Rom Miller- what’s not to heart? This super-chill guy is a favorite amongst the artists of Amelia C & Co. Ron has earned a place in the ‘Co as a Dude of Honor, if you will. First of all, his super cute baby is enough to send any gaggle of chicks into coo-ing overload. The fact that he is super calm, always on it, and found himself a fabulous girl (heart D and Madden!) that we love kickin’ it with makes him pretty much as good as it gets. Oh, and did we mention he’s also a bad ass photographer? Well, he is.
We’ve worked with Ron Miller Photography on some of our absolute favorite Las Vegas weddings. From the super large, multi-day Indian affairs to the sleek and sexy intimate rendezvous, Ron’s got it covered.
From Amelia: My favorite, favorite memory of working with Ron was on a big, fat, Greek wedding. No joke, they aren’t just a movie myth! The father of the bride saw me from behind (I was working on an Aunt’s hair) and came within inches of smacking my ass- only to realize I wasn’t one of his relatives! After realizing his mistake, he then prodded both Ron and I with a freshly baked baguette that we happily noshed on while I finished up. I think that’s the day we figured out we could be the best of foodies and colleagues.
To really appreciate our Dude of Honor, Ron Miller, swing by his website www.ronmphoto.com for swoon-worthy love stories, breathtaking photography and a few of his kid’s face smeared with blue icing.
Note to reader: Trials are typically more applicable for weddings. It’s a practice not common for anything else but the bride. This post is written in particular to that specific service.
Las Vegas weddings are unique not just for the irony of it being “Sin City”, but also because well over two-thirds of our weddings are “destination brides”. In their hometown, a bride could ask for referrals and probably already knows someone who is going to do their hair and makeup for the big day. Usually it’s the hairdresser who’s been doing their hair, and their moms hair, for so long that she’s practically family. Makeup is a trickier beast- in major metropolitan areas where MAC counters and Mary Kay reps abound, these makeup lines are the first thing a bride thinks of simply because she may not know what other options are available. A savvy bride will know that she can hire a professional makeup artist to attend to her, but she is still likely to get her hair done by her regular hairdresser. The bottom line is- there’s greater security when you get married in your hometown, amongst familiar faces and referrals. So when planning your event hundreds of miles away, it’s absolutely expected to have some anxiety about your hair and makeup and therefore wanting to have a trial.
The definition of a hair and makeup trial is this: It is the opportunity to work with your artist and stylist for the big day to experiment the idea you have for your look and to fine tune details. Your hair and makeup trial is not an audition.
At this point, something has to be said for bad trials, scary stories and incompetent hair and makeup companies. Recently, I attended a makeup and beauty conference. At this conference, Dinair, a very-well branded airbrush makeup manufacturer, had half of an entire wall lined with stations and makeup trainers to sell their new system. For a few hundred bucks and one hour of time, you could visit this area, be “trained” on their airbrush makeup, and walk away with all the fixin’s to be an “airbrush makeup artist”. The point is this- anyone can go buy professional products and call themselves a makeup artist. Wedding hair and makeup companies are popping up everywhere because it’s so easy to form one, and there is no formal education needed. All you need is enough money to buy the supplies, set up a website and even do a little advertising and BAM! There’s a new hair and makeup company who would be happy to do your wedding!
Everyone has to start somewhere. Any makeup artist or hairdresser worth their salt started at the beginning- there was a time where we didn’t know what we were doing either. Young companies and budding artists have to give it a go at some point, and most of us worked either for a makeup line or for internships long before we were able to justify earning money from our craft as a way to live. I am no exception- I remember working a 12+ hour day in August in 2005 for FREE, just because I was going to be working with a magazine. That was the norm for me at the time- paid or not, I took whatever work came my way so that I could build my portfolio, skills, and reputation. The difference is, I didn’t open my own hair and makeup company till January 2010.
Back to trials- it only takes reading a few horrifying stories online to convince one that she must audition…I mean… have a trial with an artist before booking the big event. I don’t blame her. I’m sorry to say that recently, we’ve had a rash of last-minute requests for appointments. These brides had booked both wedding a trials for the same week, only to find out at the trial that this artist couldn’t even match foundation coloring and the wedding was just days away. Yea, I’d be scared too to book my wedding makeup without having a trial first if that’s the kind of stuff I had been hearing.
But here’s the other side to that. As a professional artist, if you want to book a trial with us before booking your wedding, then it’s not a trial, it’s an audition. The real purpose of the trial is to get to know each other, work on details, maybe make some changes to the look- it’s much more like a planning session. The goal at the end of a trial is for everyone to have a clear idea of what’s going to happen on the actual day. It’s a rough draft. However, if you don’t have your wedding booked with us already, then it’s no longer a planning session, because there’s nothing to plan for. At that point, we simply do an amazing hair and makeup application to your specifications.
So what’s a bride to do? If you don’t have a trial before booking, you risk ending up with a unskilled artist who could quite possibly bring you to tears on the big day. If you do have a trial before booking, you run the risk of loosing your wedding date before your trial even happens. (Also, many companies like our charge our normal rates for non-booked wedding trials as opposed to the normal reduced trial rate. Reduced-rate trials are offered because we know that we are doing a rough draft and feel you should only be charged as such. But, if your wedding isn’t booked yet, a trial is not a rough draft, since there’s no wedding yet to plan for, so therefore it becomes a normal, high caliber finished product. ) Here’s what I suggest:
1- Do your research. Review any prospective company you are considering as best as you can, high and low, and see what others say about them.
2- When you look at their website, don’t just look at their portfolio but also look at their overall web presence. Companies with professional websites typically pay high dollar for them, and that means they must also do enough business to justify the expense.
3- Be very wary of companies that do not present a professional front on all levels- telephone, emails, in-person contact. Professional demeanor comes with experience and respect for ones clients, something that most of us grow into after years of experience.
4- Don’t book a company unless you know who your getting. Many, many so-called “agencies” will book any Craigs-List artist just to book a gig. You should know exactly who is showing up at your door.
5- If you know you are particular, or if you know your already very nervous over the hair and makeup, spring the extra funds and have a trial with a qualified company pre-booking. The relief alone will be worth the extra expense.
Lastly- because Las Vegas is a destination wedding city, our company in particular only does trials for about 25% of all of our clients. Trials are for the benefit of the bride, an experienced artist can walk into any skin tone, eye shape, lip pout, or hair style that is NOT SFX and execute it the first time around.
(I know your laughing about the SFX remark, but I had to say it… in 2008 I had a bride with dreadlocks to her waist want to look like the Bride of Frankenstein. No, we didn’t have a trial. Yes, I did have to prepare- I had to build a cage of chicken wire and Styrofoam to do it. Thank goodness she told me!)
’till next time…
On April 28th, 2012, Becky and Tony vowed to stand side-by-side for their remaining days at Four Seasons Las Vegas. We were lucky enough to be with Becky and her girls, prepping her for the moment that would change her life forever. Orange Soda Photo captured the tenderness of the day, which, I hear, was mixed with some super sexy dance moves. For the full blog, visit Orange Soda Photo.
Jennifer is such a trooper.
This sweet bride-to-be was cool as a cucumber in the week leading up to her wedding when she suddenly had to make a venue change. Hayley and Alana had a chance to meet with this posh chick about a month before during her engagment session with the ultimate Ron Miller and were stoked to be a part of her wedding. She never lost her spunk even with the unexpected changes that came her way, and looking back at her photo’s you can see this is a girl with spirit! Well known for their elegant affairs, Anthem Country Club pulled off a bright and smashing event in record time. The colors were vibrant, her makeup and hair were fashion-forward and sexy- this is one bride we wished got married every Saturday! Congrats Jennifer!