My favourite Seneca College memory was when I found out that I got accepted into the Cosmetic Techniques and Management program. I remember the moment like it was yesterday. I was so happy to start my journey in the cosmetics field and excited to be able to gain knowledge from teachers within the program that had many years of experience.
If you could give one piece of advice to a student completing the same program as you, what would it be?
Have an open mind. Be ready to learn all aspects of the Cosmetics industry, from makeup and skincare to learning about different types of ingredients in cosmetics. You will need to put your full concentration hat on because from the moment you start the program, there will be a lot of information to grasp. Don’t worry, the teachers have your back. Ask questions! If you don’t understand what information is being put out there, just ask and don’t be afraid; maybe someone else is thinking about that same question you are going to ask. Get to know your classmates because forming a study group is something that will also benefit and enhance your understanding of the course materials. Make notes after each class and read ahead so that when it comes to midterms and exams, you will not be overwhelmed. Communication is key! You need to be passionate about what you’re doing and it will all pay off in the end.
How has your career evolved?
As a result of expanding my knowledge of make-up, skincare and other essentials, I now have the ability to educate my clients. My knowledge and confidence has definitely empowered me to reach for more and share with others what it means to be determined. Makeup artistry has brought me closer to my clients and allowed me to help them with their cosmetic situations. I’m proud of what I’m doing and continue to blossom.
How did your Seneca program help you get to where you are now/your current career?
By giving me access to career fairs where I could interact with industry professionals.
By facilitating role-playing exercises that prepared me for the industry.
By building my confidence.
By giving me access to excellent teachers that have open-door policies.
Do you have any other thoughts or memories you would like to share?
The in-class make-up demonstrations and practical components of the program created amazing memories that encouraged me to become more creative in my craft and gave me the confidence to do what I do. Getting to know different styles of makeup artistry was something that I carried on into the real world, where I could explore and share my knowledge with others. My favourite class was Portfolio Development where I had the opportunity to explore which avenue of the industry I was interested in.
Behind the scenes of an outstanding artistic collaboration
As graduation approaches students are looking back at one of their most ambitious collaboration projects: Fluid — An artisanal high fashion photoshoot. Their goal was to create international editorial appeal with fresh designs and captivating photography that brings sustainability into focus. The project explores themes of expression, inclusivity and timelessness that are reflected in the pieces, which traverse beyond the boundaries of gender and colour. They are in every way, fluid.
Fashion is the expression of a state of mind, and photography captures that essence and conveys it to the audience. A collaboration of the two arts in a professional setting is inevitable. This was the inspiration for Arline Malakian and Zoran Dobric to develop this high-profile project.
Fashion and photography are highly competitive professions. They’re fast-paced, network-based and ruthless to amateurs. So, how can students make it in this industry? By having the confidence and experience to make a splash from the beginning. If aspiring designers and photographers worked together to create an industry standard piece, the world of fashion would take notice. Fluid was created for precisely this purpose – to draw the attention of the seasoned professionals and show them what Seneca College students were capable of.
Any collaboration requires hard work, communication and mutual understanding. Executing Fluid was no different.
Fashion Arts students developed the concept of Fluid and determined the themes and ideas they would be exploring through their designs. They met regularly to brainstorm ideas, plan, and consult the right people to bring their vision to life.
They knew that every piece, every design, every shot should tell a story. The audience should be moved, and their work should make a difference. They worked relentlessly to co-select garments and fabric that would best represent the essence of Fluid.
Cosmetic Techniques and Management students played a key role in tying all the visual elements of the design together. With direction from the Fashion Arts crew, hair and make-up brought the look to life. It added the final aesthetics to pull together the entire piece and take it to the next level. While the designs spoke for themselves, cosmetics added the final appeal that would draw the audience in.
Photography students worked to create magic behind the lens. Their role was to co-direct the shots, and develop a storyboard tailored to the designers’ visions. They were tasked with putting their technical skills to work by arranging the lighting, set, and presentation in a way that would capture the story and express through visuals the importance of fluidity – the central theme of the project. While they worked with the Fashion Arts students during the shoot, a significant amount of their work was done in post-production, where they ensured that their work captured the essence of Fluid and exceeded industry expectations.
Two intensive days in Seneca’s Sandbox studio and numerous days prior and post-shoot were expended to make Fluid possible. Every unit worked efficiently independently and together. They were aware of their roles, acted with utmost professionalism, and most importantly, thoroughly enjoyed the process!
The experience of working with other departments and creating something from scratch was absolutely enlightening and exhilarating for the team. They were part of something bigger; something that is very much a regular practice in the professional world.
There were certainly challenges and the students grew more confident with every obstacle they overcame. With quick problem solving skills, communication, and teamwork, they made the best of tight schedules and small spaces. It was a learning experience that prepared them to face an industry as tough as fashion, head-on.
“[We learned] how much effort is required from everyone who is involved: Makeup artists, models, photographers, stylists… Everyone’s job is important and we all must rely on each other’s knowledge.”
– Deborah Alvarado (Photography)
The professional world of fashion and photography functions like a well-oiled system. They work together seamlessly to create exquisite works of art that are celebrated across the world. However, even industry experts who are part of projects like Fluid on a much larger scale had to learn somewhere. Students had the opportunity to develop a toolbox of skills that will propel them into the fast-paced industry and make them known in the face of tough competition.
They learned how to process and edit high quality fashion editorial stories as well as ideation and concept development under a very conceptual direction encompassing art, fashion, beauty and photography in and for a specific context.
“Everything starts with the design of the clothes, you have to understand the concept and photograph it in a way that will enhance its “vibe” while at the same time keeping in mind trends and your own personal style of shooting,” Deborah added.
Along with the knowledge gained, students now have a series of photos that will enhance their portfolios and expose them to the fashion world. It gave them an opportunity to create something that they are proud of and can confidently take with them when venturing into the industry.
It is truly an accomplishment for the artists to have seen such an elaborate project from start to finish. It is a testament to the talent and tenacity of our students at Seneca College. They are constantly seeking to expand their horizons and prepare themselves for a career in something they are truly passionate about.
That is the real reward of this project- it was born out of genuine love for their craft and a determination to prove themselves!
We were graced by the presence of royalty when Priyanka and JuiceBoxx guest lectured the Creative Makeup FX course as part of the Cosmetic Techniques and Management program.
Priyanka has been performing as a Drag Queen for the past 2.5 years and has won both Miss Crews and Tangos (2018-19) and Woody’s Queen of Halloween (2018). In 2019, she was voted NOW Magazine Readers’ Choice for best local drag performer.
JuiceBoxx has been a drag queen entertainer for 6 years and has been featured in ads for Crest and Absolut Vodka. Before becoming a full-time drag queen, she worked as a professional make-up artist.
The workshop spanned over two days with the first half of the class dedicated to the demonstration component. JuiceBoxx and Priyanka taught students how to apply a complete look from start to finish. The lesson included a detailed list of which cosmetic products to use and the application techniques that are optimal for creating a strong stage presence. Students learned about brow blocking, how to create the illusion of a larger eye shape (as opposed to using fuller lashes to enhance the look), and contouring techniques. Brow blocking is a technique that uses a glue stick to adhere natural brow hairs to the skin. Once the glue dries, a face powder is applied over the brows and the desired eyebrow shape is created.
During the second half of the class, students had the opportunity to create drag queen make-up looks on themselves or on a partner using the techniques taught by JuiceBoxx and Priyanka. Priyanka and JuiceBoxx met with students during the practical component of the class to answer questions and provide feedback during their make-up application.
The demonstrations and workshops were a huge success. Students came away with a greater knowledge of drag queen makeup techniques, the products used and the one-on-one feedback from Priyanka and JucieBoxx.
On Thursday, October 3rd, The School of Fashion hosted our annual Career Networking event with industry-leading companies! Thank you to our long list of exhibiting companies, including Hudson’s Bay Company, Nordstrom, Footlocker, SEPHORA, Shoppers Drug Mart, Sanctuary Day Spas , TJX The Ten Spot, and Elmwood Spa. The event was open to all our #SenecaFashion students who spent the afternoon engaging with company representatives and handing out their business cards and resumes to prospective employers. We are #SenecaProud of our career ready students!
Did you know that #SenecaFashion has a Cosmetic Techniques and Management Program?
The two-year Cosmetic Techniques and Management diploma program will immerse you in a thriving industry with skills and knowledge that employers and clients value. From practical makeup techniques and skin care analysis skills to marketing and management knowledge, you will learn various aspects of the cosmetic business and develop your talents as an artist. This program offers both, a fall and winter term start date with different delivery options. Graduates of this program can enter some of the following careers:
Freelance makeup artist
Here is a sneak peek of some of the looks from our styling techniques class. Make-up and hair courtesy of Rebecca, Risa, and Xiaoting #SenecaProud #CosmeticsCareers
On Monday, October 1st Seneca’s School of Fashion welcomed 25 companies to the Great Hall. The event was an opportunity for companies and our students to network and learn more about each other. Career opportunities and paths were of special interest to our students and they had the chance to speak with the most knowledgeable of representatives from companies such as Nordstrom, RW & Co, Sephora, Shoppers Drug Mart, Clinique, Holt Renfrew, Footlocker, Elmwood Spa, Rexall, The Ten Spot, HBC & Saks, Sanctuary Day Spa, NYX and more!