Cat Parnell is a BA(Hons) makeup and hair design for film, TV and music graduate.
Where are you currently working/ what projects are you currently working on?
I'm freelance, so I work for myself and have done for the past 6 years now. I work on new jobs every day, from beauty editorials to advertising. I have shoots coming up with Warehouse, Karen Millen, Fashion editorials for magazine and so on coming up until the end of the year.
What do you look to for inspiration for your work?
Literally everywhere. I love looking at art and shapes to get inspiration and to understand light and shadow. Also, the obvious choices like watching the runway shows and following trends currently in season via top make-up artists, clothing designers and so on.
What has the journey been like from graduation to where you are now in your career?
Tiring, sometimes emotionally exhausting when you have to keep chasing work, but if you persist then it is so worth it! It took me about 6 months to a year to be able to be 100% freelance.
Has your career lead to where you thought it would?
Absolutely, and further. I've learnt so much about myself as an artist that I didn't know when I finished university. Your career can take you down a totally different path to one you thought you'd go down.
How would you describe your style of work?
Clean, Effortless, Precise and Elegant.
INTERVIEW : TARA PAGE
EDITED : HANA MURPHY
PHOTOGRAPHY: PROVIDED BY CAT PARNELL
Is there a message you carry through your work that you want people to receive?
You can create beautiful make-up with less products than you assume you'll need. Make-up and Hair is about enhancing your own true beauty and not shielding yourself behind layers of make-up. I like to look at a person’s features and decide how to bring those out in a natural and effortless way.
Did you have any setbacks/challenges in your career? If so how did you overcome these?
Absolutely, this industry is cut throat and brutal at times. You may question your ability at times. But you have to always remind yourself why you're there, you're doing what you love. You meet people who may challenge you but you must trust in yourself and know that your talent is not determined by others. You have to push yourself to always be better.
What do you hope to be doing in your industry in the future?
I hope to be working on large beauty campaigns, for new skincare and cosmetics. I also hope to work with more celebrities and music artists in the future.
Do you have any advice for aspiring students?
Always trust yourself. Be persistent. Say "yes" to any job that comes your way even if you are worried that you don't know how to do something, it'll push you to learn a new skill or realize it's something you're able to do, or if you can't it's all a learning curve! Assist as many people as you can. Don't take things personally, when a shoot isn't going to plan, sometimes you just need to re-think your ideas and work out something that will work on the day. Getting on set is the absolute best way to learn and gain new skills.