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Jessica Jean Myers
I’ll be honest I really lucked into my first editorials. Anyone who has read my blog from the start knows that my excellent friend and photographer Todd Anthony Tyler took a huge chance on me. He was visiting his family outside Toronto (he lives in Shanghai) and he was planning on shooting a few editorials while in Canada. He put an ad out on Craigslist of all things searching for a makeup artist and I was 6 mths out of school and i responded. We totally clicked and shot 2 editorials together some tips for healthy hair while he was visiting which led to me going to Shanghai to live/work and the remaining is history. That of course is not the way it usually ends up working for many MUAs.
I’m not going to lie it usually takes a long time like 1 to 2 yrs before an MUA can get some tear sheets for their book. That means numerous testing w/ photographers, building your portfolio till it is adequate to work w/ better photographers, testing w/ those photographers and hopefully after it’s all said and done you may get the prospect to work w/ a terrific team that may get something published.
The positive thing is that there are much more opportunities to get things published nowadays. W/ all the net magazines popping up all the time there are quite a lot of great opportunities for newer photographers, MUAs, stylists to get their name out there. The problem is sifting through all of the crap to search out places that are actually worth submitting to. Not all tears are created equal! If you wish to do Fashion and also you see an ad for a photographer in search of a free makeup artist for a submission shoot and the theme is Glamour or Alternative then that shoot even if it is published is perhaps kind of useless to you b/c guess what…it cannot really go in your FASHION portfolio…remember that when accepting submission shoots. I might only do Glamour or Alternative editorials in the event that they were paid b/c otherwise they are of no use to me…remember how I discussed before to only accept TF* shoots that will help your book…the same sort of holds true for this too.
Also a number of times nowadays newbie/amateur photographers throw out the statement doing a shoot for submission in hopes that they will attract some good talent to the shoot. It takes an entire team to create a gorgeous shoot and the shoot is just nearly as good as your weakest link. Just b/c a photographer says they will submit the shoot doesn’t suggest it’ll be picked up by anyone so remember of that before you possibly waste your day. Be certain you know the facts before you comply with shoot similar to you’ll for any creative you were planning on getting involved with.
Do you just like the photographers work and does it compare to things you see in magazines In case you don’t love his/her work or it is not good it probably will not get picked up regardless of how well you do the makeup/hair that day. If it is a fashion shoot is there a stylist involved and how much connections do they should good brands I can not stress this enough no matter how great your makeup looks and the way great the photography looks if it’s styled using only H&M clothes it has a very small chance of getting picked up. A good stylist w/ good clothing connections is an invaluable asset to any shoot…I have been on several shoots where the styling either made or blew the shoot. I give all of the props on the planet to the stylists out there b/c their job is difficult and good stylists are GOLD! Also remember the model must be an agency model or at the very least agency standard so be sure that the photographer you’re working w/ works w/ agency models. Btw the photographer is the one accountable for submitting the story. We are able to suggest magazines for them to submit to but they hold the rights to the pics so it’s as much as them to do the submitting.
So now let’s pretend that you’ve got all those elements together it’s important to remember that Fashion editorials are shot usually several mths upfront. Therefore you could have to make sure the shoot is for the appropriate season. Do not shoot a Summer story in May…all of the Summer submission deadlines have already passed. Try to be shooting Fall at that time. If you’re working w/ a good photographer they need to know this but still it sometimes needs reminding b/c sometimes photographers can get very busy w/ things and retouching can get placed on the back burner after which unfortunately if you aren’t shooting it far enough prematurely the due date for submissions will pass and the story can have a hard time finding a house 🙁 (I’ve had this happen on a few occasions and it’s always sad esp. when the shoot is nice but just too late).
Also a very important thing for newbie MUAs to recollect – Editorial pays little to nil! You won’t get rich doing editorial work! The money is in commercial work! You recognize those ads you see on the subway, magazines, tv…that is where the true money comes from! But editorials let us get our creative juices flowing and they assist build our books in order that we will get those lucrative commercial contracts 🙂
I should also mention there are other ways to get your work in magazines. You can do a shoot w/ a team and the photographer can submit it to various magazines hoping that one will pick it up…usually you’ll do the sort of shoot totally free. Otherwise you could also be part of a team that has been commissioned to do an editorial for a magazine. When you are starting out you’ll probably have more luck w/ the submission then the commission side of things. Truthfully, most of my commissioned (paid) work for magazines came from when I was living in Shanghai. I believe up to now I’ve only been paid once by a North American magazine…but I’m still pretty new to the sport 😉 But that being said doing those so called “free” editorials can lead to a variety of PAID work b/c they really help build your portfolio…so like I’ve said before you are not really working for free then!
A way that I make editorials slightly more lucrative for myself is I be certain that to credit cosmetic companies whenever possible. If it is a Beauty story it is simple b/c the story will require you to offer a full credit list for each look and you’ll later show that editorial to cosmetic companies who will hopefully give you gratis (free product) for the credit mention. I also frequently mention cosmetic companies I use in Fashion editorials ie. Makeup & Hair Jessica Jean Myers using Yaby Cosmetics (I exploit quite a lot of Yaby Cosmetics lol). So if the editorial is robust and in a decent publication you can get some gratis from generous makeup companies which helps replenish your kit therefore saving you money…so technically it is like getting paid for an editorial 😉
Hope that answers some questions about magazine submissions 🙂 For fun I’ve included a number of images from MY first published editorial…man I’ve come a good distance in 2.5 yrs! Good thing there have been a number of hats b/c my hair skills have DEFINITELY improved an insane amount lol! I won’t even go into how long it actually took me to do a clean red lip b/c my hands were shaking lol. That being said I still think it’s a fairly cool shoot..the placement was amazing! This was shot Oct 07 I believe.
some tips for healthy hair