We were excited to catch-up with Viktorija Bowers for our next A Few Questions With feature. Makeup artist and painter, Viktorija’s work is an exquisite blend of talent that crosses the boundaries into each artistic realm. Check out how she got her start in the industry below, as well as her advice for up and coming artists in the industry today.

Viktorija will be up next presenting at The Powder Group’s new not to be missed The Artistry Series on June 23rd, 2018 in New York City. Register and get more details at www.theartistryseries.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
I get my inspiration a lot from my family. I am lucky to be a part of an all creative force, with my husband who is an artist and photographer, my mom a hairstylist and my ever growing imaginative firecracker 3 year old daughter. They inspire me to create, to strive to be better, and to both provide for them and create with them.

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career)
It all started with Kevyn Aucoin’s book and which took a life of its own. That is probably the first time I saw how powerful makeup was and how you can transform people with a few brush strokes. Later I discovered Topolino, who has been a big influence on me in the ways he approaches makeup, from a quirky unconventional way. Also Alex Box comes to mind, for her powerful creativity, and Matin Maulawizada, for his clean Continue reading


Moises Ramirez’s vast array of work speaks for itself from his one-of-a-kind art to his makeup masterpieces. Check out our A Few Question with Moises below to get an insight on where he grasps his inspiration from to who has been the biggest influences in his life. Also you don’t want to miss his insight, if you’re just starting out in the beauty industry.

Moises will be among the presenters at The Powder Group’s new not to be missed Artistry Series kicking off on June 25th, 2018 in New York City. We are looking forward to Moises seminar and full-day workshop. Register and get more details at www.theartistryseries.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
It’s always hard to answer this question. As an artist I see inspiration all over but I guess my garden is inspiring me right now. My hands in the soil, seeing something transform from a seed to a plant to food. All the colors blooming, learning to balance the placements of all these different plants is inspiring.

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career)
All the artists that have been nice enough to share their knowledge, experiences, their tips and tricks especially when I started and didn’t know much about the beauty industry.

My Parents for teaching me to be respectful, kind and have a strong work ethic no matter the job.

My Partner for always supporting, listening to all the good and bad that comes with this career and his honest feed back.

Can you tell us about a defining moment in your career? One that made you realize this was what you were going to do with the rest of your life.
The first time I had a solo art show and sold a few paintings, I realized I could make a living from doing what I love to do.

What advice would you give to a makeup artist or hair stylist starting out in the industry?
Be a sponge and absorb as much information as possible from other artist (not just makeup artist). Look at photography, performers arts, go to museums, learn about art new and old. Be award of what inspires you. Start to understand the difference between inspiration and imitation. Work hard, be nice, be honest and always be open to learn from artist that inspire you and those who are inspired by you.

What is more important to you the work (a makeup artist or hair stylists artistic skill) or the artist (the person themselves – personality, professionalism)
It’s hard for me to separate the work from the artist. But if I had to pick one or the other within the beauty industry I would have to say the artist is more important. Hard work, professionalism, kindness and connecting with people will get you further.


Our next amazing feature in our A Few Questions With series, Sarah Rigano, is a spacial shaman, an intuitive, a Vibrational Designer and curator of interiors and a healer of their inhabitants. Sarah’s work is inspiring and healing on multiple levels. Take her Form + Light platform on instagram, it’s offers up Sarah’s curated pieces of expression, that exudes a calm collective, and give us reason to take pause, on a platform clouded by various images, news and digital information of all sorts. We hope you are as inspired as we are by Sarah’s interview below along with her images from @formandlight

We are constantly inspired to connect with other creatives in other industries and we look forward to elevating everything with Sarah who will also be presenting at this year’s The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. #seeyouatthesummit. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

How did you first become involved in wellness?
I spent close to a decade furthering sustainable design within the fashion and home industries for CFDA award-winning brands and Fortune 500 companies. Around 2011 I began experiencing a profound psychic and spiritual opening. I was always super intuitive but this was an undeniable calling to a journey of awakening through a series of repetitive signs, synchronicities and teachers presenting. I made the decision to leave my job in fashion to launch a consulting company and two days later Hurricane Sandy hit NYC. To see first-hand the power of Nature, the effects of climate change, the disastrous impact on people (physically and emotionally) and property (the complete destruction of all) within one of the largest cities in the world was like nothing I had ever experienced. It shook me to my core and had me reflecting on if all is taken in an instant, what remains and is of true importance? It forever changed my life trajectory and set me upon my shamanic path- illuminating a need in me to live in balance and be of service to both people and planet. What followed was my initiation in a range of ancient healing modalities including: Andean Shamanism (As a full mesa carrier), Masters in Usui and Shamanic Reiki, Energy Medicine, Stonalism, Past Life Regression Therapy and Quantum Sound Healing. These learnings instilled in me a deep connection and respect for the seen and unseen worlds, and a recognition of  the energy that exists in all, be it animate or inanimate objects, for everything has a vibration at which it resonates. The spaces in which we dwell, our individual, interior and exterior environments are of no exception. From this knowing, my philosophy of Vibrational Design™ was born; an ideology that is mindful and intent driven, a calling in and manipulation of light energy in the creation of sacred spaces and ceremonies for transformation and the realization of higher consciousness.

What is the more important thing to you about your work?
It is such an honor to witness the journey of another. To ‘hold space’ as I refer to it, which truly means to create an energetic environment where someone feels safe, seen without judgement, held in possibility and aware that they are fully supported in the path upon which they are embarking. There is infinite creative potential that dwells within us but sometimes the complications and stress of modern life cause us to forget this truth. We get spun out, off track or stuck, finding ourselves in personal and professional patterns that have us yearning for something more. I love inspiring my clients to claim their more through clearing energetic blocks and outdated beliefs, because amazing things happen when you combine energy with intention in the name of change- you begin to live the life you have imagined.

What are some of the tools that you use in your work?
I am constantly drawing inspiration and assistance from the Earth and the Elements in all facets of my work. Whether I’m in a one on one energy session with a client, clearing an interior space or piece of land, or creating a custom ceremony or rite of passage, Nature is always present and honored for her inherent beauty, wisdom and medicine. We are living in a time when many of us feel separate from Nature rather than a part of it, so I am constantly working to reconnect the individuals I work with back to the Earth so they can see the aliveness in all things as a source of inspiration and strength. The shamanic path is one which honors the energetic essence of all beings, both sentient and non-sentient, as each has a unique vibration that can be of assistance so individual circumstances truly dictate which allies I integrate into the experience. A person looking to shed old patterns might benefit from a fire ceremony to inspire transformation. A creative space needing an infusion of inspiration could blossom beautifully from a clearing with sacred smoke and sound. A new home could feel safe and welcoming from the wonderfully supportive energies of a crystal grid and blessing ceremony, etc.

How does someone who is unsure to start on a journey of wellness take the first step?
Everyone’s path to wellness is wholly unique, and wellness itself has different meanings to many. In my mind the only thing that is important is getting on a path, your path, whenever and however you are called. It’s of no matter how it appears and it doesn’t have to be complicated. Begin with one thing that sparks your interest and brings you joy. Listen to your intuition. Don’t overthink it. Try any and everything that feels right knowing you can take what resonates and leave what doesn’t. This journey of life is yours and yours alone to uniquely embark upon, so giving ourselves permission to have experiences that allow for elevation of mind, body or spirit is paramount!

What is the key to a successful work-life balance?
Realizing that there is work and there is life and that it is a beautiful thing when you can integrate the two in a way where your work doesn’t feel like work, rather it is the manifestation of what you love the most. I have redefined success in my life as moments where I feel alive and inspired, embracing my creativity and helping another to do the same. This is different for everyone, but I encourage my clients to find that sweet spot within their work that gifts meaning and satisfaction. If it isn’t immediately apparent it is worthy of reflection considering the amount of energy and attention that is directed to our profession. Can your present trajectory become more nourishing through a shift of perspective? Can learning a new skill infuse much needed vitality? Perhaps a new path altogether is the call? We need to actively vision our worlds as we wish them to be, staying open to opportunity while authentically listening to what we need.

What do you find to be the biggest barrier to self-care that those in the service industry face?
As humans we are sensitive beings effected by the energies of the individuals, spaces and experiences we have daily. Our society celebrates a hyper-focused, constantly on the go, multi-tasking mentality but there are contraindications to this state- stress and anxiety being paramount. Permission to pause and take a step back for a moment of rest is vital to consistent, meaningful success. The idea of go, go, go until one has nothing left is foolishness. Especially as creatives and ones in service to others we must gift ourselves permission to rest- stepping outside of the dogma that says ‘there isn’t enough time’ or ‘I should be doing something else,’ or that the act is one embarked upon selfishly. Self-nourishment is critical to creating space, clearing any density or energy that weighs so one can exist from an inspired place.

What are some of the biggest mistakes you see people making in self-care?
I often say that this conversation isn’t about wellness but about consciousness. That it is not about healing, but awakening. Because if we are conscious and awake- authentically living our truth we are likely to make decisions that support us in the highest way possible. Our choices in life, work, relationships are then, in theory, made from an elevated headspace that allows us to nurture self so that we can show up more authentically in service to others and the world around. My advise would be do not undervaluate the importance of honoring self. Do your best to get into a habit of choosing you unapologetically. Listen to your intuition, the voice inside and know that from this space you can manifest profound contributions from a centered, balanced state.

Does someone need to be religious or super spiritual to benefit from this type of focus?
This ideology is about consciousness and connectivity and is not counterintuitive or contradictory to religion or an individuals chosen beliefs. The intention is to appreciate the singular journey we all walk while valuing our need for community and connectivity. It is about honoring the Earth and living in a way that advocates balance and reciprocity for the elevation of all beings.


We are excited to feature Chris McCarthy, Executive Director of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) in Provincetown, MA next in our A Few Questions With series. Chris is responsible for all artistic directions of the largest presenter of Outer Cape art by national, regional and international artists, and she has worked in numerous galleries and museums throughout New England.

It’s inspiring to connect with other creatives in other industries and we look forward to catching up with Chris who will be presenting at this year’s  The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. #seeyouatthesummit. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
I sit in an office surrounded by art in a building that preserves an incredible legacy.  I am inspired all of the time by the objects, the people who come in and out of PAAM, my staff, the beauty of the national seashore; history – watching it repeat; the sea and the light.  I watch people leave on a Sunday and am thankful that I am already home – given the opportunity to do what I have been trained to do in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

Can you tell us about a defining moment in your career? One that made you realize this was what you were going to do with the rest of your life? 
When I was in graduate school at Syracuse University, one of the requirements for my Master’s program was to do a summer internship.  I was fortunate enough to secure a position at the Yale University Art Gallery.  Intimidated because it was Yale, I was very nervous that I didn’t know enough or wasn’t smart enough.  Fortunately, I was paired with a brilliant art historian and curator in the department of prints, drawings and photographs.  I was assigned to various tasks, most of which involved researching works on paper.  One day, Dr. Field, my mentor, asked me to come back into the area where prints and drawings were stored.  He told me to put out my white-gloved hands, and he carefully placed a Leonardo DaVinci sketch in my palms.  I was and Italian Renaissance major at the time, and had spent a semester abroad in Italy so the significance of this gesture was enormous.  I was moved to tears by its beauty and knew that making objects of art a part of my everyday life was critical; and the importance of the institutions that house such objects was right path for me.

What advice would you give to someone looking to focus on a career in the creative industries?
There is an enormous amount of risk associated with choosing a creative field as a full-time career. However, the results can be highly satisfying. My advice would be the following:-Be confident; choose the best mentors possible; listen; work hard; don’t be defeated easily; the sky is the limit when creativity is involved; collaborate; utilize the educational tools that are available to you; be smart; use your head; pay attention.

What is the key to a successful work-life balance?  
This is a hard question for me to answer as it is very difficult for me to separate my work from my personal life because I love my work and it is part of who I am.  I have been in a creative field for the majority of my life and all of my career, but over the past decade, I have learned to delegate, trust the people I hire, say no, and make sure that when I am at the breaking point, to step back and recharge.  Burnout doesn’t help anyone so I try not to bring work home with me, but the mind is always spinning.  I still get excited about my work and its future possibilities, but I do have other interests and try to focus on those when I am taking time off.


We have Carl Ray next on our A Few Questions With series. You have seen his work grace the covers and pages of Vogue, Glamour, Essence and Variety to name a few, but the one unforgettable face that features Carl’s makeup art is the incomparable Michelle Obama. Carl has been the personal makeup artist to Mrs. Obama for a number of years for official appearances both nationally and around the world. You can also find Carl at his business in downtown D.C. One80 Salon We are excited to feature Carl for this series and we are sure you are too! Also be sure to check out the feature Spotlight Carl Ray from our Fall 2016 issue and follow Carl on instagram @carlraymua

Get a chance to see Carl in person among the inspiring presenters at this year’s The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. #seeyouatthesummit. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
Nature, Old movies, past and present starlets, makeup artist, fashion, countries and cultures

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career)
My Mama I loved watching her apply her makeup growing up… She encouraged me from a young age to do what I love no matter what.

Kevyn Aucoin, his books influenced me majorly. First time I saw the book in the bookstore I looked at every page and was obsessed with every image I saw. Each page was so beautiful and magical to me.

I also get inspiration from Continue reading


Our next A Few Questions With artist feature Ryan Burke is not easily forgotten, his work is both inspirational and unforgettable, and the creativity of his self portraits are mesmerizing. Ryan, a Pat McGrath ambassador, makeup artist, photographer and next a soon to be The Artist Summit 2017 presenter! Also check out the feature we did on Ryan in our Fall 2016 issue: Inspired by Ryan Burke for a more in-depth look at how Ryan comes up with his various looks and more on his makeup artist career.

Ryan Burke will be among the inspiring presenters at this year’s The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. We are looking forward to Ryan’s presentation, but in the meantime check out his interview below and #seeyouatthesummit. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
Inspiration comes from anywhere – it could be architecture, it could be a plant.  I get inspired by other people too occasionally, but I always take that piece of inspiration and pull it in my own direction.  I think the important thing about “inspiration” is to spark an idea, not to replicate someone else’s work.

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career)
My first big inspiration in my career is my ex and close friend, Oscar Ambrosio.  We basically started in nightlife together at a time when instagram was only retro film filtered pictures of scenery and pets and there were maybe a handful of people in the world who were turning conceptual looks.  Both of us loved dressing up and it’s how I started getting into makeup and shooting myself.  Nobody was really doing this yet – shooting looks and putting them on social media.  Neither of us knew how to do makeup and because it wasn’t big on instagram yet there were hardly any tutorials or examples for us to work from so we inspired each other.  We taught each other techniques that we’d figure out and pushed ourselves to try any and every idea that came to mind.

My next inspiration came when my friend introduced me to the work of Pat McGrath.  I had been playing with makeup for a bit already but I knew nothing of major makeup artists.  Seeing her work opened up my world.  I was like “oh you can do THAT, you can take it THERE” so I started expanding on what I was doing and going more conceptual.  My favorite was to do cut-out eyebrows because I couldn’t draw them on right at the time.  I started with the regular eyebrow shape but it evolved to an obtuse triangle which became a signature shape for my style and has since been replicated by many people.

My third inspiration came when I moved to New York to be a more “serious artist.”  I met Domonique Echeverria at Greenhouse and we became close friends.  It was actually my intention to leave nightlife and makeup behind in order to actively pursue photography but her influence gave me new inspiration for looks and I started taking things to a whole new level – I added in better styling and began making headpieces.  Her aesthetic influenced mine to be more refined and fashionable.

Can you tell us about a defining moment in your career? One that made you realize this was what you were going to do with the rest of your life.
To be honest, I’m not sure what I’m going to do for the rest of my life.  I’m not just a makeup artist and I’m pursuing whatever opportunities come to me in various mediums. However, as far as taking makeup seriously as a professional artist, that moment came when I began working on Pat Mcgrath’s team. I not only learned to refine my techniques to a more professional level but, I also got the validation I needed that I could be successful as a makeup artist.

What advice would you give to a makeup artist or hair stylist starting out in the industry?
Pursue the style you like to do the most but, also allow yourself to develop in other types of makeup and hair.  Not only will this open up more opportunities and make you more valuable as a versatile artist but there can be a lot of crossover between different types styles.

What is more important to you the work (a makeup artist or hair stylists artistic skill) or the artist (the person themselves – personality, professionalism)
Work comes first in my opinion. In the age of the social media makeup artist, there are a lot of “personalities” who do makeup. While this is a career avenue that works out well for some people, being a skilled artist will most likely get you a more long-term career in the end. I also feel that as a matter of integrity as an artist, I would prefer to have the skills rather than being a personality who can’t actually deliver when it comes down to it or just puts out the same regurgitated generic ideas that have already been done hundreds of times over.

What is the key to a successful work-life balance?
If you love makeup and it is your profession then you should be enjoying your work as part of your life.  But apart from that, make time to be in nature and disconnect from the world.  I always have a need to do this in order to keep myself inspired and motivated.  It is very draining at times to work a lot – even if you enjoy it and taking some time away from that makes you appreciate things more and keeps you sane.



A Few Question with Sheila McKennaNext up on our A Few Questions With series, is Sheila Mckenna, President and Founder of Kett Cosmetics! An industry veteran with over 30 years of experience, Sheila is an expert in the field of airbrush makeup artistry. She started Kett Cosmetics in 2000 and what was only known as a niche brand for professional makeup artists in Film and TV, has since transformed into a globally recognized highly effective brand.

Sheila McKenna will be among the amazing group of presenters at this year’s The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. We are looking forward to Sheila’s presentation and hope you are too! Check out her interview below and #seeyouatthesummit. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
Nature. It never stops expanding and recycling. I am drawn to repetitive patterns. This is what you will find on a broad and molecular level inside all living things. You can see a pattern when looking at a field of grass and then zoom in to discover new patterns emerging on a single blade.

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career)
My father Jim McAward was the first person to truly influence my life. He did what he loved for a living and helped fuel that desire in me. He ignited my love for black and white photography where the distraction of color is Continue reading


We recently sat down with Ryan McKnight Owner/Agent at Kreative Kommune, for our A Few Questions With series. We hope you are as inspired as we are by Ryan and can’t wait to catch his presentation at this year’s The Artist Summit produced by The Powder Group and happening this Fall from October 1-6, 2017 in Provincetown, MA. For more information about The Artist Summit visit www.theartistsummit.com

What inspires you right now? (and Why?)
Individuality, it always has and always will be my main source of inspiration. When an artist of any kind is able to execute their individual point of view and make me say “wow this is so fresh and new” it really makes me smile.

Who are three of the biggest influences in your career? (and how have they effected your career) 
Shelia Mckenna. Shelia was the first makeup artist to believe in me and my talent. We started at MAC in 1998 at the same time and I was a newbie and Sheila was an accomplished makeup artist. She always treated me as if I was in the industry for years. Her talent was awe inspiring for me and having that support from someone of that caliber made me feel like I can do anything in this business. Continue reading