Behind each stunning photograph, fashion editorial or international catwalk there is a lot of talent, passion and hard work. Valeria Orlando is one of those miracle makers working behind the scenes. Valeria is a beauty director, make-up artist and hair stylist with over 25 years’ experience working for fashion, advertising, editorials and catwalk events. We had the opportunity to ask her a few questions to understand her work better.
Production Paradise: How and when did you decide that you wanted to work as a make-up artist?
Valeria Orlando: I decided that I wanted to become a make-up artist when I was studying, I was very young and my family wanted me to become a lawyer, but that wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life.
Production Paradise: Which part of the job do you enjoy the most?
Valeria Orlando: The fact that I am not only a make-up artist, but an actual artist! At least that is what people usually tell me. I love to create fabulous set up moods for fashion and beauty editorials.
Production Paradise: You also have your own makeup brand, V)Or Makeup, how did you come up with this project?
Valeria Orlando: I started V)Or Makeup five years ago, because I wanted a special and easy-to-use makeup kit. After 25 years in this job, I was tired of wasting unused makeup. Also I wanted to create a new concept, a new philosophy in the makeup industry, where make-up artists aren’t considered as numbers but as people!
Production Paradise: Did you face many challenges creating the brand?
Valeria Orlando: There are a lot of makeup brands out there, some of them are very good, others not so much. I believe that nowadays having a good product is not enough, you need to have a strong communication strategy on social media, an effective storytelling and a team that believes in you and your project.
Production Paradise: You have worked in the Balkan Fashion Week recently; can you tell us something about the experience?
Valeria Orlando: It was the first edition of Balkan Fashion Week, and it was an incredible experience! I was with my team; ten amazing make-up artists. We took care of the looks of 36 young designers, so five or six each day for a week! When you take care of so many designers with different looks, the most important thing is to change the makeup quickly and to take their collection into consideration. This type of experience gave me more visibility in the industry.
Production Paradise: How does Production Paradise help you with your business?
Valeria Orlando: I have been working with Production Paradise for seven years – it offers me the possibility to have an international window to build my own network.
Production Paradise: Do you have any tips for aspiring make-up artists?
Valeria Orlando: Passion, technique, respecting each other’s work and never stop learning: these are the keys to success.
Production Paradise: Is there any project you have worked on that was especially challenging? What did you learn from it?
Valeria Orlando: More than a project, the most important challenge I have in my professional career has been (and still is) to demonstrate that my artistic capabilities can be adapted to different sectors and needs. For example, someone looking at my personal projects, such as “Clownville”, may believe that I am not able to create nude and easy makeup – nothing could be further from the truth! I would like to demonstrate that this way of thinking has limitations – someone can be considered an artist when they have the ability to play a different role on each project.
To see more of Valeria’s portfolio and behind the scenes videos, check her member page – always up to date with her latest work! Don’t forget to subscribe to to Stylists, Hair & Make-Up Artists Spotlight and Italy Showcase to see her new work.