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Film sets and photoshoots require a village to accomplish successfully. The talent, makeup artist, hairdresser, stylist, photographer and everyone else on set work together to capture the perfect shot. Communication is key to keep everyone in synch.

So what does a cosmetologist need to know when preparing? Regency grad Ashleigh C. shared some of her pro tips. And with her experience in film, hair shows and print, she’s at the top of her game.

Getting started

When you first start, make sure you have a strong portfolio that includes more than just pictures from your phone. Ashleigh recommends finding a local college and teaming up with a photography student. They are trying to build a portfolio just like you, so students will often volunteer their talent free of charge. Maintain strong relationships with everyone you work with. They may just pass along a tip for your next gig.

Know what to expect

Create mood boards and style sheets to get comfortable with the visual aesthetic you will be working in on the day of the shoot.  Our expert Ashleigh emphasized the importance of understanding your lighting. Going to set with knowledge of the environment you will be working in will help you be confident in your styling.

Get to know your coworkers

Researching the past work of the models or photographers and understanding the current objectives for the shoot will take you far on set.

Pro tip: Double check if the talent has any allergies so you don’t use products that could spell disaster.

Create a comfortable work environment

This goes back to doing your research. Find out what music the talent likes to listen to. Having the right music playing or snacks available will help whoever you are working with feel comfortable. The majority of the talent’s day will be spent with you, so creating a calming atmosphere can help the whole day run smoothly.

Stay organized

Keep your train case organized, as well as your attitude. For films, Ashleigh has a separate color coded makeup bag for each person she is working with. This ensures all the colors are organized and provides an extra layer of sanitation.

Be professional

The biggest “don’t” when working at a photoshoot or on a video set is speaking negatively about anyone you’ve worked with in the past.  Be professional. Always. Being courteous and kind will show you are focused on your job and here show off your professionalism and your technical skills!

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