Makeup artists are cosmetic specialists who are responsible for enhancing facial aesthetics through makeup, they use their knowledge of colour palettes, design styles, trends and aesthetics to make imagination a reality. Anyone who overlooks the importance of makeup artists in creative industries, events and everyday life, does a disservice to their own knowledge. In this part of The Art of Beauty series, we had a conversation with a burgeoning makeup artist, Edima Willie, we talked about beginning her creative journey, the learning curve, her style, and inspirations.
Read our conversation with Edima Willie (@kirmxvhh) below
So firstly, how long have you been creating with makeup? Personally & Professionally
Edima Willie: Personally, I’d say lockdown 2020 is when I fully delved into the creative side of makeup, but by 2019 I guess I was already moving towards my current aesthetic. Professionally I don’t know if I would count the ones I did for friends, but my first paid job was in February 2021, So it’s been a year.
Was there anything that made you sure you loved creating with makeup?
I can’t say there was one ‘aha’ moment for me. Before I embraced makeup I was very lost and confused about the future, basically felt like I couldn’t do anything. So even when I started makeup I still didn’t view it as something, but my friends constantly told me I was crazy for not seeing my drive for makeup. I’ve always liked looking good, so the joy I felt while I was transforming, didn’t register as something different, but one day I just realised something had clicked for me and I didn’t feel so lost anymore.
Did you receive any professional training? Like a school or something similar?
I tried a twelve-day course but she kept trying to change my methods to a more traditional style and that frustrated me. Took me from September to March to even get in six classes and then I abandoned it. I know she meant well but it didn’t fit with my style/vision.
Then from there, you took it into your own hands?
Yeah pretty much, the reason I took the classes in the first place was I didn’t trust myself, taking the classes made me realise I can figure it out myself on my own terms.
When I look at your work I think of fairies and fantasies, how would you describe your art in your own words?
Lol, that’s good I like that. I’d say dark but whimsical.
What are some of your favorite projects to have worked on?
Honestly can’t say I’ve done them yet. I have quite high expectations of myself and certain factors need to be met before I consider something A1.
Who are some makeup artists that inspire you?
To sum it up drag queens and anime characters (so I guess the artists behind them). Off the top, I’d say @isshehungry, @intemplumophelia & @missfame. @in.templum.ophelia, @missfamenyc.
What are some of your favorite animes/anime characters?
I don’t have favourites for anything, I obsess over what I’m watching at that moment then go on to something else. The characters whose makeup inspire me are usually side characters. Currently watching food wars and nana but no makeup there.
Would you say your personality comes into play when you work? Like when you make patterns do you think ‘this is something I’d put on,’ if you were going to a certain place or doing a certain thing?
Nah I just do whatever comes to mind. It’s actually difficult for me to stick to set themes. My makeup really depends on how I’m feeling not how it could be received.
What’s a common misconception about the art of makeup?
That’s it’s not art or it’s all vanity.
What’s something you think make-up artists would like the whole creative industry to know?
Every step is important, don’t rush the makeup artists, don’t ask us to explicitly rip off other artist’s work. Moodboard for inspiration is not the same as asking us to replicate someone else’s look. 30 minutes is not enough time for full glam and ridiculous detailing.
Do you have any dream people you’d like to make up?
Definitely Rihanna & Rina Sawayama.