When it comes to makeup artistry and body painting, the baddest bitch in NYC is Kyle Harder. For Kyle, the road to becoming a makeup artist didn't truly begin until college, where she attended the Fashion Institute of Technology. There, she was surrounded by fashion and art students, and her best friend was a makeup junkie. She says, "Every night was a new chance to dress up, pick the perfect outfit, find just the right hair style, test a new lip color and throw on some big lashes to hit the city." She also had a purple-wigged alter ego, Elektra. And that was just the beginning.
It took Kyle a little while to really find her way to makeup. She worked in fashion design (too corporate) and wardrobe styling on film sets (too much manual labor). She had been playing around with makeup on friends and family, and then her step mom pushed her to switch careers. After the final straw of doing wardrobe and hating it down in Louisiana, she applied and got accepted to the Make Up For Ever Academy.
Now, Kyle is a freelance artist doing hair, makeup, special effects, and body painting. She loves that every day is a different client, job, and location. Her jobs range from TV, film, bridal, and events - and in all of this there is a balance between "the highly creative and the basic beauty." She was always into art and design, but using the human body as a canvas is a whole new world. For this reason, body art and body painting are her favorite jobs. She says, " The best part is seeing your design go from a small drawing on paper to this live moving piece of art. It literally is brought to life!"
In addition to freelancing, Kyle teaches at the Make Up For Ever Academy and hosts her own classes, too, passing along her knowledge of her badass art to others. She adds, I've been fortunate enough to have others share their knowledge with me so I am very happy to continue passing that information on to others. I know how much it's changed my life hopefully it can have the same impact on others."
Kyle insists there's nothing else career wise that she'd rather be doing. Through her work, it's pretty obvious. She meets many wonderful, interesting people, and gets to create a different kind of art that has established her and set her apart in New York.
The best part is that Kyle feels strong and powerful. She states, "I took that leap of faith and chose to do what I fucking love every day. Im in control of my schedule every morning I wake up. I work hard so I can chose when to give myself a break. No one else is controlling me." She also isn't afraid of wearing her heart on her sleeve, expressing emotions through art, and taking on challenging projects. Now that's the bad bitch mentality and definitely an inspiration for all of us.