Kristina Frisch knew she wanted to be a make-up artist ever since she was a little girl. “It was the 1980’s and every movie had a transformation montage. The frumpy girl turned into a babe. The dorky kid into the werewolf. I thought ‘I want to do that.’ I just love transformations I guess” she says about her childhood dreams. Some might say Kristina’s childhood inspirations led her career full circle, as she has been nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Makeup for a Single-Camera Series (non-prosthetic) for her work on 80s women’s wrestling TV show GLOW.
Choosing MUD because it “felt like a family,” in 2001, Kristina learned valuable lessons about on-set behavior in addition to the valuable make-up techniques. “The most important thing I learned at MUD was probably the basics of how a set works and what would be expected of me as a make-up artist working in films and on TV. You get to set, and you are expected to just know. That probably would have been even more terrifying if I hadn’t had a heads up” she says.
She advises aspiring make-up artists make the most of their time at school and on-set. “Always admit when you don’t know how to do something or if you need help. If someone has to redo your work because you screwed up trying to do something you weren’t confident with it’s a lot more harmful than just asking for help in the first place. There is no shame in not knowing how to do everything.” If you’re still a student, the same applies as well. Every time you work on your skills, ask the questions you need to ask. Even the most qualified artists need some clarification.
A MUD Grad from our Los Angeles school, there’s no doubt that Gina Ghiglieri knows how to work through the ranks. “Always stay connected to your peers…you will help each other navigate and pass on jobs to one another” she says. Her drive shows—not only is her beauty make–up impeccable, but she’s worked hard off the clock as well, including networking and staying connected with alumni. She even got her job on The Voice through networking, getting her name passed along to the department head as someone who did well on the make-up set for live TV competition shows.
Now, Gina Ghiglieri is nominated for Outstanding Makeup for a Multi-Camera Series or Special (Non-Prosthetic) for her work on the faces of Addison Agen, Christina Danielle, Kyla Jade, and more for The Voice. “I seriously feel so blessed to be a part of it” she says. A beauty expert, she found a job with the creative freedom with Department Head, Darcy Gilmore and Key, Kristene Bernard, and excels as she works with the make-up and wardrobe department to make looks suited to each artist’s personal style. “We start early in the morning creating their looks and watch rehearsal to see if any changes need to be made based on lighting or wardrobe changes, and then add details and pops that take the make-up to the next level” she says, “and there is no room for error.”
Gina Ghighlieri advises recent grads to know their worth and stay focused on their career. “Whether it be to gain experience, compensation for your kit, tear sheets, meeting new people, etc., I never worked for free.” says Ghiglieri about her time as a recent grad. “If you have to take another job to pay the bills while navigating, make sure it’s make-up related, and it has flexibility for you to jump when projects arise. This line of work does not come quickly, and you have to put a lot of time and experience in to get to where you want to be” she says. Know you are qualified, and don’t settle. Especially with a MUD degree, why would you?