Complections graduate Cherie Snow is what every professional make-up artist should be: exceptionally busy. She graduated just over a year and a half ago, and has already worked on commercials, fashion shoots, music videos, weddings, a web series, television pilots, a television series, short films and feature films.
So how did Cherie become so successful in such a short period of time? Complections sat down with her to find out.
When asked what she has learned about the make-up industry since graduating, Cherie was quick to respond. “The make-up industry is small in terms of the number of people in it,” she said, “which can be both good and bad, because make-up artists know each other, and reputations spread fast. You hear everything.”
Because of this, Cherie says that you must “look out for yourself.” This means that make-up artists must know their environment and the people within it. Make-up artists must always be professional, approachable, and set drama and personal conflict aside while on set.
Cherie’s main area of interest is film and television and, as a result of her hard work, most of her larger jobs have been for films and television shows. When asked about the projects that she has worked on in the past year, she said that her biggest to-date has been her role as key make-up artist for the independent film A Dark Matter. Cherie was also the only make-up artist for the film (aside from a special make-up effects artist who worked for 2 of the 13 shoot days). Produced by the Canadian company Film Folks, the movie is a sci-fi mystery that involves murder, demons and self-discovery. The film was shot this March 2011. Cherie received
the job from a contact she gained while working on the pilot of a comedy show.
Cherie also works on and off for the web series Tights and Fights, a comedy about the secret lives of super heroes and villains. This year, she also had the opportunity to create the look for Tré Armstrong of So You Think You Can Dance Canada for an interview with SMART GUIDE magazine. Cherie is a regular contributor to the Beauty section of the magazine.
Other significant projects that Cherie has been involved with since graduating include two commercials: one for Leon’s and another for the Canadian Food Bank. She was an assistant make-up artist for the film The Bessie’s and she was the assistant make-up artist for the independent film Piece of Mind, a job that came to her through networking with another Complections graduate. Cherie also appeared as a make-up artist and judge on the reality TV show Last Bride Standing. In addition, she has been a part of the hair and/or make-up team for three television pilots.
Cherie’s long list of credits may already be impressive, but the make-up artist has even higher ambitions in mind. “In the next few years, I would like to work on a feature film that appears in theatres,” she confided.
Cherie’s vast range of experiences makes her a fantastic person for current Complections students and recent graduates to go to for advice. She certainly has lots to offer. “Start looking for jobs while you’re still in school,” she said. Once Cherie had enrolled at Complections, she started contacting people in the industry, letting them know she was a student and asking for volunteer work. “You HAVE to volunteer,” she added. “Inquire, get connections and get hired. You will get [paid] jobs later. I was getting to know people in the industry and doing a lot of volunteer work while I was still in school.”
Cherie also advised students to keep in touch with fellow graduates. “If I need someone reliable at the last minute, I know who to call,” she said. “It is also important to keep a core group of friends who are in the industry for support or advice and to bounce ideas off of each other.”
She also stresses that it is crucial to “Stick with it.” Searching for jobs is something that make-up artists constantly have to do. “The key is in keeping the work flow steady, because the jobs will ever land in your hands,” Cherie said. However, now that her name is starting to be recognized in the industry, Cherie admits with a smile, “It’s nice to be contacted.”