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Student Profile: Sofia Brouse

Meet Sofia: MCS student, makeup artist, drag performer....

By: Sydney Ashton

Photo Credit: Sofia Brouse

Meet Sofia Brouse, a Senior MCS Major, Gender Women’s + Sexuality Studies Minor, and a self taught makeup artist and drag performer! Sofia grew up in Catonsville only a few minutes down the road from UMBC. The senior started her college career off at Towson University but transferred due to the pandemic and its challenges. She earned an associates degree in general studies from CCBC Catonsville and transferred into UMBC her Junior year. When she isn’t in school mode, Sofia spends a lot of her free time perfecting makeup looks, posting creative transitional videos on Tik Tok, or performing at the occasional drag shows in the Baltimore area.

Q: When did you start doing makeup and drag?

“I began doing makeup about 6 years ago, but it didn’t start with drag makeup. After doing makeup for a year or two, I found drag makeup and performance and have been doing that for about 3-4 years. Since I was so young when I started drag, I didn’t start performing for about a year after I started practicing drag makeup because there are very few shows who will allow someone to perform if they are not 21+. At first, I didn’t think that I could do drag since I’m a woman, but I was very lucky to find an incredibly supportive community of performers who welcomed me into the world of drag and taught me that anyone can do drag as long as they love it and bring kindness to the community!”

Q: Can you talk about your journey as a makeup artist? What inspired/continues to inspire you?

“I first started doing makeup when I was around 16 and would mostly recreate makeup that I found on YouTube. Although I started with mostly basic glam faces, I learned most of my technical makeup skills from learning how to do drag makeup rather than everyday makeup. I take most of my inspiration from the 80’s dark fantasy, glam rock, and synthpop aesthetics, along with many other very talented artists and performers on social media. I also take a great deal of inspiration from books, more specifically high fantasy and fantasy romance novels.”

Q: Can you talk a bit about which social media platforms you use and how your background in MCS helps you curate content and manage your platforms?

“I mostly use Instagram and TikTok for makeup content, as the beauty community tends to be the most active on these platforms. When I have more time to create content after college however, I plan on creating a YouTube channel to create more long-form makeup and performance content. MCS has taught me a great deal about how to manage my social media accounts. On one hand, being in MCS has taught me the theory and logic behind media messages, which has made it much easier to navigate today’s social media landscape. On the other, I have learned technical applications of media theory like how to create a social media marketing plan and strategically create content, which I can apply to all of my social media platforms after college.” 

Q: What specific skills/ knowledge have transferred over from class to your social media and work in makeup and drag? Which skills have you learned in the MCS department at UMBC that have been the most helpful with your work and social media platforms?

“One thing that has really helped me in my social media work has been the idea of creating a consistent personal brand. Before learning how to do this at UMBC, my platforms were not very consistent and were not organized well. Now, although they are far from perfect, my social media platforms are much more consistent and aesthetically pleasing using the design concepts taught in MCS. “

Q: What advice would you give those who want to start creating content on social media?

“My biggest piece of advice for someone wanting to create content on social media is to be yourself as much as you can. If someone thinks what you are doing is cringy or weird, you are probably on the right track. The only way creating content on social media works is if you commit to it 100%, which often means doing things that are not comfortable at first. For example, it took me a very long time to be comfortable filming in public. But, after doing it over and over, I learned that filming in public only works if you commit to it. Once you stop listening to people who judge others for creating art, being perceived as cringey or weird becomes less of a problem.” 

Q: Plans post grad?/ dream job?

“After graduation, I plan to attend a specialized makeup school to become certified in makeup artistry. I would like to use my MCS degree to build a career in the makeup and fashion industry, using both my makeup and college education for social media management as a makeup artist in the industry.”

More of Sofia’s work can be viewed on her Tik Tok and Instagram @theladylitebrite and you can also book her for prom, special events, weddings, photoshoots, and costume makeup! DM her on instagram or email her at theladylitebrite@gmail.com

Posted: March 1, 2024, 11:47 AM