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Summary

Oksana is a 15-year veteran of film, TV and the fashion industry, and also the founder of Oksana Starling Beauty. As an established makeup artist, she has worked with major networks like Food Network, Bravo, NBC, CNN, and VH1. She has also shot commercials for Microsoft, KIA, Duke's, DISH Network, and Frontier Airlines. Her client list includes Andre Agassi, Phil Collins and Genesis, Von Miller, Clinton Kelly, and Zac Brown, just to name a few. She was a makeup department head in the film Social Dilemma, which has been one of the most talked-about documentaries at Sundance this year.

Besides being a production makeup artist, Oksana is also a personal stylist and a makeover expert. She provides image and branding consultations for women looking to cultivate and uplevel their professional and personal style. One of her greatest joys is helping everyday women feel beautiful powerful, and confident.

 

Show Notes

[1:39] Oksana's Background

  • Born and raised in Soviet Russia
  • Graduated college and got her degrees economics and finance, and HR psychology,
  • Decided to move to America in 1998, initially moved to the Bay area
  • Has lived in California, Georgia, Nevada, and Colorado

[02:15] Oksana's career path

[06:02] Rose Hill Makeup Academy (Academy of Cosmetic Arts), and the move to Georgia

[08:06] Working with athletes and models

[09:12] Viva Las Vegas…

[10:33] Boulder, Yoga Capital of the U.S.

[12:59] Working yourself into the market in Colorado

[15:08] Using social media for self-promotion

[17:23] Typical work in the Colorado

[19:04] How stylists work with clients

[23:07] Putting the fun in back into the artistry of makeup

[25:44] How Oksana learns and grows as an artist

[28:04] The reality of working for experience

[29:59] Contracts and agreements

[31:01] Retaining a makeup artist

[32:21] Expendables and kit fees

[33:47] Commercial shoots versus indie films

[36:44] Negotiable expenses

[37:33] What do you look for when hiring a great makeup artist?

[38:24] What about insurance?

[40:28] To join or not join a union

[43:15] Staying healthy and fit on set

[45:45] Starting out with yoga

[52:19] The easiest makeup job ever and the perks of the trade

[56:32] Bucket list events

[59:08] The best piece of advice

[01:00:38] Single biggest lesson learned over the last year

[01:04:17] The biggest lesson learned over Oksana's career

[1:04:57] Advice for aspiring makeup artists in the Colorado market

[01:05:42] The wisdom of Rose Hill and Rhonda Barrymore, Cory Taylor Bryant and Cindy Cruz

Links and Resources

 

Be sure to check out podcasts with other great guests in the film and media industry on our DMP Podcast Page!

Summary

Todd is a working makeup effects artist and designer. He began his career in entertainment with PBS while a graduate student in Television Production at the University of Tennessee. Before starting his own small effects shop (BaPoFX) in Denver, Colorado, Todd worked as a production manager, writer, and producer for cable pioneer Ted Turner at TBS in Atlanta. He was also a writer/producer with 20th Century Fox Television in Los Angeles, and a visual effects animator for Warner Brothers, Walt Disney Pictures, and Walt Disney Television Animation. Among his feature film credits are Die Hard 2, Contact, Batman and Robin, Incoming Freshman, Cannon Fodder, The Enemy God, Decay, Apartment 212 (Gnaw), Hoax, and Ink, just to name a very few. Todd has sculpted and molded wounds used in the 2013 Tom Hanks film, Captain Phillips. Some of his television credits include Jag, and an uncredited contribution to one of his favorite TV programs, Dr. Who.

Show Notes

[00:12] Introduction

[2:31] Todd's Background

  • Grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and Boston, Massachusetts, and Atlanta, Georgia
  • Lived in Pennsylvania and California until the Northridge earthquake
  • Todd has resided in Colorado since 1994
  • Originally was interested in medicine, after an adventurous childhood, and was a surgical assistant in his teens
  • Credits Ghoulardi with his initial interest in monster makeup
  • Introduced to Curt by Cory Taylor Bryant

[8:25] Thoughts on retirement, and still being able to do the things you love

[10:25] Of art in the family and aptitude testing

[11:52] Todd's ‘LA Story

[16:44] Running an Equity Waiver theatre

[18:25] ‘I knew them way back when..' and how Todd met Gregory Peck

[20:13] The move to Colorado

[22:08] Trying to shape the future of film in Colorado

[24:16] Can you guess who all got their start in Colorado? (hint: some of them kill Kenny on a regular basis!)

[27:04] Back Porch FX (BaPoFX) and Pro*Am Prosthetics, and Shrek the Musical

[29:58] Pre-visualization on Contact, Gnaw (Apartment 212), and Hoax

[33:24] The cost of doing business with FX

[34:45] Training; Dick Smith‘s advanced course, books, and Stuart Bray, navigating the dangerous waters of online resources

[37:21] Recommendations on how to start in the makeup business, and how Todd's book came to be

[45:09] The most powerful mentors

[47:11] Todd and Stuart's podcast and Prosthetics Magazine tutorials

[48:43] How technology has changed the makeup business, and the talented Landon Meier

[50:33] Of molds and sculpting

[52:30] The many ways and places where special effects makeup and makeup special effects are used

 

[56:03] Retaining the services of a makeup effects artist and setting a budget; of Rick Baker and haemophobia

[60:07] Avoiding the makeup malfunctions during filming; “don't be a dick” and “be excellent to each other”

[1:02:24] What to look for in a great makeup artist

[1:05:54] Defining different styles of makeup

[1:06:58] IATSE and the union experience

[1:09:21] How to build a solid business in makeup, even if you barely survived college

[1:13:24] The value of asking for assistance, recognizing opportunity, and showing initiative

[1:17:34] Asking directly versus paying it forward

[1:19:03] Advice for aspiring makeup artists in Colorado

[1:20:17] Creatively digging for local work and learning how to wear different hats (i.e. “be a useful non-dick”)

[1:23:03] The Monsterpalooza Experience

[1:25:15] The brilliance of Shane Hurlbut

[1:27:49] SIGGRAPH and the NAB Show

[1:29:06] Todd's dream projects (wink, wink, nudge, nudge: drop Stephen Schwartz a line here)

[1:29:52] The best pieces of advice Todd has ever received

[1:32:08] The life cost of making money, or “the worst day in hell beats the best day in advertising”

[1:33:53] Common mistakes in makeup

[1:36:47] The biggest lesson of 2019

[1:37:34] The biggest life lesson

[1:39:07] Dealing with fame as an outgoing introvert

Links and Resources

 

Be sure to check out podcasts with other great guests in the film and media industry on our DMP Podcast Page!