‘People Don’t Think I Work Hard Because My Job Is Glamorous’

There is a reason a lot of fun, romantic comedies center on women who are journalists (and by journalists we mean fashion or sex columnists for a Glamour-type magazine), work in fashion (as designers with an amazing line) or publicists (and in movies this means they get to go to exotic beautiful places with their celebrity clients and tell them what to do.) Pretty much any film starring Katherine Heigl. In all of these scenarios, their coworker is also played by Chris Evans or someone even better looking. Oh, and then the rest of them are spies and they get to wear ballgowns while they chase after people with guns. Oh, and their coworker is played by Chris Evans. These are careers that because of movies, but also what these people are working on (fashion, movies, helping celebrity profiles), come off as very glamorous. And because a job may require them to work with beautiful clothes all day or attend the Grammy’s or talk with Jennifer Lopez about her favorite skincare products, other people in less glamorous industries may not take them seriously or underestimate how hard these people work. We talked with a few of these people who feel like they are constantly having to defend their jobs.

Jena Taylor-Garcia is a fashion designer. She told The Grindstone:

“In our modern media-driven age, many have the notion that fashion designers and couturiers are living a life of glamor and ease. Nothing could be further from the truth! When the fantasy and dreaming of new designs ends, and it is time to sweat the myriad of details, I can assure you that one needs plenty of adrenaline and caffeine!

I have done many other things, but this is the hardest career I have ever loved! This is a complicated job, where only the designing process is fun! And walking down the runway afterwards and waving! Those are my two favorites, and everything in the middle is hectic and stressful!

Since design is another part of art, you might say we belong to a driven bunch who labor on many nights past midnight, with no guarantee of market success. I do it for the sheer love of creating incredible couture!”

Marianne Skiba, a celebrity makeup artist, told The Grindstone:

“Ive been a celeb makeup artist for many years. Working in movies and TV with big stars sounds like the ultimate glam job but it’s hard, hard work and very unglamorous more often than not. Other than the basics, long hours and bad food, most people don’t realize that creative crafts division of entertainment is really a service industry and we are service providers more often than artists.

Quite often the locations are not only unglamorous but downright unhealthy even dangerous. If you’ve got a director who wants realism you may end up in a limestone quarry at night in the winter under a rain machine, or in a moldy basement for two months or an old coal mine.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great career if you learn to handle it and take care of yourself. It’s like the old joke about the guy who cleans elephant dung in the circus and gripes constantly about it. When asked why he doesn’t quit he says, “What! And give up show business?”

Creative jobs often get some prejudice because saying you get to paint people’s faces or just create art does sound a lot better than processing numbers in a cubicle (and it probably is) but stress and pressure exist in every field. One especially stressful field that gets a rep for being quite glamorous is public relations.

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