Q&A with Mandy Gakhal
Q&A with Mandy Gakhal
HERE AT AMB, WE CAUGHT UP WITH ONE OF OUR PRO MAKEUP ARTISTS MANDY FOR OUR TAKEOVER TUESDAY CAMPAIGN. MANDY IS AN EXPERIENCED INTERNATIONAL MAKEUP ARTIST WITH YEARS OF EXPERIENCE WORKING ACROSS THE WORLD.
How did you start in the beauty industry?
From early teens, I was always interested in magazines, models and fashion - and beauty was a part of that. I loved magazines so much that I actually completed an MA in Journalism before working in the field. As for beauty work, as soon as I got my National Insurance number, I started working in Boots and was able to work in multiple departments and eventually made the move into beauty.
What advice do you wish you had received at the beginning of your career?
To learn more around the business-side of makeup artistry; how to start a business, employing staff, GDPR, rates of pay, insurance etc.
How has the industry changed since you started?
When I started, social media wasn't what it is today. This meant that your portfolio would be a hard copy often referred to as your "book". You would have to carefully select which images you wanted and there were always conversations on the right amount of images to have, the type of images and the order in which to present them. The same was true for models, photographers and other creatives. Now you have platforms like Instagram which allow you to showcase your work without a limit on imagery, but also gives you an opportunity for you to show your tone of voice or personality. It is also easier to connect and network digitally, without having to pick up the phone.
What is it like being an international Makeup Artist?
I am grateful to be able to travel for work and see the world whilst doing something I love. I'm a people-watcher so it's nice to be able to look at beauty styles and trends in other countries. It's not as glamorous as people think though - taking a full kit abroad as well as your personal luggage can be logistically challenging. Your liquids have to go in hold because of restrictions and there is always a guarantee that something in my kit will explode or a blusher will break and it's always going to be a bright colour that is difficult to clean!
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
There have been so many, but to be in a position where brands and partners trust you to design and execute a look for their campaign has is definitely heart-warming. To have been able to work on Fashion Weeks for the "Big Four" fashion capitals - (London, Milan, New York and Paris) is pretty special too.
Tips for Makeup Artists wanting to get their work published in magazines?
Keep working on your makeup skills and understand how the makeup will photograph. It is also important to understand whether the style of makeup you do suits the magazine's aesthetic and whether you see this type of image being featured in their magazine.
Ways to get your work noticed in the industry?
Keep your portfolio updated. People who want to work with you want to know that you are active. Make sure your images are of good quality. Whilst your portfolio should have some versatility, your style of makeup and your strengths should be clear.
Beauty product you cannot live without?
My Tweezerman tweezers because there is nothing else I can use as a substitute.
What is next for you?
I always let things take their course and until the next thing comes along, all I can do is to keep practising and keep learning.