MUD Celebrates Our 20th Anniversary With John Bailey

John Bailey hasn’t had the most typical make-up career. Starting in a college theater department, Bailey first picked up a make-up brush to do his own character make-ups for his college roles. However, his talent for make-up did not go unnoticed, leading to Bailey becoming the go-to make-up artist in the department and teaching his own class as an undergraduate.

Evolving from student to teacher, Bailey’s passion for education grew, as he became frustrated with the teaching techniques of so many industry-leading schools. Preferring a more easily digestible, detail-oriented approach, Bailey found full-make-up classes to be both rushed and unnecessarily overwhelming. Incorporating the company and co-writing MUD’s Beauty Make-Up Textbook, John Bailey is to thank for MUD’s step-by-step lesson plan.

Q: Going back to 1997 when MUD started, what was your role?

A: We came from a place where we were teaching make-up. But, people would teach a class in make-up in this rushed way, where you would watch a demonstration of a make-up, and then you just do it. That’s why, when we started, I wanted to break everything down into small, learnable bites. So instead of just doing a make-up, the first thing you would do is learn a little bit about the eyebrows when you walk in the door. The next day we would start learning how to base match. Then we teach them how to work with eyeliner: how to hold a brush, how to put the eyeliner on the brush, and we would dampen the brush and let them practice, so that they get used to the tactical aspects of it before they had to actually put on any make-up at all. We also developed the progressive eyeliner, where we would do a straight liner then turn it into a glamour liner, then turn it into a fashion liner, then close the inside corner. I’d teach them how to hold a brush instead of them just taking the brush and putting it on the eyes, because there’s certain ways that you hold a brush that make everything much easier. I always wanted to be taught how I learn best, and I think that most people taking make-up classes learn the way that I learn. We’re visually oriented, or tactile learners. A lot of people have problems with focusing, and I think the way we teach make-up gets rid of that because we’re doing short, specifically directed techniques.

Q: Did you start with the curriculum then?

A: The curriculum came first. Before MUD, I taught at a school with a two week beauty class. I thought that two weeks for a beauty class was just ridiculously short–I would have liked to make it six months long! So we put together a four-week class, where the first two weeks are basic skills, and the second two weeks are using those skills to create certain make-ups.

Q: Was beauty your specialty?

A: For me, beauty was the soul of it. There’s so many little things that you can do in beauty, and so many skills you develop that carry over into everything else. Beauty is much more interesting than people realize. You’ve probably noticed that when you’re younger you don’t understand the subtlety of things as much as you do when you get older. You don’t see the small things that make something work, but instead see the big picture.

Q: I heard when MUD started you would do these fourteen-hour days, doing the night classes and the day classes, right?

A: The day class would start at 8:00 or 9:00 in the morning and we’d finish at 5:00 in the afternoon. It was an eight-hour day, and then the next class started at 6:00. For about a year or so, I was teaching both. After that, because we were growing fast, I was mainly training teachers. I’d be in a classroom teaching a class and training teachers at the same time. And we got good at training teachers! They would be learning the short little skills and they’d follow me around and they’d watch how I’d teach things and the comments I’d make. Then, they’d just fall right in.

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about your background, before MUD?

A: I was in college theater. While I was there, I would get cast in character roles, and I started learning to do character make-ups. I’d take a class in the make-up there, work on it, read books, practice, and study. All of a sudden people were asking me to do the make-up for their show, and then some students wanted me to teach them a class. People would come by wanting people who could do some make-up to look like George Washington, or something like that. I got sidetracked a little bit after that time, buying some property and doing some real estate stuff.

Then I moved to California. They had a very good make-up class that Bill Smith was teaching out here. So I went to learn from him and decided I was going to get a degree, but he passed away just after I got there. Then someone recommended I go to school in LA, and they said they would give me credit for taking the classes there. Soon enough I started teaching, and then I left in ’97. Of course I didn’t expect to get into the school business so quick, but all of a sudden Tate had an idea and I had an opportunity. We went out on September 15th, and I incorporated. We started working on the lesson plans, and Tate started working on getting his business, and we found a little place in Toluca Lake, upstairs over a Mediterranean restaurant. Our first class was about five people and then it was eight people and then ten, and we had to get another room for another classroom, then we had to get another room for another classroom, and soon enough we had several offices up and down the street in Toluca Lake. When Tate found a deal for a place we could actually buy, we ended up with the Burbank school we’re in now.

Q: Were there any people who encouraged you to keep growing when you started MUD?

A: It comes to the point of who motivates the motivator, right? At that point the last thing other people want to see is you become successful. But we have a lot of teachers that have been around since the very beginning. Mary Anne, and Yvonne–Yvonne and I worked on the beauty book. Writing the book gave us the opportunity to put down some of the techniques on paper. The book was written as we were teaching the classes, so it starts off with the eyeliner and all that. But everything we do comes right back down to small, manageable bites–putting you into a situation to do this work.

Q: Did you ever think MUD was going to be this big?

A: Well, I always dreamed it would! Whether I really believed my dreams were true or not I don’t know, but I kept believing it. Would you believe it?

Q: I wouldn’t imagine it!

A: It’s like anything–it’s small little steps. The hardest thing in the world is to get everybody on the same track, teaching the same thing. For me, being able to teach the teachers, and then those teachers teaching, was much better because they would be doing the same thing. Make-up artists assume that everything they say should be known but it’s not! When you tell a person to pick up the brush–what does that mean? When people had difficulties, I actually taped the brush to their fingers so they could learn to use the brush just like an extension of your hand. It’s a movement, a flow. The only problem with getting bigger is it takes you further and further away from the things you wanted to do when you first started. But there’s no way to get around that when you run a large company, is there?

Q: Where do you see MUD in the next 20 years?

A: I’m just hoping that it keeps growing, because once you stand still you’re either growing or declining. We have the two major schools, and then we have the studio schools. The idea was to have hubs and all the studio schools from around plug into the hub. It would help maintain everything if we had not only Los Angeles and New York, but also Atlanta and Miami, for example. That being said, I think we’ve done more for cosmetic education than anybody else. In fact, I’m sure we have.

MUD Celebrates Our 20th Anniversary with Paul Thompson

 

Starting his make-up career in 1987, Paul Thompson is MUD’s Director of Education and organizational leader behind the MUD Schools. Unlike our students, Thompson didn’t go to a traditional make-up school, instead he taught himself and took scattered classes under the guidance of an instructor at his community college. In the beginning he took jobs as a makeup assistant, learning from his experiences. As his career progressed he primarily worked in television and commercials, and ultimately opened his own FX shop. While working as a makeup artist, Thompson was also teaching extension courses at UCLA and doing master classes for multiple other cosmetic brands. Having fallen in love with the learning process itself, he went on to get a teaching credential and started teaching for MUD. Additionally, he authored the first edition of MUD’s character textbook Character Make-Up and co-wrote the second edition with Gil Romero.

Even with a firm belief in the power of education, Paul manages to keep things light and fun. whether he’s stealing his coworkers’ candy or face swapping photos of him and his wife, Francine, he keeps the MUD offices running with his goofy shenanigans. With his booming voice and high energy, Paul Thompson is the joyful lead behind the MUD education.

Q: What makes MUD different from our competitors?

A: From the beginning we fundamentally believe that the most important person in our organization is the student. We want them to have an exceptional experience at MUD learning makeup. To feel good about their choice of coming to MUD, and once they got in a class, we wanted to make it so meaningful and so outcome-based that they walked away getting everything they needed to start their career. In the beginning we really felt that we could make a makeup school that was better than anything that came before us. The other thing that continues to make us different is all the people that work here–all the different people that give voice to the education, whether it be the teachers, management, or the outside industry talking to us and working with us. It’s not a person, per se. It’s not Joe Shmoe’s make-up school, it is Make-Up Designory. So, it’s not based around me or Tate or any other single individual. It’s all about a company that does something of real value.

Q: Who is the MUD student?

A: I see students as so many different individuals. Our students are people that are just getting out of high school looking to start their career, but they can also be somebody that’s changing careers. I’m a make-up artist, and I’ve been a makeup artist my whole life. I see our student as me–as what I wanted and what I needed when I started. I learned as I went, and because of that I feel like I really relate to the students. I know what their needs are and, ultimately, what their dreams are regarding them wanting to be professional makeup artists. MUD is that company that really helps students to live those dreams.

Q: In the last 20 years, how have the MUD schools changed?

A: Originally, we said we were just going to do one school. But, we wanted to make the best school possible–one that had high-end, high quality education. I felt that we were doing a service that most schools couldn’t match because they just did not have the passion that we were pouring into it. Each one of the owners of the company were in the classrooms, doing everything we could to make the school the best it could be. The big switch came when we opened our NY campus and we expanded into Studios and Partner schools. Instead of just one campus, there are now 92 campuses offering some form of MUD education.

Q: Did you envision a cosmetic line back in 1997?

A: No, not so much. I know Tate initially was kind of like “oh maybe we should do products” but we didn’t have the wear-with-all to do that. It grew from Francine, really. She was the guru in product development and the rest of us would give her our opinions. She knew manufacturing and how to acquire things, she was the one who really got us started.

Q: Did you ever think MUD would reach the size it has now?

A: It’s hard to look back and go “oh, yeah, I knew we would be huge,” but I really didn’t. I knew we would be the size of some of the schools here in Los Angeles and have two or three classrooms, maybe four, tops. But, we grew to five classrooms and had extra teachers and people in the first year! I thought that all we would have is this cool little business and we would be set–and what I mean by “set” is that we would have jobs, we would do what we loved, we would be happy, and we would be able to make a good living. It’s crazy where it’s gone.

Q: Is there a most memorable moment from the last 20 years? Or maybe a funniest moment?

A: There’s a whole slew of funny events and things that have happened over the years. Time has absolutely flown by. My youngest daughter was born right after we started MUD, and seeing her in college now and knowing that’s how long the company has been around is cool, you know?

Q: Where do you see MUD in the next 20 years?

A: I think we’re going to see a lot more growth, on the education side we will be adding more campuses. For us, we are investing in the US and helping students live that dream of working as a makeup artist. It’s interesting how other cosmetic companies are moving to sell in China, even though to sell in China you have to test on animals. Companies are looking to China for that big untapped market. I really think the sky is the limit for the cosmetics side of things, however we will never test on animals.

Q: Is there anything else you want to include?

A: I love my job! We try very hard to help students find this level of happiness, to help them live their dreams. For me, I am so happy with the choices that I’ve made in my life and the great bunch of people that I work with. I couldn’t be luckier.

MUD Celebrates Our 20th Anniversary with Gil Romero

Our Associate Director of Education, Gil Romero, has been with MUD since the beginning. Choosing to become a make-up artist because of his childhood love for monsters, Gil has not only worked administratively but has also taught in our schools and acted as our Burbank location’s School Director. In 2009, Romero co-authored the second edition ofMake-up Designory’s Character Make-up textbook and has demonstrated special make-up effects techniques on behalf of MUD around the world.

As an independent make-up artist, Romero’s work has been seen on television shows like ScrubsPrison BreakThe ShieldAmerica’s Next Top Model and films like Midnight Movie and Route 666. In addition, he’s produced prosthetic make-ups for Universal Studios Hollywood and Tokyo live-action stunt show WaterWorld, the Anubis puppets for The Mummy II: Chamber of Horrors, Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream character “Jack,” and live musical performers including Lady Gaga. With his extensive experience and personable nature, Gil Romero is a central piece in maintaining all of MUD’s schools, studios, and partner schools.

Q: What makes MUD different from our competitors?

A: I think there’s a lot of things that make MUD different from our competitors–the quality of teachers that we have and our structured and organized curriculum, primarily. As an organization we truly do care for our customers and our employees. We will make extra efforts for each customer and for each person that works for us. MUD is also unique in its approach, because we’re not just a hard sales atmosphere. We really try to investigate whether this is the right choice for the student and I think we do the same when we’re looking at people who are working for us and who are teaching and are in contact with these students. We want to make sure this is what they really want to do and we want to make sure that they’re well trained and well prepared to make a difference in the kids lives. Overall, it’s a sense of caring that comes from the company and from the employees that I think makes us different.

Q: MUD says it’s focused on the needs of the professional makeup artist. What is it about the MUD schools makes our grads so professional?

A: First and foremost, I’d say it’s our strict adherence to cleanliness, sanitation, and our ability to establish professional work habits. Beyond that, we try to immerse them in an atmosphere that feels safe and constructive and allows a student to learn. But we still hold the students to that same level of professional standard inside of the classrooms as far as behavior. Our opportunities to expose the students to professional industry speakers I think really helps us to set an expectation of the student.

Q: Are there any new directions that you see the schools being developed in the future?

A: I think our core classes are going to remain the way that they are right now. We’re looking at how we can separate these out and bring in some different levels of education that will then speak to people at different levels of learning. I’d like to see us develop avocational courses–courses just from a hobby standpoint–and, definitely, the continuing education aspect for different levels of professionals. I’d also like to see us bring in some emphasis on some traditional art studies, like maybe some more developed classes in color theory, or foundational art and drawing type classes.

Q: How did you envision the future of MUD back in 1997?

A: I never thought it would get this big! In 1997 I was just excited to be a part of something that was so new and what I felt was, at that time, so unique to the other institutions. Everybody was so close and everybody worked so hard to make sure that the school succeeded. We were really focused on student satisfaction and making sure that students not only progressed through the school, but also that they had the support they needed to be successful after their time with us. I don’t even think at that point in time I thought we would ever have a second campus, and then in 2005 New York happened. It’s amazing to see the level of growth that we’ve had in the last 20 years.

Q: You didn’t think MUD would reach the size it has now?

A: Yeah! I lose count every time I try to think about the amount of partner schools and studio campuses we have. I am fortunate enough to travel to some of these locations and spend some time with their educators, faculty, and administrators, and it’s amazing to be able to help them establish the quality of education that we offer at our primary campuses in their local markets. But I don’t even think that many of these locations ever thought they were going to have something of this quality and this caliber. It’s pretty cool to see the standard of make-up challenged and I’m really excited to see what the next 10-15 years is going to bring. It’s awesome to see how qualified graduates are out there making a difference.

Q: Where do you see MUD in the next 20 years?

A: I would like to see more of our primary campuses established in the United States. I think there’s still some very large international markets that I would love to see us develop a primary campus in, as well. I’d like to see something in the United Kingdom, and I think it would be nice to see something in an emerging area in Spain. There’s definitely room for more primary campuses and more growth to help out artists in all different avenues be it print, fashion, or film and television. I would also like to see cosmetics opportunities grow and the cosmetic company expand. I’d really like to see more distribution centers and more retail spaces inside of the US. I feel like we’re on the verge of seeing all that happen.

Q: What’s the most memorable moment from the last 20 years? Or is there a funniest moment that comes to mind?

A: So Burbank is a very eclectic neighborhood, and occasionally we would get people wandering in off the streets. Somebody had called my desk and asked me to come into the store. They didn’t elaborate. When I had rushed to the store, I saw a young lady inside the store causing a little bit of a ruckus. She was going through all the cosmetics in the display and going through some of the back stock and opening it up and physically trying the stuff on and dropping the package. I asked her to leave the store after staff had already asked her to leave, and she just blocked us out. She really wasn’t there all the way. So, I got on the phone with the police quite calmly and they said “is the woman located in the store now?” and I said “yes.”

They asked me to give a description of the woman, and I gave them a physical description of her when they said “what is she wearing?” I said “well, she’s wearing some sparkly woman’s underwear, fluffy slippers, a pearl necklace, a pink feather boa, and an old Sony walkman strapped to her waist.” The police officer on the other line just started laughing hysterically. She said “you’re kidding me?” and I said “no, absolutely not.” Of course, the police officers came in and helped the lady out, but it was definitely an odd moment for all of us who were standing there.

Q: Is there anything else that you want to include?

A: I’m proud to be a part of Make-Up Designory for almost the last 20 years. I’m always excited to talk a little bit about the company, the organization, the students, and the quality of our faculty. I’m happy to have the opportunity, like I said before, to go around and visit the other campuses and sights and I really do feel a sense of pride when I’m able to talk about what we do for our students. The best sense of pride I think comes from when we see the little bit of impact we make on our graduates. To be able to see what they’ve taken with our education what we’ve given them and how they’ve been able to grow and establish themselves in the industry is amazing. I think now, 20 years later, we’re really starting to see many of our grads making a big impact and it’s amazing. I’m proud to be just a small part of that.

 

MUD Talks: An Interview with Vincent Van Dyke

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Vincent Van Dyke is an industry leader in special make-up effects. Getting his first job at just 14 years old, Vincent Van Dyke has gone on to work on TV shows and movies like I Tonya, Darkest Hour, Code Black, and Dexter. Acting as the owner and creative director of Vincent Van Dyke Effects at only 28 years old, Vincent Van Dyke has now moved to the Burman studio space where he learned the tools of the trade.

Despite being so much younger than his peers, Vincent Van Dyke says his career has always progressed in “gradual baby steps.” From experimenting with a make-up kit at six years old, to introducing himself to Barney Burman at an FX supply store, to working with Kazu on Darkest Hour, Vincent Van Dyke’s career has blossomed in a way many young make-up artists can only dream of. We spoke with him about approaching your make-up artist idols, living your passion, and knowing when to take your next big career step.

MUD: What was the defining moment when you knew you wanted to be a make-up artist?

VINCENT: That’s such a hard question for me because it goes back so far. My step-dad was a huge film aficionado, so he was really big into old black and white silent movies and all that stuff. I remember one night in particular I was going to bed and he had the original Hunchback playing and I was mesmerized by it. I could barely go to sleep because I was like ‘oh my god I want to do that!’ When I woke up in the morning I got my little makeup kit out and I duplicated that makeup on myself. I don’t remember when I first got this little kit or how I put it together, but I had it already. That was one of those moments where I got silly putty and I got a pillow and I shoved it in my back and I made this little face. It was really a fun make-up to do. There’s a picture of it somewhere that my mom has I’m sure.

MUD: How old were you?

VINCENT: I was probably six when I did that–that’s what’s weird. I had no idea what I was doing; I just knew it was fun. My mom would always be so encouraging and so supportive. I would say “how does this person look like this?” And she would go “oh well it’s makeup and I don’t really know how to answer that question, honey.” My association with makeup was what my mom put on her face so I was like “well that doesn’t make any sense!”

MUD: I read online that you were reading a lot of books and watching a lot of videos about special make-up effects early on. Which ones in particular?

VINCENT: I was reading a lot of Vincent Kehoe’s Special Make-Up Effects. It’s funny because I found it recently and it has all these little highlighted notes and post-its. It looks like a textbook, you know? The internet was in its absolute infancy, so I was literally going through books and getting VHS tapes. Michael Burnett had a line of VHS tapes that were huge for me. I watched those over and over and over again.

MUD: You met Barney Burman at an FX supply store, correct?

VINCENT: He was there shopping and I showed him my portfolio, and maybe six months after that he gave me a job. It was my first internship, which was amazing. Then later on, maybe one and a half or two years after that, I went over to Tom and Bari Burman’s shop. That was when my career took off. You know, you have your job and then you have like your career. It was really like they honed me in and guided my eye. I can’t imagine any other company ever doing that for me. I was so, so lucky to have fell into that position at that time in that month and the universe–just everything aligned and it just worked amazingly.

 

MUD: What was it like working that young?

VINCENT: Oh it’s ridiculous! It’s weird to be paid for something that you absolutely love. I think that’s honestly still hard for me to grasp, because so many people have to work to live but when you live to work and you really just have this amazing passion that you get paid for–that’s so rare. It was hard for me to fathom like ‘oh I’m getting a paycheck for playing with the stuff that I played with already for so many years as a little kid.’

MUD: I bet that a lot of people reading this will wonder how you were able to just strike up a conversation with a potential employer. Do you have any tips for approaching a big make-up artist?

VINCENT: I always had my portfolio with me. So no matter where I went, especially if I was going to a make-up store, I always had a little portfolio. You never know who you’re going to run into. I would just go up to them and say ‘hey, I know who you are, and I would love to show you my portfolio. I hate to interrupt you.’ I can’t imagine anybody in this business going ‘I don’t have time for this like get out of my face.’ Everyone’s going to take a minute to look at your portfolio, especially if you’re coming up to them, and you’re polite, and you’re just asking for them to look at your stuff, not asking for a job. I wasn’t really thinking about having a job.

MUD: When did you know that you wanted to have your own studio?

VINCENT: It’s funny because I think a lot of people maybe discover that they want their own studio after working for people, but I knew from when I was little. I really loved this stuff, and I knew that one day (I just thought it was going to be when I was 50), I want to be able to have the stuff produced under my roof be something I’m really proud of. When it happened I had no idea that I was ready for it. I don’t think you ever know that you’re ready for a move like that. But the way that everything had aligned–I had been working at the Burman’s for around 8 years, and I eventually became their shop supervisor and creative director, and they had really groomed me to be in a position like that. Bari Burman pushed me and my eye so much- really giving me a totally different perspective on the way I approached sculpture and paint. She and Tom are brilliant artists. And Tom Burman had such an ease about everything he did- always thinking outside the box and pushing the boundaries for the “standard” approach. Orchestrating teams, and working with extreme deadlines, I could go on and on but they really made it possible for me to have my own shop. It was a good time for me to be able to get a space and see what happens.

MUD: You’ve said it can be difficult to relinquish creative control once you start expanding. Do you have any advice for delegating tasks or collaborating?

VINCENT: I’ve been really fortunate that all the artists that I hire are all very collaborative. I never feel like somebody’s taking the bull by the horns and just saying like ‘this is how we’re doing it.’ It’s always a conversation of like ‘what’s the best way to get here?’ That was something that was instilled in me from Bari and Tom when I was working with them–like having these discussions and having open ideas of like ‘let’s take ego out of it and look at this situation and figure out the best way to do it.’ That to me is always the answer. Most of the time the answer for me is ‘that guy is way better at this than I am, so he’s going to do this.’ Sometimes it’s ‘I would love to sculpt this right now, but I’ve got my lead Daniele Tirinnanzi.’ He’s been my lead sculptor and painter now for a while, and he’s brilliant, so I always know that he’s going to do these things better than I am and it’s easy for me to relinquish that creative direction.

MUD: What is your favorite thing about your job?

VINCENT: I think that actually is my favorite thing about my job–that collaborative deal–because it’s so nice to be able to work with other artists that I learn from every day. For me the coolest thing is when I get to hire people that I think are so amazing at their job. Because I don’t shop hop around, I’m actually bringing people in that I get to look over their shoulder and learn from.
It’s cool to me when I can go ‘oh, I get to bring in Mitch Devane, who I think is the best sculptor in the business, to sculpt for me and he’s across from my office and I can just look in there and be like ‘wow Mitch Devane is sculpting the most amazing thing right now!’ That to me is kind of the coolest thing.

Thanks for talking with us, Vince!

MUD Open House Saturday July 14th

Next Saturday, July 14th, we will be having our annual open house at MUD’s Burbank Location. The event will be from 10:00am to 1:00pm. Prospective students, parents, grads, family, and friends are all encouraged to attend!

We are all familiar with the magic of MUD, but not everybody has had the opportunity to explore our school and see all that we have to offer. At our open house, guests will have the opportunity to visit the campus and cosmetic store, check out our course catalogue, and meet with administrative staff and instructors. Best of all, guests can also see demos by talented artists ranging from beauty to special effects.

We ask that students RSVP by contacting us at 818.729.9420 or responding to the Eventbrite. However, all are welcome! Our next New York open house will be August 24th.

In Memoriam: David Langford

One year ago today we lost our beloved friend and colleague David Langford. David Langford was known for his work on Elvira: Mistress of the Dark, Jeopardy with Alex Trebek, and The Richard Simmons Show. He also played a role as Department Head at Paramount and Disney, and as a member of I.A.S.T.E. Local 706. Langford was a part of the MUD extended family for years, and taught at our Burbank school since 2010.

“David and I not only shared a love of make-up and teaching that goes back to the late eighties, but we also shared a birthday. He had an enthusiasm and a love of life that was so contagious and I could not help but smile whenever I was around him. He truly cared about his students and whether they succeeded, he and I would often talk about what graduates are doing and how proud he was. He was a teacher, a mentor and a friend that touched so many people in such a positive way that I feel honored to have worked with him and even luckier to call him a friend.”

Paul Thompson, Director of Education

David Langford is survived by Pam, Ryan, and Erin Langford. He is missed dearly by everyone here at MUD.

Read last year’s article here.

MUD at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

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Contributor: Stacia McCarthy

The Art Institute of New York City partnered with  Make-up Designory to debut their Spring 2015 designs at New York’s prestigious Mercedes Benz fashion week.  The two schools were in good company, earlier in the day the tents featured names like Tory Burch, Badgley Mischka, and Pamela Roland to name a few. The festivities took place at 8pm on September 9, 2014 at Lincoln Center.

Doors opened at about 7:30pm and the seats began to fill with fashion enthusiast all eager to see what the students had come up with. The show included 13 designers from the Art Institute with over 20 models (male and female) all prepared by MUD Make-up artists. The designers’ creations featured a wide range of bright colors with an eclectic mix of textiles and patterns.

Lead Make-up artist keying for the 3rd time was MUD Graduate Jackie Caruso.  Jackie managed a team of 17 Make-up artists who are also MUD affiliates.  She describes her vision for the show, explaining that the idea was to create a clean-faced look with contouring, a wet smoky eye and dramatic brows. All of the make-up artists used MUD products including; the eggplant purple lipstick, the Brownstone eye shadow, and the Ice eye shadow. The look also incorporated eyelashes which MUD happily donate.

The event was coordinated by MUD’s Assistant Director Brenna Belardinelli. Make-up artist were selected by Brenna based on proficiency and experience. Participants have a range of expertise in both fashion and beauty make-up application due to skills they have honed at MUD. Participating in such an event is undoubtedly a resume builder and a great way to network with other industry professionals. Current MUD students even got in on the action; Tatiana Muñoz an international student from Colombia is currently enrolled in the Master make-up artistry program and participated for the first time.

As another Fashion Week wraps we would like to congratulate our grads on a job well-done!

Industry Speaks: Todd McIntosh

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“I could recognize an artist’s stroke; I knew that the same hand that created this make-up, created that make-up.”

Interviewed by Deverill Weekes, Article by Myrna Martinez

Todd McIntosh is a believer—a believer in theatre and movie make-up magic, a believer in an artistic hand that has been touched by a higher power—a believer in knowing every aspect of make-up artistry is the key to no-missed opportunities. When the key that unlocked your life’s calling is found in classics like Dark Shadows, or the theatrical magic of Peter Pan, and—Spock’s ears?—you know you’ve been called to be an artist.

At eight years old, Todd began exploring what he could do with an eyeliner pencil, drawing lines on his face and creating characters with available materials. A neighbor who surely saw something amazing in this young boy, gifted him with a book on how to create stage make-up. By 12 years old, he worked in theatre; by 15 he was molding; by 16 he was teaching his high-school classmates make-up techniques and by 18 he was employed by a Studio.

This young, talented artist was on his way to creating multitudes of characters in his lifetime. Determined to master his craft, he learned all aspects of make-up, from beauty to character and Make-up FX.

“Every skill you are without is every job you go without,” is Todd’s ambitious philosophy. But, only a special kind of passion for what he does can cause him to be so driven. “I could recognize an artist’s stroke; I knew that the same hand that created this make-up, created that make-up.” With such keen focus on the artistry, Deverill asked if there was anyone who contributed to his fire—and like many artists before him, he answered, “Dick Smith.”

“Dick Smith was my first, well, I don’t have the words for it. He has this artistic ability that transcends the average—he has a hand that’s been touched by God.” Todd continues, “I went to a museum with Dick and he had me looking into paintings. I saw colors in skin I had never seen before—greens and blues—and I learned first-hand from Dick Smith.”

Today, Todd is inspired by make-ups on shows like Supernatural, Salem and American Horror Story. He remembers a certain aging make-up in a final shot of AHS that he thought was absolutely brilliant.

Now, our students’ eyes are on you, Mr. McIntosh. We are so very honored that you visited MUD and shared your personal stories of growth and inspired us with your experience.

MUD LA Students with Todd McIntosh, Daveid DeLeon and Deverill Weekes

About Todd / http://www.mcintoshmakeup.com/

Todd McIntosh is known for his work on Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997) Emmy Winner, Memoirs of a Geisha (2005) Pushing Daisies (2009) (Emmy Winner)

MUD Alumni Shine Backstage at MISS USA

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And the 2014 MISS USA winner is … Nia Sanchez representing the state of Nevada! Last Sunday, the fourth-degree black belt beauty received the MISS USA 2014 Tiara amidst a cheering crowd at the Civic Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  As the official cosmetics sponsor for MISS USA and MISS TEEN USA, Make-up Designory congratulates all of this year’s beautiful contestants!

It has been an absolute thrill to have taken part in this event which included not only the sponsorship for cosmetics, but the opportunity to have a special team of MUD Make-up Artists chosen by Sean Conklin, Lead Artist to make-up all 51 of the MISS USA contestants for the registration and fitting events, photo shoots, the dress rehearsals and the live show.

The MUD Alumni team of make-up artists included Lauren Smeraglia, Ashley Guirdy, Vanessa Moreno, Chelsea Wallace, Jessica Poche, Jill Pugh and Denise Zamora.

We asked Sean to elaborate on his strategy for choosing such a successful group of artists. Sean stated,

“I chose our team based predominantly on their skills and personalities, and each artist had to be a MUD graduate. The goal was to create a great working dynamic. Since we would be working on 51 contestants, judges and t.v. personalities in a span of 12 hours, we needed to be quick, precise and, needless to say, pleasant. Now that the whirlwind of events are over, I look back and am astonished at the way our team performed—like clockwork. The girls were all willing and able, and as a whole, I couldn’t have asked for a better team.”

It takes amazing individuals to make a great team, we asked Sean to sum up in a few words why he chose each artist. Here’s what he said:

On Lauren Smeraglia “Lauren carries MUD products at her salon The Powder Room. She is familiar with MUD products. When I went to her Salon to offer further product and retail training, we connected instantly.  She was one of the first on my list of contacts.

On Ashley Guirdy: ”I remember Ashley as a student. She has a great personality and she’s a fantastic artist. It was great to have a Louisiana local!”

On Vanessa Moreno: “This gal is as sweet as can be, but her skills really ‘pack a punch’!”

On Chelsea Wallace: “Chelsea’s background includes Pageants. Her experience, along with her upbeat personality, and her excitement for joining the MUD MISS USA team is what sealed it for us.”

On Jessica Poche: “She’s another Louisiana local, so having her friendly personality and excellent make-up skills on our team worked out perfectly.”

On Jill Pugh: “Jill is fast and furious (laughs). Her make-up skills in beauty are superb and her work ethic is phenomenal. We are lucky to have gotten her on board.”

On Denise Zamora: “Dee is my right hand woman! She’s great at delegating, awesome at her make-up skill and loved by all.”

Thank you to all who participated in this amazing event. For more photos, visit our Flickr Page and http://instagram.com/makeupdesignory

 

MUD Alumni Spotlight: Jackie Caruso

At Make-up Designory Schools, our most important goal is to provide our students with the education and experience needed to be successful in the make-up industry. Whether it’s working on a movie set as a special make-up effects artist, or beautifying brides in the billion dollar bridal industry, it is an imperative part our program that we are an available and active resource to students even after graduation. In our “Alumni Spotlight Stories” we are proud to share the accomplishments of MUD Alumni to inspire, take pride in and applaud the great artists in the Make-up Industry.

Alumni Spotlight: Jackie Caruso
Contributor: StaciaMcCarthy

Jackie Caruso is a 2009 graduate of the MUD Journeyman certificate program, where she received training in hair, make-up, skincare and airbrush. Since completing her studies at MUD, Jackie has been a consistently working make-up artist, freelancing in various industries such as print, film, television, runway and bridal.

Jackie Caruso

Her highest level of achievement since obtaining her degree from MUD has been keying shows at New York Fashion Week for the past two years. The make-up looks applied to the models were designed entirely by Jackie who participated in and supervised the execution of her creative concepts.  Recently, her work has been published in Seventeen Magazine and Metro NY.

Jackie attributes the success she has seen throughout her career to the skills she obtained at MUD. She explains how MUD’s diligent career services team put her in contact with industry professionals and taught her how to market herself as a business and as a brand in order to get the kind of jobs she wanted.

In addition to her freelance work, Jackie spends her days working at the Make-up Designory MUD Shop in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City. Her future goal is to one day own her own shop where she can incorporate her well-honed skills and expertise to lead her staff.  We will continue to watch Jackie and see what success she will achieve in the future!

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