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WINNERS REVEALED: Merry Little Elf Makeup Contest

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It’s time to announce the winners of our Merry Little Elf Holiday Makeup Contest!

But first, we would like to extend a huge “THANK YOU” to all our participants, the semi-finalists, finalists, and our judge!

This year, our fabulous judge, Nathan Johnson, created a personalized scorecard for each finalist to determine the winner.

Judge: Nathan Johnson

There is no better way to spread holiday cheer than with a winter makeover, except when that winter makeover has an ELFIN theme! This years holiday contest is tailor-made to stretch your imagination and challenge your skills.

What is a holiday elf to you? For some it will involve realism and complex prosthetics, for others it will be more artistic-perhaps more of a cartoon or pop art interpretation. As long as you have fun, there is no right or wrong.

Here’s what Nathan was looking for:

  • Creativity: As long as you delve into the elfin world, there are no limits to what you can create. This is your chance to show personality and flair, take risks, and express yourself. Here’s a tip, don’t do Google searches and copy or modify an existing makeup…be yourself and be a true creator. If you create from your own imagination, you’ll rack up higher points.
  • Realism: Does the makeup look realistic? Whether you make a woodland elf, an elf prince/princess, a LOTR Elf, an elf who just survived an epic battle, a cartoon recreation, a pop art elf, or whatever other elf you can imagine, make sure that the character is realistic for the genre you are working within.
  • Combination of Skill: The more difficult and complex techniques you utilize, the more likely you are to get higher points. If you use prosthetics, practice getting perfectly smooth edges and making sure the coloration is realistic. If you create a cartoon character, make sure to perfect highlight/shadow and precise application techniques. No matter what you try to create, pay attention to every detail, including symmetry, blending, and over-all accuracy. The better your use of combined skills, the higher points you will receive.
  • The Story: I want to read a few lines that tell the tale of your character. Not what you did, but who it is, what happened, etc. Include your in the “description” box in the entry form below. This is your chance to sell me the makeup through storytelling. Historically, this is the most overlooked section of the contest and in the past in has been what has made or broken the winner.
  • Final Image: Bring the image to life. This comes down to clear photography, use of props, costumes, and setting. Does the image enhance and further the make-up artistry? Delicate and tasteful Photoshopping and use of lighting/ring lights are acceptable, but Instagram/Snapchat filters and Facetune correcting apps are not.
  • Final note: Good luck and have a ton of fun. I cannot wait to see the amazing magic you’re going to make.

Merry Little Elf Contest Scoring:

Makeup Artist Amanda Westgard Makeup  Contest Submission

Artist: Amanda Westgard

  • Creativity: 9/10
  • Realism: 8/10
  • Combination of Skill: 7/10
  • The Story: 2/10
  • Final Image: 8/10
  • Total: 34/50

Comments: I do appreciate the uniqueness of this application. Of all the submissions, it is by far, the most out of the box and purely of your imagination. The camouflage, the tribal lines, and the amulet, all tell a very bold story that makes the imagination run wild. But there were two things missing for me. Equal weight was given to all 5 categories. Instead of writing the story of your character, you simply named her.

Had challenged your imagination for a few sentences of story, that would have garnered full points from that section, instead, that accounts for the loss of most of your points. Second, is the combination of skills. Your ability with detail (the brows, the spots on the nose, etc) is superb. It shows you are a great artist. But, if you had considered using more skills—either prosthetics or highlight/contour to reshape the face, for example—your look would have been over the top perfection. You did great work. In the future, really challenge yourself and don’t forget the story!


Makeup Artist Monique Lovecchio Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Monique Lovecchio

  • Creativity: 6/10
  • Realism: 7/10
  • Combination of Skill: 5/10
  • The Story: 10/10
  • Final Image: 7/10
  • Total: 35/50

Comments: I appreciate your take on bringing to life a shelf elf who is makeup obsessed. It is a very creative concept.The makeup application is lovely. It combines many beauty techniques. There are two things I want to point out. Green and red/pink must be used very carefully on the face for several reasons. First, people can get a greenish or yellow hue if they are ill.

Second, when reds/pinks are used improperly around they eye people can look like they are sick or have been crying. I think you have done lovely work above the eye, but I want to take a look at the inner corner and the lower lash line. The red inner corner is evoking images from many a horror movie where someone becomes infected with some deadly strain and the inner part of their eye goes red. Combine this with the green below the lash line and it almost has an unintended sinister or ill feeling. when you add in the nude/ colorless lip and lack of blush, the feeling of un-wellness carries through a bit more. She is an elf and she loves makeup, right? Some color in the lips and color in the cheeks would have made her far more jolly, AND they would have gone a long way to counter the red inner corner and green below the lash line. It is very in trend to do cut creases, nude lips, overly shaped brows, and minimal blush, but leaving some—or all— of them out might be more appropriate to the character you are creating. Additionally, the only thing that makes this an elf, and not a makeup using holiday colors is the hat. I would encourage you to consider a few other techniques to finalize the look. My main take away for you—you have a lot of skill and you’re a great story teller. I would just reconsider some application techniques/ color placement and knowing when trend makeup helps or hurts a character. Great job.


Makeup Artist Adela Simpalean Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Adela Simpalean

  • Creativity: 7/10
  • Realism: 8/10
  • Combination of Skill: 6/10
  • The Story: 10/10
  • Final Image: 9/10
  • Total: 40/50

Comments: This is a lovely makeup and it is very true to an existing character. I have a tremendous amount of respect for that. As a whole, the application is nearly flawless. The skin, lips, and cheeks are perfect. The eyes have just enough detail to make them the focus. The details on the forehead are lovely, not fully symmetrycal, but that can easily be overlooked. I commend you on doing a beautiful makeup and making sure the image continued to tell the story. The one thing that would have sent you over the edge would have been the use of some more skills. For example, if you’d added an elf ear of some sort. Congratulations.


Makeup Artist Jessica Shay Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Jessica Shay

  • Creativity: 7/10
  • Realism: 10/10
  • Combination of Skill: 9/10
  • The Story: 8/10
  • Final Image: 9/10
  • Total: 43/50

Comments:I have to admit, there is nothing original about this concept. There are a ton of online how to’s teaching people how to put broken ornaments on the face. That being said, you did it beautifully. You actually did it better than most of the people teaching the how-to’s. With the application, you hit two sides of makeup very well. With the use of ornaments, their adhesives, and the complimentary wounds and bruising, you demonstrated a wonderful, horrible, and realistic, use of prosthetic work.

Also, the beauty makeup you did is precise and gorgeous. BUT, I do have to ask, if someone was in this big of a fight, would their eye makeup still be this perfect? probably not. Thank you for the story as well. I will make one last confession. If it wasn’t for your story, no one would ever guess this is an elf. It looks like a woman who got into a nasty situation at Christmas Town Shopping Center. The use of an elf ear, would have taken this to a whole new level (as possibly would have a beauty makeup that reflected her trauma, even in a small way). Again, the work you did is superb. In the future, I want you to innovate beyond what everyone has already done. Just because you can do it better, doesn’t mean it’s innovative. This is excellent work, next time show me your imagination.


Makeup Artist Cara Sawtell Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Cara Sawtell

  • Creativity: 7/10
  • Realism: 10/10
  • Combination of Skill: 9/10
  • The Story: 9/10
  • Final Image: 9/10
  • Total: 44/50

Comments: I find both the story and the makeup fascinating. I want to give you great kudos for fully committing to the story you are telling and for using a great combination of techniques to make it happen. Yes, this is a makeup challenge, but sometimes, it is the lack of perfection that best tells the story. The skin and lips are perfect, except where you don’t want them to be.

I love that you used the broken ornaments in a variety of ways, shapes and sizes. The candy cane through the mouth is a great effect and it sells your story. Remember, if a candy cane pierced the cheek the would would likely not be so huge, consider a smaller wound and more bruising. Like I said earlier, you have not done anything with the candy canes or the ornaments that has not been done before, many times, but you did fully commit to a story. What really sells this is the fact that you can tell her makeup was precise and beautiful before she got into her sugar related debacle. The smudged eye makeup, combined with the other techniques you used really make the image click perfectly with your story. Also, you used an elf ear. It is definitely not the most realistic, but it really goes far to add a final detail to your look. You did a lovely job. It is your combination of skills, willingness to tell a story, attention to detail, and presenting an image that truly corroborates the story that set you apart. Great Job.


Final notes from Nathan: I want to send out my congratulations to all of the amazing artists who participated. Each of you has the makings of a winner, but I did have to make the final decision based on the 5 guidelines that were laid out in the beginning. I am so proud of all of you and I look forward to seeing all the magic you make next time. Congratulations to all of you, but especially to our winner Cara Sawtell.

Congratulations Cara for winning our 2017 Merry Little Elf Holiday Makeup Contest!

Cara wins a Tarte Limited-Edition Treasure Box, a Sephora “Fox in a box” sponge set, and a Too Faced “‘Tis the Season to Sparkle Glitter Set”.

Student Prize Winner

The lucky winner of our student prize draw is QC Makeup Academy student Michele Clauser! Michele wins a Too Faced “Boss Lady Beauty Agenda”!

Thank you to all the artists who submitted entries for the contest! And to the 5 finalists, you should all be very proud of your work. Once again, congratulations Cara for winning the 2017 Merry Little Elf Holiday Makeup Contest!

Halloween Makeup Contest 2017- WINNERS REVEALED!

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It’s time to announce the winners of our 2017 Halloween Makeup Contest!

But first, we would like to extend a huge “THANK YOU” to all our participants, the semi-finalists, finalists, and our judges!

This year, our wonderful judges—Nathan Johnson and Azzi Williams—created personalized scorecards for each finalist to determine the winner of their category.

Click the links below to navigate to each category and view the judges’ choices:

The lucky winner of our student prize draw is QC Makeup Academy student Elektra Heart! Elektra wins an Anastasia Beverly Hills’ “Subculture Palette”, and two pairs of Stilazzi’s fantasy lashes.

Thank you to everyone who participated!

Halloween Makeup Contest 2017- Fantasy & Sci-fi Category

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Category: Gore Makeup

Judge: Azzi Williams

Here’s what Azzi was looking for:

  • Creativity: I want to see something truly unique that shows you as a true, innovative artist that is not afraid to push your creative boundaries. Outstanding hair, costume styling and accessories need to all work together with your makeup artistry to create an overall visually stunning look.
  • Skill: Technique in sci-fi and fantasy is a must to really bring the look to life, so I’m looking for detailed brushwork, killer contouring and blending, plus the ability to demonstrate how to use high-pigmented products and textures.

  • Photo quality: If you want your work to get noticed and taken seriously, photos need to be high resolution, clear, detailed and beautifully lit. Creative or even plain backgrounds work, you can even experiment with fabrics or wrapping paper textures until you find the perfect way to celebrate your look.
  • Nothing blurred, out of focus or with poorly thought-out backgrounds (certainly no bedroom clutter in the background. And less is more with skin retouching and photoshop – and yes, I will be able to tell!

  • Fun: I want to see the joy, magic and fantasy in your overall look, and outstanding artistry that simply jumps out of the page in its Halloween glory!
  • Final note: All the best with your exciting creative makeup journey ahead and have loads of fun creating your look! Finally, GOOD LUCK! 🙂

Fantasy & Sci-fi Scoring:

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Ashley Sloan Makeup Artist

Artist: Ashley Sloan

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Skill: 9/10
  • Photo Quality: 9/10
  • Fun: 9/10
  • Total: 35/40

Comments: Creative, intense pigments and incredibly artistic. Immense effort to create a truly unique look. Would have loved to see a little more intensity around the eye makeup to take the look to a more dramatic edge, perhaps with a false lash or shimmer for extra dimension. Also think about the hair when submitting a look – perhaps add a wig or style for extra effect.

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Brooke Forget Makeup Artist

Artist: Brooke Forget

  • Creativity: 9/10
  • Skill: 10/10
  • Photo Quality: 10/10
  • Fun: 8/10
  • Total: 37/40

Comments:Intense, creative and haunting, beautiful recreation of a look that is currently a social media favourite amongst makeup lovers. Although it’s not a unique concept, it has been executed beautifully and shows tremendous skill and talent.

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Heather Warner Makeup Artist

Artist: Heather Warner

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Skill: 9/10
  • Photo Quality: 10/10
  • Fun: 9/10
  • Total: 36/40

Comments: A popular look this season with the launch of IT, this look is beautifully intense and photographs with energy and punch. While it is not a unique design concept, the pigment and application is bold and haunting.

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Tyler Russell Makeup Artist

Artist: Tyler Russell

  • Creativity: 9/10
  • Skill: 9/10
  • Photo Quality: 10/10
  • Fun: 10/10
  • Total: 38/40

Comments: A wonderful bold and creative effort. The neon intensity of the pigment used stands out and the artistic merit is incredible. Would have liked to see the hair come together with the makeup – perhaps a wig or a style that is consistent with this epic pop zombie look.

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Brittany Bullers Makeup Artist

Artist: Brittany Bullers

  • Creativity: 10/10
  • Skill: 9/10
  • Photo Quality: 10/10
  • Fun: 10/10
  • Total: 39/40

Comments: The whole look is cohesive, fun, creative and vibrant. A pop-art take to a classic Halloween look. The black detailed work could be sharper and more defined, but otherwise a vibrant and energetic adaptation.

Congratulations Brittany for winning the 2017 QC Halloween Makeup Contest with your creative pop-art zombie look!

Brittany wins an Anastasia Beverly Hills’ “Lip Palette Vol. 1”, a RCMA’s “Shinto Palette”, and a Stilazzi’s artist caddy bag!

Thank you to all the artists who submitted entries for the contest! And to the 5 finalists, you should all be very proud of your work. Have a Happy Halloween everyone and once again, congratulations Brittany for winning the 2017 QC Halloween Contest, Fantasy & Sci-fi category!

Halloween Makeup Contest 2017- Gore Category

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Category: Gore Makeup

Judge: Nathan Johnson

Note from Nathan:

I want to extend a heartfelt congratulations to all who entered our Halloween makeup contest. I can say with certainty that these are among the best entries we have ever had. It was impossibly hard for the voters and the team at QC to narrow it down to a top 5. The winner was selected entirely by using the criteria that was listed at the outset of the competition. Remember, for the purpose of this contest, story is just as important as application. I would like to say it was too difficult for me to choose the winner on my own and I had to enlist the help of the team at QC. What some made up for in application, others made up for in story or other criteria, and all of those elements had equal weight in this contest.

Here’s what Nathan was looking for:

  • Realism: Does the make up look realistic? Whether you make a woodland fairy who was smashed on a car windshield, or a demon who lost an epic battle against the powers of good, you want to make sure that the characters and their wounds and gore read as realistic.
  • Combination of skills: Major points will be given to those who go out of their way use a great combination of skills. Yes, anyone one can do a black eye, but how much more fascinating is it to have that black eye be combined with an piece of metal impaled through the chest of a killer clown?! Challenge yourself to use the full arsenal of your skills, beauty and FX, to create something really amazing.
  • Difficulty and skill of application: If you can artfully pull off more difficult and complex techniques, you are more likely to get higher points. So practice getting perfectly smooth edges on your prosthetics and making sure the coloration of all the wounds are realistic. Also, if you create a very complex character like a killer clown who has been injured, or a zombie whose flesh is tearing away, or a nymph who barely survived an attack by a werewolf, you’ll get far more points than someone who does a black eye and a cut on the cheek.
  • Originality: Be sure to create your character from your imagination. Every year, many people recycle the good old favorites that have been made popular by YouTube and Instagram (e.g. the skin peeling away to reveal the cyborg below, the person who was wounded in a fire, etc.). I am not suggesting you don’t use burns or a cyborg reveal, but what if the cyborg is under an elf or a wooden marionette? What if the one who survived the burn is a fairy who escaped a forest fire? Use your imagination.
  • The story: I want to read a few lines that tell the tale of your character. Not what you did, but who it is, what happened, etc. Include your in the “description” box in the entry form below.
  • Final look: This comes down to clear photography, use of props, costumes, and setting. Bring it to life baby!

Gore Scoring:

QC Makeup Academy Contest- Charley Arnold Makeup Artist

Artist: Charley Arnold

  • Realism: 8/10
  • Combination of Skills: 9/10
  • Difficulty & Skill of Application: 8/10
  • Originality: 10/10
  • Story: 7/10
  • Final Look: 10/10
  • Total: 52/60

Comments: This is a stunning image. It is made even more impactful by the fact that you know the story before you even read the description. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and in this case, the photography, model, artistry, and art direction all align to tell a powerful tale. The prosthetic use is lovely, the edges may not be perfectly blended, but the use of blood helps them to fade into the skin.

If I were to make two recommendations, they would be about the size of the wound and the use of blood. The holes in the back seem a bit too large for an area around a sawn off wing. I think the image might be a bit more powerful and realistic if the holes ended quite a bit closer to the “bone” of the wing and were a bit asymmetrical. Because the holes are so big, there would need to be far more blood running down the back, versus just being smeared to hide the prosthetic edges. To take your work a step further, I recommend practicing flawless edges for your prosthetics, even if they are self-made. Blood and bruising are tools to enhance a look, not to hide minor application weaknesses. I do want to commend you on the use of color. Your care with highlight and shadow in the wound gives it a beautiful dimension. As I said above, a picture is worth a thousand words, but I would have appreciated a bit more story. Who cut off her wings and why? The quote is good, but the story is lacking. Excellent work.


QC Makeup Academy Contest- Elena Maraniello Makeup Artist

Artist: Elena Maraniello

  • Realism: 8/10
  • Combination of Skills: 9/10
  • Difficulty & Skill of Application: 8/10
  • Originality: 9/10
  • Story: 7/10
  • Final Look: 10/10
  • Total: 51/60

Comments: This is a beautiful example of storytelling through imagery. Before I even read your description, it was clear to me that these were demon twins and that you were a filmmaker. But the rest of the story is lacking. Who are these demon twins? Where did they come from? What do they want? Even answering one of those questions would have satisfied the request for your characters’ story.

The makeup is really quite excellent. I appreciate the small details– the holes where the twine pierces the lip are perfect on the photo-right model. You created depth and incredible realism. If I were to offer some suggestions, I would say the bruising/darkness below the eye could be a bit closer to the eye. When you start to put color everywhere or pull it down too far, you can detract from the image. In this case, because there is a lighter area above the half moon of darkness, it makes it look a bit like a dark circle that was placed too low. Additionally, the edges of the cross on the forehead could be a touch smoother. If you used “Third Degree” makeup, it looks a bit like it might have dried before you could really perfect the edges. Again, the photo-right model has smoother edges than the photo-left model. These are just small micro-adjustments on a beautiful application.


QC Makeup Academy Contest- Jeimaliz Troche Makeup Artist

Artist: Jeimaliz Troche

  • Realism: 9/10
  • Combination of Skills: 9/10
  • Difficulty & Skill of Application: 8/10
  • Originality: 9/10
  • Story: 7/10
  • Final Look: 8/10
  • Total: 50/60

Comments: For a first go, you have done some very compelling and graphic work. The roasted flesh peeling away from the arm is disgusting and in many places quite realistic. You would benefit a bit from the use of black. If someone was burned so bad that their flesh was literally hanging off, some of it would most certainly be charred.

There would also be a good amount of soot and smoke residue on the fingers and surrounding skin. The third and fourth degree burns are quite wonderful, I would just work a bit on the second and third degree. Instead of just putting a wash of maroon over the pinky edge of the hand (and on the fingers), use a gentler wash of red with a few blisters (maybe even some that have popped. This can easily be done with “third degree” silicone and latex). Then by letting the red fade gradually, you’ll have all the varying levels of a burn, and it will enhance the realism. The burn on the pinky itself is magnificent. This is beautiful work, and with a little bit more finesse, some picture quality, and a story, it could have been the winner. I cannot wait to see what you create for the next contest.


QC Makeup Academy Contest- Tamikah Rivette Makeup Artist

Artist: Tamikah Rivette

  • Realism: 7/10
  • Combination of Skills: 8/10
  • Difficulty & Skill of Application: 8/10
  • Originality: 10/10
  • Story: 10/10
  • Final Look: 9/10
  • Total: 52/60

Comments: When it comes to originality, no one has you beat. You are also the only one who truly committed to a story. I want you to know how much I appreciate that. The complexion, the detailed work below and above the eye, the flesh tone eyelashes, and the freckles are absolute perfection. I am also crazy about the textured forehead. I’m not just speaking of the use of twine (for the veins?), but rather the texture of the head itself.

I wish some of this uneven texture, as well as the veins, reappeared elsewhere– perhaps on the shoulders, lower jaw, or chest. I can only find two minor things to point out. First, the area below and around the ear looks like it is peeling away, as do some of the veins. Secondly, a part of me would have appreciated it if there was a touch less blood. Sometimes when you create a very powerful image, a touch of editing will make it even more thrilling. A tiny trickle of blood running from her ear can be far more powerful than a bath of it. I learned from the QC team that you submitted this entry for the other category, and they rightly moved you to gore based on the amount of blood. I think this could have worked in either category, had you been a bit more restrained with your use of blood. Remember, our job as artists is to enhance a character, and allow its story to be told. When one is too aggressive on one element, it can overwhelm and detract from the rest of the look.


QC Makeup Academy Contest- Halie Holley Makeup Artist

Artist: Halie Holley

  • Realism: 8/10
  • Combination of Skills: 10/10
  • Difficulty & Skill of Application: 9/10
  • Originality: 9/10
  • Story: 7/10
  • Final Look: 10/10
  • Total: 53/60

Comments: There is an old saying “the devil is in the details”, and I think you really took that to heart here. There are a lot to love here, but I think my favorite part of the makeup is the bite on the shoulder. It has depth, it is graphic, and in my imagination, it is likely where she first got bit causing her zombie transformation! I really love the texture and details on the face.

The scaled effect of the skin is innovative. You have completely distorted the features using a combination of techniques. And very impressively, all the edges are invisible. Yes, some may be hidden by the hair, but in the mask of the face, the application is flawless and that is where it matters the most. The rotting nose is glorious. The one thing that confuses me is why has the mouth sealed itself shut? Perhaps if you told me a bit of a story… for example, she was doused in battery acid by someone trying to escape her clutch, etc. Also, consider the blood. If someone has gone so far as to rot, they would most likely not have any relatively fresh blood below the eye. Blood flow is a sign of life or recent death. You could argue that that blood is from biting and consuming her victims, but I would counter by pointing out that her mouth is melted shut. The flawless application, diverse use of techniques, and the overall professionalism send this look to the top. For higher points, next time use your story to explain the application choices. Very impressive work. Beautiful image. Congratulations.


Thank you again to all who entered. It was a delight to see your beautiful work.

– Nathan

Congratulations Halie for winning the 2017 QC Halloween Makeup Contest with your creative pop-art zombie look!

Halie wins a Ben Nye’s “Primary Creme Palette”, an Esum’s “Pro Palettes & Spatula”, a set of 5 latex prosthetics, two Graftobian creme foundations, liquid and gel blood, and a stipple sponge.

Have a Happy Halloween everyone and once again, congratulations Halie for winning the 2017 QC Halloween Contest, Gore category!

WINNERS REVEALED: Fashion Week Makeup Contest

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It’s time to announce the winners of our Fashion Week Makeup Contest!

But first, we would like to extend a huge “THANK YOU” to all our participants, the semi-finalists, finalists, and our judge!

This year, our fabulous judge, Nathan Johnson, created a personalized scorecard for each finalist to determine the winner.

Judge: Nathan Johnson

Designing for the Runway is an AMAZING opportunity. This is a moment to create a look that will impact trends around the world for years to come. I want to congratulate everyone who participat-ed. There was a lot of amazing work here and it was very difficult to choose the finalists. I do want to let you know, that finalists were not chosen by popular vote alone (as Facebook can be a popu-larity contest based on number of followers, etc). My input was also used to choose these finalists, so have no fear about the fairness. And when it comes to the winner, it was chosen exclusively by me and my dear friend Ms. Leanne Marshall. And, not once, did we check to see how many likes any of the images received. I will be including some comments from her with some of the finalists. The decision for the winner was chosen entirely based on the criteria I listed and whether or not the look could actually be used at a Leanne Marshall NYFW show!

Here’s what Nathan was looking for:

  • Face chart: A face chart that is clear and representative of the look. Feel free to make notes in it explaining your choices if you desire.
  • Creativity: A creative look that complements the collection. Think outside the box and create something wonderful and new. NYFW is where trends in hair and makeup are born, so make some magic.
  • Application: Precise application. Remember, this is the global stage for fashion and beauty, so your application should be perfect and symmetrical (unless your look is clearly designed not to be).
  • Photo quality: Clean, clear, and well lit photos are a necessity. You’re putting so much work into your design, so make sure you capture it well!
  • Final note: At the end of the day, it’s most important that you have fun. If you remember that the clothing is the star and you are there to complement, it will be easy to succeed! Do your best!

Fashion Week Makeup Contest Scoring:

Makeup Artist Megan Brown Makeup  Contest Submission

Artist: Megan Brown

  • Face chart: 3/5
  • Creativity: 2.5/5
  • Application: 4/5
  • Photo quality: 4/5
  • Total: 13.5/20

Comments: In your description, you say that you want to play with shine and color to balance nicely with the elegance of the clothing and the designs. I think you created an interesting look, but it is more of an Instagram look than it is a NYFW look. As lovely as it is, this look would overpower the elegance and easy flow of Leanne’s designs. A big part of designing for a designer means doing research. Now, I did not tell you that Leanne does not like a strong cheek, but had you looked up any of her past collections, you would have immediately seen that. My advice would be to do as much re-search as possible. To your credit, I believe that you used strong application skills (The skin is gorgeous, the lip is precise), but it is just far too aggressive of a look to compliment one of Leanne’s collections (they are known for being delicate and ethereal). Had you taken down that cheek by 3/4, and gone a bit softer on the eye, we may be having a different conversation. Leanne felt that the eye and lip were too strong so she would not have picked this look to compliment her collection. The face chart is also done well from a color point of view, but the excessive writing would make it impossible to be used at a show. Simplicity is important….overall excellent work.

Makeup Artist Karessa Johnson Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Karessa Johnson

  • Face chart: 2/5
  • Creativity: 3/5
  • Application: 4/5
  • Photo quality: 4/5
  • Total: 13/20

Comments: I will start by sating this is an eye catching look. It is extremely precise and detailed. The look has near perfect symmetry, which is very difficult to achieve. The write up of your face chart is one of the best of all the submissions (clarity, simplicity, typed), but the illustration is not present. As I said earlier, a face chart is a road map for your team of artists, if you do not do one that is complete and correct, you are not preparing your team for success. You’ve created a lovely look, and I commend you on it, but I would also encourage you to do a bit more research into Leanne. You mention that “you kept the face soft”, this is actually a very heavy foundation application and Leanne is always less is more when it comes to skin. She likes her models to look ethereal, with softer, more natural skin. She also like focus to be in only one place. Leanne said, Karessa “has some skills on the eye! I love the eye. I just wish she would have left the lip minimal though.” This is a gorgeous make up application, but with the heavy foundation and the gilded lip, it is more appropriate for Instagram likes and followers than it is for the Leanne Marshall show. As I mentioned earlier, take the advice of Coco Chanel and take something off. This is beautiful work. Congratulations.

Makeup Artist Annette Silvestre Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Annette Silvestre

  • Face chart: 4/5
  • Creativity: 2/5
  • Application: 4/5
  • Photo quality: 4/5
  • Total: 14/20

Comments: I will start by saying that this is a beautifully applied look. But, it is also a look that has been done many, many times. If you look through Instagram or YouTube, you will find countless how to’s that the illustrate applications that look just like this (maybe using different colors, but the essence of the look would be the same). So, as lovely as it is, that makes it a bit forgettable. To make a look for the runway, it has to be novel. In a way, this seems like a recycle of what is currently popular on Instagram. I do not want to suggest that you didn’t do a beautiful job, I just want to see your voice as an artist, and a bit less of the heavy Instagram influence. You are very talented, and that is evident in the gorgeous skin, the symmetrical eyes, the nuanced lip, and the well-blended cheek. But, I want to start to see your voice as an artist shine through. You are more talented than most of the folks getting paid millions to do how to’s online…I want to see your true voice now, instead of versions of what is already out there. You are on the brink of greatness. Stop watching Instagram and YouTube, and allow your own imagination to inspire everything you do. With your talent, you can do anything you want…and I know you will, once you trust yourself. You are capable of extraordinary greatness…and I am ready to see you shine. As a note to the face chart, it does not truly represent the application, for example, the smoke on the bottom lashing is extreme in application, but not present in the chart. A face chart has to be precise because it is a road map for your team of 20+ artists.

Makeup Artist Deahnna Dunstan Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Deahnna Dunstan

  • Face chart: 2/5
  • Creativity: 5/5
  • Application: 4/5
  • Photo quality: 4/5
  • Total: 15/20

Comments: Leanne said, that this look was her “favorite one at first glance. It’s a look I would choose for a col-lection.” And I have to agree. This look makes strong use of a collection color in an interesting and very high fashion way. A runway look needs to be strong, but quiet at the same time. Strong enough to make an impact, but quiet enough not to distract from the designs. You achieved that balance. BUT, the great Coco Chanel once said, “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take at least one thing off.” I think that would have served you very well in this instance. Brushing the eyebrows up was fine, not totally necessary given the strength of the eye, but putting a glitter orange powder below it took the high fashion look and added a level of cheapness to it. In the future, trust that what you did on the eye is enough. The lips and cheeks look great. Besides editing the brow, I would recommend more precision in the eye. In your chart, there are crisp, beautiful lines, and there is a very bright use of color on the lid. In your application that crispness gets lost a bit and the bright shade on the side is lost a bit. I think a bit less blending would have given you the crispness of the face chart, and the brighter pop on the lid would have made the look even more impactful. This is excellent work. But, a proper face chart is very important. By not filling out the product details, you would leave your team in the dark and that could cause a backstage disaster. With a touch more precision, the editing of the eyebrow, and a proper face chart, you very likely would have been the winner.

Makeup Artist Diana Martins Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Diana Martins

  • Face chart: 3/5
  • Creativity: 5/5
  • Application: 5/5
  • Photo quality: 4/5
  • Total: 17/20

Comments: This look is inventive and striking. Leanne said, this look “is original and I like that alien, high fashion look to it. Well Done.” And I totally agree. Choosing to keep the skin natural and fresh and put focus in only one unusual place, was a brilliant idea and it makes for a makeup that makes a statement while not taking away from the collection. This is what I would call a true compliment to a collection. I adore the dewy, perfect skin. And I just LOVE the use of stark color being primarily on the eyebrow. For this season’s collection that showed a week ago, the look I designed for Leanne put no color on the lid, it only used color on the brow bone! You are thinking outside the box, but doing it in a quiet way! Bravo! That is how you design for a designer. Congratulations. This is a very exciting look. As for the face chart. A face chart is not a painting. It needs to be very clear to show artists how to duplicate the look. Yours is very, very confusing with the skin fully colored in (remember models at a fashion show will be in all skin tones). The black lines around the lips are also confusing. Clarity is essential. The write up is clear and easy to follow, but the illustration makes it very difficult to follow as that will be their primary resource. Congratulations on some inventive and exciting work.

Final notes from Nathan: Creating a look for the runway has its own set of guidelines. You need to deeply research your designer, you need to make a statement without overshadowing their collection, and you have to create something that will inspire women around the globe to either be fascinated by it, or want to wear some version of it. Congratulations to all of you, but especially to our winner Diana Martins.

Congratulations Diana for winning our 2017 Fashion Week Makeup Contest!

Diana wins a Cover FX’s “Illuminating Prime and Set Kit”, as well as Tarte’s “Tarteist™ Pro To Go Amazonian Clay Palette”.

Congratulations Deahnna for winning the 2017 Fashion Week Makeup Contest First Runner-Up Prize!

Deahnna wins a Urban Decay’s “UD Jean-Michel Basquiat Tenant Eyeshadow Palette”!

Congratulations Annette for winning the 2017 Fashion Week Makeup Contest Second Runner-Up Prize!

Annette wins a QC Makeup Academy’s Travel and Expandable Makeup Palette!

Student Prize Winner

The lucky winner of our student prize draw is QC Makeup Academy student Inelda Santana! Inelda wins a Wander Beauty’s “Secret Escape Kit”!

Thank you to all the artists who submitted entries for the contest! And to the 5 finalists, you should all be very proud of your work. Once again, congratulations Diana for winning the 2017 Fashion Week Makeup Contest!

WINNERS REVEALED: Festival Dreams Makeup Contest

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It’s time to announce the winners of our Festival Dreams Spring Makeup Contest!

But first, we would like to extend a huge “THANK YOU” to all our participants, the semi-finalists, finalists, and our judge!

This year, our wonderful judge, Azzi Williams, created a personalized scorecard for each finalist to determine the winner.

Judge: Azzi Williams

Here’s what Azzi was looking for:

  • Effort: Beautiful detailed makeup that works seamlessly with the hair, costume styling and accessories, creating an overall visually springtime stunning look.
  • Skill: Clean, neat and polished makeup skills, beautiful detailed work, killer contouring and gorgeous, high-pigmented products that capture your spring festive look. Of course I’m also expecting those false lashes to be totally on point.
  • Photo Quality: Nice clean, crisp image that is of great quality—something you would see in a makeup artist’s portfolio. Nothing blurred, out of focus or with poorly thought-out backgrounds. (Certainly no bedroom clutter in the background. And less is more with skin retouching and Photoshop —- and yes, I will be able to tell!)
  • Fun: I want to see joy, magic and dreamy, fantasy fun! Have fun every step of the way!
  • Final note: Take time to really study this genre and see what models, makeup artists, celebrities and bloggers are creating to help fuel inspiration. Think of the details of color, texture, pigment and application. Look at the overall mood of your image—have you conveyed the character’s true springtime festive fantasy essence? All the best with your exciting creative makeup journey ahead and have loads of fun creating your look! Finally, GOOD LUCK!

Festival Dreams Scoring:

Makeup Artist Karessa Johnson Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Karessa Johnson

  • Effort: 5/5
  • Skill: 4/5
  • Photo Quality/ Overall Image: 4/5
  • Fun: 5/5
  • Total: 18/20

Comments: Stunning makeup with strong pigments and fine, beautifully executed detail. The lip accents are stunning and the eye makeup is beautifully executed. Accents above the brow could be enhanced with a little more metallic or gold to really bring the look to the next level. Also – to really enhance the makeup look, consider photographing against a plan black or white or spring-themed backdrop.

Makeup Artist Phoebe Bell Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Phoebe Bell

  • Effort: 4/5
  • Skill: 5/5
  • Photo Quality: 4/5
  • Fun: 4/5
  • Total: 17/20

Comments: A soft, romantic spring look that is very fashion forward and on trend. This look is more boho/whimsical in its finer elements than a dramatic festival look, but the metallic accents are sublime and the lips are beautifully finished. Would have liked to see a playful set of false lashes to add a bit more drama to the look.

Makeup Artist Jade Williams Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Jade Williams

  • Effort: 4/5
  • Skill: 3/5
  • Photo Quality: 4/5
  • Fun: 4/5
  • Total: 15/20

Comments: A pretty boho concept with lovely pretty accents. For a finish that photographs flawlessly, I recommend adding a more pigmented concealer and contoured base. The eye makeup colour palette selection is lovely, but please watch for the symmetry in eyeliner and shading application. Again, this look could be taken to the next level with a playfully dramatic false lash application or some more textured lip colour.

Makeup Artist Wendy Beane Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Wendy Beane

  • Effort: 4/5
  • Skill: 4/5
  • Photo Quality: 4/5
  • Fun: 4/5
  • Total: 16/20

Comments: A very pretty makeup look that is beautifully applied and shows off a more delicate makeup application. The gold accents on the brows work in harmony with the strobed effect. Would have liked to see a bit more fun and drama and playfulness – especially with the intensity of the eye makeup.

Makeup Artist Mehri Kazemi Makeup Contest Submission

Artist: Mehri Kazemi

  • Effort: 5/5
  • Skill: 4/5
  • Photo Quality: 5/5
  • Fun: 5/5
  • Total: 19/20

Comments: Incredible concept fusing both a modern spring festival look with a beautiful cultural concept. Exquisite detailed work and beautiful colours and textures that work together to create a spectacular look. The image is cohesive and the eye makeup is beautifully executed. Would have liked to see the lips accented a little more with colour or gloss, but overall a very strong look.

Congratulations Mehri Kazemi for winning the 2017 Festival Dreams Spring Makeup Contest!

Mehri wins a Pinch Provisions “Festival Kit”, a Tarte Make Believe in Yourself: Eye & Cheek Palette, and a Bite Beauty “Love, Bite Lip Set”.

Congratulations Karessa Johnson for winning the 2017 Spring Makeup Contest First Runner-Up Prize!

Karessa wins a Pinch Provision “Festival Aid Kit”, a Stila “Magnificent Metals Glitter & Glow Liquid Eye Shadow” in Gold Goddess, and a QC 9-shade Contour and Highlight Palette!

Congratulations Phoebe Jade Bell for winning the 2017 Spring Makeup Contest Second Runner-Up Prize!

Phoebe wins a Kat Von D Everlasting Lip Duo: Lip Contour Edition and a QC 9-shade Contour and Highlight Palette!

Student Prize Winner

The lucky winner of our student prize is QC Makeup Academy student Emily Burns! Emily wins a Benefit Cosmetics’ “Sunday My Prince Will Come” Easy Weekender Makeup Kit!

Thank you to all the artists who submitted entries for the contest! And to the 5 finalists, you should all be very proud of your work. Once again, congratulations Mehri for winning the 2017 Festival Dreams Spring Makeup Contest!

Night/Holiday Glamour Category

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Category: Night/Holiday Glamour

Judge: Nathan Johnson

What Nathan would like to see:

  • Creativity: How unique and creative is this look? Does it show personality and flair? Don’t be afraid to take risks and express yourself. I recommend not doing Google searches and copying an existing makeup…be yourself.
  • Effort: How much effort has the makeup artist put into the look in terms of products used, textures, effects, and finer details?
  • Skill and Technique: Does the makeup artist demonstrate a high level of skill in terms of honoring the color palette selection, good symmetry, blending techniques, accuracy, and attention to detail? Is it clean and precise with even application on eyes, cheeks, and lips?
  • Overall Image: Does the makeup complement the outfit, hair, and model’s features? Is the photography clear, in focus, and taken with good lighting? Does the image enhance the artistry? Delicate and tasteful Photoshopping is acceptable, but Instagram and Snapchat filters, and Facetone correcting apps are not.
  • Final Look: When comparing the before and after photos, how is the overall, final transformation?

Night/Holiday Glamour Scoring:

Artist: Tori Moore

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Effort: 9/10
  • Skill and Technique: 10/10
  • Overall Image: 8/10
  • Overall Transformation: 10/10
  • Total: 45/50

Comments: This is a beautiful and clean make-up application. The brow is absolutely perfect. The use of glitter is a beautiful, bright contrast to the flawlessly blended shadows on the lid and crease. There is great precision in the lip and the matte is a perfect contrast, to the glitter in the eye. Very striking. The skin also looks very clean and bright. I would have loved to see something unique and outside the box in their application. This is a very flattering make up. Excellent work!

Artist: Heather Warner

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Effort: 8/10
  • Skill and Technique: 8/10
  • Overall Image: 8/10
  • Overall Transformation: 9/10
  • Total: 41/50

Comments: This look is a lot of fun. The extreme cat eye is gorgeous. The lid work and crease are beautiful. I appreciate the placement and application of the cut crease. I love the defined brow, but do remember to use a shade that is 1-2 shades lighter than the hair. When it is as dark, or darker, than the hair, attention goes to the brow first instead of the eye. I would also like to see the drop shadow connect to the outer corner of the eye. It appears to only be under the center of the eye. I would also like to see the inner corner of the lips completed. It is also impossible to judge symmetry when I cannot see both eyes. This is wonderful work. Great editorial feel!

Artist: Madeline Martinez

  • Creativity: 9/10
  • Effort: 9/10
  • Skill and Technique: 9/10
  • Overall Image: 8/10
  • Overall Transformation: 9/10
  • Total: 44/50

Comments: This is a beautiful application. The precise use of glitter is a wonderful pop when set against the cut crease. The skin and lip are stunning, just be sure to complete the inner corner of the lip. The glow of the cheek is also phenomenal. It is difficult to fairly judge a make up when the eyes are essentially closed and both side of the application are cut off (photo right by the angle and photo left by the hair). In the future, I would love to see eyes open and at least one full side of the face unobstructed by fallen hair or camera angles. As an image, it is phenomenal.

Artist: Ruth Masilag

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Effort: 9/10
  • Skill and Technique: 8/10
  • Overall Image: 9/10
  • Overall Transformation: 9/10
  • Total: 43/50

Comments: The skin is glowing and perfect. The brows are perfectly shaped and defined. I think the use of color is beautiful and creative. The blending on the upper lid is gorgeous and the transition to the highlight under the brow is exceptional. Use some caution with the gold inner corner highlight. When this is over applied, it draws attention to the tear duct instead of the eyes. The lips add a rich compliment to this look. Job well Done.

Artist: Shania Gweder

  • Creativity: 10/10
  • Effort: 9/10
  • Skill and Technique: 8/10
  • Overall Image: 10/10
  • Overall Transformation: 9/10
  • Total: 46/50

Comments: I think you really embodied the spirit of the challenge. I appreciate that you put so much effort into the make-up, hair and photography. The lip is very precise and that is very difficult when you use bold colors. The cut crease and blending of the crease into the highlight are perfect. The double wing is exceptional. The one recommendation I would have is to know when to edit. Between the hair accessories, the crystals, the choker, the statement earrings, the head adornment, and the statement necklace, it becomes very busy. Even just removing the necklace would have helped to concentrate the attention onto the eyes and the lips. Too much statement in too many areas will lessen the impact. I would also recommend having a gentle hand when it comes to the gold glitter. I wish I could see both sides of the face to judge symmetry. Excellent work.

Honorable Mention:

Artist: Kayla Ciccone

  • Creativity: 8/10
  • Effort: 9/10
  • Skill and Technique: 10/10
  • Overall Image: 9/10
  • Overall Transformation: 9/10
  • Total: 45/50

Comments: I think this make up is exceptional. The skin and lips are perfect. The blending of the eyes is brilliant. Very, very well done. This make up deserves recognition.

Congratulations Shania Gweder for winning the 2016 QC Holiday Contest, Holiday Glamour category!

Shania wins a a Sephora Favorites “Give Me Some Bold Lip”, a Too Faced Chocolate Bon Bons Palette, as well as a Stila “Morning to Moonlight” Waterproof Eyeliner Trio!

Thank you to all the artists who submitted entries for the contest! And to the 5 finalists and honorable mention, you should all be very proud of your work. Have a Happy Holidays everyone and once again, congratulations Shania Gweder for winning the 2016 QC Holiday Contest, Holiday Glamour category!