Industry Speaks: Michelle Garbin


Make-up Designory was proud to host guest speaker Michelle Garbin this past Wednesday, January 9, at the Holiday Inn in Burbank, CA. Michelle shared her extensive experience with Make-up Designory students and grads, and stayed after the event to answer questions on an individual basis.

Key Make-Up Artist for Sons of Anarchy, Michelle Garbin began her passion at the young age of 15, when she attended cosmetology school. From her beginnings as an intern in the Art Department on NBC’s“Days of Our Lives” to creating her own skincare line, Vivid MD Skincare, Michelle has picked up clientele that range from celebrities to politicians.

Films that she has worked on include: Identity Theft, The Green Hornet, Funny People, Yours Mine and Ours, and Three Kings. Currently she is key makeup on Sons of Anarchy.

Her current success in the industry sparked a momentous discussion:

The importance of having additional training:

“Extra training is always helpful, especially with skincare. The more you know, the more you work. Knowledge is power.”

You did make-up for the “Halo 4” video game. What does that entail?

“Motion capture dots. It’s a special makeup and a very meticulous technique. The dots have to be in the exact same spot every day or you have to do it over. And it’s very hard to get off.”

What do you look for in an assistant, both on set and with your skincare line?

“ Someone who has my back, on time, smiles, willing to be a team player. I hired my current assistant because she kept in touch after meeting. Talent as a makeup artist isn’t always as important as a good attitude.”

How HD has affected make-up artistry:

A. Everything is in HD now and it shows everything. The skin has to be flawless. Skincare is even more important.

The difference between working on a union and non-union show:

The food!

What advice would you give the students about to start their careers?

Always say yes. You never know what each opportunity will lead to.

The next event will be Friday, January 11 at the MUD Studio, Los Angeles, with Mari Shten from 4-5:00pm.

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