Lucy Wearing is an excellent make-up artist who paints the most beautiful and fascinating faces. She teaches all over the world and is the make-up course director at the London College of Fashion. She works in fashion and music- Arctic Monkeys, Chase and Status, Wiley, MIA, Blur, Vogue, Elle and iD magazine are a few clients. Oh and she's also Ellie Goulding's make-up artist. I grabbed ten minutes with Lucy to have a chat about her career and get some more pro advice.

MANW: Hi Lucy, how did you start your career and what was the progression it took?
LW: I was studying Fine Art at Liverpool John Moores University (UK) and I was in to live installations, I basically wanted to paint naked bodies and get back to London. On a whim I applied to go to London College of Fashion to study hair, make-up and styling but I didn't really know that there was such a job as a make up artist, it was the best whim I ever had. I loved the creative side; make up artistry is art on faces, it's just a different canvas. I started assisting on my second day at college, I was willing to do whatever it took to  learn and get better. I was assisting on morning TV then going to college and I was a very, very dedicated student, I knew it would never be handed to me on a plate. After college I started working on my own doing shoots with iD Magazine and it went from there.

MANW: Now you mainly do fashion and beauty make-up, were you ever tempted to work in tv or film?
LW: I have actually done both, I started on morning TV before I got into the fashion side and more recently I worked on the Blur film 'No distance to Run' by 32 and 'The Ellington Kid' by Dan Sully. I love creating characters, working on continuity and helping to create a believable story. I love working on music videos as they quite often involve the same approach. I enjoy working in a team and having a creative relationship with the director, researching and developing ideas.The Ellington Kid involved a lot of blood, which was fun. I also work on commercials and I enjoy the banter and the different types of people you end up spending endless days with.

MANW: What are the pro's and cons of being on tour with a music artist.
LW: When it comes to Ellie I enjoy my job so much I can't believe I get paid to do it, it's been amazing to be part of the journey watching Ellie go from relative obscurity to playing huge festival stages, the Royal wedding etc. I am very, very proud of her and she has a team of great people around her that are like a family. I suppose the draw back is that I spent more time with the Goulding family then my own friends and family for a year and a half. That isn't a con but, when it all stopped for Ellie to write her new album, you feel like you're in limbo and wonder where everyone has gone.  

MANW: How did you end up teaching and do you enjoy it?
LW: When I was in my final year at LCF I was chosen to go to Korea and Japan to promote learning in the UK for the British Council, this was where I started demoing in front of big groups. My mum works in education and teaching was something I had always fancied having a go at. When I was working as a technician at LCF a teacher was sick and my boss who had taken me to Asia thought I would be good at it and asked me to take over. Before I could make up an excuse she pushed me in the classroom and locked the door behind me, which was the best way and I have a lot to thank her for. I think it takes a long time to be a good teacher, especially in a practical subject like make-up. It's important to  have a lot of experience behind you, to inspire students and create a fun, informative, industry-based respectful environment to learn in. I find it very rewarding to see students flourish in terms of personal confidence, creativity and technical skill. 

MANW: Being a teacher you see new artists graduating into the work place all the time. How do you think the industry has differed and what advice do you give to new artists starting out? 
LW: It is so much easier to network now. When I was at college we didn't have the internet, email or google, we had one wonderful library. Now you have Twitter, Facebook, you can blog and have a website. We used to have to traipse our books all over town, that took up a lot of time and energy. I advise students to utilise all of that to get assisting work and always be open to learning and practice - the more you do it the better you get, I still learn something every time I do a make up. And learn about your own business, when I guest lecture with students that have studied make-up for two years I am always astonished when they can't tell me their favourite make up artist, if you were studying fine art you would know who Picasso is. Pat McGrath has always been my inspiration and we all need inspiration. It's not the sort of job that you apply for with a CV and an interview, it's a highly competitive industry and it's necessary to get a proper education in the field by assisting. All my assistants have come from my classes and are as hard working and enthusiastic as I was and I treasure all of them. Personality is also very important. If you have to spend 22 hours out in the cold in December and its raining you need to be able to get on, we have a great time on set and its always a lot of fun. So, work hard, take every opportunity and don't tread on anybody else's toes.

MANW: All artists have 'the wish list'.  My current one is Towie's Lauren Goodger, I'm dying to give her a make-over. Who's on yours?
LW: I don't think I have one to be honest. I did always want to work on Daisy Lowe and I was lucky enough to do it.

MANW: On to the good stuff, what are your tricks for flawless looking skin?
LW: Look after your skin, drink lots of water, Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish and Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant. Also, massage your moisturiser in to increase blood flow to the skins surface, that gives a healthy glow. Use a drop of MAC strobe creme in your foundation to get dewy skin.

MANW: What are your top five holy grail kit products?
LW: MAC Strobe cream, MAC Fabulush Creme colour, Bobby Brown foundation sticks, MAC blot powder, MAC Face and Body.

MANW: What's your best make-up artist tip?
LW: Prep the skin well first, it's much better to make the canvas as good as possible rather than completely mask the face and slap it on.

MANW: Finally, false eyelashes - the longer the better or enough already, they look ridiculous?
LW: Definitely enough already, Girls Aloud "Kimberly" lashes are as big as I go. I'm not into jewelled or fancy long lashes unless Im working on a drag queen character. I think a lot of young women wear too much make-up on a daily basis, it's quite ageing and you should embrace your youth not completely cover it up.

You can find out more about Lucy via her website or blog and see the course Lucy runs hereLucy also set up a studio to provide an inexpensive, creative environment with discounted rates for students.

If you liked this interview and would like to read other leading industry makeup artists stories have a look at the rest of the 'Meet The Artist' series here.

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