It’s early morning on set of a new film and Cassidy Alana Blackall-Krantz thinks to herself, “This can’t be real,” as she fishes through her makeup kit to find that perfect contouring brush. To think that she could’ve been stuck in an office with loads of paperwork had she gone to Law school as originally planned. Now she is living her dream as a makeup artist and happier than ever.
Born and raised in Maple Ridge, B.C., Cassidy has always stayed close to Vancouver. Her love for horror movies and special effects inspired her to get into the makeup industry. She was also influenced by JCI Makeup graduates Samantha St. John, (whom she has become close friends with), Samantha Ravandahl and Kimberley Margarita.
“Anytime I watched a movie I was curious to break it down and see how the special effects were done. I became interested in beauty makeup throughout high-school, and one day it kind of hit me that I could combine my love of special fx and beauty into one amazing passion. It’s a bonus that I get paid to do the things I love.”
After weighing in the pros and cons of schooling, it was clear to Cassidy that she belonged at John Casablancas Institute. She enrolled in the JCI Makeup Artistry Program, which teaches both beauty makeup and special effects. She was certain that she could change her dreams into reality within this program.
“JCI was organized, professional and an amazing school that helped students in each industry. I noticed that anyone successful in makeup happened to be following JCI or were a graduate/instructor of JCI.”
Cassidy enjoyed her 10-months at JCI and her instructors were to thank for her amazing experience. Each of her instructors were informative and guided her in the right path. Upon graduation, JCI graduate and head of the Special Effects Makeup Department, Tracy Lai, gave her key position to Cassidy to work on a Langara film project, as well as a feature film, which ended up being Cassidy’s first feature film as a Key Makeup Artist.
“I met a lot of amazing people, and learned so many things I wouldn’t have been able to do on my own. JCI definitely set me up for success. They helped me jump right into the working world with amazing contacts and jobs that were given me to give me as a head start.”
The feature film was a Bollywood film which Cassidy brought Krista Hann, MUA graduate from JCI, onto as her assistant. After the movie wrapped up, Cassidy was hired onto a production company which deals with producing music videos and many feature films. She was recently offered a feature film by SugarShark Productions which she will be Keying as well.
“I wanted to open doors for Krista as Tracy had done for me. This industry is all about helping each other.”
The piece of advice Cassidy would give to aspiring makeup artists is to keep connections and stay kind to everyone you work with, as it can really come back to hurt you if you don’t. It’s important to be humble and always remember there is more to learn no matter how experienced you are. She also stresses to always be prepared— even if you think you don’t need it, chances are you do.
“If I could do makeup on any celebrity, I think it would have to be Halsey. She’s a peach, and it would be nuts to see my makeup go with her music as she’s always been someone I looked up to.”
Cassidy has been featured in IMDb as Head of Makeup Department. Seeing her work pay off and being recognized by professionals was a prized moment throughout her career so far. We are so excited to continue following Cassidy and her growing success in the film industry.
“I don’t feel like a student anymore, though I miss it, I feel like I’m finally who I’m supposed to be.”
JCI’s Makeup Artistry Diploma Program has gained an industry-wide reputation for excellence, giving students an exceptional network of contacts and resources when they enter the marketplace. During the 10-month full-time program, students study everything from glamor and special occasion makeup to special effects makeup and prosthetics application techniques. With classes limited to 16 students, individualized attention and encouragement foster each student’s personal and professional growth potential.
John Casablancas Institute is the pioneer of prosthetic lab techniques and face casting in Western Canada. This advanced level of training affords our graduates amazing opportunities and a significant advantage for a career in film, TV or theater.