Working with QC Makeup Academy has been a highlight of my career. The power of the feel-good factor has always fascinated me. And being on the team at QC has allowed me the opportunity to share the knowledge I have acquired with people who are eager learn, and ready to put their mark on the industry. As much as I love being able to share my techniques and tutoring tips here at the school, I also have a selfish motive. Working with all of you also teaches me. And being a lifelong learner, I find that very satisfying. Below are two moments that were particularly inspiring to me.
There is nothing more exciting than being able to witness growth. Over a year ago, I had a student who started the program with no practical experience and little to no makeup knowledge. At the end of Unit A, I encouraged her to watch the units often, practice constantly, and submit her work only when she knew that it was as good as it could be. When her Unit B arrived, complete with a note that she had followed my advice, her work was already above average. I made pointers to help her perfect the skills before moving on to Unit C. I encouraged her to re-watch certain segments and practice some specific points. When Unit C arrived, sure enough, her smokey eye was one of the best I had ever seen. Her blending was already very good in Unit B, but there was a night and day difference in her new work. Again, it came with a note saying she had re-watched the videos and practiced on everyone who would sit for her. By the time we had reached the end of the course, her work was actually spectacular. The raw passion she exhibited in her initial letter, combined with her drive, created a perfect learning environment. The real moral here is that makeup is a skill. Like anything else, if you have passion for it and you practice, practice, practice, you can become great very quickly… And you will only get better from there.
I am not one to mince words. When a student does great work or makes improvements, I will happily celebrate them. I will also tell a student when their work is not where it should be. I had one student whose opening letter declared her passion and drive. It told of her enormous amount of practical experience and her desire to freshen her skills. Like her, I am a lifelong learner, so I have a huge respect for anyone who takes the time to improve him or herself, no matter what the subject. But, getting more education in a field you have experience in can have as many negatives as it does positives. I gave her a key piece of advice; watch the videos as if you are a beginner. If you were taught well and learned great techniques, this course will allow you to improve upon them. But, if you have bad habits that were learned from teachers who were not well-trained, this program can be a great way to break them. BUT this will only happen if you watch the videos with fresh eyes, and allow the correct techniques to replace the ones that may have been weaker.
When I received her Unit B, the makeup was a stereotype of the makeups done in bad YouTube tutorials, and every assignment looked exactly the same. In her feedback I talked about what she did well, but I put a strong focus on what was holding her back. From her first unit it was obvious that her knowledge base came from YouTube. Don’t get me wrong, there are many great things out there, but there are even more terrible things. I gave her a harsh, but loving critique, because I believe that only truth can help us grow. Some students would have shut the computer off and walked away. But not her. She came back stronger than ever. She resubmitted Unit B (by her own choosing) and did spectacular work. I took my hat off to her then, and I do the same now. She is proof that bad habits can be broken by determination.
Education is powerful. A good one can put you on the road to success while a bad one can do the opposite. To me, the above individuals were both model students. In each of their very different cases, they demonstrated how to create a positive change and advance themselves toward their goals. If you are great, strive to be better. If you need improvement, strive to be better. Each day, with a little practice and a lot of belief, you will get a little closer to your goal.