Anahita Loghmanifar graduated from CMU’s Comprehensive Makeup Artist program back in 2014. A professional makeup artist with a degree in visual arts- it is no surprise that Anahita found incredible success in the makeup industry. From fashion, theatre and film – Anahita has built quite an impressive portfolio from working on productions with the Canadian Opera Company, to the luxurious Clarins brand, to even film and TV productions such as Netflix’s In The Tall Grass and FX’s Mrs. America. Continue reading to learn more about Anahita and what she finds most exciting about working in the makeup industry.
What inspired you to pursue a career in makeup artistry?
My interest and passion for art goes back to my childhood years. I was particularly interested in experimenting with different colors on paper, bringing life to my paintings. Ultimately, this led me to pursue an education in visual arts at York University. After graduation, I was working as an independent artist and teaching art for a couple of years.
I then discovered makeup artistry. I was particularly interested in makeup because it was a great match for my painting skills and creativity. I also really liked the many opportunities to work in a creative environment such as theater, movies, fashion photoshoots and so on.
What is your favourite thing about being a Makeup Artist?
One of my favorite aspects of working as a Makeup Artist is the creative work environment. I find pleasure in being surrounded by many talented artists of different backgrounds. Every project is different! It’s challenging and rewarding as it allows me to apply my skills in different ways. Furthermore, the flexibility this career provides is a bonus.
Photos of Toronto City Opera’s production of “Un Ballo in Maschera” courtesy of Ivan Lemus Photography
Why did you choose CMU?
After researching different makeup schools, I concluded that CMU was the best school in North America. I attended a school tour offered by CMU and really came to like the school campus and the overall vibe. Hearing and seeing all of the work by students and alumni was also very impressive! After the tour, I made the decision that CMU was the best option for me and enrolled in the Comprehensive Makeup Artist program.
What did you enjoy most about attending CMU?
It was an incredibly fun and creative environment. I particularly enjoyed the theatre and film part of the program the most.
What’s the most important piece of skill you learned at CMU?
There were a lot of skills attained during my program at CMU however, the most important one was on how to behave professionally as a makeup artist. I think my professionalism and personable attitude is a huge part of my success as a makeup artist.
Photos of Toronto City Opera’s production Mozart Don Giovanni courtesy of John Loper Photography
What advice would you give to anyone thinking of enrolling at CMU? As well any words of advice for aspiring makeup artists in general?
CMU is a great school to learn makeup artistry. Any student should know that their career starts in school through building reputation and networking. CMU offers amazing instructors who are active and best in their field, so take advantage of their knowledge and their skills.
In addition, the makeup artistry is an incredibly competitive field; I highly recommend any makeup artist student to never stop learning and to work as hard as possible. I also encourage everyone to always stay positive.
After graduating, how did you get started working in the industry?
I worked as a beauty advisor in Shoppers Beauty Boutique and later as a beauty expert for Clarins brand – which I’m still working for as the brand’s freelance makeup artist. However, my goal has always been working in theatre and the film industry. So, I started to work a lot of freelance gigs. I reached out to people working in film and theatre to build my hours and gain more experience. Reaching out to people and freelancing led me to working in low budget films and community theaters.
For example, I was the head of the makeup department in Toronto City Opera (TCP) which was a small community opera for two seasons. Through building experience I was able to become a permittee in Nabet 700MUnifor. Later on, I became a permittee in IATSE 873 and IATSE 822; now I am a member of IATSE 822.
Photos of Toronto City Opera’s production of L’elisir d’amore and Die Fledermaus, courtesies of John Loper Photography and Ivan Lemus Photography
What jobs have you been working on since graduating from CMU?
I worked as a beauty advisor for a while, I did fashion shoots, got published. I worked in film, TV and theatre and was able to be head department in some of them as well! This is the one thing I love about this field and the makeup industry- it is so broad and there are many opportunities to be had!
What have you learned being on set on all the projects you’ve done?
It is important to be reliable and a problem solver. Keep your positive attitude at all times.
What has been your favourite on the job experience thus far?
Working backstage of Canadian Opera Company (COC) and musicals. I love working in theatre because it is live and there is a sense of urgency and excitement. Also, some film sets like Mrs. America were fun!
What else do you hope to accomplish in the future? Any dream projects?
My dream job is to assist prominent makeup artists in a major film or theatre show and travel with the show. However, I am always open to any opportunity that comes on my way! I am always looking to hone my makeup artistry and special effect skills.
To see more of Anahita, you can follow her on Instagram @anahitalfar or visit her website.
Anahita working backstage at the Canadian Opera Company. Photo courtesy of the Canadian Opera Company