By Aurelia Brun
English make-up artist and hair stylist, Laura Viana da Silva, has accumulated many high profile credits to her name and is currently a very in-demand talent. Her most recent credits are TV’s Poldark, Da Vinci’s Demons and Fleming. She has also worked with some of the world’s top photographers and brands. Laura took some time out of her busy schedule to have a chat with us.
Production Paradise: How did you start your career as a professional make-up artist and hair stylist? Did someone in particular inspire you to pursue that career?
Laura: I was inspired to become a make-up artist from a very early age; I have memories of my mum doing my make-up when I was only 9 years old and I thought that she turned me into a princess. I told her even earlier than that; even when I was 4 or 5 years old that I wanted to be an artist, and then the whole goth/punk Siouxsie Sioux era came about and I went mad with make-up. I turned into a walking self-expression of art when I was a teenager.
Laura: My personal style has calmed down a lot now since I’m a little older and a mother of 2, but I still love lots of color and I do love wearing feminine dresses rather than trousers or jeans. I’m still a crazy free spirit; I just don’t have the colorful hair nowadays.
Production Paradise: You have recently finished working on the 1st and 2nd season of Da Vinci´s Demons, what were the challenges of such work?
Laura: I think every day there was a new challenge on Da Vinci’s Demons, as the show was so busy you just had to get on and do the work and think on the spot. I dyed the famous ‘flame wig’ that the character of Lucrécia wears, by hand that the designer of the show Jacqueline Fowler had in her imagination. It was my job to bring her vision to life. Even the director David .S. Goyer awarded me with a little gift for that. I think shooting in the rain at night in the freezing cold many times was a challenge of the spirit.
Production Paradise: You have been in the industry for 20 years now and you have worked with many of the world´s top companies such as Nintendo and McDonalds; what was the most difficult make-up or hair style you have had to make so far? What was your favorite one or the one you are the most proud of?
Laura: I would say that the most difficult make-up that I did, that I remember at the time, was the first time I ever did the bald cap & prosthetics for the Phantom in the musical Phantom of the Opera in London. I was only 24/25 years old at the time. It was only because it was live theatre and you had to do the bald cap and make-up in a set time, otherwise, the entire show would be ruined, if the Phantom wasn’t ready in time. After that I could do it more or less with my eyes closed and went on to be the Makeup Supervisor of the UK tour when I was only 26 and did the make-up every day.
I actually don’t have a particular ‘favorite’ make-up as such, although I once did a front cover of a magazine when I was pregnant with my daughter many years ago and I was just relieved when I had completed it as it was a 4 hour job.
Production Paradise: You regularly update your social media networks and have an incredible numbers of followers; what are the biggest benefits that come from your online presence and how does Production Paradise help you with this?
Laura: I think that when I get feedback from followers on my social media pages, it does give me a sense of ‘I must be doing something right’ as I consider myself to be an artist and I always try to give 100% in my work. I have worked all over the world, and a lot of this has happened through clients contacting me through the Production Paradise site.
Production Paradise: You were semi finalist in the L’Oreal International Brush Contest UK 2015 with your Brazilian Carnival make-up which received over 3600 likes; what is your next exciting project?
Laura: Thanks for noticing that I got through to the International L’oreal Brush Contest Semi-Final. The next big thing I would like to be doing is holding my own workshops in Brazil with the help of some fabulous Makeup artists that I know there, and possibly introduce my own cosmetic line.
Production Paradise: Is there a particular client you would like to work with in the future?
Laura: My all time idol, singer ‘Debbie Harry’ from the New York, New Wave band ‘Blondie’ as I’ve wanted to do her make-up from being a teenager. I do always like working with my actress friend from the Da Vinci’s Demons and Sherlock series, ‘Lara Pulver’ as we always have great conversations and a good laugh. I did her hair and make-up recently for her wedding in December.
Production Paradise: What have you found most useful about being a Production Paradise member?
Laura: I’ve found being a Production Paradise member very useful as I’ve had clients from all over the world get in touch to work with me.
If you’re a stylist or hair & make-up artist who wants to be published where photographers, agencies and clients are looking, show off your work in Production Paradise´s next Spotlight Magazine, contact us now at firstname.lastname@example.org