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Industry Tips For Makeup Artists From Beauty Photographer Dorit Thies

Dorit Thies

Los Angeles based beauty photographer Dorit Thies offers some advice in finding the right makeup artist. 

What are the top three qualities you look for in a makeup artist?

“Talent first. Talent comes from within— from the desire to be successful and to have high integrity. I love seeing a portfolio with a good variety of natural ‘no makeup’ looks, visible skin texture and creative trend-related and conceptual editorials. I appreciate very precise work, but also work that is more free, fun and original, which tells me a lot about the artist’s character. Having a blog, an Instagram account and an updated website is essential, as well.

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“Second is experience. I absolutely appreciate artists who are proactive and come up with a conceptual presentation of ideas and looks instead of being told what to do. That’s very much what a beauty editor does and, in order to be successful, one has to wear many hats these days. My decision to hire someone for an assignment is based on recent tear sheets or images, which could also be test-related. Even up-and-coming magazines are now a great way to get your work published, especially if your work is avant-garde. I also like seeing product reviews on their blogs; this tells me that they have authority in their field, which again is very important in the editorial world.

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“Finally, passion. Working as a team means bouncing off of and inspiring each other, and not being fearful of having an opinion and coming up with a great idea. I love collaborating with artists who are fearless and are willing to go big and bold, and who want to take the extra step. If someone wants to work with me, show me what moves you, show me where you want to go, show me what inspires you.”