In my years of experience being in the freelance industry, I have learned to truly live by the saying, “Patience is a virtue.” For those of you who are new coming into this industry, I suggest you post this on your wall, mirror, dashboard in your car….anywhere…to remind yourself: be patient. It actually pertains to possibly every single job field there is in this country. The one thing that I have to remind myself each and every day is that I have to just be patient.
I have always been the type of worker who wanted to do everything NOW. I have been told by several people that I needed to learn to “walk before I run.” Anyone reading this who knows me personally probably knows how I am, which is being a very very ambitious person. Sometimes too ambitious. Coming up with crazy ideas all the time, ways to network, or different ways to come up with extra cash. My mind never sleeps, so being told to be patient for my “big break” feels like I’m being pushed under water. I get panicky and feel that I have to do every thing I can to come back up to the top.
There’s also the pressure of never having enough money. To all of you artists who have already gone through either school, internships, or apprenticeships, trust me when I say: You are not alone. I have been out of school for roughly 7 years and still struggle financially. Even though I make probably 4 times as much as I ever did back in Indiana…the cost of living in California tend to even that back out to….virtually nothing. I’m lucky if I can pay all of my bills on time each month. I’ll admit….I’m a whore when it comes to going out for food. Oops. But hey….I’m not denying it. So, my Almost-New-Years-resolution will be to stop going out to eat and save back that money to pay off my bills. And maybe start a jar of change for shopping. A girl’s gotta have some money to shop (I have been deprived of shopping for probably 5 months now. I’m literally going insane. Although, I did myself a favor and bought a sweater for a month long gig I have in Chicago. Bout’s to get reeeeeal cold).
Aside from struggling financially, there’s a somewhat ugly side to this industry that pops up every once and a while. In film or fashion, there tends to be, how do I put it….a plethora of personalities. Some are super intimidating, others can be outrageously egotistic, but most of them are just fine. I can happily say that I haven’t run into too many of these strong personalities, but I have come by a few and I definitely hear plenty of stories. Obviously I refuse to name any names, but what it boils down to is that these individuals or incidents have been the culprit of why some artists decide to leave this industry (I literally was brought into tears just recently from a crew member belittling me in front of other crew members. Ask my family– i DO NOT everrrrrr cry. I didn’t even cry when I worked with a crazy woman who told me I was horrible at my job. Well….today was the day). It’s really unfortunate and to be honest pisses me off. But I don’t have time to go on a tangent about it. My point is that if you are someone looking into this career: know that it will happen and be ready for it. Just smile and say, “Ok.” And for those of you who are experienced, well just keep your head up. I’m sure you have crossed paths with these individuals.
I hate seeing girls or guys I know give up on their dream. Whether it be because they couldn’t afford it, realized this wasn’t the career path they had dreamt it would be, or for the sake of a loved one. It’s heartbreaking really. If I can give any guidance to anyone either looking into this career, or help boost confidence to those who already are in it, then my mission is fulfilled. Climbing the mountain we call “success” is no joke. It takes years and years of patience, acceptance, practice, knowledge, and experience. Don’t let anything stop you. We never make mistakes, we only make discoveries. Learn from every step you take in your journey- even if it has nothing to do with hair or makeup. We all struggle, so don’t ever let that get you down!