How to Cold Call to Get Hair & Makeup Jobs

So what is a cold call you might ask? A cold call is a common term used in business that refers to calling people you don’t know in order to find work. I know it may not sound appealing. To some of you it probably sounds down right frightening. I once had an assistant who didn’t even feel comfortable calling up new members of The Hair & Makeup Artist Network to welcome them to the network. She said, “I don’t like those types calls where your are telling them, hi I’m calling you, you don’t know me, but….” It was simply too far outside of her comfort zone to do it. But what if you don’t have any clients and you really don’t know a whole lot of people who can refer you work? What do you do? This is something you will have to face at some point of your career if not many times. We are self-employed. This means we have to hunt down the work. I don’t care if you are just getting out of school or if you have been working for a while. You will have to hustle to get the jobs and it doesn’t stop. Clients come and go. Production companies open and close and production people change jobs everyday. So the job search never stops. Here is how you find the job through cold calling:

1. Decide what type of work you really want to do (film, TV, print, commercial celebrity)
2. Make a list of companies or photographers you would like to work for
3. Call the company and find out who hires for Hair or Makeup (if you already don’t know)
4. Ask the person if they are crewing up for anything in the near future or ask if they have any projects coming up
5. Tell the person you would like to send over a link to your website
6. Only send a link to the page/ pages that are most relevant to the work the company or photographer does (if you can)
7. Ask what is the best way and time to follow up
8. Add this person or company into your contact database (outlook or entourage is really great for this)
9. Make a note to follow up at the time suggested in the conversation
10. Make sure you follow up on a regular basis (this is best either once a month or especially when you have new work to show)

It may sound scary or dull to do but this is how all businesses operate across the globe. If you want the clients you have to be proactive and persistent! If you aren’t willing to do this and the phone isn’t ringing with job offers, you have no one but your self to blame for your lack of employment. You can convince yourself there isn’t any work and blame it on the economy but the truth is that you create your own reality so make the cold calls. You will be glad you did.

Michelle Lee
For more career advice visit: www.hmartistsnetwork.com

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September 13, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. 1 comment.

Do You Wonder How C.G.I. Will Effect The Art Of Makeup?

It seems that C.G.I is taking over the makeup world. You see movies like Avatar, Clash of the Titans, and even the new Star Wars where the creature characters are created in post rather than a makeup effects house. Some people say that special effects makeup is a dying art, others say it is just evolving into a new partnership between the effects artist and the graphic artist. I recently got the pleasure of working with John Slowsky the preproduction Art Director from Lord of the Rings and his vantage point was very interesting. According to Mr. Slowsky, makeup artists are not excluded in the digital creature creation process.

So what exactly is does a preproduction Art Director do? Well, that person is responsible for creating the overall look and feel of the film. They literally create the style guide for the on set Art Director and crew to follow. So essentially, that person is key in the creation process which results in the finished product we see in the theaters. John Slowly is not only the visionary behind the design of films like Van Helsing, The Incredible Hulk, and The Lord of the Rings, he has been around since the dawn of the computer graphics revolution and he is an expert on what role Makeup Artists will play in film making in the world of C.G.I..

Please join us Monday April 19th to meet John Slowsky and find out more about how makeup and computer graphics work together in this new age of film production. For details about this event visit: http://hmartistsnetwork.com/events.

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmartistsnetwork.com

April 9, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Networking, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. Leave a comment.

How Do I Finanically Plan for My Hair or Makeup Career?

When I first started working as a freelancer, I never once considered setting up a budget for my career. I was just like everyone else out of school, I put out resumes and promo pieces using my credit card.

Let’s face it, you have to spend money to make money. Yes, there are a lot of free ways to promote yourself online but that will only take you so far. You still need to have a website, business cards, demo reels, and office supplies for things like your resume, software, a computer, and other tools of the trade, not the mention the cost of networking and having lunch with people. Since most of the work you will get as a freelancer will come from referrals, networking events and “doing lunch” will also be a very important part of your budget. There are many networking organizations out there that hold monthly mixers but they all cost money to attend. My advice is to understand your is income vs. your monthly expenses (rent/ utilities). Once you understand these two things you can:

1. Create a monthly allowance for promotional materials and networking events
2. Open a separate checking account that you use for only business expenses so you don’t overspend

By doing these two things you will never be too broke to advertise your services and you won’t be debt financing your career. So take the time to create financial plan. You will be surprised on how much easier it will be for to get your name out there, and you won’t be stressed out about money while you are doing it.

To create a solid financial plan visit our website and download a financial planning spreadsheet to get started at http://hmartistsnetwork.com/financial-planning

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmartistsnetwork.com

April 8, 2010. Tags: , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. 3 comments.

Do You Know How To Stay Ahead Of The Competition?

The best way to stay ahead of the competition is by understanding a bit about business and keeping your artistry skills current. The most successful artists in our industry are the ones who understand this very basic concept. Never let your successes go to your head to the point where you think you don’t need to learn anything new, and never get too comfortable with your existing clients. Trends change rapidly in the fashion and beauty world and so do the people who hire you. My philosophy is that you always have something to learn from someone else (even your assistant), and you have to stay head of the competition through education. You do do this through product, business, and continuing artistry education. It’s not enough to just be a good artist. You must be a shrewd business person as well. This means that you must know your industry inside and out. By doing this, you will have the respect and loyalty of your clients.

One of The Hair & Makeup Artist Network membership perks is having unlimited artistry and business education through our virtual classroom. We have classes with top artists and industry experts and you can watch them at home. Visit: http://hmartistsnetwork.com/virtual-classroom

Or to learn more about paid membership perks visit: http://hmartistsnetwork.com/artist-signup

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
http://hmartistsnetwork.com

April 6, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. Leave a comment.

Stop Being Lazy & Start Networking!

I’m always amazed at the small turn out of Hair & Makeup Artists at our networking events. As you all my know, we co-hosted the opening night red carpet gala for the Los Angeles Women’s International Film Festival. The event was a huge success! There must have been over 300 people at our event (most of which were filmmakers). Attendees included Sprague Hayden (24), Ileana Douglas, and Director Cheryl Hines. There had to have been over 200 filmmakers presents providing hair & makeup artists with optimum networking opportunity. Still the turn our for hair & makeup artists were low. I really don’t understand the mentality of today’s young professionals. There really seems to be this strange sense of entitlement with our peer group. It’s as if they expect that the work will just fall into their laps, or they believe that getting an agent will solve their problems. Agents certainly help, but there is not substitution for self-promotion. I have talked to agents and top artists alike, and the response is always the same. Agents from both Celestine and The Rex Agency have told me that an agent can only do so much. It would make their job easier if the artist would continue to network. I know an artist at Cloutier Agency who tells me that she needs to self-promote because her agency is only pushing the top artists.

People tell us that they would join our network if they could get work out of it. Our response is always the same. We are not an agency. We are a networking organization. Our job is to provide you with the tools for success by putting you in the same room with producers, directors, filmmakers like Cheryl Hines, and other celebrities so you can promote yourself. However, the work will not come to you unless you show up and participate. Ninety nine percent of all success if just showing up. If you are looking for a hand-out in this business, or if you are sitting around waiting for the phone to ring, you are in the wrong industry. You are self-employed which means it is up to you to bring in the clients. Job referrals will always come from people who know and like you, but that will never happen if you don’t get off the couch and build the relationship yourself. This is not an industry where you can just join a website and the work will start poring in. You must take control over your career and put some real effort into it if you want to be successful. So stop being lazy, stop waiting for the phone to ring, and start networking! For more information on our organization or networking events visit:

http://hmartistsnetwork.com/

http://hmartistsnetwork.com/events

Photos from our Red Carpet Gala:

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
http://hmartistsnetwork.com/

April 2, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Networking, Party Event, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. Leave a comment.

Who’s Fed Up With The Rates???

In my last blog I addressed the lack of professionalism and issues we are facing with our rates dropping. The response I got from my last blog was overwhelming. It seems that everyone is being hit really hard with the recession and everyone is really tired of being taken advantage of. It’s time that we all start to stick together on this subject. I know a lot of people see other artists as competition, but the truth is that we are really are best allies. Most Hair and Makeup Artists work in teams. We hire other artist on as assistants and we refer people we know and trust to jobs we can do. However, the practice of working for free has to stop. The day that the people hiring can’t find a soul in this town to work for free is the day we all get paid. I don’t know of any other profession that excepts this practice outside of an internship or apprentice programs. Our time, expertise, and education is worth something. Not only do other professions get paid for their time, they also have professional associations they belong to. So what exactly is an association? An association is a group of people seeking to further a particular profession, the interests of individuals engaged in that profession, and the public interest. It creates a sense of community and standards of excellence for the people in that industry. Hair & Makeup Artists have the union and that’s great if you want to work in film and television, but what happens to the rest of us who are not in the union?

The Hair & Makeup Artist Network was designed to provide networking opportunities, business education (such as rate negotiation), and business resources to self-employed artists. It is also designed to create industry standards in our profession and give everyone a voice. There is power in numbers and its up to us to band together in order for us to get treated like the professionals we are. HMAN is not another social networking website or facebook fan page. We are an association and we want your voice to be heard but this will not happen if you don’t participate. So contact us, email us, and get involved with what we are doing. We want to standardize the rates in our industry so that everyone will get paid a fair wage. Stop being afraid to say “no” to a job. Good negotiation happens when you are willing to walk away based on principle. Help us create better professional standards. Join our network and our cause by visiting www.hmartistsnetwork.com.

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmartistsnetwork.com

March 12, 2010. Tags: , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. 1 comment.

What Happened To Ethics In Our Industry?

I was speaking to a forty year veteran makeup artist sometime ago and he brought up a valid point. He said that there was a time when you were able to do business in the entertainment industry on a hand shake. It really seems the days of ethical behavior has really gone out the window and dog-eat-dog has taken its place. I think it’s really is a sad day when you feel like you can trust anyone. I know things are tough right now, and everyone is in survival mode, but does that mean that you have to screw other people over just to get ahead? One of the biggest issues that that has been raised is the practice of severely under cutting the rates of other artists. There has been a lot of talk about how the newest generation of hair and makeup artists have been under cutting the veteran makeup artists rates so low that they can’t seem to make a decent wage anymore. I know the makeup and hair schools are pumping out new people into the work force every day. I realize that the new people just want to get their foot in the door, but you need to think about who you are hurting in the long run. It’s really important for the new generation to realize that when you grossly under bid for a job, or when you’re afraid to negotiate a higher rate, you are driving the rate down. We the experienced artists, are trying really hard to piece together a decent middle class lifestyle, and that won’t happen for anyone if the new people keep agreeing to work for $100 or for free. The union had the right idea from the beginning, keep the union rates standard and don’t go below that amount. They understood something very basic, when one person works for less then slowly everyone else will too. If this practice keeps up then very soon from now, there won’t be an industry for us to make a living from. It will all just be a cute hobby.

Years ago, when I worked in Washington DC, the makeup artists there all had set rate that everyone adhered to. It was considered to be a huge “no-no” to undercut someone because they wanted to keep the wages at a high standard. We live in Los Angeles here where union is king, but more and more of the work is coming from non-union. It astounds me that there really aren’t any standard non-union rates here. When I moved here, I asked a person who runs a well know workshop what the going rates were in Los Angeles. To my surprise she told me, “its whatever the market will bare.” I’m sorry but that is an unacceptable answer! Now we are in a recession and the “market” or producers will bare $100 for a day. I don’t know about you, but my rent won’t be covered on that day rate! I’m asking you to think long and hard about what you bid for a job and to do your homework before you start quoting numbers. If you don’t know what the going rate is for your craft then call a few other artists or a few local agencies. But please stop working for bare minimum! We must stick together on this issue if we want to keep making a living at our craft. I can guarantee you the day that the standard is $250 a day for 14 hours the producers will get very comfortable keeping it there.

For more information about rate negotiation watch our virtual classroom video on “Negotiating Rates With Cloutier Agency”: http://www.hmartistsnetwork.com/video_list

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmartistsnetwork.com

March 9, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. 1 comment.

Reinvent Yourself In 2010

I was on set this morning and the caterer all of people made a very valid point about creating an image in Hollywood. I know that it may sound strange that the caterer was handing out advice on self-image, but she used to manage top recording artists in her early days in Hollywood. As the caterer and I talked, she gently pointed out how she was surprised I was the makeup artist for the shoot because I was “dressed down”. She said, “she usually sees the celebrity makeup artists dressed like a million bucks.” I could have take offense if I didn’t already know that she was right. For as long as I have been in Los Angeles I have been dressing for comfort and not for style. I guess it has been a combination of being lazy and heavily influenced by my super casual surroundings. In Hollywood, people wear jeans and flip flops every where they go! It astounds me that people show up to movie premieres wearing jeans rather than a dress. Where did the glamor go in Hollywood? I guess I can’t really talk because I have been doing what everyone else has been doing. I forget that if you want to work with the celebrities and their people you have to also look the part. It was suggested to me that I take sometime in 2010 to reinvent myself and my image if I want to attract better clients. Now, I never show up looking like what the cat dragged in but I do dress for comfort. I was told that I should take some time add some more style to my wardrobe and add some highlights to my hair. It may sound strange, but this is Los Angeles where image is everything. And if you want to run with the movers and shakers, you have to look like them as well. It may sound crazy but I know this personal Makeup Artist for a well know dance show. She dresses to the nines every time I see her. Her hair is perfect and she always looks hot, but more importantly she works all the time! So maybe there is something to be said about creating an image for yourself by the way you show up dressed to work. It certainly is something to consider when you are out networking in this town. So I suggest we take the artist manager turned caterers advice and reinvent ourselves in 2010. Think about where you want your career to be and project an image that will make you stand out. After all your image is your brand!

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
http://www.hmartistsnetwork.com

February 18, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Networking, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. 1 comment.

Are You Spending Too Much Money On Your Portfolio?

I just did a presentation today for the a local beauty college in Los Angeles and many questions came up about building your portfolio. One of the main points I addressed was that building your portfolio shouldn’t be costly to you. Yes, you will need to spend some money when building your book, but you should still be smart about how your money is spent. In the beginning, I would use photo labs to print photos for my portfolio. Each custom photo was between $75 and $100! The most frustrating thing was that I would very quickly replace the photos with better ones. That meant I was wasting a lot of money. It was then that I realized my money would be much better spent investing in an Apple computer, Photoshop, and a large format color printer. By doing this I could customize the photos myself and print them straight off the computer. So, when it came time to replace the photograph, I had only spent a couple of dollars. An Apple computer costs between $1500-$1700. Large format Epsom ink jet printers cost around $500 and Photoshop can cost around $600. Today, large format ink jet printers can produce amazing photos. I know it might seem like a lot of money up front, but you will be saving yourself thousands of dollars in the long run. Imagine if you are testing every week and replacing old photos with new ones twice a week. Then imagine it taking you two years to build your portfolio. How much money do you think you would have spent then? There is something to be said about being penny wise pound foolish. So be smart and make the investment. You will have saved yourself so much time and money in the long run. Your career is an investment in your future.

For more career information and tips go to www.hmartistsnetwork.com

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmartistsnetwork.com

February 10, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. Leave a comment.

Do You Know Who Hires For Hair & Makeup?

Most people who have worked in the entertainment industry a while definitely know who to send their resume to. However, I recently noticed in my blog search someone was inquiring on “who hires for hair and makeup?” So for this reason, I’m going to address this issue. Who hires freelance hair and makeup artists can vary widely depending upon budget and the medium you are working in. Here is the break down:

Print:
1. Most of the time it will be the photographer who will hire you, but sometimes it will be the art director or another hair or makeup artist.
2. If you are working with a celebrity, the celebrity’s publicist or “people” will hire you.
3. Catalogue on occasion might be the publicity firm or department but most of the time it will the photographer
4. Sometime the designer will hire you directly
5. In magazines sometimes it could be the magazine editor but most of the time the photographer will hire you

Bridal:
1. Bride
2. Wedding Planner
3. Salon
4. Photographer referral

Commercial/Music Video:
1. Makeup or Hair Artist (you assisting)
2. Director requests you
3. Producer
4. Art Director
5. Production Coordinator
6. Production Manager
7. The Music Label or Management Group
8. The Talent Requesting You

Film/Television:
Much of the time it will be the same as commercial and music video, but you can also submit to the VP or Head of Production

Music Tours:

Sometimes the manager of the artist, but most of the time it will be the tour manager.

As you can see, its really important to do your home work when promoting yourself. Make sure you don’t waste your time by sending your portfolio/resume to the wrong person. In my experience, if you don’t ask the right questions about who hires for a particular project, you could end up following up with the wrong person and no one will tell you otherwise. Make sure you ask a lot of questions about who hires when calling a production company. But more than likely, you are going to have to target specific directors, producers, and department heads that you want to work with. It is then your job to find a way to contact them, network, and build a relationship with that person.

For more information on this topic watch our virtual classroom video on “Creating A Hair or Makeup Portfolio With Cloutier Agency” http://www.hmartistsnetwork.com/client.php?action=add&id=2

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick
www.hmaristsnetwork.com

February 4, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Marketing, Networking, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist. Leave a comment.

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