and I am positive that there are more than capable makeup artists and hairstylists in Charleston, but to my absolute delight, Karah considered me to be an integral part of her studio experience and wanted me there, without actually being there. How would that be possible?

If there’s a will, there’s a way, and I say it again, my girl is resourceful! She called me up with the solution already mapped out: A Lesson. The way to have her hype-woman makeup artist there without actually traveling 3,000 miles across the country would be to have a 2-hour lesson going start to finish, a step-by-step tutorial, hands-on lesson on how to create her desired looks for an upcoming shoot. God bless zoom! The upside to us doing this virtual lesson was that  Karah was able to record and view it as many times as she needed to practice leading up the shoot date. During our time together, we went over her needs, what her goals were, and even collaborated on how to fill the gap between what she had and what she needed. We edited her current makeup collection by trying to use AS MUCH of the makeup and brushes she already owned and making a purchase list based on my recommendations for items that were a must to complete the desired looks.

The way the lesson works depends on the person. Some would like me to do everything and just explain every step of the way. Others learn by doing, so they prefer to shadow and copy my technique. In these cases, I’ll work on one half of the client’s face so they can see what I’m doing, hear my explanations, and also feel my touch as I’m completing the step. Most choose this option but  I can adapt to either depending on the comfort and learning style of the client. Obviously, certain circumstances limit the options. In Karah’s case, I wasn’t able to do my technique on her face and have her copy. I was, however, able to demonstrate on myself and walk her through doing it on her own, look by look, step by step.

“You can get a little glimpse 

into our time together here.”

After our zoom time together, I sent my beautiful, resourceful girl on her way. She was prepared, armed, and I had complete faith the shots would be great. I wasn’t surprised by how the photos came out; I was proud! My girl did sooo good. The makeup was perfection! It was natural, enhanced, fresh, and professional. The looks we added to the list ended up being my favorite out of the bunch. The lesson was definitely worth the investment. So, do you need to be 3,000 miles away form your preferred artist for a lesson to be worth it to you? If you’re in LA and have access to your favorite makeup artist and hairstylist, is it still worth it to get a lesson?

Absolutely! You don't have to live a rags-to-riches tale. If you simply struggle with makeup, a lesson can offer you a fundamental level of knowledge and skill, empowering you to tackle self-tapes, auditions, and even date nights with confidence. For major events, you may still opt to hire me or your preferred makeup artist, particularly when your schedule is packed and the last thing you want is to handle the pressure of doing your own hair and makeup. On average, hiring an artist for an on-location glam session can range from $300 to $750, depending on the artist and location. In contrast, a lesson with me costs $500 for two hours of training. The investment in a lesson quickly pays off after just one DIY glam session compared to hiring someone. While you might still choose to hire an artist for significant events, investing in a lesson is a substantial money-saver and provides a competitive edge, ensuring you look and feel your best for crucial occasions such as auditions, self-tapes, and agent meetings.

So, whether you’re in the heart of LA or nestled in the charm of one of the America’s favorite southern towns, the power of a personalized makeup and hair lesson knows no bounds. Just like Karah, you too can unlock your inner glam guru from the comfort of your own home. With a tailored session, you'll not only master the art of makeup but also gain the confidence to rock any occasion, whether it's a red carpet event or a casual night out. So why wait? Book your lesson today and embark on a journey to self-expression and empowerment, one brush stroke at a time.


bottom of page