Friday, 24 July 2015

The 'Before', the 'After', and Photoshop.

Good afternoon Dolls *and gents*

How you doing today? I trust your day is going well already.

Wierd post title huh? This article was written by Yemisi on her blog some weeks ago, and i decided to post it here too *with permission from her of course!*. I thought to re-post this article when i discovered the unrealistic demands the use of photoshop has placed on makeup artists these days.  I mean, it has set the bar so high that natural doesn't matter anymore. I'll just type the article as she wrote it, and then i'll borrow Stella Dimoko-Korkus's red ink to write my thoughts on the article.

Ok, here goes...

"I was on my phone minding my business when i came across this crazy meme, it got me cracking, i laughed until my tummy hurt. Makeup artists in Nigeria have become even better at artistry than the legendary Leonardo Da Vinci. Tehehehehehehe!
Hey, but the reality on ground is that we need to watch it- as there is a thin line between love and hate, there is also a thin line between the before and after of makeup application. I kid you not when i say i have seen some wonders, and with the kind of transformation i have seen, i begin to wonder why the person didn't just opt for plastic surgery. I'm telling you!

Don't get me wrong, makeup can transform you from plain Jane to a sexy siren, it can also accentuate your features by giving you higher cheek bones, pointed nose and bigger eyes and even a flawless skin with the right products and technique. You could hide all your blemishes and under eye wrinkles leaving you looking like you just got an instant facelift, but i beg of you, let us do it with some degree of moderation and fear of God. I laughed out loud at the doing it with the fear of God part....but hey, its true! 

Now, what really got me into writing this post is the blatant bastardization of photoshop. I have seen a picture where the nose of the person was literally chiseled off using the photoshop wonder tool. It is worthy to note that makeup application should be based on personal preference as some like it loud, while some prefer it natural/subtle. I've seen hundreds of pictures where the lady in the before picture had lots of pimples, and then in the after picture, her face is smoother than a baby's buttocks. We all know that makeup doesn't smoothen out and cover only covers black spots, dark circles and patches, so apparently photoshop was used to create the effect of a smooth face devoid of pimples. What if you get contacted by a client with plenty pimples and she wants you to perform that same magic on her face.....can you? Can you really?

I am not against photoshop either, but then, we need to understand what is real and what is not. Extreme cases of photoshop have most certainly changed consumer-producer relationship because client's expectation wasn't met. Exactly! The client would now expect you to make her look as perfect as the pictures she sees on IG and other social media apps. She wouldn't know that the raw finished work looked nothing like the perfect pictures she admires on IG. People don't want to see natural pictures anymore! I did the look 'Blue lining', and someone commented that the look was good but not perfect......say what? Trust me, if i sent those pics to a professional to retouch for me, when you see those pictures, you would be in total awe!

When i started makeup application, photoshop and other apps weren't this popular, you couldn't necessarily rely on photo retouching to do your job for you, but today- Hello, you see some makeup artists who refuse to blend foundation and powder properly, eyeshadow fallout, bleeding lips, etc and then try to clean up using photoshop blur. Perfect your makeup skills so that there will be no imperfections which you would need to cover with an app. What if your client asks to see unedited pictures?

For me, the only acceptable time to use photoshop is when there are blemishes, a cold sore or pimples. Mostly instances that do not require everyday makeup to cover. When we apply makeup, it is done with a brush, not a magic wand, and it is sometimes very difficult to explain to clients that most images they see on social media or magazine covers have been retouched either with photoshop, filter or an app. I remember when i just started makeup, i was always comparing my work to the pictures on IG and magazines....i always thought i wasn't doing something right, and it left me dejected. Eventually, i found out that photoshop was the magic tool! I saw pictures from a photoshoot......someone showed me the raw pictures and the edited ones...Oh my days! From then on, i stopped beating myself up. You all have to understand that the raw pictures are waaaaaaay different from those pictures you see. A lot of things come into play : High-tech cameras, artificial lighting and of course photoshop!

To avoid disappointment or unrealistic expectation, look in the mirror, there is no filter, app or photoshop. Who you see is the real you, the reality on ground is that photoshop is not real.
Let's try to live with that fact. Also, when looking for a makeup artist for your big day, always ask to see unedited pictures or just pay for a trial session....simple! That way, you get to know if the makeup artist is really good. So that you don't get deceived with overly photoshopped pictures that mask imperfections, and then on your big day, you'll be soooo disappointed that you'll want to cry. "

So that's it folks...... I hope this article would help reduce your unrealistic expectations from makeup artists biko (please). MUAs on the other hand, please reduce the use of these apps and stop decieving clients into thinking that you are a magician *yup, i call it deception*. You will only succeed in raising the bar unrealistically high that even you cannot reach it. When client's hire you based on a picture you mercilessly photoshopped, how then will you explain to her when the raw finished look on her face doesn't look like the picture she saw? Just work on yourself and perfect your skills. That way, your work looks perfect when your client looks in the mirror.

Chew on that for a while.

Have a wonderful day.........


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  1. good one.... treachery i call it

    1. Thank you! A little modification might be allowed to make your picture look good, but it shouldn't be overdone.

  2. Hello Chinazor,

    This post made me laugh, I truly understand why the misrepresentation will both amuse and annoy someone who is sincerely committed to their craft.

    Have a lovely weekend.

    1. Thanks for reading dear. Have a nice weekend too.

  3. This is the best post ever! Clients don't even want to hear that makeup can't cover up pimples, their own is "just get it out of the way".

  4. Gbam, truth must be told joo

  5. I knew it*dancing and smiling*...I knew you were an SDK BV but I wasn't so sure.....I needed a makeup artist in the state I stay so I went on instagram and got some contacts...One stood out so well that I was even thinking of learning from her so that I would be as good as she is...If you see the pictures,you would really drool...I carried my two left legs and drove round the town to locate her shop...On getting there,I didn't meet her so I drove to where she was(she went for a job)...I am sur she was even shocked because I was so eager to see her that day eh...she me pulling stunts just to get to where she was that day...On getting there,to say I was disappointed was an understatement,the makeup was HORRIBLE..I am not a makeup artist but seeing her Job,I was almost tempted to go and buy a kit and start the business...she was even forming for me that she was really busy that period and all...when she saw u was not respondin well,she asked what happened...I told her I just remembered I needed to pick up something that I would call her so I run o

  6. *correct in your mind as you read....*shines teeth.

  7. Spot on!!
    People are so blinded by fotoshopping that they've lost touch with *youre beautiful just the way you are#...
    Lovely write up mama mish!!

  8. Aunty nazor u actually just hit the nail on the head, people will always expect their makeup to look like the ones on IG *sheeeesh* the forget that you cannot photoshop in real life

  9. Aunty nazor u actually just hit the nail on the head, people will always expect their makeup to look like the ones on IG *sheeeesh* the forget that you cannot photoshop in real life


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