For this week's 'Makeup Artist Chat' we had the pleasure of speaking with DeShawn Hatcher. DeShawn is a makeup artist from Brooklyn, New York, who has seen her career flourish over the last 12 years thanks to her dedication and enthusiasm for the industry. She has been the key makeup artist for several Mercedes Benz Fashion Week shows, Beauty Director for Cotton's 24 Hour Runway Show, and worked with stunning celebrities such as Annette Bening, Tom Cruise, and Beyonce, just to name a few.
We asked for her thoughts on the best advice she ever received, finding inspiration, makeup trends and so much more. Enjoy!
When did you have your "Ah Ha" moment, knowing that you wanted to be a makeup artist?
When I looked at Bette Davis and watched all of my favorite old movies, and later saw Kevyn Aucoin's book, “Making Faces.” I knew it was possible to be a makeup artist after seeing that book. It took me about 3 more years to get up the courage to leave my corporate job behind and pursue my dream of being a makeup artist.
What was your first gig as a makeup artist?
A low budget music video. They still owe me money! LOL
What was the best advice you ever got from another makeup artist? Who was the artist?
I have two really. The first one actually came from a photographer, Fadil Berisha. I wrote about this on my blog deshawnlovesmakeup.com. He told me to stop undervaluing my services and ask for what they were truly worth. That was a very powerful lesson.
When I moved over to beauty and starting doing well, some folks were just nasty to me. I just couldn't understand what I had done to them. It really bothered me, because the last thing you want to do when you're a newbie is upset folks. So, the other powerful advice was to stop listening to the haters, and stop letting them block me from moving forward. Their insecure issues had nothing to do with me at all. That was really powerful for me. It freed me to just be me, and allowed me to move forward. That came from the amazing Mary Erickson. After she told me that, I couldn’t care less about them, and kept my eye on being the best makeup artists I could be. INVALUABLE!
Which elements of your job do you like the most? Print, fashion, TV, etc.?
Wow, that's hard! For me they all have things in them I absolutely love. Any day I get to pick up my brush is the best part of my job, and I don't care what I'm doing. Fashion is great for the creative aspect; your brain can explode with creativity. For TV I love how technical everything has to be. I always learn so much about lighting, sound and video when working in TV—it’s always a lesson.
Which do you prefer, creating far out looks or keeping things classic and clean? Why?
I do love funky makeup! I love color and doing creative makeup, BUT what I really love is clean makeup. From makeup that looks fresh all the way to red carpet. People think its so hard to do the out of this world stuff, but for me doing a super clean base on someone who has bad skin is a skill all its own. I have spent years practicing to be able to do clean makeup on everyone—male, female, and on all (and I mean all) ethnicities.
Where do you find your inspiration?
I find inspiration in everything! Nature, fashion, the city and trees (I really do love trees). I look at things and then my mind flips to “Hmm, how could I use that in my work?”
Can today's hot makeup trends apply to all types of makeup jobs?
Not really… Let's take the "on fleek" eyebrows. Where is that going? And how about the overdone contour? Ahhh-Hell NO. Unfortunately, trendy doesn't always translate to the world of a professional makeup artist. Now if you were to say classic, like a beautiful red lip, or a winged eye (not the ‘on fleek’ winged eye) then yes, that can translate to so many areas. Those are timeless.
What three items are in your kit at all times?
How do you unwind after a long day on set? Do you have a favorite thing you do or place you go?
I never unwind! (Hahaha I really don't.) Our hours are so wacky that I don't unwind like I did when I was a part of corporate America. I come home, clean my kit, chill with the boyfriend and start working on new the ideas I have in my mind to help my fabulous artists.
You have had an admirable career. What are your personal highlights?
Being the Beauty Director and designer of a runway show that is now in the Guinness Book of World Records, writing "Assisting Rules! The Ultimate Guide to Assisting Makeup Artists and Hairstylists in Beauty Fashion and Print," being Creative Director for the now-defunct Nixie Cosmetic 07 Ad Campaign and getting my first major cover.
The day I got the Zink Magazine cover, I was in a trailer working on location and when I got the text. I ran through the trailer like three times, saying, “yes yes yes hahahaha!” They thought I was nuts, but when I told everyone what happened they were all so happy for me! But, my all time favorite highlight is being a mentor, helping other artists and watching them grow into amazing makeup artists on their own. There's so much more, but those are things that pop into my head.
If you would like to learn more about DeShawn and her fabulous career, please visit her website at www.deshawnlovesmakeup.com . Or click on the video below and subscribe to her YouTube channel.