I'm a professional makeup artist (licensed esthetician actually), and was wondering if it would be a good idea for me to find a way to provide services to cosplayers for conventions?
I worked in the dealer's room at Animazement last year, and I saw a decent amount of people that if they had their makeup professionally done, or done at all, their whole look would have been much better. Not to knock on their effort, because I'm aware of how difficult it can be to put together a costume--especially if it's from scratch.
It's also really fun for me when I branch away from what I do for my regular clientele, which is bridal and event (prom, bridesmaids, special night out, etc) makeup. I enjoy doing it, but it doesn't leave too much room for creativity as even with event makeup not a lot of people want to go all out. Conventions are THE time to go all out and I feel like there aren't enough resources to allow for that to happen for a lot of people. Be it lack of materials, skill or otherwise.
I've also been trying to drum up some ideas on exactly how to do it. I've considered getting a hotel room and operating out of it, but I don't want to sketch anyone out. Thoughts?
>tfw captcha thinks quiche is a pie
I think it's a good idea in theory, but I don't know how many congoers (especially the ones who aren't wearing makeup or are wearing it poorly, who tend to be the younger crowd or those who care less about their appearance in general) can afford or are willing to pay for professionally-done makeup for a con.
You're absolutely right. I forgot to mention I had already planned on providing my services for the congoers at a rate lower than what I would normally charge, on a sliding, time based scale.
Purely for example: $25 for a 30 minute application, lashes/other adornments a la carte, discount if you book an appointment ahead of time, yadda yadda. I can get a lot done in 30 minutes, especially with airbrushing. I want to charge reasonably, and be flexible with my pricing. I don't want to be taken advantage of, but I also don't want those in my chair to feel as though they spent "too much" on my services (though that will eventually happen as some people want everything for free)
I'm aiming to use this as an opportunity to help get my name out in the community, as well as possibly add a couple images to my portfolio. I don't really mind "cheapening" myself because of this as it'd be a win-win.
sounds like a pretty good idea to me; i've actually been looking around for someone to do the same at a local con in my area and seen one or two people advertising on tumblr for it. I think you've definitely gotta make sure to book specific times/locations like photographers do in advance, agree upon the looks you'll be doing, show plenty examples of your work and agree on/pay the price upfront (because you and i both know how much of an issue convention budgeting can be, and you dont want to end up the victim of "whoops i thought it'd cost less, i dont have enough here" or flaky "i changed my mind and dont need it anymore" buyers last minute).
you probably wont be able to turn an overall positive profit what with hotel costs etc, but if you're already going to the con anyways and want to offset costs/get your name out there, it's a pretty good way of doing it.
Unless you also do sfx art, then no. You will not make money -- not enough to cover the cost of your booth and all the equipment that will no doubt get grossed up by weebs (because they will touch your shit.)
You may also have your things stolen.
If you can do body/face paint, prosthetics applications and have a few go to looks (homestuck, LSP, TWD zombie, facepaint sailor moon diadems) to sell, then you'll do much better especially because non-cosplay people and younger children will get super excited. Also great if you can get a contact lens stockist to partner with you.
Like others have mentioned I imagine you would lose money. Having a hotel room or any kind of place where people can visit you safely is going to cost too much when you're making around $50 an hour. Depending when the con starts you'll likely have people who want it done beforehand which means you'll have a lot in a short window or not enough time at all.
I imagine a lot of things could go wrong as you'll be doing these peoples make up for the first time and they may not think it fits their vision. You'll have to have a solid portfolio and make sure you and the customer understand every step that will be taken.
I agree with >>8819046 generally -- the worst offenders are the ones who won't pay, even $25. >>8819275 is right about most people wanting their makeup done around 9AM. Another potential problem is that while casualish cosplayers stay in one costume all day, a lot of more aggressive cosplayers wear two or three costumes a day. If I'm going from crossplay to a round-faced teenage girl, I'll have to take all that make-up off.
That said, I have disposable income and I would seriously consider this if you had a solid portfolio. Some things that would make me, personally, more interested in your work:
- Before and afters on a variety of models -- I don't care if you can make kawaii Asians look kawaiier, I care if you can make my Sarah Jessica Parker face kawaii.
- SFX. (Get that Warcraft money.)
- Perfect colored eyebrows.
- Wear tests. ("... and this is what it looks like after X hours on the con floor!")
I was in the market for this service as a brolita who is unskilled at applying make-up myself. I definitely would have shelled-out for the services of someone who understands the aesthetic and could perform the required contouring in addition to the rest of the make-up.
Like >>8819345 said, I would want to see images that show you have the particular skills required to pull it off.