Industry gurus Maurice Stein, Byrd Holland, and Tommy Cole took to the stage at this year’s Makeup Show in Los Angeles on Saturday, March 17th to hold a panel discussion before an audience of young make-up artists and aspiring professionals.
Maurice Stein shared his over fifty years of experience starting off as a hairstylist in cosmetology school, working under John Chambers on the original “Planet of the Apes,” working as a make-up artist on “Golden Girls,” and eventually founding Cinema Secrets.
Byrd Holland, a distinguished make-up artist that has been working in the motion picture and television industry for over forty five years, shared his experiences studying acting at the New York Neighborhood Playhouse under Sanford Meisner, and first learning make-up by applying his own as a thespian on the stage. He entertained the audience with stories of his first experience as a make-up artist on “Terror In the Jungle,” in which he was initially hired as an actor.
Mr. Holland inspired those attending with stories of how he fought on behalf of female make-up artists in the 1970’s by making the motion to offer them membership in NABET, and it was approved. It was the first time that women were allowed to be union make-up artists.
Tommy Cole, a former actor, singer, and Mouseketeer — whose early experiences as a make-up artist include working with screen legend Jimmy Stewart — shared his experiences as a business representative for Local 706 of the Make-up Artists and Hairstylists Guild. He encouraged young artists to join the union so that it can stay strong.
In a humorous moment, all three artists shared the experience of working together with the notorious Jonathan Winters.
Their advice to the young audience, and to young make-up artists everywhere? “Just because you’re making up a celebrity doesn’t mean that you’re a celebrity,” “Don’t be afraid to hire someone as-good or better-than you,” and “You’re only as good as your last job.”
Wise words that made this an afternoon to remember!