MUD NY Faculty Bios

Whether you’re interested in make-up artistry for film, television, theatre, retail, bridal, fashion or print, our accomplished NY faculty draw on years of experience in the business. 

Brenna Belardinelli,
School Director

Brenna Belardinelli completed her undergraduate degree at the University at Buffalo, earned her Master’s in Student Personnel Administration and her Doctoral degree from Argosy University in Organizational Leadership. Dr. Belardinelli has worked in the field of higher education, specifically Career Services, for the past six years. She has experience in public, private and for- profit education and served as MUD’s Associate School Director prior to becoming School Director. Dr. Belardinelli is a certified School Director in accordance with NYSED Law 5002 (6) and a state licensed school agent.

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Kelly Budd,
Instructor

After graduating from MUD’s New York campus in June 2005, Kelly Budd has worked extensively in the make-up industry for individual clients, magazines, and more. Her editorial assignments have included shoots with celebrities like Rev Run of Run DMC for People magazine, and her work has been featured in publications like Noise, Pride, Prim Magazine, Mini Magazine (Russia), Deutsch, and Client. As an instructor, she works hard to help her students discover and hone their own distinctive styles. Ms. Budd is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Alan Cutler,
Lead Instructor

Alan Cutler started his career in Miami 26 years ago working on films, music videos, and photo shoots while teaching his craft to aspiring make-up artists. Since his move to New York in 1989, he has worked with numerous celebrities including former Beatles band members, disco divas, pop stars, and acclaimed actresses. Mr. Cutler has worked with celebrity photographers Annie Leibovitz, Arthur Elgort, Andrew Eccles, Walter Chin, and Mathew Jordan Smith. His work has appeared in Vanity Fair, InStyle, McCalls, Ladies Home Journal, and Good Housekeeping, as well as on movie posters and assorted CD covers. Mr. Cutler is looked to as a resource by the make-up artist community; he has been quoted on Sephora.com and in Allure magazine and has been featured in Make-Up Artist Magazine. His film experience includes The Producers, Revolutionary Road, Perfect Christmas, and The Telephone; his television credits include Project Runway, The CDFA Fashion Awards, VH-1 Fashion Awards, The Sopranos, Fringe, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Homicide: S.V.U., Saturday Night Live, Sports Illustrated Bikini Issue, and Clash of the Choirs. He has received four Emmy® nominations and has been the key make-up artist on ABC soap operas and on The View, for which he won his first national make-up Emmy®. Mr. Cutler has appeared as a make-up expert on camera and has worked on over 400 commercials. He has designed and taught curricula for international cosmetic lines and has been the style director for ABC News, training new and established hires in updated techniques. Mr. Cutler is a member of IATSE Local 798 and a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Audrey Da Costa,
Instructor

Audrey Da Costa is a make-up artist/instructor and wardrobe consultant who values bringing forth the natural beauty she believes exists within everyone. Ms. Da Costa’s non-traditional path to make-up was via fashion. In her early years, she aspired to be a fashion buyer. She went on to study fashion buying and merchandising at the Fashion Institute of Technology. While working in the lingerie department at Neiman Marcus, a buyer in the department told her she appeared to have a flair for the world of cosmetics. She then moved to Houston, TX, and began training as a newcomer in the cosmetics department at Marshall Fields. Within the first six months of her position as a sales associate, she realized that her passion was in artistry. This led her to return to New York, to pursue and become one of the top make-up artists in the entertainment/music industry. She was the head make-up artist at VH1 from 1990 to 1994. In 1993, she won the Daytime Emmy® award for Outstanding Achievement in Make-up from the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences for her work on Mathnet – a PBS educational program. From 1994 – 1998, she was head make-up artist at MTV. Since then, she has worked on an eclectic array of actors, rock stars, TV personalities such as Dave Matthews, Ben Kingsley, Paul McCartney, Jerry Seinfeld, Mariah Carey, Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, Halle Berry, Matt Damon, Paul Simon and Courtney Love. 2003 marked the start of Ms. DaCosta’s own private line of cosmetics in the Cayman Islands. Her business thrived until 2004 when Hurricane Ivan destroyed her store. In 2005, she returned to New York as a make-up artist and instructor. Ms. Da Costa is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Lisa Front,
Instructor

Lisa Frost has been a professional make-up artist and hairstylist for 25 years. Her career began after graduating John H. Glenn High School and Long Island Beauty School in New York, where she received a cosmetology license. She began working on various television productions for ABC, NBC, FOX, HBO, MTV, VH-1, PBS, and Comedy Central, as well as print and runway for Revlon, and Betsey Johnson. In 1996, she was given the opportunity to move to Los Angeles, where she continued as the make-up artist for Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, (later named Real Time with Bill Maher). This led her to join the make-up artist Union Local 706. Her vast experience in the industry has allowed her to work on sitcoms, sketch shows, reality shows, talk shows, episodic shows, game shows, commercials, award shows, red carpet events, news shows, print ads, and fashion shows. She has been the personal make-up artist for Jenny McCarthy, Carmen Electra, and Kathy Griffin. Her celebrity client list also includes: Sarah Jessica Parker, Tom Hanks, Chris Rock, Ben Affleck, Sarah Silverman, Bill Clinton, Alec Baldwin, Nicole Richie, and Jack Black. Most recently she has lent her talent to Dancing with the Stars. Ms. Leveridge is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Anthony Giordano,
Instructor

Anthony Giordano is a New Jersey native who received a degree in Industrial Design in 1997 and has worked as special effects fabricator and make-up artist for the last 16 years. In 2001, he moved to L.A. Some of Mr. Giordano’s movie credits include The Last Samarai, Spiderman 2, and Scooby Doo Part 2. In addition to make-up artistry, Mr. Giordano has worked for Disney as a set and costume fabricator and has created training suits for NASA. Moving back to the New York area in 2003, he expanded his career further at Saturday Night Live for six seasons, where he was a special effects artist and prop fabricator. He also worked on Broadway productions such as Young Frankenstein, Tarzan and Shrek the Musical. His music industry credits include Madonna, Metallica, 50 Cent, Dr. Dre, Johnny Cash, David Bowie, Aretha Franklin, Mariah Carey and Korn. Mr. Giordano is also an organizer of the International Makeup Trade Show (IMATS). For the past five years, he has run and operated one of the top haunted attractions on the East Coast, State Scare. Mr. Giordano is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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J. Guerra,
Instructor

Working in Paris, New York, and Los Angeles, J. has an acclaimed clientele in fashion, print, theater, special make-up effects, television, and celebrity red carpet make-up industries. Born in South America of Spanish and Brazilian descent, J. grew up in New York City and became a self-taught make-up artist. J. began his career freelancing and assisting top agency make-up artists. He is one of the youngest and most elite make-up artists, and has worked on shows at Mercedes-Benz New York and Paris Fashion Weeks. Known for his wide range of skills, innovative techniques, and proficiency in all areas of make-up, J. is now a sought-after make-up artist who creates runway looks for designers, works on major television sets, produces an array of editorial and commercial looks, and works with many celebrity clients. Mr. Guerra is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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La Sonya Gunther,
Instructor

La Sonya Gunter has been in the make-up industry as a make-up artist for 23 years. She has worked on Broadway, for television and film productions, in editorial and for runway shows. Her credits include, Late Night with David Letterman, The Colbert Report, Oscar de la Renta, Zac Posen, Ugly Betty, Hairspray, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, The Lion King and the film And So It Goes. Most recently she has been working on the Broadway hit, Kinky Boots. La Sonya has been a make-up educator for six years and is a member of the Local 798 IATSE Hair and Make-Up Union. Ms. Gunter is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Merideth Haring,
Instructor

Merideth Haring has been a New York City-based hair and make-up artist since 2001. Her work history includes film and television, print advertising, fashion, and theatrical events in the Nashville, TN, and New York City areas. Ms. Haring currently specializes in high concept, avant-garde make-up. She attended New York University with concentration in Film Production and is a licensed New York State Cosmetologist, holding professional certifications in basic and advanced make-up artistry, airbrush make-up, and special make-up effects. Ms. Haring is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Byrd Holland,
Make-Up Artist Emeritus

Byrd Holland is a recognized professional make-up artist and a member of Local 706, The Make-Up Artists and Hairstylists Union IATSE. His career spans 40 years in television, theater, and print. Mr. Holland’s film credits include working as Department Head for productions such as Executive Action, The Spectre of Edgar Allan Poe, I Crossed the Color Line, Rabid, and Journey to the Center of Time. Mr. Holland’s television credits include The Alamo: Thirteen Days To Glory, Six Against the Rock, Crazy Times, Gunsmoke: Return to Dodge, Crisis in Midair, The Bill Cosby Variety Show, The Rock & Roll Years, and American Bandstand. In addition, Mr. Holland worked as the Department Head for Hard Copy for four years. Over the course of his career, he has worked with prominent actors, musicians, and entertainment personalities that include John Travolta, Danny DeVito, Cloris Leachman, Tom Hanks, Burt Reynolds, Natalie Cole, Paul McCartney, Michael Jackson, Hal Linden, Jonathan Winters and James Arness. He has also worked with Jimmy Carter, Senator and Mrs. Bob Dole, and Governor Pete Wilson.

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Tate Holland,
CEO, President

Tate Holland has worked in make-up education and cosmetic sales, manufacturing and distribution for the last 18 years. He is also an experienced Administrator and School Director. Along with his school responsibilities, Mr. Holland is active in local community affairs. He is a former President of CAPPS, the California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools, the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, and the Burbank Downtown Business Improvement District. He is also a member of the Measure K Budgetary Oversight Committee for the Newhall School District. Mr. Holland holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from the American University in Washington, D.C.

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J. Sterling Hurley,
Instructor

This Midwestern native moved to New York City well over 20 years ago with a passion for art, culture and the energy that only New York can offer. His work has appeared in regional, national and international fashion magazines as diverse as Rolling Stone Italia, Playboy, Cosmopolitan, Surface, and Zink. He has worked with a wide range of celebrity talent including Liam Neeson, Mandy Moore, Natasha Henstridge, Robin Tuney, Vivian Green and Kherington Payne, to name a few. He is a versatile artist and is able to seamlessly transition between the mediums of photography, film, television and live performances. His long career has been sustained by his constant inspiration by the world around him. He believes that successful design is the result of both the cerebral and the emotional. He has applied this perspective to wide range of projects from MTV, VH1, HBO and countless music videos, commercials and live events. As an artist he is greatly influenced by the ever-evolving worlds of art, fashion and pop culture, which he constantly immerses himself and finds that in the beauty and fashion worlds it is imperative to keep up with the latest products and techniques to successfully execute his work. He strongly believes in the power of make-up not only to transform the outside but also to foster well-being on the inside of his clients. Beyond the promise that cosmetics offer exists their true impact, enhancing self-esteem and promoting a sense of well-being. J. Sterling is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Rich Krusell,
Instructor

New York City-based artist Rich Krusell started making his mark in the art world as an illustrator and aerosol artist with aspirations to one day work for Marvel Comics. He studied commercial and fine art in their traditional mediums, though with the evolving job market, Rich eventually learned his way around a Mac computer and mastered its respective art programs. Having worked in advertising as a graphic designer (traditional & digital) for over 18 years, he found himself at a crossroads; inspired by watching horror and sci-fi films growing up, he shifted his energies to his oldest loves: sculpture, mask-making, and special make-up effects. He is well regarded amongst his peers for his likeness sculptures, conceptual design, painting and knowledge of color and his ability to think outside the box. In 2010, he co-founded “Gotham FX”, an FX shop serving the NYC metropolitan area and beyond. The spectrum of work coming into the shop has been very diverse, working closely with different industries such as: medical, pharmaceutical, fine art, fashion, print, film and television. Rich prides himself on being able to adapt to clients large and small, from corporate giants like Disney to short NYU student films. Today he is happy to join the MUD faculty and to be able to pay-it-forward by teaching what he has learned over the years as one of his mentors, the late Dick Smith, had always done. Mr. Krusell is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Craig Lindberg,
Instructor

Craig Lindberg began his career in make-up in 1985. Throughout his career, he has worked in industries including film, television, and Broadway. In 1997, he became head make-up instructor at Christine Valmy; during this time, he continued his own education by taking workshops hosted by many well-known artists such as Ve Neill, Richard Snell, and Sam Fine. Mr. Lindberg joined Local 798 in 2001, and became a journeyman make-up artist in 2004. His television work includes five seasons at Saturday Night Live, three seasons with Royal Pains, four seasons at Law and Order: SVU and all seven seasons of Rescue Me; his film work includes Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Spiderman 3. Mr. Lindberg is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Chantal Mariani,
Instructor

Chantal Mariani has been a professional make-up artist for 20 years, and is a member of The Make-Up Artists and Hairstylists Union Local 798, IATSE. Her work has appeared on television productions such as Guiding Light, As The World Turns, Good Day N.Y., A Current Affair, Larry King Live, Showbiz Today, and The 500 Home Run Club (Mickey Mantle). She has worked on commercials for JP Morgan, Dean Witter, Ticketron, Nutri-System and Robin Leach on the Beach. Ms. Mariani’s film credits include She’s Back (Carrie Fisher), Day Traitors, and The Gifted. She has also worked with major actors, models, politicians and entertainment personalities, including James Earl Jones, Patrick Stewart, Ellen Burstyn, Vanessa Redgrave, Christopher Reeve, Sigourney Weaver, Susan Sarandon, Ray Liotta, Gwyneth Paltrow, Miranda Richardson, Iman, John F.Kennedy Jr., Elle MacPherson, Brooke Shields, Jaclyn Smith and Cicely Tyson. Ms. Mariani has a passion for acting, and has been awarded the 2001 Curtain Up Critics Award for Best Actress, in addition to her extensive work in commercials, and as a spokesperson. Ms. Mariani is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Marissa Masella,
Instructor

With over 15 years of work in the industry, Marissa Masella, specializes in make-up for film, television and photography. She is experienced in a variety of make-up applications, from beauty and fashion to special effects and prosthetics. Her experience also extends into styling hair and doing wig work. Ms. Masella is also Co-Founder and Head Make-up Artist for Wicked EFX, Inc. and is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Paul J. Mason,
Instructor

Paul J. Mason discovered his love for the art of make-up in his teens, eventually attending film school at night while working during the day. It was this intensive film production training that solidified his decision to work in special make-up effects. While trying to soak up as much as he could (with the internet still a toddler), he enrolled in the Dick Smith Advanced Makeup course and Special FX Workshop in New York. Through Special Effects Workshop, he started mold-making and running foam for MTV productions, and later ran the fabrication crew on the network’s show, Celebrity Deathmatch. Today, he is honored to be one of the building blocks of East Coast-based effects shop Gotham FX. Other credits include such films as Wildling and Across the Universe; Broadway productions including Edward Albee’s The Goat, August Wilson’s King Hedley II, and The Lieutenant of Inishmore; live events for The Walking Dead and AMC’s Monsterfest; print including the cover for Italian Vogue; commercial clients Verizon, ESPN, and Fed Ex; and music videos for Fall Out Boy and Circa Survive. Mr. Mason is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulations 126.6(f).

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Johnny Ottavino,
Instructor

Johnny Ottavino is an international beauty expert and on-air spokesperson. He has been a sought-after professional make-up artist, hair stylist, and beauty education consultant for more than 20 years. His clients include A-list celebrities, TV personalities, and models for television, film, entertainment, publishing and fashion. Among his credits, Johnny was chosen as the official media spokesperson for Revlon’s ColorStay Haircolor with supermodel Cindy Crawford. His work has been seen on Paris runways for designers including Chanel, Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Armani and Donna Karan. Recognized as a beauty industry authority, Johnny is often approached by major publications (he was named one of New York’s top “Hair & Beauty Essentials” by Quest magazine). He has conducted beauty education training seminars in New York and internationally for highly recognizable professional make-up lines. Johnny’s clients include well-known faces such as Deborah Norville, Montel Williams, Aretha Franklin, Salma Hayek, Carnie Wilson and many more. He honed his expertise while studying in Europe at the Vidal Sassoon salon. His professional training also includes the William Tuttle School and Ben Nye. A native of Brooklyn, Johnny brings his cutting-edge New York style to his work. Mr. Ottavino is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Sylvia Pichler,
Instructor

Sylvia Pichler has been a professional make-up artist since the late 1980s. She has been a passionate airbrush enthusiast for the past 15 years, and uses the airbrush technique to create a wide variety of beauty make-up artistry looks. In addition to her freelance work, she worked as Director of Education and Product Development for Temptu Cosmetics from 2006 to 2007. During this time, she traveled extensively throughout the United States and abroad, conducting airbrush seminars and leading hands-on classes. Ms. Pichler has worked on advertising for clients like Rolex, Clairol, Epson, T-Mobile, and Panasonic. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Zink, and Glamour. Her credits also include make-up for Broadway, red carpet events and the runway. Ms. Pichler is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Elizabeth Pisano,
Instructor

Elizabeth Pisano is a Make-Up Designory graduate and has been a professional make-up artist for the past seven years, with an emphasis on film and television work. She has also worked in special make-up effects and as a hair technician on films such as Tropic Thunder and TV shows such as Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. Ms. Pisano is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Chelsea Reiss,
Instructor

An alumna of Make-up Designory, Chelsea Reiss first started her make-up career with the school and has since been freelancing for name brand cosmetics like Bobbi Brown and NARS. Ms. Reiss has been the lead make-up artist on many commercials, and also works for an advertising company (Giovatto Advertising) that shoots many commercials for car dealerships and state college clients in New Jersey. She first started her teaching career at Christine Valmy International school of Esthetics, and is licensed in skin care as well. Ms. Reiss enjoyed her education at MUD, and is very excited and passionate about being a part of the faculty. Ms. Reiss is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Gilbert Romero,
Associate Director of Education

Gil Romero has been an educator with Make-up Designory for over 15 years. He is a graduate of Willow Park High School in Apple Valley, CA, Cinema Make-up School in Los Angeles, CA, and Make-up Designory. Additionally, he received training in make-up design and artistry from UCLA Extension and Schell Sculpture Studio, and has continued to further his own educational experiences by taking courses in management and instructional methodology through UCLA Extension, University of Phoenix, Victorville Community College, Skillpath and the Coalition of New York State Career Schools. Mr. Romero has lectured and demonstrated make-up techniques including injury simulation, the process of prosthetic construction and prosthetic application on behalf of MUD, both nationally and internationally. In 2009, he co-authored the second edition of Make-up Designory’s Character Make-Up textbook. As a professional make-up and special make-up effects artist, Mr. Romero has had extensive experience in film and television since 1995. His work has been seen on television shows and films including The Unit, Scrubs, Prison Break, Untold Stories of the E.R., The Sarah Silverman Show, The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, The Shield, America’s Next Top Model, Midnight Movie, Five Fingers with Laurence Fishburne, Route 666 with Lou Diamond Phillips, Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses, tattoo transfers for Sherri Moon-Zombie in The Lords of Salem and effects for the short film Wounded Embark of a Lovesick Mind by author/ illustrator and film director Gris Grimly. In addition to his film and television work, he has produced prosthetic make-ups and effects for Universal Studios’ Hollywood and Tokyo live-action stunt show WaterWorld, the Anubis puppets for The Mummy II: Chamber of Horrors, Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream event character “Jack”, FuseTV/ Fangoria Chainsaw Awards, Lady Gaga and other live musical performers, and specialty trauma simulations for companies and professional organizations, including one of the largest and most technologically advanced burn centers in the U.S., the Integris Burn Center. Mr. Romero is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Cassandra Ross-Dixon,
Instructor

Cassandra (Sandee) Ross-Dixon is originally from Chicago, IL. She has been a licensed Cosmetologist since 2003 and a licensed Cosmetology Teacher since 2004. Ms. Ross-Dixon established herself as a gifted stylist working on numerous fashion shows in Chicago before moving to New York. Since relocating, Ms. Ross-Dixon has made a lasting impression in the Big Apple. She has regularly worked on New York Fashion Week for great designers such as Vera Wang, Oscar De La Renta, J. Lindeberg, Nicholas K, and Kimberly Ortiz. She also has established her own hair and make-up studio where she makes herself available as the go-to hair and make-up stylist for brides and various gala events. Ms. Ross-Dixon is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Ray Santoleri,
Instructor

Ray Santoleri holds an Associate’s Degree in Marketing Art & Design from Middlesex County College. He began his professional art career as a freelance graphic artist at advertising and design studios where he did basic print design, layout and production. His skills include comprehensive layouts, marker renderings, illustration, technical illustration, computer graphics, airbrushing and photo retouching. He attended make-up effects school in Orlando, FL, where he gained proficiency in clean and corrective straight make-up, character, aging, injuries and prosthetic make-up application. Mr. Santoleri has used his knowledge of make-up and effects make-up design in various areas of work. At Universal Studios he applied make-up and prosthetics to the cast of Beetlejuice Graveyard Review, sculpted life masks and molded slip- rubber masks for the show. He conceived the 1997 Universal Studios Horror Nights concept for the Universal Studios Tour in Hollywood, CA. In New York City, Mr. Santoleri freelanced with NBC Studios, where he did straight make-up for WNBC News and worked at Saturday Night Live, where he did straight, character, and prosthetic make-up. For two seasons on SNL he worked as Will Ferrell’s personal make-up artist. His movie credits include Beloved with Oprah Winfrey and Van Helsing. On Beloved, his work involved mold making and casting of the various effects created for the film, including various injuries, a newborn child and a dead child. On Van Helsing, Mr. Santoleri worked on sculpting the Frankenstein monster bodysuit at Captive Audience Studios in Burbank, CA. He has also worked as a make-up artist on local and regional TV ads, and he recently worked on the movie Paranoia and NBC TV’s Do No Harm. In 1998, he began working with McFarlane Toys where he started sculpting scale figures and has since freelanced for different companies including NECA, Mezco Toys, and Entertainment Earth & Presidential Monsters. Mr. Santoleri is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Paul Thompson,
Director of Education

Paul Thompson is the Director of Education at Make-up Designory and is a professional make-up artist with 24 years of experience, and an educator with 18 years of experience. He graduated high school in California at La Quinta High School, and then attended Orange Coast College and UCLA extension classes to learn the art of make-up. In addition to his make-up education, Mr. Thompson has completed courses in curriculum design and writing with the University of Phoenix, completed all course work required for a designated subjects vocational teaching credential at UCLA, and completed all course work to achieve a full teacher’s license in the State of New York. Over the course of his career he has been licensed to teach in California, Florida and New York. Mr. Thompson founded Creature Creations, a special make-up effects company specializing in television, commercial and theme park projects. One project resulted in the creation of the very first silicone bodysuit for Luke Perry in Robin Cook’s Invasion, an NBC mini-series. He also supervised film and television projects for the MUD/FX Group, a special make-up effects shop he co-founded. Mr. Thompson has held a number of educational specialist positions at several professional make-up schools including UCLA extension, and has lectured all over the world for major cosmetic companies such as MAC Cosmetics, Max Factor & Company, and Kryolan Cosmetics. Currently, he is responsible for the educational quality of the Los Angeles, New York and European MUD campuses which includes overseeing curricula, educational materials, and the recruitment and training of all faculty members. In addition to managing the development of curricula for MUD’s main campuses, seminars and company training programs, he also manages MUD’s publishing endeavors. Mr. Thompson authored MUD’s character textbook Character Make-Up, published in 2005 and co-wrote the second edition, published in 2009. Over the course of his career, he has worked with many prominent actors, musicians, and entertainment personalities including Janet Jackson, Whoopi Goldberg, James Earl Jones, Jackie Chan, Matthew Broderick, Christopher Reeve, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Cheech Marin, Pauly Shore, Traci Lords, John Dye, George Hamilton, Clint Howard, and Mark Kriski. He is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Mary Anne Toccalino,
Instructor

Mary Anne Toccalino has been a professional make-up artist and consultant for the cosmetics industry for over 30 years. Since 1997, she has worked to develop a strong background in commercials, industrial videos, and print, for clients like Chrysler, General Motors, The Detroit Pistons, Merrill Lynch, Audi, K-Mart, Benetton, and Domino’s Pizza. Ms. Toccalino has worked for major cosmetics companies including Lancôme, Ralph Lauren, Rene Guinot, Sothys, La Prairie, Dermalogica, MOP, Giovanni, and Sebastian. Her more recent fashion credits include Lux Life Fashion Evolution 2007 in Miami, Florida. Ms. Toccalino has also owned and operated her own business for over nine years. Her film and television credits include work as a Make-Up Supervisor for Jelly at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival, The Big Story, and The Faith Hill Special (NBC). She has worked with personalities such as Michael Jackson, Gary Oldman, Lily Tomlin and Rachel Hunter. Ms. Toccalino is a graduate of Radford Union High School in Radford, MI, Joe Blasco Makeup Artist Training Center in Hollywood, CA, and Make-up Designory. Ms. Toccalino has her A.A. in Humanitarian Arts from Oakland University in Oakland, MI and an esthetician’s degree from Virginia Farrell in Royal Oak, MI. Additionally, she has received make-up training from Lancôme, MAC, Dermologica, Giovanni, Arbonne, Estee Lauder, Bumble & Bumble, and Toni & Guy; additionally, she has instructional methodology training from UCLA Extension and the Coalition of New York State Career Schools. Ms. Toccalino is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Tyrone Traylor,
Instructor

A native New Yorker, Tyrone grew up in Brooklyn as the son of a fashion model mother and a record producer father. It was during college theatre classes that he first fell in love with creating innovative make-up and hair. When he isn’t in the studio of a fashion photographer or behind the scenes at a television show, Mr. Traylor is on the road, bringing ideas for fresh, flattering make-up and hair to real people. His list of credits includes on-air work for The View, Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees, Paula Zahn Now, Makeover Mondays for The Rosie O’Donnell Show, Livin’ It Up With Ali and Jack, and The Queen Latifah Show, along with several music videos and commercials. His work has been seen on runways in New York, Paris, Milan, and London. Mr. Traylor has also conducted seminars and performed demonstrations for Clairol, Maybelline, Garnier, Shiseido, Estée Lauder, Lancôme, and Francois Nars, He has been quoted in Allure, Glamour, iVillage com, MSN.com, People, Marie Claire, Style Monte Carlo, Real Simple, Latina and Essence. Mr. Traylor is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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Sky Vega,
Instructor

Sky Vega is an award-nominated Special FX Make-up Artist and entrepreneur based out of New York City. Beginning in entertainment business as a touring musician, Sky has since worked as a department head on many feature films, shorts, music videos and TV shows. She is credited with producing molds and life casting for The Hobbit (An Unexpected Journey) and has worked for a slew of celebrities from Dr. Oz to “Weird Al” Yankovic. Sky’s work has been seen in many publications, from creative costuming for singer P!nk’s red carpet appearances at the Bette Midler annual Hulaween ball and Heidi Klum’s party, to media coverage of various Isabella Rossellini productions, Green Porno and Animals Distract Me. Sky is a graduate of the South African Academy of Arts, with a four-year intensive and comprehensive arts curriculum. She studied aesthetics and cinematography at the University of Art & Design in Greece, A.K.T.O., majoring in Computer Graphic Animation and Multi-Media. She completed the Special FX Makeup course at the School of Visual Arts and fine-tuned her lab skills at the Make-Up Designory’s Special Make-Up Effects 301 course. Sky founded her creative company, Pittaway Art, in 2010, which acts as the retail portal for the Sky Vega Special Effects Makeup product line and her other artistic endeavors. Ms. Vega is a licensed instructor in accordance with NYSED Regulation 126.6(f).

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