Today we’d like to introduce you to Blythe Tierney Dever.
So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I have loved makeup my whole life. As a kid, I would paint my friend’s faces, put lipgloss on my elementary school friends & carry makeup around before I was even allowed to wear it – so strange I know. However, the people who knew me as a kid always comment on how me being a Pro Makeup Artist makes sense because I used to carry around a fanny pack full of makeup.
But the real passion bloomed when I got into theatre – in high school I would always love to do the theatrical looks that our shows required on myself & many friends would have me do theirs as well – that progressed into being asked by directors to create looks for principal characters – this kind of led to me being the designer of the shows. I was hooked. My passion for theatre grew – leading me to pursue a BFA in Theatrical Performance from Baylor University.
While at Baylor, I found myself strongly gravitating towards Makeup Design & Application – any show or scene or piece of experimental theatre that I could get my hands & brushes on – I did. I would design the shows & run the crews. This led to me having 15+ design credits before having graduated in 2015. My senior year of college a close friend & mentor told me she was leaving the tour of the Off Broadway musical (“I Love Lucy”: Live on Stage!”) she had been working for a couple years & needed someone to finish the last leg of the tour – when she told me I was her first choice I was through the roof – her faith in me & her belief that I could not only handle a job like that but do it well meant the world. I got the job of Makeup Manager/Assistant to Wig & Wardrobe before I graduated from college – a HUGE opportunity & a real fairy tale scenario – I will never forget that call. After completing the tour I got an internship at Richard Linklater’s “Detour Filmproductions” in Austin TX & learned so much about film – up until that point the majority of my experience had been theatrical so this experience was huge for me.
While in Austin I also did my first film as the Makeup Designer/Makeup Department Head. Once I completed my internship, I moved back to my hometown of Houston TX where I landed a job doing wigs at the Alley Theatre. This job meant a lot to me because it was the theater where I saw my first show & found my love of theatre. I worked at the Alley for a year & learned more than I could have ever imagined. My boss Amy Solomon is one of those phenomenal people in the industry who have SO much knowledge & are so incredibly forthcoming & willing to teach others. I can never thank her enough for all she taught me. After completing my season with The Alley, my boyfriend & I made the decision to move to Atlanta to pursue our careers in film (me being a Makeup Artist & him being an actor). We made the move July of 2017 – Atlanta was the perfect choice for us – an industry city with so much opportunity – yet with the same “Southern Hospitality” that we grew up with & love. After being in ATL for a couple of weeks I was offered a job at the Alliance Theatre doing wigs for the show “Shakespeare in Love” – this was my first job in ATL & a pivotal one – from there I was introduced to the Atlanta Opera where I have been a Principal Makeup Artist & Wig Crew Member for most of the last two years.
Since then I have also been lucky enough to work with the Atlanta Ballet – doing photoshoots & getting to design Makeup looks for their newest production of “The Nutcracker” which was one of the most exciting opportunities of my career. – I’m very blessed to live in a city like Atlanta where I am able to maintain my passion for theatre while pursuing a future in film as well. The versatility of the industry here is something unlike anywhere else. Getting to do my Theatrical shows with Film opportunities in between is something I am extremely grateful for – not every city gives you the opportunity to do Theatre, Opera, Ballet, Film, TV, Music Videos & etc. in such a small saturated area. Truly the land of opportunity. I am very grateful to Atlanta for being so kind to me & offering me so much opportunity with open arms – I truly believe Atlanta is the kind of city where what you put in – you will get back – its all about the hustle & the drive – I’m grateful to live in a great city where that is the case.
Has it been a smooth road?
I have been extremely blessed by my journey – it has been A LOT OF WORK – blood sweat, tears & an extreme lack of sleep – but worth it all. In every career there are struggles – but I like to think I’m a person who follows opportunity. I have never tried to force myself into a position or along a path that I didn’t strongly feel the universe was guiding me to. I follow my heart & my feet. That mindset I think has really benefited me in my life & my work.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I am a Freelance Makeup Designer & Artist. I do Makeup for Plays, Operas, Ballet, Film/TV, Music Videos, Photoshoots & whatever else I can get my hands on (In Theatre Makeup & Wigs are in the same world – so although I am a Makeup Artist – I have training & experience in Wigs as well.)
I am proud that I have been able to & consistently work with major companies in the Atlanta area – the opportunities I have been given are major & I am so grateful for the incredible people I have been able to meet & work with – the fact that they love & respect my work & keep asking me back is everything to me. I’m really ecstatic about all I have been able to accomplish in my 26 years of life & in my professional career thus far – I’m still young & am very content with where I am on my journey thus far. I have so much I still wish to accomplish & I feel like I am on my way. Also, I am really proud to be a part of such an incredible community of artists.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love Atlanta – like I said before – I truly believe what you pour into Atlanta, Atlanta will pour into you. This is the city for people who want to work hard & reap the benefits of their labors. It’s an incredible industry city while maintaining the charm & Southern Hospitality other industry cities can lack. Also, the diversity of Atlanta is incredible – this city is so full of culture & life its amazing.
Hmm what do I like least…I’ll have to get back to you on that – I truly love the city. – Maybe those 55MPH speed limits haha I’m a Texas girl who is used to 75MPH so that KILLS me sometimes on my way to a gig.
- Website: blythetierneydevermakeup.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @blythetierney
Blythe Tierney Dever Photography