Vittorio Masecchia graduated from CMU College in 2005. Since graduating, Vittorio has added several noteworthy accomplishments to his credit. An award winning makeup artist, Vittorio’s work has graced magazines like Elle and Paper, Brand Photoshoots, Music Videos and Red Carpets. His extensive portfolio in the industry reaches out to celebrities like Lizzo, Gigi Hadid, Hollywood director Patty Jenkins, Kathy Griffin and trailblazer Halima Aden. He is also the personal makeup artist for singer and songwriter, Kesha working with her on music videos, TV appearances and special events, to name a few. Continue reading as Vittorio shares with us how his relationship with the Grammy-nominated artist started, and learn more about his future aspirations.
What inspired you to pursue a career in makeup artistry?
I grew up in my mother’s salon and remember doing her makeup as a child. My parents gifted me a starter makeup kit and some Kevyn Aucoin books for Christmas when I was 19 and it quickly became clear that I should make it a career choice.
What is your favourite thing about being a Makeup Artist?
My artistry has been consistently there for me. At times when I needed it most, being a makeup artist has given me value and self worth that otherwise would be hard for me to access. Being in this industry also allowed me to travel the world and it’s all thanks to the art.
Why did you choose CMU?
When it became clear to my parents that makeup was going to be my life plan, they helped me research education options. After visiting schools, CMU stood out as the strongest contender because of the teachers, location, and body of work from students.
What did you enjoy most about attending CMU?
I really enjoyed that CMU was able to create a safe space where myself and fellow students were able to learn from all the mistakes you make as a new artist and how we were given solutions to those challenges.
What’s the most important piece of skill you learned at CMU?
Well aside from taxes and blending haha! I think proper sterilization practices were some of the most important skills I learned at CMU.
What advice would you give to anyone thinking of enrolling at CMU? As well any words of advice for aspiring makeup artists in general?
Keep notes of questions you may have so that you can access them when presented with teachers or fellow students who may be able to help and have the answers you are looking for.
After graduating, how did you get started working in the industry?
I put in a couple years at makeup counters while building a portfolio. The real-life practice was helpful for timely shade matching and improvising skills.
What projects and jobs have you been working on since graduating from CMU?
It’s been about 16 years since graduating so I’ve done a lot! The types of jobs I did mostly have been in fashion – editorial, red carpet, music videos and cosmetic campaigns. I am currently writing this on break while on set shooting a campaign for Bite cosmetics in Los Angeles, where I live.
You have a great longtime relationship with Kesha (even inviting her to visit our campus once!), could you tell us about how your working relationship with her started?
In early 2008/2009, Kesha was promoting her debut single, TiK ToK in a variety of cities. While promoting her soon-to-be number one hit, she was using locals in every city. At the time, I was already pretty established in the makeup industry- I was an award winning artist with an agent, magazine covers, and an expressive portfolio! My agent and Sony had a relationship, they connected and I was the most suited to Kesha’s taste!
When it came time for her to choose a personal full time makeup artist and someone who she can travel with, she reviewed two years of footage to see when she felt her best and it was her time visiting Canada in my makeup and hair that stood out to her.
What have you learned being on set on all the projects you’ve done?
Something that I learned from set over the years, is the ability to stay in the moment. I find that being prepared while on standby, ready with any products and tools for any quick touch ups is incredibly important! It’s moments like those that can really separate you from other professionals and honestly is why I get my callbacks and referrals for future projects. A positive attitude also helps!
What has been your favourite on the job experience thus far?
I’ve had incredible moments of gratitude for my artistry while working over these past years but one that comes to mind first is the American Music Awards. I knew a bunch of other artists working at the event. It made me realize and feel like I was truly where I belonged.
What else do you hope to accomplish in the future? Any dream projects?
I’d love to dive a little deeper into product development and branding! The intentions behind color, texture and performance of makeup really speaks to me and I have a lot to offer in that respect. And while I am curious for what the future holds for me, I normally like things to play out naturally. So in the meantime, helping people feel beautiful and having fun with makeup is an accomplishment in itself for me! I’m excited to see what life brings me over the next few years.
For more Vittorio, make to sure follow his Instagram, @vittoriomasecchia.