I’ve been pretty busy the past few days and my head is a big empty sieve right now so I’m going to use this as an opportunity to talk about someone else.
This is an interview with Jamie Genevieve from 2015 which was written for a magazine article about social media and never used in the issue. As a young woman (and a Scottish one) doing so well in a creative industry I thought I’d post it here in case anybody would like to read a bit more about her and see how far she’s come, even in the past few years.
You can read the interview below! (Jamie’s Youtube channel is here)
I caught up with Jamie to pick her brain about the influence of social media on her ever-expanding make up artistry career, and how utilising your social media accounts to display your creative folio can be the catalyst to your success.
It may sound simple but pouring enough of your work ethos online to change your life offline requires the same amount of blood, sweat and tears – if not without more time, dedication and talent.
When did you first begin posting about make-up on social media and what pushed you to start uploading your looks and tutorials online? Was there a particular make-up post that kicked off your success online?
My first post was around a year and a half ago when I was still at college, but the craziness started in October time 2014 when I uploaded my first YouTube video. I’ve had a few people ask me how it happened, truth is I have no idea! Illamasqua were really supportive by reposting my pictures, then other pages must have seen and shared them too! It was a snowball effect.
Did you study make up artistry or are you self-taught?
I studied for 2 years at Clydebank College (now West College Scotland), but I’d have to say I’ve learned a lot more from working and practising. Even watching other tutorials!
You’ve worked for established beauty companies like Estée Lauder and Illamasqua. Do you think having this experience helped you earn respect and attention from your followers and fellow make-up artists, and would you advise other make-up artists to try and get experience working with big name beauty brands under their belt?
I think because there is only one Illamasqua counter in Scotland and even though it is such a cult brand, it’s quite a small company. There’s only a handful of artists who have been trained with them and I think that’s quite cool.
What is your favourite outlet to post on and why has it become a favourite of yours?
Probably Instagram because it’s so easy. Literally Click and Post! I love YouTube, but the time and effort that goes into a 5-minute tutorial is insane. I can’t believe I managed 1 a week when I was working full time.
How often do you aim to post a new look?
Every day on Instagram, once a week on YouTube. It sounds easy but trying to come up with different looks every day is hard, I’m constantly looking at other artists for inspiration.
When did you first notice you were beginning to gain a lot of followers on your Instagram and Youtube accounts?
When I hit 10K I was so chuffed. I noticed the figure on my Instagram just kept growing, my family would ask ‘How many now?’ and within days I was getting thousands more followers. A bit terrifying to be honest. It really puts the pressure on to get better, or change it up more.
What is it about your social media that you think appealed to so many people?
I couldn’t say. I can’t believe people sit and watch my videos,
or look at my Instagram for inspiration. It’s really overwhelming.
Is there a certain kind of aesthetic you aim to create with your online profiles?
Not at all, just be myself.
You’ve received sponsorship from very successful brands like Limecrime, Bellami Hair Extensions and NYX, how did you get begin working with brands like these?
I’ll be sitting doing something totally normal, look at my emails and flip out because another brands been in touch.
All my sponsorship have approached me on Instagram or through email and there’s really no way of guessing when and who someone’s going to get in touch. Someone from the companies PR must just come across me and like my work, it’s so flattering.
What kind opportunities have come your way since becoming a huge online presence, and what opportunities have been most beneficial to furthering your career?
Working for myself definitely. Things like holding masterclasses and travelling for events, and it’s definitely boosted my client base for when I’m taking appointments in ONYX Salon.
Your looks are often shared all over the internet, being featured on the Instagram of top brands like Anastasia Beverly Hills. Has your success on social media made it possible for you to collaborate with another artist or be recognised by a brand you’d always dreamed of working with?
I love Anastasia! I’m dying to work with them. I have my eye on a few brands I’d love to work with, but I’m a big believer in what’s for you doesn’t go by you. Playing the waiting game and focusing on my current partnerships.
Have there been points where you’d been living a double life with a boring day job when your social media was beginning to take off? If so, how did you make the leap to turning your social media into a career?
Definitely, it wasn’t until my followers and clients were coming to the counter and saying ‘What are you still doing here!?’. I think everyone expected me to leave and work myself sooner, but I think I picked a good time. Everything seems to be falling into place!
Are there any bad points to being so widely recognised and followed online? Do you ever receive criticism and what do you think has been the best way to deal with it?
I feel really lucky and I haven’t experienced much ‘hate’. My followers and so supportive and when anyone has anything nasty to say, they totally back me up and tell the trolls where to go.
Has your social media enabled you to meet and connect with any people who have really pushed you to go further with your career?
Yes, actually my new makeup bestie is Instagram sensation Amber Dean. We’re holding a class in London together next week and one up here in Glasgow on the 23rd of July! She’s great. I’ve been chatting to loads of artists from all over the world, it’s amazing.
Are you ever recognised out and about in public?
Most day’s now, it’s so freaky haha. The nicest compliment I get is when people say ‘You’re so normal/genuine/humble’. I love when people come up to me and say they love my makeup and videos, it really makes my day. I’ve been asked for a selfie with a follower so much that I’m not so terrified anymore.
What’s been the best piece of advice given to you in your career so far?
To stay positive. My mum would always say ‘What you put out to the universe comes back to you’, so when I’m having a bad day or feeling demotivated, I shake it off and plan what I’m doing next, stay determined and get excited about things to come. The biggest mistake is holding on to negative feelings and thoughts.
What goals are you currently hoping to achieve in your field?
Do you have anything you hope to have accomplished by next year?
I would love to make my own brand. I think that is something I’m aiming to start by next year. I’m keeping pretty hush-hush about that just now though…
How would you say posting online has benefitted your career and what advice would you give to someone looking to be as successful with social media as you have been?
100%. Without my social media, I would never have had the guts to leave and work for myself. Work hard and don’t get frustrated. Be consistent and kind. Remember that your efforts will pay off and if I can do it, so can you.
Interview written 01/07/2015