STAR APPEAL: Stephen Dimmick at work as a social media correspondent.
STAR APPEAL: Stephen Dimmick at work as a social media correspondent. Contributed

From Raceview to red carpet at The Emmys

MAKEUP artist Stephen Dimmick has come a long way from the days when he used to practise hair and beauty treatments on his mother at his Ipswich home.

Almost 30 years later, the former Raceview resident has risen to the top of his industry.

He's worked on haute couture and Christian Dior shows in Paris.

He's applied makeup on such famous faces as Cate Blanchett, Toni Collette, Vanessa Hudgens and Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian.

He's had even his handiwork featured on the covers of Italian Vogue and Time magazine.

Despite his success, the 45-year-old, who now lives in Los Angeles, said his venture in to the world of makeup started almost accidentally.

"Before dropping out of school in 1985 and attending Bundamba TAFE hairdressing school, I used to practice on my mum, doing her makeup and cutting her hair," he said.

"She suffered many bad hair days.

"Growing up in the 1980s, we were all about colourful hair and wearing makeup, so that's how I began doing it professionally."

Mr Dimmick said he started out working on brides in a salon before he met a photographer in 1988 who hired him to apply makeup on his clients. The opportunity allowed him to build a portfolio and it wasn't long before he was on a plane to New York to pursue a career in makeup artistry.

When he arrived in the US, Mr Dimmick was 28 years old and had just three months to find sponsorship for his work visa.

"It wasn't an easy industry to break into," he said.

His strategy to find work in New York consisted of calling the offices of different fashion publications before a combination of hard work, good fortune and talent saw him land a job for Vogue.

"New York City proved to be the most amazing life experience," he said. "It ripped me to shreds and tore me to pieces.

"Some people have a fast rise to the top while it can be slow for others - mine was slow.

"I was told that it takes 10 years to be an overnight success in New York and for me this was true."

By 2007, a decade after his arrival in the US, Mr Dimmick had finally made a name for himself in the world of makeup and fashion.

In that year, he shot his first of many Vogue Italia covers and worked on his first haute couture shows in Paris.

"That was a defining moment for me," he said. "I'd achieved everything I had set out to do in the world of fashion.

"I was quite despondent in the following months though because I had spent the last 20 years of my life working to get to this place and never thought about what was to come afterwards."

In 2011, Mr Dimmick began a video blog called The Daily Dimmick, which provided him with a forum to express his opinions on fashion and teach others to apply makeup.

Through the success of the website he now works as a social media correspondent for the TV show OMGinsider.

He appeared on the red carpet at The Emmy Awards last weekend.