LOOKING YOUR BEST! with Brandi Washington

Brandi Washington is a makeup artist who learned the ropes from her mother at an early age. Brandi is pursuing a career in acting in New York City but feels that her creativity is too outrageous to put into only one craft. Since living in NYC Brandi has worked at Sephora where she learned how to apply makeup on different skin types, tones, and textures. After Sephora, Brandi started freelancing and doing makeup for local artists’ music videos, weddings, Independent movies, head shots for actors and fashion shows. Brandi loves applying makeup, because it allows her to create, and make others feel good while doing it.

1. How do you approach the “look” you’re going to give a client? Is there an initial consultation?

BRANDI:  Yes, there is an initial consultation either in person which is usually done for a bride to be. If I’m doing makeup for a photo shoot or video I will talk to the photographer or director to get their vision via phone or email. I’m usually told the theme or mood of the occasion, and then I go from there using my own creative expression. I stay within the guidelines that I’m given, but I like to add my own personality to my art as well.

2. Is there a standard when it comes to head shot make-up? Or make-up for auditions?

BRANDI:  The standard for head shot and audition makeup is to be as natural as possible. When you take your head shot you want it to look the way you look in person so the casting director will recognize you. When you enter the room to audition you want to look the way you look in your head shot for the same reason. They go hand in hand.

3. What are the key essentials a do-it-yourself-er would need to create the perfect look for head shots/auditioning?

BRANDI:  The key things you need to do make for your own head shots are an HD (High Definition) foundation that matches your skin; Natural lipstick or gloss (pinks & nudes); Soft blush that brings a pinch of color back to your face after your foundation application; Translucent setting powder to apply to your face after your done applying your makeup (the powder holds your makeup in place for the shoot); Mascara; A natural based  matte eye shadow (light brown, nude, pink) applied only to your eyelids; Soft pencil eyeliner (I prefer brown over black for a more natural look); Any basic brush set will get you started (foundation, blush, and eye shadow brushes are the most important). Things that also help is to clean, moisturize, and prime your face before you apply any makeup. Any primer that has oil control is best. You can find most of these products at any pharmacy in the makeup aisle or at Sephora. Also there are a host of Youtube tutorials to help you once you gather all of your supplies.

4. How cohesive should hair/fashion be with the make-up job?

BRANDI:  Your hair should be natural just like your makeup, and how you are on an average day in the city wearing it down in some pictures and up in others will showcase different features and give different looks for your head shots. Your clothing should be the same, nothing over the top, just relaxed and YOU. If you are going for more sophisticated roles, still pin up your hair in some and wear it down in others. Wear a nice blouse or dress shirt… whatever the role calls for, but remember to be natural in whatever you do.

5. Do you have any recommendations regarding make-up for men in head shots/auditions?

BRANDI:  My suggestion for men is to bring blotting papers to wipe the oil and sweat from their face during the shoot. Translucent powder does wonders for men as well. It just keeps the oil and shine under control. Wear your hair and facial hair according to the roles you are aiming for and be natural with your selections.

Contact Brandi at br_renee@yahoo.com OR 646-351-7832

$50 Make Up Application for Headshots


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