Profile: Elena Guzman, Makeup Artist

Love of beauty is taste. The creation of beauty is art.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
 Elena at work preparing a model for the Exalt New York Fashion Gala

Elena at work preparing a model for the Exalt New York Fashion Gala

If you ever want to achieve quality results as a photographer shooting portraiture or fashion, or as a model either developing your portfolio or for a professional shoot, you'll need to work with a good makeup artist. One who posseses a look and style you can appreciate while having an open mind for collaboration. A trusted professional is extremely important - someone you can go to in a pinch with a concept and can deliver on your idea. I've worked with Elena Guzman both on larger projects as well as more intimate photo sessions; the experience and results were equally impressive. I sat with Elena recently to get an understanding of her past, what's on the immediate horizon and where she's headed in the future.

She is a young, energetic and dynamic fashion professional who came to New York from Russia in 2010. Hired by Macy's in the Lancôme department, she understood makeup was her career path. Taking classes in one of New York's best schools, The Nina Mua Makeup Academy, she is a certified makeup artist. She cites Serdar Kambarov and Mario Dedivanovic as a pair of her influences. Elena's understanding of color concepts and design aesthetics run deep, and are the key to emphasizing the beauty of a woman.

As the fashion and makeup industries are extremely competitive spaces, she places a premium on her professionalism. I had firsthand experience into her focus and expertise, as we worked the Exalt New York Fashion Gala at the Plaza Hotel New York this past February. Shooting behind the scenes during the model's preparation, I took note of her precise attention to details and steady hand. There was never a doubt as to why Exalt had chosen Elena to prep the models who were showcasing Gerda Truubon's elegant designs. Her style perfectly fit the show's design, fashion and the model's appearance.

Her approach for success during a working engagement is to build a comfortable relationship with her clients, taking into consideration their needs, style and big picture for a look. Having witnessed her working with the models, it was easy to see it was a calm experience for everyone before a signature event. An important nuance, as the client needs to be at ease and relaxed while the artist is at work. It also carries forward during a shoot, as the model is relaxed, confident and eager to put her look on display to be captured for her audience.

In Elena's words, "As people say, “You have the talent.” Therefore, I have been invited and selected to attend New York Fashion Week. I just love what I am doing; It makes me feel so happy and proud of myself when I see these positive emotions on my clients faces once makeup done." She is satisfied with her career progression, and her dream is to ascend in the fashion industry. Her immediate goals are to continue on in future fashion shows and Fashion Week, as well as with Red Carpet shows that highlight this prestigious time of year for the industry. Her main career goals are to blossom with her own standalone business, along with a wedding salon and even her own makeup school.

You can see some of Elena's work on Instagram.