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Written by Grace Yoon


Cassandra Lacroix, Professional Makeup Artist

“I love being hands on. I also love that I can make something beautiful or something out of a nightmare. There is so much that you can do in makeup.”
- Cassandra Lacroix.

Our first artist to be featured for Lab Art Show's monthly Q&A, brought to our wonderful readers by our great sponsor, Steam Whistle, is Cassandra Lacroix. Cassandra is a professional makeup artist, trained at the Blanche MacDonald Centre. Originally from Calgary, Alberta, she has been honing her practice and skill in Vancouver, British Columbia and showcasing her technique and imagination, in film and television, as well as in her recent participation in the Lab Art Show 5 at Studio East with her Red Sea Urchin, which mingled its way through the crowds that evening, creating quite the buzz!

Lab Art Show: Please tell us, why do you do what you do, Cassandra?

I love being hands on. I also love that I can make something beautiful or something out of a nightmare. There is so much that you can do in makeup.

Lab Art Show: How does your medium differentiate your art from the rest? What do you feel makes your art different and uniquely your own?

I like to use materials that are easily accessible and that aren't very expensive. Because of this I am different because I am forced to be creative and innovative in the materials that I use while still keeping them makeup related and safe for people [to wear].

Lab Art Show: What inspires your subject matter and why?

I am always looking for inspiration from nature and especially the underwater world for my creatures. Nature already provides all the inspiration that you could ask for. For my beauty and fashion looks I like to look at paintings, sculptures, architecture and everything in between. Just open your eyes and look around and there is something that can inspire your work.

Lab Art Show: Living in a beautiful coastal city, surrounded by nature really does provide us all with inspiration, for sure. Could you please walk us through your creative process and what that looks like when you create a new piece of work? Has this process changed over time?

Most things that I do come to me on a whim. I will be walking down the street or looking online or at the aquarium and inspiration will hit me. I'm not much of a drawer but I have a great imagination and can vividly imagine what it will look like. From there I like to practice techniques on myself from how to stick spikes to blending eye shadows - I always try it on myself. Then I find a model that fits my look (usually one of my unsuspecting friends) and just do it!

Lab Art Show: Sounds like fun, indeed! On a slightly serious note, what role do you feel an artist has in/on society?

Artists can change the entire mood of an era. Look at Surrealism in the beginning of the twentieth century. People were surrealist. Art influences everything therefore artists in turn are a huge influence to culture.

Lab Art Show: So true. It's easy to look back in history and pinpoint social, cultural and political movements that were inspired and challenged by great artists of that era. It's quite powerful! With that being said, what do you like about the art world? 

The creativity and community.

Lab Art Show: What is the best part of being a professional makeup artist?

Being creative! Its amazing turning something from a dream to a drawing to a real-life fantasy creature.

Lab Art Show: Yes, your creativity is very evident in your creations! What do you like about your work?

That I am always learning and growing.

Lab Art Show: Tell us, what do you find challenging about the art world as a professional makeup artist?

The struggle to make it and the lack of recognition from people who aren't in the industry. Usually it is [the lack of] funds however getting your name out there is a challenge as the TV/Film community is very tight knit.

Lab Art Show: What do you hope to accomplish with your career as a professional makeup artist?

To get into Film and TV. Maybe one day win an Oscar! I hope that I am able to be recognized in the film and television especially for my creature makeup.

Lab Art Show: Name three artists who have impacted your career and why?

Ve Neill, Pat McGrath and Dick Smith.

Lab Art Show: Wow, very notable professional makeup artists to look up to. Thank you so much for your time, Cassandra! To wrap up, if you were to give one piece of advice to a young artist, what would it be and why?

Take every opportunity that you can to showcase your work. And try to get paid for it! Your talents are priceless!


Check out her Tumblr: