Feature Friday: Kristen O'Rourke, Makeup & Youtube

Each Friday—hopefully—I'll be sharing with you a quick glimpse into the life of someone living the creative life. Not just focusing on calligraphers, I'll be chatting with people from all different creative spaces about what inspires them, how they got their start, and more. If you're interested in being featured, shoot me an email to kelli@wanderlovepress.com.

I'm not sure about you, but my morning routine consists of exactly 27 minutes to wake-up, shower, put on makeup, feed the dog and cats, and get out of the house to make the trek to work. Most days, I'm not exactly a well put together person. And chances are, even if I woke up earlier, it wouldn't make much difference. It's not that I don't care, it's that a smokey eye will always look like a raccoon on me, I'm guaranteed to rub my eyes 5 minutes after applying mascara, and I'll always have more lipstick on my teeth than on my lips. 

So I'm very impressed by people who are well put together and have the passion and steady hand to expertly apply make-up. My friend Kristen is one of those people. But what I like best about her newly founded Youtube Channel is that she does all of that while being hilarious and real; her videos are as much about her personality as they are about the makeup. I think even those of us who only touch that bright blue eye shadow on Halloween and don't know what an Anastastia palette is can find her videos entertaining and informational. I'm so proud of her new channel, and I think you will be too! Keep on reading for my quick interview with Kristen to see how she got started and more.

Let’s start of with some basic, fun facts:
Where are you from: I’m a Jersey girl through and through, and am currently making Barnegat my home.
What do you do: I am a Paralegal for a business immigration firm. (And Youtuber!)
What’s one thing you can’t live without: Mascara, my puppy, my family (not necessarily in that order).
What’s in your purse: 4 different shades of liquid lipsticks, a planner (I still have to write things down), a notebook, wallet, keys, mace (real.), and sunglasses.

Why and how did you get started making doing makeup and creating YouTube videos?
I’ve always loved doing makeup - mostly for myself and my family members. It wasn’t until I started watching other YouTubers that I really started fine-tuning my skills. I loved learning about new products and watching tutorials. After so many years of playing with makeup on my own and watching the more popular YouTubers I thought, “Hey I can do that too!”. So I bought a camera and a tripod and started filming!

 Kristen O'Rourke

What does your typical process look like?
I have to write things down - so when an idea for a tutorial pops in my head or is requested by someone, I write it in my “idea” notebook. That notebook is my holy grail - it contains almost all of my creative ideas - party plans, makeup tutorials, lists, plans - you name it, it’s in there. I find inspiration for my tutorials in fashion, TV, the weather, even new products I want to try inspire me. Once I have a tutorial in mind, I just go in front of the camera cold turkey - the video I post is probably one of the first times I have even put the look together. For example, I did a Valentine’s day look - I knew I wanted to use a specific palette and I wanted to keep the look simple and girly - other than that, what you see on camera is me just winging it - thank goodness for editing sometimes! I try to keep to a filming/posting schedule (film Saturdays, edit Sundays, post Mondays), but it doesn’t always work out as well as I’d like.

What’s one thing that you’ve learned as a new YouTuber that you wish you knew when you first started?
The power of lighting. I’m still new and I’m still developing as a YouTuber, but once I got real, studio lights, I feel like it changed the look of my videos. But I could say something else in 6 months - it’s all about finding what works best for you and developing in a way that makes you happy.

What is the biggest struggle in being a part-time creative professional?
Being a full-time non-creative professional! Life gets insane, and having a demanding full-time job during the week puts a lot of pressure on the weekends - trying to squeeze in an additional 3-5 hours in those already-packed weekends for filming and editing can be a real challenge. Also I, like most people, struggle with insecurities over my work - the internet is a nasty, nasty place and, for that matter, people I know can be nasty! I’m constantly plagued with feelings of “not good enough” or questioning if people really do like what I’m trying to do. Ultimately, though, it’s my passion and it makes me happy - I just have to remember I’m not going to please everyone.

What’s been the highlight of your creative career so far?
The feedback I have received from my friends and family has been truly incredible - it really makes me feel like I’m not insane for doing this! Reaching over 100 views on a video was a big moment for me as well - it was a small step in a positive direction for my channel for sure.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting out?
I read somewhere once that you’re not passionate or excited about something on accident - it’s because it was what you were meant to do. My only advice would be to just love what you are doing. Don’t start something because you want to be rich and famous from it - start something because it literally fills you with joy and happiness. No matter what my insecurities are, my videos do that for me.

Dream big - in a perfect world, where would you see like to see yourself and your channel in 5 years.
In a perfect world, I would be able to devote more time to my own personal training and bring those skills to my tutorials. I would also love to be able to collaborate with a brand on my own product - that would truly be surreal! 

Where can we find you on the Internet? My YouTube Channel! (Or just search for Kristen O’Rourke in YouTube).


If you're interested in being featured, shoot me an email to kelli@wanderlovepress.com.


1 comment

  • Nancy Sherwood

    I enjoyed the interview so much I went back and watched Kristen’s YouTube videos. I’m looking forward to more interviews! And Kristen does a beautiful job with makeup (I also enjoy experimenting with makeup but usually leave the house fairly plain!), however she is beautiful without the makeup!

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