by - OG magazine

JETA BUJUPI (@jetamakeup), 26,  London

The artistic freedom afforded to those in creative industries, such as stylists, make-up artists and creative directors to name a few, induce some to assume that these career paths/degree courses are effortless (talent) and therefore somewhat easier- forgetting that visualizing and generating original concepts/looks, decorating and developing faces for brands not only takes weeks (sometimes months) of prolific planning, gathering and adjusting  to produce stimulating as well as clear-cut content also involves physically chasing up those with whom you need but also believe in making your vision a reality.

And then comes the challenge of working with others- which I personally have an intense anxiety about still scarred from the `group’ projects at uni, where it (no matter how much you divided tasks or how many texts you sent asking for the work so you could put it into  the classic powerpoint) would always fall upon one person who actually cared enough to make the project. Now imagine this but with people you’ve just met and have a day or so to work with to materialize something which is, at this point still a concept.

A scenario that fresh-faced, feather browed makeup artist Jeta is in on daily basis whether it be painting faces for her own beauty spread in ELLE China, working on runway models or assisting on  Zara Larssons music vid for ain’t my fault. Jeta spoke to us about nerves, the industry, inspirations and her definition of success.

Whats the first thing that runs through your mind when you get on set ?

I can do this

Your favourite thing about make-up  ?

Mostly just being able to create something different every day. Whether it’s a simple clean beauty look for a private client or something more crazy and high fashion, it makes me happy. I mean, I know that being a makeup artist I’m not exactly saving lives, but a lot of the time I do have moments or feedback from clients that make me stop for a moment and think, wow, the confidence and self esteem this whole experience (not just the makeup) gives people is really important and it’s rewarding to me. That’s also my favourite thing, making others feel good about themselves.

Tell us how you got into make-up ?  

Hmmm where do I start? Art & Design was my favourite subject at school, I took it as one of my A Levels but never had a clue as to what I would actually do with it, I just knew it was my path to be creative in some way, and when it got to that stage where everyone was applying for Uni I didn’t really know what to do, what to apply for or what career I wanted to choose, what I wanted to be. Then one day me and my sister were talking about it and she mentioned that her friend knew someone who was studying make up artistry in university, she thought that it was cool and that I might be interested. I remember thinking what? Make up is actually a JOB? Instantly I was OBSESSED with the concept of “drawing” or “painting” on people’s faces as a career and immediately started my research into universities and began teaching myself Make-up. I ended up going to London College of Fashion for an Art & Design foundation degree because I thought it’d be a good way of allowing me to dip my fingers into a variety of creative fields within fashion, and hopefully still choose make up at the end and go from there. The course really did enforce the fact that I still really wanted to study makeup and be a makeup artist, so the next step was to apply for a BA honours degree in Makeup for Fashion at London College Of Fashion, and I did just that. I didn’t get in however, I was totally unprepared for the second interview (there were three stages of interviews to get through) and my confidence was quite low at the time. After that I felt really deflated and I got it into my head that hey, I didn’t need uni anyway to get where I wanted to. Fast forward maybe 2/3 years of working in Fashion retail and being self taught in makeup I did a rubbish beauty college course and then I changed my mind and decided I wanted to try again and get that degree to give me a head start and maybe open some doors for me. I studied Hair and Makeup for Fashion at the same uni when I was about 22 for two years and I don’t regret it! It’s not for everyone, but for me it was more about gaining knowledge and an insight into the industry, collaborating and making contacts that gave me the confidence I had/have after completing the degree.

Have you always wanted to be involved in a creative field ? 

Always. Before Makeup I used to draw a lot, mainly portraits. I was always into art, it was my way of escaping reality and entering another world, and to me Makeup is definitely a form of art.

How long have you been MUA for ?

I have been a working professional MUA for about 3 years now.

Where do you get the inspirations for the looks you create and what helps your creative process when thinking about looks? 

Anywhere and anything can give me inspiration, I could spot the most simple object or walk past something and I’ll stop and take a picture on my phone or capture it in my head. There’s inspiration everywhere I look. I would say I am mostly inspired by textures and emotions.

Your work is so diverse ! From out-there art looks to more traditional simple looks? Which do you love to create more of ?

I love both but I enjoy doing something a bit more “out there” as you put it, because it gives me the freedom to be more creative, and that’s my passion.

Do you love working on shoots or runways the most? 

I love both in different ways. With fashion runway I love the adrenaline rush it gives me working under that pressure, everything is just go go go, it’s challenging but I love anything that challenges me! I love shoots because they can be a lot more chilled (sometimes lol) and more fun!

What do you like most and least about the industry ? 

What I like about the industry is that it’s a very big industry so there’s room for anyone. What I don’t like about it is also that it’s a very big industry haha. It is a tough industry with tough people and you have to grow thick skin to get through it.

Looks you’re loving at the moment ?

Wet glowy skin is always a fav. I’m also loving graphic lines and blocks of colour on the eyes.

What’s your signature look ? 

I would say a very clean look. Youthful glowing skin, good feathery but groomed brows and a perfect lip.

Whats been your favourite look to do so far ? 

I can’t choose!

Have you ever thought about bringing out your own make-up line/range ? 

Yes I have and that would be amazing. Maybe a future goal who knows.

Dream client ? 

Cindy Crawford to name one.

Anyone you’d love to collab with ? 

Anyone who’s passionate about art and shares a creative vision with me.

You’ve worked on Zara Larssons music vid-  how did it come about and how was it? 

Yay I did! It was for the ‘ain’t my fault’ music video and the location was this incredible Georgian style mansion in Buckinghamshire, it was dreamy. It was an assisting job and basically this amazing celebrity makeup artist from the US called Colby Smith (who I’d been following on Instagram for a while) had put up a post saying that he was coming to London for a job and needed an assistant. Obviously I instantly (not even knowing if I was available on that date) sent him a message saying I wanted to do it and he replied straight away. Turned out I wasn’t actually free that day I had to work, but still I managed to change things around in order to do the job even though at this point I didn’t actually know it was for Zara’s video, I just knew I wanted to work with him as I love his work and his personality shines through his Instagram! So the day itself was SO FUN, (although we were all SWEATING like pigs because it was the time of that disgusting heatwave in the uk), as soon as I met Colby I knew I was going to have a great day, so down to earth and so funny, always smiling, dancing and making jokes. He introduced me & another assistant to Zara who was really sweet, and we watched him do her makeup and learnt some tips and had a laugh. We did the makeup of the backing dancers, and let me tell you, the amount of sweat and oil we had to blot and remove, and the amount of times we had to touch up their makeup! Haha they were such SICK dancers though, I know it’s hard to take your eyes off Zara but watch them in the video they’re so so talented and the choreography was done by Beyonce’s choreographer who was also there (I know!) Anyway, it was a huge production and an amazing job and experience for me, and all because I tried my luck for a job with an artist through Instagram who happened to like my work!

What has been the most surreal moment of your career so far ? 

It would have be last year when I was taken to Paris to shoot my very own beauty spread for the January Issue of ELLE China Magazine! Such a huge moment for me in my career and life in general. I’m very proud.

And so you should be!!! Do you ever get nervous when doing looks and if so, how do you get over your nerves ?

Yeah of course, I think everyone does. You just learn how to mask it and act confident even when you’ve made a little mistake or are unsure of something.

Your favourite feature to work on … Lips, eyes or cheeks (skin) ?

Skin. It’s what the entire look is built on and if the skin is perfect then every other aspect of the makeup will look even better.

The biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career so far ?

I can’t really pin point it I think it’s more of an ongoing challenge really. Every single Job is different and therefore a new challenge for me and I just take each one as it comes.

What brands would you recommend for those on a budget ?

I think Sleek is great and so afforable, also Maybelline, L’Oréal, Makeup Geek and NYX Cosmetics. There are quite a lot, and more and more new brands are creating better quality products at a lower price range.

What about high end ?

Too many to mention and every brand has its good and not so good products, but I’ll name a few of my favs – Makeup Forever, Nars, Laura Mercier, Urban Decay, Mac, Charlotte Tilbury and Bobbi Brown.

Staples that should be in every make-up bag ?

A good base even if you don’t wear foundation, even just a primer or moisturiser that brightens and evens out your complexion, concealer, brow gel, mascara, blush/bronzer & a lipstick.

Common beauty mistakes? 

The contour stripes need to go, blending is key, and besides not everyone even needs to contour and definitely not on a daily basis. Applying concealer before foundation – it’s best applied after, otherwise when you apply your foundation on top and your buffing it in with whatever makeup tool you use or your hands, you’re just going to be moving it around or away from where you placed it, defeating the purpose.

Top three make-up tips ?

Here’s the most important one – your makeup is only ever as good as your lighting!

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to become a makeup artist ?

Get yourself out there, build contacts and assist as much as you can.

How would you define success ?


What’s your 2017 forecast?

Well glowy skin is still in, no surprise there. Lived-in eye looks, earth tones and monochromatic looks, healthy radiant skin with rosey cheeks and lips, and gloss will be making a come back!

Images : @jetamakeup

Interview and text: @gericela_