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How Scotia Boyd Broke Through in the Creative Industries

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Scotia Boyd

Film and Television Makeup Artist

Mediaplanet sat down with film and television makeup artist Scotia Boyd to discuss her experiences, how she built the foundation of her career, and the evolution of the creative space. 


Where do you see the future of makeup within film and television headed, and how do you stay up to date?

In this age of information and technology, I see advancements within the film industry happening every day. The cameras are changing, the products that we use as makeup artists are changing, trends are changing, and even the structure of a film set is changing. In this climate, I see makeup artists and other film technicians who continue to ride to the top and those that get left behind.

Those who develop a negative attitude — resisting change and holding onto the past seem to evade getting the jobs they feel they ought to have. Producers and Hollywood executives want to include people in their projects who will use the most up-to-date methods in the industry and are as passionate about the project as they are. The artists that remain open, learn, upgrade themselves, and strive to make the industry a better place rather than staying true to old values, are the ones that get hired on the top projects. 

I’m a major proponent of lifelong learning. I believe that it not only helps us to advance our careers but that it’s also what makes us happier people. 

In my career, I strive to be malleable and embrace growth as the industry evolves. I plan to keep learning from my colleagues — those above and below me — attending courses, experimenting with new products, and staying up to date with all the wonderful content that’s available. 


As a film and television makeup artist, what has been your overall experience in the creative industries thus far?

Although my love for the arts began through painting and admiring renaissance art, the career I’ve chosen professionally is a film and television makeup artist. I thank myself every day for having decided to pursue what was most meaningful to me — a career in the arts. 

So many people hold back from pursuing their passions because careers in the arts are not always viewed as “real” jobs. I feel lucky for growing up with parents with unconventional jobs, as it allowed me to see that creative jobs are jobs too. 

Of course, as with anything meaningful, it’s been a long and sometimes difficult road to get to where I’m now. In my career I’ve worked on shows for companies like Netflix, Disney, and Paramount. Despite all of the challenges along the way, following this path has never ceased to bring me joy and satisfaction. 


How did your post-secondary education help build the foundation for your career in makeup artistry?

I studied makeup for media and creative arts in post-secondary, which helped lay the foundation for my career in a few different ways. Firstly, there are all of the technical skills that go along with the art of makeup. Although one may be creative, it pays to be taught the methods that have been built upon for many years in the craft.

You can learn your way through trial and error, but post-secondary experience helps you to gain all those foundational skills efficiently. The beauty in studying and learning from others is that you get to add their years of knowledge to your repertoire without doing all the work they did to discover it. After you learn the basics, you’ll embark on your journey, where your experiences will build on that, and you can develop your unique style. 

Attending post-secondary as an introduction to the creative industries has also proven to be fruitful in terms of networking. Teachers are often people that still work and have connections in the industry, so if you do well in school, your first industry contact will be your teacher. Some of my peers are people I now work with within the industry. 

I’ve gone back as a guest speaker to provide insights on the current landscape and what to expect in the film industry. Students are given access to resources and can connect with or intern for industry professionals. 


What advice would you give to someone looking to break through in the creative industries?

My advice is to learn to keep working through that critical voice in your head that’s telling you that you can’t do something. If you’re getting a million reasons not to do something, that’s likely the very thing that matters to you the most. In the end, it’s taking chances and overcoming challenges in life that make us most fulfilled.

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