Today I had the opportunity to go to LA and take part in a celebrity photo shoot at one of the Smashbox Studios in West Hollywood. It was such a great experience and honor! Most people however dont really understand the work that is involved in a photo shoot. From lighting, to cameras, to hiring the right photographers, beauty team made up of Hair, Makeup, and wardrobe, so many details go into making the shoot run smoothly.
I got to experience this all first hand. My call time was 5:45 am. When I arrived I was given 30 minutes to set up my station, make sure that I had all the makeup tools & supplies I needed, make sure my brushes were sanitized,and that I was ready to go. (Hair and makeup are essential during photo shoots, you only have one time to get the look right, then the rest is just reapplying and touching up. Sometimes you even have 2,3, 4, or more looks to apply, and making sure you are on your A game is essential.)First the peron or persons being shot arrive on set. They are immediately greeted from the production team, then they go right over to wardrobe. This is where they make sure that the clothes they have picked out for the shoot ahead of time have properly been fitted and are still the clothing of choice, or if its a last minute shoot, this is when they pic out what they are wearing. Next they go over to hair, this is for people who need to have their hair set for when its time to actually do it. As their hair is setting they then usually get into the makeup chair. Once that is finished with, its back into hair to finish the look, then wardrobe, and then its time to shoot!!!
My job at this point becomes the touch up girl ! I have to make sure that the makeup is highlighted correctly for the lighting, and which ever way the person being shot turns, I have to make sure that its picking up the right colors. Being under so much lighting, can also cause the skin to look shiny or the person being shot may be sweating a little. So I have to always be on my toes looking out for this. The hair team has their responsibilities during this time as well. Once they think they got the right shot, its then back in the chair for makeup retouch, hair retouch, and then wardrobe change. At this point sometimes they want to do a completely different look. So it starts from square one again, except at this point, the makeup artist has to remove the makeup and start over ! Aside from making the person that is being shot look the way they do, so much more goes into a smooth running photo shoot. You have the production team, the photographers, the managers, the PR people, the lighting people, the studio set team, etc. I know that many people see magazine covers and are not really aware of all it takes to get that person looking that way and that perfect shot, & it can take hours to get the correct one. I dont think many people realize how much it entails. So Im posting about it to educate a little more.
I have worked on photo shoots in the past, but this one was not only an honor to be apart of but extra special because I was there on behalf of one of the companies that has helped make me into the makeup artist I am today and continuing to become. If you would like to learn more about the Smashbox Studios here in LA & Boston please go to www.smashboxstudios.com You can also check out some of the famous shoots that have taken place in their studios.