Melanie Weekley…

…is a celebrity British makeup artist and the Founder and Academy Principal of the prestigious Bath Academy of Media Makeup.

 

Let’s find out more about Melanie and her world.

 

 

    

 

Tell us about your makeup background.
I have enjoyed over 16 years (so far) of working in makeup with a career that spans many fields in the entertainment industry. My career started in documentary reconstructions before I leapt into the world of TV soap, from glossy shows such as Hollyoaks, (where I spent many fabulous years), police and medical dramas such as The Bill and BBC’s Casualty to Children’s TV series Grange Hill. My role as makeup artist has been extremely diverse – after many years in TV Soap I then switched track and started working on Live Transmission broadcasting for news and sports events with BSkyB, entertainment and talk shows like Good Morning Britain, and many other glossy magazine shows, music awards and high profile events such as The Brit Awards. Being amongst the fast pace of Live Transmission and working with many celebrities I became personal makeup artist to many recognised names such as Catherine Tate, Jo Frost, Amanda Redman, Georgie Thompson, Yvette Fielding and Amy Childs. I frequented lots of popular shows and projects such as Super Nanny and Extreme makeover and became part of the extremely scary Most Haunted Team. Through working in the industry and making many key contacts I turned my attention to my second dream – to create an elite training facility for aspiring Makeup Artists in my hometown of Bath. BAMM is now 6 years old and I am extremely proud to have created such a diverse team and work alongside some of the industry’s finest – Oscar Winning Makeup Designer Peter Swords King and Fashion Guru Gozra Lozano.

 

How did you become a makeup artist?
I had a love of Makeup from a young age stemming from my Grandmother’s obsession with Hollywood Film stars. Born and raised in Bath I left home and decided to pursue my dream career as a Makeup artist and took a course in London at the Delamar Academy. It was a considerably tough start getting a foot in the door but I was determined to make it and in 2002 my journey into Television Drama began. I found it hard living in London as the competition was fierce and it was expensive to live so I decided to relocate to the North (Manchester), and this is where I got my first jobs working on documentaries. Creating Tattoos for Beckhams Body Parts, doing reconstructions for a series called Crimes that shook the World and many other World War reconstructions. It didn’t take long to be taken on by Hollyoaks, where my career developed within Television Soap Drama and this then led me into many other avenues within Media entertainment. After a while I decided I would try to crack London once more, so took the leap and managed to secure a place working with BSkyB in Live Transmission News, Sport and Current affairs, and following this Entertainment, Music, Editorial and commercial. I must say becoming a successful Makeup Artist is a career you must be really passionate about. To become a Makeup artist you need to have a good work ethic, drive, ambition, determination and stamina! My success (I feel) is not only being able to do a good makeup but largely due to being sociable, a good networker and not afraid to take a challenge/ job at the last minute, never say no and be humble, there is always so much to learn. You will never know it all!

 

When and why did you decide to set up BAMM makeup academy?
I have always had life goals and after training in 2002 I set myself the goal of setting up my own Academy within 10 years of being makeup artist – and I did just that! I turned 30 in 2012 and began writing BAMM (I had broken my foot on holiday and my house mate said “Maybe this is the time to do what you have been talking about for the last year!”). And so it began. The aim was to offer a training facility dedicated to providing the highest quality courses and tuition in Makeup, hair design and techniques. All our tutors are leading professionals in the industry, hand-picked for their specific skill-sets and all actively working in film, television, fashion and theatre. My virtue to my students is being able to provide industry contacts and ensure business modules were put in place in order to give my students the best start in this competitive industry and the best after-care. Something that was massively missed during my training and as such has been paramount to our success. I also wanted to ensure our students succeed and continue to keep up the high standards of the arts recognised by The Academy of Motion Pictures and BAFTA. Meeting and working with Peter Swords King has driven this idea from strength to strength.

 

Why did you choose Bath as the location for the academy?
Bath is my home City where I was born and raised. The South West is a beautiful safe location which I realise is a huge bonus to young adults leaving home for the first time. We are easily accessible by train. Bath is a place celebrated by the Arts, and is backdrop to many period film. BAMM is situated next door to the stunning Royal Crescent and of course home to the much celebrated Jane Austin.Here is a great link if you wish to see just how much has been shot here http://fashionmuseum.cn/pdf/Bath_Movie_Map.pdf
BAMM is are also brilliantly situated between Bristol and Cardiff and close enough for an easy commute to London (all of which are big filming hot spots). I am also lucky to have many of my talented tutors who live close to Bath including Peter Swords King. There is also no other private Training Academy like us in the South West.

 

 

What courses does the academy offer?
We offer a variety of specialist courses specifically tailored and focused on relevant industries and students’ needs – from 1 day Bespoke Courses, Taster Days and Teenage Workshops to 16 weeks of intensive training within TV Film, Theatre and Fashion.
Here are our main Flagship Courses…
The Peter Swords King TV and Film Hair and Makeup course (16 weeks): designed for anyone wishing to work predominantly within film, television and theatre,
The Fashion makeup Course – Designed by senior tutor Gozra Lozano – (8 Weeks): Beauty and Fashion Makeup from Advertising to the Catwalk. This makeup course is designed to explore the creative elements of the beauty and fashion world
The BAMM Bridal Hair and Makeup Course (2 Weeks) is designed to teach you the art of achieving classically flawless and stunningly beautiful makeup and hair for bridal, beauty and photographic work.
Beauty & Editorial Makeup Course for the Deaf: (1 Week) Makeup Course for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is designed to give the confidence and skills to become a self-employed makeup artist working in bridal, special occasion and beauty editorial industries. This is taught by Deaf Makeup Artist Kellie Moody and incorporates other visual learning aids and support.
Casualty Wounds and Special FX Makeup Course: (2 Weeks) – For anyone wishing to learn specialised techniques and application methods for the creation of realistic simulated injuries used in the TV & Film Industry
Gentleman’s Barbering and Historic Hair Styling Course for Film and Television (1 week) intensive course specialising in the art of period and modern hair design for men. The course covers skills and techniques in cutting and styling mens hair and facial postiche.

 

Tell us about your favourite daily look
Natural and glowing , – Beauty at its best!

 

What two products you can’t leave the house without?
Bobbi Brown Pink Mauve Liner and lip Balm.

 

What part of the make up process do you enjoy the most?
Nowadays my satisfaction is seeing my students progress blossom from the start of the course to the end, You can see their achievements throughout their portfolios and this for me is so fullfilling, especially when I can see how proud they are of their own work and the constant feedback of them saying I can’t believe I have done this!

 

What two products are essential for the makeup artist to carry in their kit?
1: As long as you have a primary colour wheel which includes black and white you should be able to achieve any basic makeup looks – I always start by asking our students to do a half face using top of the range BBU palette skin and then ask them to recreate the same thing using the Kryolan colour wheel. House of Glam Dolls have now launched a fabulous Mixology wheel and this has made this process simple and is an extremely brilliant that helps all makeup artists understand colour theory.
2: A good Brush Range – I love Louise Young’s brush range.

 

Which is your favourite ‘touch up’ makeup product?
MAC Studio Fix
Simple Moisturiser and a cotton bud
Dermalogica Antioxidant Hydramist

 

What makeup trends you dislike most?
Contour and Bake! – leave this for the drag scene please ladies!

 

Who is your favourite makeup artist?
Amongst my fabulous team of Experts at BAMM – One of my new favourites has to be Deaf Makeup Artist Kellie Moody – She is an inspiration and extremely talented.

 

What is your Favourite Makeup Look
I think Megan Markle looked stunning and timelessly classic during her wedding day, I hope this sets the trend for women to encompass there natural beauty and stop obsessing over Instagram filtered images that are just not real!

 

 

bammakeup.com

BAMM