Dani Fonseca, educator of airbrush make-up and body art and professional make-up artist
What would be your Definition of a Makeup Artist?
A makeup artist is a problem solver, a manifester of vision, and a personality specialist. A true makeup artist can both bring out the true essence of a person or character in the subtlety of beauty, or the transformation of shapes and forms. Either way a makeup artist is a story teller without words, but through the image of people.
Do you think there is a difference between a general makeup artist and a Cinema make-up artist?
A Cinema makeup artist must always think of a larger picture, both litterally and figuratively. Their job is a part in a larger story where their are so many pieces that create the final product. The cinema makeup artists must be a designer, but a team player, and must connect and communicate with everyone around them so his or her job is in sync with that larger story. The cinema makeup artist must always think ten steps ahead, yet be prepared to approach any problem that may arise unexpectedly. The cinema makeup artist must consider their success as the success of the picture, not just just their makeup.
What brought you to this industry? What are you the most found of in this industry, is it relationships with actors, directors, producers, the transformation that you can operate on characters, …?
Makeup artistry was a destined accident for me… it had called to me quietly throughout my young life through theater, and being inspired by films I had watched. I went to school for fine art, drawing and painting, and yet found myself again working in the theater. The ability to tell stories that envelop people always got me excited. Whether you were taking someone to another world in history or fiction, or you were taking them to a raw reality that they themselves had not allowed themselves to go… relating to others by telling stories to inspire them was always apart of what I wanted to do. Whether I am working one on one with a client or on several people for a large production I am always a channel for someone’s story to come through. I also get to work with other amazing creative professionals to create a project that will hopefully touch and inpire others, and that is something I am very proud of.
What are the basic requirements to be a makeup artist in the movie industry?
In the US, you need to be in a UNION for makeup and hair to work in film consistently. I am not in the union, yet I have had the opportunity to work on many amazing music video projects as well as some amazing independant films, and tv shows. As far as I have experienced, you need to be patient, and committed to your craft. You need to be knowledgeable on most time periods, style movements, and be able to thoroughly research references. You need to be able to work on a team, collaborate ideas, and be aware of your timing that it takes to complete your job. You need to know lighting, and all products and materials that will not only get a certain effect, but with stand hours of wear. You need to be what we in the US call a “MacGyver” (based on a tv show character that had the ability to make anything out of whatever he had available to him at the time).
What are the most proud of in your career?
I am most proud of the ability to work through challenges with the support of my team and my community. The career of a makeup artist is not easy to be successful in but worth it if you put the time in, contribute everything you have got, keep finding ways to be passionate, and be responsible and work in integrity for the sake of yourself and for others. I am still growing my career and business everyday, and look forward to the “challenges” that make this career always exciting.
Some MUA in USA and in Europe say that MUA are not enough recognized in the industry, do you agree?
I think there should be more education or shows out there that illustrate the amount of work it takes to work on a film, or create a character and be consistent with it. Then perhaps people will understand why we should be recognized more. But even MUAs that work with célébrités on their multitude of looks (and personnalités)...those people should be recognized for as well… But did we get into this industry to be recognized.? Or did we get into this industry to do work we love? Sometimes its just enough for be to get one accelade from a peer because I know they know what it took to create something. Personally I do not need the recognition to know I did something great, but I could see why others do.
What is your first impression of our TV and Cinema Academy project?
As always I am proud to be in relationship with a company that continues not only to grow in products that cater to our industry, but grow in its commitment to educating ARTISTS across the world. I am an artist and an educator and I stand firm that both are equally important, no matter what level you are at. So when I heard about the new Film and TV Academy, I was not only excited, but not surprised, and felt much gratitude that I have been asked to be apart of it.