Fiona Abdullahu is a talented makup artist, who received her training from the professional academies in Helsinki and Paris. The looks that she creates are a work of art, transforming people’s faces to artwork. She wows you with her make-up skills. Currently Fiona is working on a new project called “Fake it Real”, which features six signature looks: Fresh, Sophisticated, Prostitute, Tortured, Cancer and Old. The looks will be presented at Fiona’s first exhibition in Prishtina.
Meet the Artist: NY Elite Interview with Makup Artist Fiona Abdullahu
NY Elite: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your career beginnings.
Fiona Abdullahu: I am Fiona Abdullahu from Kosovo, 20 years old, always very passionate about makeup. My family has a business with cosmetic brand Yves Rocher and beauty service since 2002. The ability of creating art on human faces, was something that drove me crazy to do since I was a little girl, but as we all know, to finish reading an amazing book, school is where you have to learn reading first.
On January 2016, after I finished High School, I chose to travel and put myself in the real make up world. “Make Up For Ever Academy in Helsinki” was my first mission. Five months of studying the face, the texture, the make up products, the style, the attitude of the make up artists, etc. After finishing the school in Helsinki, make up was flowing into my vines already, I wanted to learn more, I wanted to learn all kinds of make up. So, my next mission was “Make for ever Tv and Cinema Academy in Paris”. The Academy was located at “La Cite du Cinema” film studio complex supported by the film director and producer Luc Besson and all students of movie directing, sound engineering, makeup, screenwriting worked together to create movies.
My Academy was eight months intense master program, my best experience till now. I got to dig deeper of analyzing human faces, learning how to put beauty on the face and how to completely destroy the face, how to play with my imagination even more, how to play with products, knowing fashion world, cinema world, the most important I had the opportunity to attend the master weeks from Robin Mathews (Oscar winner makeup artist). Leonard Engelman, Kazuhiro Tsuji etc. After learning and working hard in school, meeting incredible people, working in many internships, the cherry on top was when the school highly qualified me as a student and made me so proud and confident to start working my dream job.
NY Elite: Define Beauty.
Fiona Abdullahu: Beauty is when everything is in harmony. Beauty exists in nature because, colors, energy, style and everything together is in harmony. Beauty in humans exists because, mind, energy, character, physical appearances are in harmony with the soul.
NY Elite: How long have you been a make-up artist and when did you get your start in the industry?
Fiona Abdullahu: I have started the make up school one year and six months ago and never stopped since then. But as a professional make up artists, I have been doing it since April of this year.
NY Elite: Did you have any formal make-up training?
Fiona Abdullahu: Yes, I have graduated from two “Make Up For Ever” academies. I spent five months in “Make Up For Ever Academy in Helsinki” and eight months in “Make Up For Ever Tv and Cinema Academy in Paris”.
NY Elite: How would you describe your signature look?
Fiona Abdullahu: Romantic/funky.
NY Elite: What is your style?
Fiona Abdullahu: Editorial High Fashion.
NY Elite: What are you favorite products to use?
Fiona Abdullahu: Make Up For Ever the new HD foundation, MatteTrance Lipstick from Pat Mcgrath, skin fetish from Pat Mcgrath and pigments from Pat Mcgrath. Nars, creamy concealer, Make Up For Ever pro sculpting palette, Make Up For Ever aqua brow.
NY Elite: Are you working with a major cosmetics company? Do you have your own products?
Fiona Abdullahu: No, currently I am working individually, while using products from different brands.
NY Elite: What are this season’s make up trends?
Fiona Abdullahu: Pink and peach tones for eyes and lips, monochromatic, glossy lids, glossy lips, and glowy skin.
NY Elite: How do you keep up with all the new trends and styles? How do you incorporate them into your makeup repertoire?
Fiona Abdullahu: I follow trends in social media, but mostly I try to communicate with my makeup, world events and movements such as gender equality, gay pride, racial equality and peace. I introduce them mostly in the social media such Instagram and Facebook, which is the most effective way to show my work.
NY Elite: Can you reveal three beauty secrets?
- Skin care: Oils feed the skin and are the best products to a healthy skin.
- Healthy food: Good food provides the skin vitamins, minerals, and strength. Basically, food is one of the most important things not just for your body, but for your skin as well. (Reduce alcohol, dairy products, gluten products and sugar).
- Sleep: The freshness of your face, eyes, smile, all come from a good overnight sleep.
NY Elite: Do you apply makeup for special events? Name some you have covered?
Fiona Abdullahu: Till now, I have applied makeup on young ladies, for events such as proms or weddings.
NY Elite: Where do you get your inspiration from?
Fiona Abdullahu: From the energy of the event, the face of the model, clothes, themes, the character of the model, the energy of the season, beautiful cities, happy people and good music.
NY Elite: Who are some people that have inspired you throughout your career?
Fiona Abdullahu: First, my dad, which in my opinion is perfect. Back when he was young, he was poor. During the war, he finished the medical university with a fascinating success, regardless of all the obstacles that came with the war. Now, he is 52 years old, and one of the best doctors in Kosovo. He lives a happy life, surrounded by his family and work.
Secondly, is Robin Mathews, Oscar winning make up artist. She was invited to my school, for a master class, to teach us her secret(s) of success. I admired her modesty as a Hollywood star, she told us the path from a bartender to an Oscar winner, where I realized how talented and hardworking she is, is my dream to be like her.
NY Elite: What is your advice to aspiring makeup artists?
Fiona Abdullahu: Love your job, work hard, and be modest.
NY Elite: Are there any new exciting shows or projects that you are working on or have lined up in the near future?
Fiona Abdullahu: I am working on an individual project, called “Fake it Real”, where I am trying to perform different human characters with only one model. I chose six looks: Fresh, Sophisticated, Prostitute, Tortured, Cancer and Old. The looks are going to be presented at my first exhibition, in my city, Prishtina, and the idea of this project is to show the society, especially the society in my country how important is make up and how much you can do with it. Also, this project can properly show my skills as a young make up artist.