Where to start, what to focus on and how to stand out - the secrets are revealed by the creator of the best makeup school in Russia, Ksenia Nikitina.
Founder and Creative Director of the Iconface Professional Makeup School. Makeup artist, international master
I came to Moscow from Dnepropetrovsk. At home, I received an architectural education - I studied for 6 years at the Pridneprovsk State Academy of Civil Engineering and Architecture, and became a specialist. Since then I have been "delirious" with ideal proportions, looking for harmony of lines and shapes. Thank you education for my structural thinking. I drew and mastered makeup techniques - it fascinated me. It turned out better and better - I tried endlessly, prepared models for filming, honed the technique on different faces.
My first teaching experience happened in 2001, at the VIS-ART makeup school (Ukraine). I worked for a year and realized that I wanted to move on. I easily packed my bags and moved to the capital.
I already had the idea of my own school in my head, but I wanted to study all sides of the process. From 2005 to 2008, I taught at the Forum Moscow School of Makeup Artists (then it was the most famous in Moscow). The Forum trained specialists in the fashion industry - they focused on glossy magazines, shows and films. In 2008, I stood at the origins of the Make-up Code school of image - there I began to develop my own teaching methodology. The point was to produce not just makeup artists, but modern specialists in their field. I "rehearsed": observed, made conclusions.
In 2011, I pulled myself together and opened the first set at my own school of makeup artists Iconface. From the very beginning, I set myself a high bar. I had the best cosmetics, for example, Shu Uemura, a brand for make-up artists Ben Nye and Illamasqua (not yet in Russia). For the first three years I was at Iconface 24 hours a day. I gave the students everything, taught everything I know, answered any questions. That is why people came to me from other cities and countries. From the very beginning, I put myself in the shoes of a student, paid maximum attention to the visitors. It is important for me that the student receives comprehensive information when going to Ksenia Nikitina.
When I opened the school, I realized that my relatives were suffering, - then I decided to recruit helpers. Hardworking, honest, with a spark in their eyes. I am proud of my team - only fans of their profession work for me. They like to come early in the morning and leave after midnight. I, in turn, never offend anyone! My important principle is to pay people money for any job. My team receives a salary, but gives me much more - it starts to live by its own business.
To create the best makeup school, you must genuinely contribute to the growth of each employee. I teach everyone! Work at Iconface starts from the position of an assistant: you take all the school's courses for free and reach such a level of knowledge that I would be pleased to call you part of the team.
Why did my school quickly become successful? I'm not trying to save money on what's important. Now Iconface's office is located in the Federation Tower of Moscow City, the offices have panoramic windows with perfect natural light. We thought over the interior to the smallest detail - it is very functional: powerful lamps, modules for storing huge stocks of our cosmetics, high chairs that are really comfortable to sit on.
I stake on indifference: after classes I help to draw up a case and advise on the opening of my LLC. If people believe in me and want to study at Iconface, I want to complete the program 100 percent. From the very beginning, I put myself in the shoes of a student, paid maximum attention to the visitors. Imagine: a guy from Vladivostok flies to me, spent crazy money on a ticket. He rents an apartment in Moscow for a month, pays for food, and his questions are not answered! This is a disaster.
I come to work like a holiday! I can paint, talk and explain for five hours straight. My profession is not a way to make money. I see in her a great opportunity for self-realization, helping people and love for them. Many people think my work is fun and easy - no one thinks about sleepless nights, two children (the second is 5 months old) and responsibility.
They constantly come up to me and ask what needs to be done to work at Iconface. Firstly, such questions cannot be asked to me. Secondly, I myself see who can do it. We are looking for people who understand what work is. It's like a sport, they train here every day. Those who see how the work actually happens and are ready to work quickly become stars, they are chosen by big brands.
On the final day of the Foundation basic course, I spend 5 hours telling people about their year after Iconface - telling them what they need to do to become a star. Make a portfolio, hone technique, create the perfect case, pick up working photos. Who follows these tips? 1 percent! I ask students to use the hashtag #iconface so I can see their progress. From last year's set (15 people) there are only two girls who "plowed" as I asked. If I need people, I will take them.
I have a favorite graduate - Tim Leo. You will be surprised, but I do not consider him initially talented. He has his own shading technique, Tim does not hold a brush according to the canons. When I released Tim, I said: "If you don't paint every day, nothing will work." He painted from morning till night, looking for any job. After 5 years, he became a big star.
What do I think about natural talent? I have only one example in my team - Anastasia Kruglova. She draws brilliantly. All the rest are ploughmen who have reached the level of Kruglova with constant work.
Text: Dilyara Telyasheva
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