June 2017

Specialist Hair and Media Make-up newsletter: Issue 3

Read time: approx 1 mins

Jane Lumb

Jane’s fascination with make-up started at a young age - she would constantly doodle faces falling apart at school! A little later she discovered Fangoria, a magazine devoted to the horror film industry, and it was this that cemented her ambition to work as a make-up artist.

After studying for make-up and hairdressing qualifications, Jane secured her first professional job at the age of 19 as a Wig Assistant with Opera North in Leeds.

Two years later she joined the BBC as a make-up artist and worked with some of the best in the business on a variety of programmes, ranging from period dramas to live TV.

After ten years with the BBC in Birmingham, Jane embarked on a freelance career in London working on film, as well as Eastenders and many more. Jane returned to Birmingham in 2005 to have a family, but continued to work for the BBC, including on Doctors, the Birmingham-based TV drama. Jane also combined this with teaching. Jane is now a SHMM lecturer and module leader in special effects and prosthetic make-up at UCB.

Hernam Najran

Hernam’s initial training was in beauty therapy, but she successfully transferred her skills to the hair and make-up industry.

She moved to London from Ireland in 2006, and completed a Level 5 qualification in teacher training while also working in a photographic studio. 

Hernam then launched a freelance career, focusing on bridal hair and make-up. She soon diversified and began working within creative make-up, designing looks for catwalks and fashion shows. She provided editorial and high-fashion looks for promotional work, film, television and music videos.

Hernam has combined her career with teaching at various Further Education institutions, where she gained experience of developing and leading a make-up department, as well as coaching and mentoring students for competition work. She now lectures full-time at UCB, specialising in Creative Fashion and Artistry Skills.

Hernam still undertakes some freelance projects to stay-up-to-date with changing trends and is committed to helping students enter the workforce with the skills required in this fast-paced industry.

Alexandra Wathey 

Alex worked as a freelance prosthetics and special effects make-up technician & artist for twelve years. During that time, she was employed by some of the most renowned prosthetic make-up companies in the UK.

Her first job was with Neill Gorton at Millennium FX, where she worked her way up from being a runner to supervising the silicone department. She was involved in many well-known television programmes including Doctor Who, The Catherine Tate Show, A Bucket Full O’ French and Saunders, and Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.

A career in the film industry followed, through which she managed to work as part of David White’s crew on Guardians of the Galaxy.

Alex later worked at Coulier Creatures, where her credits included Dracula UntoldAtlantis and Heart of the Sea. Finally, she worked on two seasons of Game of Thrones and was awarded two Emmy Award Certificates for her prosthetics work. 

Alex now lectures at UCB and has made it her main priority to embed employability within the curriculum. Alex is a module leader for Advanced Prosthetics at Level 5, and Postiche for Performers at Level 6. She also currently teaches on the Freelance Practitioner module and is a mentor for the final major project.

Anna McBartlett, SHMM placement tutor, sends students back to the roaring twenties

UCB’s new Placement Tutor for Specialist Hair and Media Make-up (SHMM), Anna McBartlett, was “thrilled” to send a team of 12 students to transform the hair and make-up of performers at a Great Gatsby-style pop-up party at the O2 institute on Saturday 27 May. 

Founded in Munich, the Party Like Gatsby event has built an international reputation over recent years, visiting London, Paris and Singapore and attracting over 1,000 guests at a time. 

Anna hopes to use her new role to increase the amount of opportunities for SHMM students to work on a huge range of private-sector projects like this. Industry training, she believes, is really important for SHMM students not only to build up professional experience but also in order to start building a network of commercial contacts that could last students their whole careers. Turns out, in the hair and beauty industry, it’s not a case of being what you know or who you know – it’s both.

Anna aims to provide highly specialised training to students so they are able to enter the world of work with a valuable unique selling point when it comes to applications, as well as the chance to enter into areas of the industry students might otherwise have considered out of reach.

Anna recently took third year SHMM student Ellie Burton to the National Make-up Awards at the NEC, where the talented student won the title of Best Fantasy Make-up for her animal-inspired representation of famous engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

Mentoring scheme means there’s always someone to help

Starting university can be a daunting experience. It’s full of firsts: first lecture, first seminar, first experience of living away from home if you choose to stay in halls. 

We know that sometimes it can be helpful to have someone to talk to. That’s why UCB has introduced the Peer Active Learning (PAL) programme for SHMM students. It is our belief that existing students make the best mentors. Therefore, SHMM offer trained level 5 and 6 students the opportunity of becoming a mentor to first year students. They have been through the process, and can talk knowledgeably about the systems and procedures at UCB, everything from revision skills to finances.

Tecola Smith and Sian Thornton are the Mentoring Co-ordinators and it is their job to ensure everyone has someone they can turn to. Tecola explained: “We encourage mutual trust and respect amongst the mentors and their mentees. Our mentors are trained to understand that it is a two-way, confidential relationship. Every mentoring relationship is different, but each will present the opportunity for both mentor and mentee to learn from each other.”

Mentors can:

  • Listen to the things that are worrying you throughout your time at UCB
  • Help by sharing their own experience of both failures and successes 
  • Give friendly, unbiased support and guidance 
  • Be a sounding board for ideas 
  • Provide contacts and networks to further personal and business development 
  • Inspire you to realise your potential 
  • Provide ongoing support and encouragement

If you would like to find out more about the PAL programme or if you are currently a level 5 or 6 SHMM student and interested in finding out more information regarding becoming a mentor, please email Sian Thornton.

Bridging sessions give you the space and time to learn the basics

Tutors have started to plan this year’s bridging activities for new SHMM students. The sessions are designed to enable students who feel inexperienced in hair and make-up, the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the studios and equipment, and to practise their skills. If you attend bridging sessions you will also get to know our Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs), who will have lots of invaluable hints and tips about succeeding both on the course and in the industry!

Lucy Barnett, a student on last year’s SHMM bridging course, said: “I thought the workshops were great. It was so much easier to come to the studios to practise our practical sessions than trying to practise in my own flat, as all the products and tools I needed were ready to use and it was just easier to have the space. I would definitely attend more workshops in the future if they were to come back as I really miss not being able to attend one in the week.”

Please don’t be shy about attending the bridging sessions. They only run for the first five weeks and get booked up fast – so make sure you get a place early! Details will be sent to you nearer the time.

Induction Week

Induction week (the week beginning 11 September 2017) will involve preparation for your timetabled sessions, which start the following week. You will collect your kit and uniform, get your timetable and meet fellow group members. It will also be a great opportunity for you to network with students from different groups, you may be able to model for each other during assessments/exams as your time slots will vary. You will also meet your tutor and your other lecturers, who will be on hand to answer any queries. We will also run some practical and academic sessions to help prepare you for this level of study. Further details about your induction will be sent to you during summer.


Samples of student’s work from last year

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