At Academy of Makeup and Fashion in Encino, California, owner and instructor Barbara Layne picks up where beauty school programs leave off, in addition to offering basic courses to both licensed and unlicensed people with no make-up background. Graduates from Layne’s master program complete a minimum of 16 four-hour classes for a total of 64 hours. Layne provides live models so that students are not spending “dead time” serving as each other’s models, and she arranges photo shoots to give their portfolios a professional look.
Layne breaks down her program into two segments. The first, which addresses “real people” make-up, covers beginning techniques through bridal make-up. Layne offers a certificate for students who opt to take only this first part, which includes more than just application methods.
“You need to learn a lot of psychology in order to come up with the right look for an individual,” explains Layne. “Otherwise the client will look in the mirror and say, ‘It’s nice, but it’s not me.’”
Layne’s courses focus on both analyzing a client’s face and identifying her “fashion personality.” Students learn to ask the client what she wants her image to convey and all about her daily grooming routine. “Some people will not sit for 15 minutes and do their make-up,” explains Layne, “while other people see it as a ritual that they look forward to every morning.” As a specialist in corrective make-up, Layne also educates make-up artists in techniques that can alter, for example, the perceived shape of a nose.
The second part of Layne’s program provides instruction in media make-up for models and actors. Students who take this hope to get gigs in advertising, do fashion shoots or work on the sets of movies and television. While Layne’s school does not offer classes in monster make-up, pretty much everything else is covered: black-and-white vs. color film; fantasy make-up, which is currently popular in fashion magazines; period make-up; and special effects.
“We have a huge dressing room filled with costumes,” says Layne. “Students learn about wardrobe styling and how to do ‘light’ hair for the camera. They can’t really do hair unless they’re licensed, but they can backcomb and fluff up the hair.” Since the school is in Southern California, work opportunities come in regularly, she adds.