After working in this industry for such a long time, you would think I would get a bit complacent about things, but I never do. I still love to receive thank-you letters and feedback from the lovely people I have the pleasure of meeting and working with. I have a huge folder full of thank-you letters and they always bring a tear to my eye when I read how much they appreciate what I do for them on their special day. I also think that you never stop learning. I am constanty striving to do the best I can for people, buying in the best make-up and moving with the times.
I do have a Facebook page, where people can leave reviews and you are more than welcome to leave a review on there if I have assisted you. The link is – https://www.facebook.com/TinaBrocklebankMUA There are already countless reviews, which I am very proud of. I have worked extremely hard over the past 20 odd years, and even more so to gain an excellent reputation as “the best Make-up artist in the Lincolnshire area.” That is something I used to strive for and I am very proud to say that many people now say that of me. I have worked so hard over the years and I am proud to say that I have achieved all I want to achieve. I really would just like to maintain that now.
However, as you get older you do get wiser and the industry has changed dramatically since I first started out, which of course, is inevitable. I believe I can officially call myself a Make-up artist – without sounding pretentious or arrogant – but to be a Make-up artist you really do have to have a sound knowledge in art, it is not just about applying a bit of lipstick believe you and me! I think with any profession, you really do need to earn the right to call yourself something. For example, to be a photographer it does not simply mean taking any old photograph! It takes years of training and working. I guess what I am getting at is that the new generation of “Make-up artist”s have now begun to emerge. When I moved back to Lincolnshire, there was not even a category in the Yellow pages for Make-up artist! I wanted to give ladies in Lincolnshire that experience of having their own professional make-up artist using high-end cosmetics, which they did not have access to. Now, there seems to be a lot of people who have worked on beauty counters or trained in Beauty therapy calling themselves a Make-up artist…and to be honest that really does wind me up!! Also, with technology a lot of these people now get their work airbrushed – something which was not even really invented when I started out. That is how skilled you needed to be, we would never even consider someone retouching our work! it had to be that perfect!…and I still maintain that level of professionalism now, I am such a perfectionist, but it is the only way to be don’t you think?! I do find myself getting copied quite a lot too these days, (or people attempting to.) They say copying is the highest form of flattery…I am not so sure! It does show a lack of creativity.
I myself am inspired by lots of things, including other Make-up artists, I love Alex Box, (who is from Grimsby I must add…go Alex!) Equally, I also admire Pixiwoos’ work (Nic and Sam Chapman), Polly Osmond, (who I went to college with and is awesome), Clayre Hemmings, Lisa Eldridge, Rae Morris, Kevyn Aucoin, Bobbi Brown, Charlotte Tilbury, etc…but I would not dream of copying their work, I would try and make it my own…but I know nothing is original, to quote Jim Jarmusch “Its not where you take things from its where you take them to.”! Its when people have no creativity of their own, now that really is upsetting from an artist point of view and business owner.
Also, to be a good make-up artist I think you need to be proficient in a wide range of make-up, not just one type of make-up. As you can see from my portfolio I have a love of body painting, (yes, not that popular in Lincolnshire I know! but it does come in handy now and again!) So, whilst I love doing wedding/bridal make-up it is very specialised and is really not an easy option at all. You really do need lots of experience in this field to be confident, especially when it is going to be the most special day in someones’ life! Also, lets not forget the safe hygiene practices that need to be demonstrated when working as a Professional make-up artist. I am constantly cleaning my make-up kit, and that means sterilizing everything – eyeshadows, lipsticks, ensuring lip pencils are sharpened with a clean sharpener, etc. Also, make-up brushes – I pride myself on my clean make-up brushes…if you ever have a “Make-up artist” that uses the wand from out of a mascara tube directly on you….RUN!! (and no double-dipping either!) These are all second-nature practices for the Professional make-up artist and sets us apart from the amateurs…and this reason, aswell as others, demonstrate why we are worth every penny that we charge.
I also love doing fashion/photographic make-up too, afterall, I was trained at the London College of Fashion and I do love to diversify and also stretch myself. I was lucky enough to be taught by the wonderful Julia Townend (London based make-up and body artist), and also Sheelagh Wells, (Make-up designer and Doctor Who Make-up artist, she was also awarded a BAFTA.)
I jump at any opportunities that come my way and I love doing anything related to make-up, (I also still love drawing.) Most recently I have worked with some local fantastic photographers, (Tracy Conway-Smith and James Green) and I really love working with these guys, they are fun to be around and their work is amazing. They also trust me enough to let me loose creatively!
I also run make-up artist workshops and a lovely lady came all the way from Suffolk to train with me, (she had also trained with Pixiwoo.)
And so…I shall carry on doing what I do best. I love my job…how many people can say that? it is definitely not a glamorous job by any means, it is hard work too!
I am still writing my regular column for the Journal magazine, which I love. I never tire of harping on about make-up! I am constantly looking at make-up tutorials, (I do keep in touch with Samantha Chapman from time to time of Pixiwoo/Real techniques fame. Sam is also the wonderful Maggie Hunts’ niece, who I am lucky enough to be in touch with too, and I respect her work and experience very much too.) It is always a huge compliment when someone like her acknowledges my work, and she has been known to “like” my work on Facebook! Although, we all like compliments don’t we, and I love it when indeed anyone likes my work!
If there is anything I can help you with make-up wise or if there is something you would like me to write about in my column, please get in touch! I am still busy with make-up trials and make-up lessons at the moment. I also have a few shoots lined up at the wonderful Healing Manor (watch this space.)
Anyway, enough ranting for now! thank-you for reading. Tina xxx
World cup body painting by Tina Brocklebank Make-up artist