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Karina Sanasaryan

Meet our latest guest, the multifaceted Karina Sanasaryan. Karina brings a wealth of experience as a freelance makeup and hair artist, owner/operator of ‘Makeup Station’, and as the Head of Wigs and Makeup at the New Zealand Opera!


Navigating the Makeup Landscape in New Zealand

Chatting with Karina, it's clear that she has made her mark on the local scene, not just in one aspect of makeup artistry, but across multiple platforms. Karina’s journey in the beauty industry spans over a decade, during which she has developed a formidable presence both as a freelance makeup and hair artist and a successful business owner.


From Passion to Profession

It's interesting to hear that Karina's business ventures were borne out of her passion, as she originally explored makeup courses for personal enjoyment. What began as a casual interest evolved into a noteworthy career, thanks to influential industry opportunities like her time with Face Me Makeup.


Balancing Entrepreneurship and Artistry

Our conversation also taps into Karina's expansion of her freelance wedding and special events teams, with a notable presence in both Auckland and Christchurch. She candidly discusses the challenges and unexpected inquiries that led to such growth.


The Intricacies of Opera Makeup and Wigs

Karina shares insights into the extensive preparation that goes into each opera production, which can span two to three months. This involves countless meetings and the careful consideration of visual elements on stage, especially wigs, which are a vital component given their visibility compared to stage makeup.


The Quick Change: A Theatrical Ballet Behind the Curtain

The discussion also touches on the sheer speed and adaptability required in the world of makeup for quick changes during live performances. Karina notes the cooperativeness of directors in ensuring practicality and feasibility in these high-pressure situations.

Leadership and Legacy in Makeup Artistry

Ascending from team member to head of department has naturally altered Karina's role, introducing a new dimension of leadership alongside her technical skills. She emphasises the importance of mentorship, striving to involve students and help foster the next generation of makeup artists.


Beyond the Footlights: The Passion for Theatre

Despite the financial challenges often associated with stage production, Karina underlines the enthusiasm for theater work as the driving force for students aspiring to enter the field. As for her own journey, she aims to maintain her involvement in freelance opportunities, recognising them as avenues for continuous learning.


Contact Karina


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