9 Aug 2009

Sonntags Zeitung Interview



I am super, super excited about this!!!! Although I've previously been published online on various other websites and also in a Hong Kong newspaper, this is my first press appearance in a national Swiss newspaper. A few days ago I was contacted by the Sonntags Zeitung, a big nation-wide newspaper in my country. I was interviewed for an article they were writing about the Youtube makeup community. Today, the newspaper was published and there's even a small picture of me in it - yey! (The picture is from my Modern Gothic tutorial.)

I have taken the liberty to translate it into English.

Their names are Michelle, Claire, Lauren, or Julia. They sit in their bedrooms, a desk lamp directed onto their faces. One last check of their webcams, then it's show time. No, these young women from places such as Chicago, Newcastle or Berne are not going to perform a striptease. They put on makeup. As soon as their masterpiece has been perfectly applied, powdered and primped, they will upload their newest video to Youtube. These young women produce what is known as makeup tutorials: Videoclips that show step by step how to apply makeup.

With a bit of luck, these young women are also able to jumpstart their careers as celebrity makeup artists for the web-generation. These makeup tutorials have been the front runners on the Youtube community for about the past two years. They are themes that interest 13 year old schoolgirls just as much as the 40 year old career women: how to achieve a perfectly straight eyeliner? How to wear red lipstick so that the color will really last for four hours? In these clips, often not longer than 3 minutes, the starring actresses paint with carefree ease and create magical looks that are good enough to be on magazine covers.

A Swiss woman applies makeup on Youtube with success
The most successful gurus are self-taught and simply learned by doing. They have become important sources of inspiration to their subscribers that are in the hundreds of thousands (viewers who receive automatic updates when their favorite makeup guru has uploaded a new video.) Three of the most watched tutorial stars are: Lauren Luke, a 27-year old single mother from England, who has caught viewers' attention under her Youtube name “panacea81” with her no-nonsense personality and her broad northern English accent, and has managed to inspired over 40 million users to recreate her looks. A success story which has helped her to create her own makeup line, a contract for a makeup book, and inspired a BBC documentary.
Also Michelle Phan, in the above photo on her way to achieving a Lady Gaga Look, has meanwhile launched her own skincare line “IQQU Beauty”. This American woman with Vietnamese roots has been presenting her tutorials for 3 years, is considered a master of the “smokey eye”, and is ranked as the 5th most subscribed Youtube “Guru” with over 200,000 subscribers.

Under the username “MissChievous”, even a Swiss woman has managed to reach the highest ranks within the league of makeup gurus. Julia Graf, an administrative and PR professional, has been creating makeup tutorials for roughly one year in her free time, in which she creates dramatic looks on herself.

“I have always been really interested in makeup, and through my previous participation on various online beauty communities, I finally decided to start my channel on Youtube.” The Swiss-Canadian dual citizen, who now lives in Canton Berne, is still not able to live full-time from her career as a makeup artist, despite having over a million unique channel views. “Of course it would be a dream for me to jet all over the world as a makeup artist. But I also love the creative freedom that I currently have – because I don't have to base my entire livelihood on my makeup career.”

Due to her popularity on Youtube, Julia earns a small income based on her Youtube partnership which forsees a revenue-sharing program for ads placed on her page; however, she still regards this as “pocket money”. She finds it interesting that many cosmetic companies are now sending out samples of their products to gurus, in the hopes that their newly developed products will appear in the next clip. Big brands such as MAC, Shu Uemura, or Bobbi Brown have long recognized the potentials of these online makeup artists: In the case of Lauren Luke, the marketing department of the British cosmetic line Barry M was finally able to explain their sudden popularity when they realized that Lauren used many of their products in her tutorials.

At the moment, such an exclusive deal is out of the question for Julia Graf: “I would like to maintain my current freedom to present the best products to my viewers – not only those products that I was paid to endorse.” Regardless of the reasons why these makeup videos are being clicked: No one can teach women the art of makeup application faster, more directly or enjoyable.


54 comments:

  1. Anonymous12:09 am

    Awww, congratulations Julia! What a great article!

    Love from New Zealand :D

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  2. Anonymous12:10 am

    Woo :D

    Congrats, Julia. :D

    :D <3

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  3. I'm not good at german, I don't know diffucult words, so thanks for translating!

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  4. claudia12:15 am

    Cool, Julia, wish lot's of success for you :)

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  5. oh wow... how cool!

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  6. How perfectly translated and easy to read is that: thank you for sharing!
    "even a Swiss woman has managed " -> yay yay yay, omg, I am really happy for you, go go go switzerland! go europe. I guess I needed to see this to believe this and I am truly moved for you. You truly deserve it. and if this means more 'german language' tutorials, I am still happy with that. Raising to my glass to you. Well done girlie :) x

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  7. congrats! its wonderfull you get your work recognized

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  8. Congratulations~ You definitely deserve this :3

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  9. This is so exciting, Julia!!

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  10. Congrats, You truly deserve it. You inspire me everyday!

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  11. Congatulations, this is awesome!

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  12. Congrats! You truly deserve it! :)

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  13. I am so very happy for you! May you continue to shine in Switzerland and across the globe!

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  14. Congratulations!!! :)

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  15. Congrats! Very cool. I've been waiting to see it, since I'm in the US and couldn't buy it for myself. :) Thanks for sharing with us!

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  16. Congratulations! You really deserved it :) I really like your videos and your blog, especially since you are one of those who have "worked" their way up, and not just gotten famous on the internet over night.

    You were actually the inspiration when I started my youtube-channel and my blog. I really love your tutorials, especially the one with the purple smokey eyes.

    xoxo

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  17. Your hard work and passion is paying off! Congrats!!! :)

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  18. Anonymous2:03 am

    Congratulations Julia for your recognition. It makes people like me & you work harder and hard work isn't in vain and definately pays off..

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  19. good job. Congradulations

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  20. congratulations julia! one of the things i love about you and your tutorials is that you are not tied down to any brand/line..you perfectly said it, you have the freedom to use any product you like.
    more success to you!

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  21. Anonymous2:35 am

    fantastic. love to watch your tutorials.

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  22. Fantastic article! I am so thrilled for you Julia, you certainly deserve it and may many more good things come your way! Well done xx

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  23. Congratulations !!! Great Article. Seems like they actually did their research unlike the silly aussie 1 min thing a little while back.

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  24. wow! congratulations Julia! and thank you for deciding to keep your reviews as honest as possible for us :)

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  25. riotofxmyown6:10 am

    CONGRATULATIONS!

    I like that you said that you don't want to be paid to promote just one brand. I think that's really fair of you and shows that you really value your fans because you want to genuinely give them the best advice you can and not just what will be profitable for you. You're honest and you're into this for the right reasons!

    I mentioned this on YouTube as well but I don't know if you want to edit out your location and career because they're things you have previously wanted to remain unanswered? Just thought I'd point it out in case you wanted your privacy and didn't realize it was in there.

    Anyways, congrats as I said and thank you so much for your wonderful videos!

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  26. sooo nice.. i feel soo proud!

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  27. Hehe actually it's not my location. :) I didn't tell the reporter my real location. ;)

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  28. And, well, my career is vague enough, doesn't disclose where I work etc. I had to make sure this was all ok before I published this piece. :) Never know stalkers out there.

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  29. Congratulations! Wonderful article!

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  30. Félicitations! Je viens de Lausanne et ça fait plaisir de voir quelqu'un en Suisse d'aussi doué que toi! Continue!

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  31. Anonymous8:27 am

    Well written... and translated :)
    I love the honesty and descriptive observations in this piece :)
    Keep up the good work, Julia!
    You're awesome :)

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  32. Wow, your soo famous :) Lucky.

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  33. This is awesome! Congrats! You deserve it!

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  34. Herzlichen Glückwunsch zu dem tollen Artikel :).

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  35. Auch von mir herzlichen Glückwunsch zu dem Zeitungsartikel!

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  36. ^^ OO Congratulations.!

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  37. Congratulations Julia!!!
    I'm sure you're very proud of it!!! :)
    Not everyone can go so far!!

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  38. Anonymous10:58 pm

    congratulations Julia, You are very talented. Greetings from the Dominican Republic :)

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  39. Anonymous1:12 am

    OMG! You r so lucky ! You r also Canadian! Me too! Congrats! Well... I am a bit jealous cuz Im only 12 and i want to strat to make vids, but people will start putting mean comments, cuz Im young! Seriously, Ive seen a lot of the comments for young youtube gurus! :(

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  40. congrats! that is so great!

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  41. Gerardina6:33 am

    Congratulations!!

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  42. Super Julia!!!! Gut gemacht!!

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  43. Super Julia! Gut gemacht!!!

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  44. jenix (from Vancouver!)8:34 am

    Congratulations Julia, a very positive article!
    You really deserve this recognition and the best part is that it all stems from doing something you love.
    Something like this laminated in your 'portfolio' would be amazing.
    All the best.

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  45. Fernanda aka Phernumphy on youtube12:40 pm

    Congratulations. There's only one thing I don't agree with, you say you don't want to be forced to stick to only one brand but if you watch Lauren Luke's videos, you know that she didn't, she still wears every different brand she can think of in her tutorials. Anyway I think you're right to want to do this only as a hobby for the time being but You are really good at it.
    Congratulations. Keep up the good work.
    Fernanda , Portugal

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  46. Congrats! I started making videos on YT because of you. I would love if you take a look and comment on my YT channel. Channel name is Carasforever.

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  47. congratulations on the article! and thank you for the translation :D

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  48. Dilyana2:32 am

    Congrats, Julia! Such talented people like you should really get a recognition for their devoted work, I'm really happy for you!

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  49. Anonymous3:47 pm

    perfect make up.Go ahead

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  50. Anonymous4:57 pm

    So cool again !

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  51. Wow! This is so AMAZING! Congrats!!!!!!!!!

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  52. oh, super !! Gratulier dir ganz herzlich zu deinem ersten Artikel, aber machst ja auch ne super arbeit !

    lg isi


    http://theisiwayoflife.com

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  53. I like that you use all different brands of makeup. I wish you success AND independence!

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