For as long as I can remember I’ve been interested in everything that encompasses the fashion and beauty industry. I have every confidence that this has everything to do with my mom, the woman, whom I am 99 percent sure went to the hospital in heels when she was in labour with me – or at least that’s how I respond to people when they ask: “how can you walk in those?!” Basic genetics.
My mom taught me the important lesson of caring about myself and that I was worth my own time. Amidst this lesson was the impressive power of the tools of the trade, like mascara, blush and backcombing. What started off as a love of watching my mom put her makeup on has developed into my passion for the beauty industry.
I got my start in photography in the make-shift darkroom at my alma mater – Melville Comprehensive High School. After spending grades ten, eleven and twelve in the dark, under an ambient red light, I applied and was accepted to the Alberta College of Art and Design to study photography.
As a result of what I’ll choose to call persistence, and what others might phrase as borderline harassment, I got a job in New York working for Stuff and Maxim Magazines straight out of college.
The experience was life-changing for more reasons than one. I arrived in New York on September 9, 2001, and I stayed there until I had to leave in 2002. The city and its energy got its claws in me, and I knew that beyond just photography – I loved everything behind the scenes as well – hair, make-up, and wardrobe. I wanted it all!
How I got from there to here proves a long story, with a consistent theme – my continued love for all things beauty. Accolades over the last 15 years include being a part-owner of a successful salon studio in downtown Calgary for nine years, establishing a firm foothold in the television and advertising industries as a freelance makeup artist, as well as continuing on with my roots in boudoir, wedding, and family photography.
My mom also taught me that if we’re able to take care of ourselves, we are able and responsible for taking care of others, just the same. It’s my honour to give back to an industry that’s given me so much. I’m thrilled to be a part of the amazing Cancer Chic group, empowering women facing or recovering from cancer by teaching them the power of the aesthetic arsenal!
All of these things make me. There’s been bumps and bruises along the way, just like there’s been celebrations and high-fives. But, like my mom would say, and like I’ve come to believe: it’s the good and the bad, the ups and the downs, and the perfections and the imperfections that make us truly beautiful.
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