Tell us about your experience as a makeup artist?
JP Ramirez: I have always had a fascination with make-up applications. It was not just the physical transformation, but the confidence and attitude that would levitate after each application that never seized my amazement. I found joy seeing people feel good about themselves. As I reflect back to my childhood, I recall watching my mother put on make-up in front of the mirror and witnessing how much fun she had doing it. It also had other meanings; her putting on make-up was a cue for me to get dressed and ready because we were going to go outside that day.
Although this one day she sat in front of the mirror, as she had done many times before, trying on several shades of lipsticks. I enthusiastically asked her what our plans were for the day. She then looked over at me and explained, we don’t always have to go outside for her to put on make-up, sometimes she just put it on to feel better about herself. The thought that these beautiful crayons she was using on her face made her feel great about herself intrigued me. My mother definitely influenced me and from her, I realized how special make-up is, and I love to see people enjoy using it every single day.
When did you take your passion seriously to pursue as a career?
JP Ramirez: My professional make-up experience began like most, behind a make-up counter in the year 2000. You must remember Y2K, the first time we all thought the world was going to end, that exact year was my new beginning. (LOL!) I began working at the historical Marshall Fields on State Street, in Chicago. Having no experience, I worked at a beast of a line that had an astonishing vast following with intimidating, but amazing artistry staff. Talk about throwing me into the Lion’s Den! Let’s just say I wasn’t where I needed to be, but eager to learn.
A few years later, I took an opportunity to experience America’s fashion capitol. With only two-thousand dollars in my bank account, I accepted a transfer to a position in NYC, at the iconic SAKS 5th Ave. This is where I took my learning experience to the next level and gained my experience with fashion week. I was on the make-up team for ANTM cycle 13, I was blessed to assist Francios Nars and Lena Koro for Nars Cosmetics, doing shoots with Alexander Mcqueen, Muse Daphne Guiness, American Actress, Christine Ricci, and Model Actress, Isabella Rosselini.
Now represented by a beautiful creative agency named Blonde and Co led by the amazing talented Julie Stahl and where I do make-up for a lot of their beauty advertisements such as: Maybelline, Loreal, Innisfree, Ouidad, Redken etc. I feel really blessed to work with such an extremely talented and well spirited group of creatives!
How do you define beauty?
JP Ramirez: Beauty really can’t be defined by one person, it is defined by many things these days. Beauty I feel is defined by trend, culture, personal esthetics, and taste. The everchanging Reinvention and Revolution (R&R) happening in this subculture is so amazing, I can’t help, but love it. People are expanding their notion of beauty, it is more about being inclusive, represented, and acknowledging that we are all beautiful in our own unique way. Beauty is really in the eye of the beholder. People are defending their beauty, tearing down guidelines of what makes a person beautiful, beauty is how one sees themselves over the opinions of others. Beauty is more about confidence, being confident and healthy. Being the best version of yourself!
What is your signature look?
JP Ramirez: Everchanging! Every project is so different, so versatility is very important in this industry!
What’s your style?
JP Ramirez: Being versatile these days is really important, I aim to move freely and make decisions confidently in my day to day assignments. Walking into a project, I need to be ready for various styles, visions, and direction. The industry is constantly evolving, it is so important to stay current with today’s trends, as well as to be on top of your education with product knowledge; these are crucial to meet the project or clients needs. My style is constantly changing directions to whatever I am asked to do that particular day. I think of it as an ongoing collaboration of ideas between the team, however, I provide the overall guidance and expertise in beauty and make-up application.
You have worked with many famous celebrities, is there anyone that stands out as your favorite?
JP Ramirez: They are all my favorite. I spread love to everyone one I have worked with evenly.
What was the most exciting opportunity you had as a freelance artist?
JP Ramirez: Working with Francios NARS, Creator and Founder of NARS and Lena Koro, my make-up mentor earlier in my career.
**Article Cover Photo by Ylva Erevall