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Playing with Colours with Anisah Alkaff

Everytime we looked over to Anisah’s make-up station, it was always a serene ambience. She was quiet but diligent. Her hands holding the brush moved with confidence and painstaking precision.

Three years ago, Anisah decided to bravely take the plunge to fully invest her time in the beauty scene. A period of loss and confusion ensued after leaving her 9 to 5 job.

That moment of murkiness dissipated as the uncertainty itself gave forth for her creativity to shine brilliantly. This was when she really began to experiment with a lot more make-up, trying out different looks that are more editorial.

“I think people who have known me from Day 1 know that when I first started with make-up, I was doing editorial or experimental looks for the most part.

“Then, it naturally progressed into bridal because that’s kind of the main route to have a sustainable career as a make-up artist in Brunei,” she said, “When I got into bridal, I went into that bridal mindset so everything is pretty neutral and classic.”

She knew from the get go it was a daunting decision to be a full-time make-up artist, but it all worked out well for her in the end and was worth the risk. Now, “Everytime I meet a bride, it’s a good day.”

But, it was only recently that she took a dip in playing with vibrant colours to create a visual that may be considered as not synonymous to a bridal aesthetic.

“I always thought to myself, if I have more time, I will do more experimental looks.”

She explained how the Covid-19 situation has presented her a stretch of space for her to practice her artistic side, using her sister as her model. Gleaning from her affection for editorial looks and inspired by Christina Aguilera’s promo videos for the live action adaptation of Mulan, Anisah decided to go with an Oriental concept for this edition.

“It was so eye catching and fun that it really inspired me to do my own take on it,” she stated. “My only intention with the concept I went with was to create something fun yet beautiful – something that would translate well in a magazine.”

The beautiful blend of red, pink and purple in Anisah’s touch emanates a sense of regalness and beauty that reminds us of Spring. The blush colours against the strong feature of the model encapsulates the richness of the concept and serves a harmonious balance between fierceness and grace.

Though her main work is mostly bridal, she has also done some commercial
filming and even participated in Aziz Harun’s ‘Jangan’ music video to add to
her portfolio.

The make-up industry in Brunei is also not without its own competitive twists and turns. Given this, Anisah calmly responded, “We have a small market and a lot of make-up artists as well as up and coming ones.”

“Honestly, I try not to take too much of my time to look at others because if I compare myself too much, I’d have a lot of self-doubt in myself.”

“So, I try not to compare myself. I just think about how to improve and only look back at my own photos, analyze it and do a postmortem,” she said.

Taking a trip down the memory lane, this dulcet voice make-up artist spoke dearly of her first client, “The one I’ll always remember the most is the first one I ever did, which is my best friend’s wedding.”

Confessing there was a slight hesitancy due to the pressure for perfection on someone’s big day, she did it nonetheless. In the end, it did more to Anisah than she expected, sparking her love for doing make-up for others.

“I realized how much I love the feeling of getting someone ready,” she described the thrill akin to a makeover scene from a movie. “That was the beginning of everything. So I’ll never forget that.”

Her bridal touch is just as elegant as the artist herself. Her artistic side tells us that there was an inner thirst for bold looks. Without a doubt, Anisah’s capability is undeniably brilliant and she does her work with poised sophistication.

One thought on “Playing with Colours with Anisah Alkaff

  1. Pingback: The MUA Issue: Faces of Change | 1001 Magazine

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