Paco Blancas, Makeup Artist Interiew

Fewer industries offer a broader arrange of career opportunities than fashion. In our ongoing series, The Impression highlights some of the industry’s most talented people and interesting jobs.

How did you get your start as a makeup artist?
When I was in college and studying architecture, I was invited by a friend to work as an extra for a tv commercial, while I watched the lead makeup artist work his magic on the main model I knew that make up was my thing.

What makeup artists from the past or present have influenced you the most?
Meeting my mentor, Jorge de la Garza, was crucial at the beginning of my career. I admire the work of Linda Cantello, Stephane Marais, Serge Luttens, and Francois Nars.

Photo | Mark Abrahams

How do you decide the best makeup for a photo shoot?
It all has to do with the woman. A brief conversation with the Creative Director is KEY and most times minimal make up is the answer.

What are the biggest challenges facing you now?
Fashion is always moving forward, so keeping the timeless quality in my work is one of the biggest challenges, also understanding and interpreting the vision of the Creative Director, while still keeping my signature in the work and making the women I’m working with feel uplifted and beautiful.

What’s the most important thing you want potential clients to know about you?
I am a team player, someone who is fully committed to the work and enjoys a playful process.

What sort of impact does digital have on makeup artistry?
It has a huge impact. An advantage is that you can see the image you’re working on in real time and often what you see is what you get, so you can do things much faster. You can fix little things, flaws, etc. quickly however, too much manipulation steals from the spirit of the image but you can reach a wider audience through social media, websites and other digital outlets.

What do you think of makeup artistry today and where it is going?
On one side there is so much happening with alternative magazines that showcase creative makeup, which can be a lot of fun. There is also a lot of layering and contouring stuff, which I find so artificial and old, and finally the no makeup makeup look which I really enjoy. I found makeup is going to a practical, minimal place because there is less time for the person to spend in front of the mirror. Now more products are being developed to protect, enhance and heal the skin. The future for makeup looks like a transparent mask with added tribal elements.

Favorite Film
The Sacrifice by Andrei Tarkovski

What are three of your favorite online destinations?
The Impression, Instagram, BBC UK

What type of Impression do you want to make?

Paco Blancas is a Makeup Artist on the The Impression Biannual Vol. 2