Beauty photographer extraordinaire and friend Julia Kuzmenko shared her insightful tips on how to find the ” Ideal Makeup Artist “ check out the whole story on her blog Master Beauty She is definitely one to follow!
This is a more obvious point, but I want to mention a couple of things that I always keep in mind:
a) QUALITY OF THE PHOTOGRAPHY. I am looking at the quality of photography first. If the imagery in the portfolio of the MUA you are planning to approach (or they have approached you) is of poor quality, it may be a sign that they have never shot with good strong photographers, so they may not even know what it’s like to work with one. Your experience with them may be good, but it can also be a whole bunch of surprises and mostly unpleasant.
The other thing to consider is the MUA’s visual taste. If they have put all of the images that you find of poor quality on their website, then they most likely consider these images good, which is a clear sign of their visual taste. And their visual taste is what dictates all of the creative decisions they make when planning looks and applying makeup for a shoot.
b) TYPE OF PHOTOGRAPHY. Then I look at the type of photography in their portfolio in general. If I am planning to shoot clean beauty closeups with this MUA and all I see in their portfolio is outdoors fashion photography, for example, or super colorful, “costume-y” makeup, then they may not be a great choice for what I plan to shoot. It’s like with all other creative professionals, every Makeup Artist has their own skill set, and while some may be able to pull off almost anything, they usually can be brilliant in one or two things only. It’s like a professional baby photographer would struggle shooting an edgy fashion campaign.
c) QUALITY OF THE MAKEUP. And if the first two aspects of the MUAs portfolio “pass”, I carefully study the makeup in the image. This is where you should stay very reasonable because post-production might have changed the colors and the application of the makeup for better as well as for worse, so the final look might be deceiving. I typically look to see if I even like the choice of makeup, the colors, etc., keeping in mind that sometimes the MUA only executed the Art Director’s/Photographer’s vision, but he/she wouldn’t end up adding something they don’t like to their portfolio, so it still demonstrates the MUA’s choice.
article from Julia Kuzmenko Beauty Photographer