“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together” – Vincent Van Gogh
“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” These are the words of Vincent Van Gogh. I feel these words describe my journey as an entrepreneur. As I reflect on the past, I see all the small things that lead to great success. It takes me all the way back to first grade (yes that far back), when my teacher asked us to draw a picture of what we wanted to be when we grew up. I drew an artist with paint brushes and a clown. I loved drawing/painting, but I also loved being funny. Through grade school, I would take art classes and excel in them. By the time high school came around, I figured out I would starve as a clown! As time progressed, my passion for the Arts and my skills continued to flourish and got other ’s attention in class. In my junior year, I won a special congressional award for my “self-portrait’ which made it to the Washington DC Capitol Hill walls. The award also included a trip for two to Washington, DC and I also got a full art scholarship to a school in a different state and city. I had other priorities and goals at that time, so I decided to stay in Dallas. To be honest, I’ve always been ambitious and I just wanted to graduate early from high school (which I did, one year early) and start my career as an artist. Although I didn’t know where I knew I had to start the journey. I knew to be an Artist meant “Starving Artist” so I thought the only way you can be an artist is to be a graphics artist. I got a scholarship at ATI where they had a program for Graphic Illustration. While I was going to school, I was working part-time at High Tech Sign as a Sign Layer. It was labor work and I absolutely loved it! And I loved what I was learning in school! I found my calling…or so I thought! Well, guess what?! After graduating, I couldn’t find a job as a Graphic Designer (OMG!!!) I had several interviews and the answers were: I needed a 4-year degree or I needed more experience (how could I get more experience if no one hires me…duh!!!). So I decided to enroll in college and take a job as a customer service representative, so at least I could have a paycheck. Thus I entered Corporate America and I moved up the ladder fairly quickly. But this was not what I wanted to do for a career.
I had to go back to the drawing board, literally, to figure out what was next. This 9 am to 5 pm was not going to stop my dreams of being a business owner one day. So I began creating and selling custom artwork. This was the birth of JTorry Art. I would do this in the evenings and on the weekends. I would put my artwork online and sold them sparingly. With any business, it takes time. One day at work on my morning break, so sleepy from how hard I’ve been working, I had an idea. I decided to vent and talk to my co-worker and asked her thoughts on this. I said: “Since painting canvases wasn’t cutting it, what do you think if I start painting faces, like do ladies makeup?” She said,” I think that’s a great idea!” I said: “Yeah… you’re right! It is! I’m going to do it!” I was so excited and shared my idea with my husband. Being the supportive husband he is, he just nodded and said that’s a good idea. With this career path I chose I was alone at the start. I didn’t know anyone in the makeup or beauty industry that I can ask for help or consult with. But being the person I am, I made my mind up and was determined to figure out how to do makeup. (With time I was able to meet amazing Artists and developed supportive friends in the industry that all contributed to my success.) Well that very weekend I went to CVS and spent close to $1000 on makeup! I had no idea what to buy so I bought one of everything! I was determined to make this work no matter what…I mean how hard could it be?!? Well, I was about to find out! It was 2007, so there was not much on YouTube, not much on Google (imagine that!). I went to target and bought a cute pink Kabookie which I still have. (I will show you guys on a post one day.) I started practicing on all my friends and family…basically anyone who would let me borrow their face. I would show up at my friend’s house on the weekend with my pink Kabookie and practiced on perfecting my craft with trial and error. LOL. The day I made my mind up on being a Makeup Artist knew no one would pay for what I was doing…not in the beginning! But I knew deep down inside, I had the talent in there, I just had to bring it to the forefront! As I practiced I got better and better! Eventually, I got to the point where I could start charging (I knew what I was doing then) for my services. I kept my website domain: www.JTorryArt.com but changed my website content from canvases to faces. It was still art, just on a different surface. I absolutely loved the instant gratification I got from seeing the immense joy my artwork brought to these women I worked on
I worked seven days a week for years, doing my day job and being a make-up/hair artist! All my PTO, Sick Days, Lunch breaks and Vacation days would be used for my clients and weddings. Needless to say, I had little time with my family and that had to change! From the weekend I decided to become a makeup artist, it took me about 4 years to leave my job in Corporate America in 2012 and dedicate myself full time to JTorry Art which then became JTorry Makeup & Hair Artistry. This was the best decision I ever made! From that point forward my business continue to flourish and grow as I continue with grit and perseverance. I have learned so much about running a business along the way. Most of it has been trial and error. I am constantly learning and doing all I can to improve my business. I am still working just as hard, but I am doing what I love! I absolutely love working with brides and clients. Helping them feel beautiful keeps the JTorry Core heart beating. I have my JTorry Studio where my amazing and talented team that provides special event hair and makeup. My team carries the same mission as I do where we focus on helping ladies feel beautiful and execute the looks they truly want.
As long as I can remember, I love sharing things that I have a passion for. Knowing that I wasn’t surprised when I discovered that found my next passion for teaching. In 2018 I got my state board instructor’s license and opened the JTorry Makeup Academy. Now I teach other passionate artists to become confident certified professional makeup artists. Seeing my student’s eye light up when they learn and really understand the art of makeup brings me so much joy!
There’s so many challenges and so many heartaches that come with Entreneuship. However, the rewards that come with being able to see all your tears, blood, sweat and all your hard work come together is truly amazing. As people see my success, I want them to see that with perseverance, drive, and grit you can accomplish whatever you set out to do! But don’t be mistaken I will continue to work hard and stay humble.
I can go on and on… There’s so much more to my story… So many building blocks that are important that got me here, that I didn’t get to share with you in this blog. I had to cut it short. Maybe I’ll write a book one day. At any rate, a
BE PASSIONATE, WORK HARD CONSISTENTLY AND PURSUE YOUR DREAMS! IF I CAN DO IT…YOU CAN DO IT TOO!! #MotivationMonday
To learn more about the Makeup Academy. Please visit www.jtorrymakeupacademy.com
To book makeup and hair services: Please visit: www.jtorryart.com