Now is the Time. Memphis is the Place.

Interview with a Memphian: Faizah Husniyah

Cover photo: Faizah Husniyah by Kaitlyn Stoddard

I first met Faizah Husniyah during a photoshoot for Collage dance Collective

Everyone was really happy with how the makeup turned out. As usual, I decided to network and exchange info hoping for future opportunities to work together. She has been my makeup artist ever since.

Makeup by Faizah Husniyah, photo by Ziggy Mack.

Makeup by Faizah Husniyah, photo by Ziggy Mack.

What got you into doing makeup? What would be your dream makeup gig? 

Well, I grew up in the theatre. My mother was an actress at Playhouse on the Square/Circuit Playhouse and TheatreWorks, and I was able to work backstage and sometimes assist. I just loved the environment and the hair and makeup artists. My dream gig is to work on major motion picture sets doing period piece makeup… or hair. I do both. I work daily to become a master at my craft. It would be a privilege to work alongside industry masters.

faizah-work-1What’s your experience working in Memphis? How does it compare to other cities?

My experience working in Memphis started off rocky, I was one of those who always had negative things to say. Once my attitude changed the opportunities came. I am able to work as a full time freelance hair/makeup artist. I’m able to do what I love right here. Memphis is not a big industry town, like NY, LA, ATL, etc., so it’s easy to get discouraged. The energy in those cities is insane. Sooo many people working and creating, truly mastering their crafts. So I can totally understand why a super passionate artist would choose to leave Memphis… but if we all leave, who will be left? I believe there is an opportunity to build something here. At least try to. I’m also able to fly to different cities to work.

faizah-work-2Tell me about projects you’ve worked on and which has been the most fulfilling.

I started out doing hair and makeup for fashion editorials.  4 Memphis Magazine, Hyde Park, Justine Magazine as well as attending New York Fashion Week and Art Basel in  Miami. I’ve worked with The Travel Channel, Food Network, WeTV, Elvis Presley Museum and Million Dollar Quartet (renamed Sun Records) among a plethora of short films and music videos. I’ve worked with Adam Richman, Zoe Kravitz, and Jackie Evancho.

However, of all the amazing projects I’ve been blessed to be a part of I would have to say boudoir (yes, boudoir) has been THE MOST fulfilling. I’ve had domestic violence and cancer survivors come to me to help them feel beautiful. Boudoir is such a vulnerable and courageous act, and I believe every woman should experience it at least once. My partner Candy and I guide each woman through the process. There are tears and laughter. Truly beautiful to experience! All women can do it!

faizah-work-3How do you think you have influenced your daughter and others? 

I hope I inspire others to follow their dreams, as cliche as it sounds. When you follow your passion you’ll find your purpose. I want my daughter to see where I started and understand what it takes to be successful. I believe all women should be as self sufficient as possible, know who you are and what you want.
How are you using your work to give back? 
I spend my free time giving makeovers to deserving women, most recently Ms.Barbara of the viral Chauncey’s Chance story. I solely fund it all. I purchase the hair and whatever else I may need. I’ve recently created a GoFundMe to reward deserving women with a makeover. The power of a makeover, or makeunder, is underestimated. It boosts your self-esteem and gives you a positive outlook. I’ve worked with a number of non profits, and different companies in Memphis. The GoFundMe would  also help me partner up with safe havens for domestic violence survivors to provide services for makeovers – women who need wigs made or learn tricks to alter their appearance. It’s really serious. I’m also in the process of working on a project in honor of my beloved cousins whom I lost in a house fire in 2015, as  well as many other projects so stay tuned.
Do you think Memphis has seen all you have to offer?
Honestly, I feel like I’m just getting started.

You can see more of Faizah’s work on Instagram and see more in music videos for Crown Vox, Lisa Mac, and Faith Evans Ruch.

Learn more about her work with boudoir photoshoots at eyecandymemphis.com.

What else am I up to? Keep up with my Year One adventures here.

What is Year One? Go here to read more.

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