Let’s be real here. I’m a complete planner addict and picking out a new diary each year really does bring me true joy! (Stationery will be the death of me one day…). As the years go by though, I’m thinking a lot more about how to plan my life in the most functional and efficient way, without the pretty stickers and gel pens. My current planner really has become my go-to for keeping track of my appointments and keeping to-do lists, but I’m always excited to see what else is out there.
Recently, I came across MUA Alisha Baijounas on Instagram and saw that she was in the process of launching a planner for makeup artists (which you can buy NOW!). It was something really new and unique, and I loved that it was also filled with some extremely important freelance information. I signed up and bought a copy as soon as the pre-orders started. I couldn’t help myself and had to get in touch with Alisha to learn more about the birth of her planner and her experiences working in Film and TV.
The initial idea for the planner was sparked from her previous experiences with diaries and schedules. “I spent a period of my life as a sales and education executive for beauty brands while freelancing. I would operate out of three planners; a daily revenue sheet, a standard organizer, and a blank business ledger that I customized.”
“I started scribbling an idea in the Good Notes app for an all in one planner to make for myself and showed it to a friend. Her reaction brought it to life: “Wow, I would totally love something like that for my business. I want one too!”
Titled ‘The Freelancer: Makeup Artist Edition’, it’s a 12-month daily planner to keep yourself organised as well as your business. Remember, being a makeup artist IS a business and it’s great when there’s tools out there to help you stay on top of that!
The grunge design of the planner was a last-minute change that differed completely from the original design. “It started out more romantic looking, but it didn’t feel like my style (a little more rough around the edges). I wanted it to feel unisex and industry neutral so that anyone from bridal makeup to special effects would be happy to use it.”
“A week before I had to turn in the final copy to my printer (and while designing the color wheel page) – it hit me. I changed all the romantic elements to grungy graphics and paint splatter. Something about drawing out the formula for mixing color reminded me of a makeup covered palette.”
I think this is a fantastic resource for makeup artists and Alisha had always intended to create something more than just a diary. “This planner is so many things; an on-going educational support system, a system for business cost control, a guide to understanding your business costs and rate setting, as well as a 24-hour appointment book. It’s also got a super-loaded useful information section. Not every artist will need every page, but there’s something for every artist. I’ve even included an inventory list to keep track of expired product and back-stock. My favorite part is the envelope on the back cover for stashing receipts, thank you cards, or even business cards.”
I was eager to know how Alisha got her start in the industry and how she ended up becoming a makeup artist. “I went to a performing arts high school, and as an elective, they offered a production and makeup design class. Our makeup design project was A Mid Summer Nights Dream, and I loved doing those designs.”
“My college English teacher asked us to research and write an essay about any job in the world we wanted. I thought “makeup was fun, that’s probably not a real job, but I’ll write about it.” It was real. I started buying books and emailing any working makeup artists I could find online. Artists weren’t as visible in 2003 as they are now with Social Media.”
The one artist who wrote back to her was Bobby Weiner (Bloody Mary). “Her makeup line was carried in Halloween stores and Hot Topic, and she did a ton of moulage makeup for the military, as well as film work. She told me to go to makeup school and encouraged me to chase this new dream I had. I dropped out of college, went to makeup school, and have been working in makeup ever since.”
Like many of us, Alisha worked on student films at the start to gain connections. “An artist I met right after school needed a replacement on a UCLA student film, and I kept getting rotated through the same group for a few months. I gathered a handful of IMDB credits before I finally landed my first feature.”
“I find it’s always other artists who will open doors for you.”
“My favorite job was getting to do an Uncle Sam character makeup for Season 2 of Sarah Silverman’s ‘I Love You, America.’ We had to make a realistic version of the famous American propaganda poster. No one on set had any idea that half of his face was foam and silicone pieces (thank you, RBFX), which meant we did a great job. The crew at Hulu was also incredible and so much fun to work with. I’ve also loved mentoring growing artists and giving the same advice Bloody Mary once gave me. We’re all in this together.”
For newer artists eager to get into the industry, her advice is simple. “Don’t buy everything you are told is “amazing” unless it’s something you absolutely need. If it doesn’t add immediate value to the service you are providing, then you don’t need it. It will expire long before you make that $60 eyeshadow palette worth it.”
Be kind, be respectful, and be self-aware. You never know who’s watching. You never know where your next job will come from.
The Makeup Artist Planner is available to buy NOW online. I’ve just received mine and can’t wait to try it out on my next job. The paper is thick and high quality and I love the cute page marker that comes with it. However, this is not for the faint-hearted. The Makeup Artist Planner is hefty and bursting at the seams with business-related trackers and information, just as it should be. How might you use it to keep organised?
That’s all she wrote,
(All opinions are my own. This post is not sponsored.)