Friday, May 18, 2012
Saturday, May 5, 2012
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
It was a pleasantly surprise been asked for an interview by The Edge recently. And I'm glad that I'm able to contribute my experience to it readers as well as who follow my blog alongside with the world squash champion Dato' Nicole Davis, Songbird Shafinaz Selamat and the prominent award winning writer and poet Shirley Lim.
Below is my part of interview by Raina Ng
Sheng Saw is one of the top make-up artists in Malaysia. As a little boy, he loved colour, painting and calligraphy. He would follow his mother to the beauty parlour or when she shopped for cosmetics, tak- ing in the brilliant palette of colours available.
However, becoming a make-up artist was not something he had even considered. He became a car salesman instead. But on the side, he experimented with anyone who would let him take a brush to their face. “At 16, I began doing a lot of make-up for those on the local cross-dressing scene. Drag queens were the only ones who would allow you to be ex- travagant with their faces. I was constantly on the lookout for faces I could paint, trying out colours, even on paper and with paint.”
But when he tried to do it professionally in Malaysia, it was too difficult. “I felt I had to go overseas to really make a good living out of it.”
It was not easy. He went for a few interviews and kept be- ing rejected until he landed a job as a part-time sales assist- ant at Givenchy. “They began to notice my potential and gave me a permanent position as a make-up artist at Givenchy, Harrods. I began meeting a lot more people and was offered a permanent contract with Isabela Rosellini’s make-up brand, Manifesto Cosmetic.”
Sheng Saw had been practising, but it was here that he fi- nally received proper feedback. “My technique improved when I started working for MAC. I was able to compare my skills and techniques with other artists and I learnt from the seniors. I learnt a lot about how different colours complemented differ- ent skin tones and,being in London,I got to practise on people from all over the world.”
And he continues to practice and hone his style, although he is already one of the most acclaimed (and expensive) make- up artists in Malaysia. As the years go by, he has learnt that less is more. “I think my technique has changed and my work is getting finer. I used to like the big, the showy and the avant garde, but as I grow older I am learning how to make people look more natural, what I call the ‘effortless look’, rather than just plastering a mask on their face.”
You have to pour yourself into your work to ensure that what you do is authentic. You can be technically proficient, but to be a good make- up artist, you need to have a personality. Appreciate the people you meet along the way, especially your mentors. And finally, work with passion. As Leonardo Da Vinci said: ‘...where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art.’ — Sheng Saw, make-up artist