One decision made country girl a celebrity make-up artist
IT WAS a decision that determined the course of Allison Boyle's career - should I stay or should I go?
Back in 2000, a young hairdresser from the regional hub of Rockhampton moved closer to her sister in Sydney.
With the world at her feet, a period of self-discovery would present itself for Ms Boyle before she'd become one of the nation's in-demand make-up artists.
"I thought I'd pack a bag and if I like it I'll stay, and if I don't I can come home,” she said.
She stayed, and her fate was secure.
An exciting path lay in front of her.
"It was exciting, a complete change from Rockhampton,” Ms Boyle said.
But the country girl had to quickly adjust to a whole new lifestyle.
"Everything's in a much higher pace (in Sydney), so you have to be on top of things and can't be too relaxed,” she said.
Sydney had hosted the 2000 Olympic Games, so the city was bustling with an electric atmosphere.
Ms Boyle wanted to break out of hairdressing, so she set her sights on fashion where she could focus her creative energy in a different kind of expression.
"I worked for the Versace boutique. My friend was the head of marketing and found me a role there. I was doing retail and then wholesale,” she said.
She was employed there for some time, and also worked a few other jobs in fashion.
It was 2001 when Ms Boyle was holidaying overseas visiting countries including England and France.
It was during her time in France when catastrophe struck. The tragedy of 9/11 unfolded.
"I just didn't know what was going to come after that. It could have been World War III so I came back to Sydney,” she said.
Upon her return, Ms Boyle decided she needed to dive into another creative project.
"I needed to have a proper career, and make-up was the next natural progression,” she said.
Ms Boyle completed a make-up course, and during this time worked four jobs before she gradually built up a portfolio.
She'd begun to assist inspiring people around the city with their hair and make-up needs.
Financially, it'd been a big commitment to focus solely on her creative career.
"You don't feel secure in the freelance world, you don't know where the next job is coming from,” she said.
"It took five years from the make-up course to being really established.”
Ms Boyle's first big job was assisting David Wenham, Sam Worthington and other male cast members of Getting Square for a photo shoot in GQ Magazine.
Having her work featured within a magazine assured Ms Boyle she was on the path she'd been born to take.
"You've got to feel confident and be able to handle all sorts of make-up and briefs that are thrown at you,” she said.
Doors began to open for Ms Boyle, and she could see her horizon expand.
"You're meeting different people all of the time,” she said.
Over the years, Ms Boyle has served as make-up artist for a host of stars including Miranda Kerr, Paris Hilton, Rebecca Gibney, Amanda Keller and more.
Ms Boyle has just finished work with Dannii Minogue on The Masked Singer which will air on our television screens soon.
"I've worked with a lot of inspiring women. They're all business savvy,” she said.
Make-up differs among various mediums such as television and magazines.
"It depends on the photographer you work with, their lighting...sometimes you can put the bare minimum (of make-up) on and it could look like they've got a lot on,” she said.
So it's a collaborative process with photographers and stylists to produce the best quality results.
"You have to adjust your skills. You'll give your feedback and try to work it in with the talent you've got so everyone has a say,” she said.
One intriguing aspect of working within the industry is what each day will bring.
There's an element of mystery as to which job she'll conquer next.
"Sometimes I'll work with beauty brands so they'll launch a new collection and you'll demonstrate to the beauty editors to show new colours of the season,” she said.
So we'll wait and see where Ms Boyle brushes her make-up skills next.
Ms Boyle was born at the Mater Hospital in Rockhampton during the 1970s, and stayed in the region until 2000.
She attended St Joseph's Wandal before The Range Convent where she studied until Year 10.
A pre-apprenticeship course in hairdressing arose in the 1980s, a time when the industry was buzzing with big hair, lots of colour and craziness.
"The industry has swung around to that again after having a calmer period,” she said.
Ms Boyle started hairdressing in 1987 when she began work at Betty Thomas Hair Affair. After the salon was sold, she stayed on in the industry before she made her big move to Sydney.