Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Let's Hear It for MUAs!

When shooting glamour, beauty, fashion, any of that sort of stuff, credit for the pics usually goes first to the photographer, next to the model, and finally to others who may have been involved in the creation of the images, assuming those others get any credit at all.

I'm often guilty of not providing credits to those others who contributed. It's not that I don't value their contributions -- I do! -- but later on when I'm sharing my images I often neglect or forget to credit them.  Plus, given my more recent status as a bonafide geezer, my memory doesn't always work so well so I might not remember who did what; you know, as in the names of the people who did whatever they did on one set or with one model or another.

Generally speaking, the "others" who contribute most to the majority of my pics are the makeup artists (MUAs) who performed their magic on the models I've shot. I've not always had an MUA present on all the sets or with all the modlels I've worked on/with and there certainly are more than a few models who are quite good at applying their own makeup. For the most part, though, when an MUA is on the set my photos will be noticeably improved.

MUA Jennifer J. doing a quick touch-up on a fashion shoot I worked
My photos aren't simply improved because of an MUA's skill, although that's a big part of it, but also because having an MUA says something to the models-- something silent yet positive. Having an MUA generally makes models feel better about themselves, more confident and special.

When I'm shooting, my mouth is often running at high speed, delivering one esteem-building compliment after another. It's rote and repetitive and often comes off as anything but genuinely sincere -- although I try my best to make it all sound sincere -- yet models still want to hear it, genuine and sincere or not.  But even all that on-set ass-kissing doesn't necessarily or automatically trump the positive impact of having an MUA on the set.

If you're a professional pretty girl shooter, or perhaps a hobbyist or something in between the two, I highly recommend engaging an MUA for your shoots whenever possible or practical. Your images will not only be improved simply because a good MUA will make your alluring models even more  alluring, they will be improved because having an MUA says something positive to the models. Something silent yet still loud and clear.

The pretty girl at the top -- featured before makeup, after makeup, and a production image -- is Penthouse Pet, Tori Black. The before/after pics are cell phone snaps taken by the MUA. Tori is certainly plenty cute without the makeup but she's devastatingly sexy and gorgeous after sitting in the chair. The MUA who performed the magic was Melissa Murphy, a most excellent MUA whom I've worked with more than a few times. CLICK HERE for an article from the Huffington Post about Melissa's on-set habit of snapping before and after pics of the models she's worked with. After watching the video, you'll definitely understand the value of an MUA.

No comments: