Inspired by a club kid and visionary called Leigh Bowery.

Tell us a bit more about Gareth Coleman.
Mmmm. Gareth is a colour Mage. An alchemist. “Character-wise, I’m kind of borderline shy/wild. ” I’m not from here, that much I know, or I’ve been through this experience called reality too often over many different timelines. I don’t take myself, makeup or anything seriously unless I really have to based on survival. Always remember if you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong. 

Can you recall some of your first interactions with makeup and when the penny dropped that this was a career you would like to pursue?
I remember watching my mother apply makeup when I was little. Back then girls got Tinkerbell makeup, and I wasn’t very impressed with the fact that I’m not allowed to wear any. I worked at a bar, and two Makeup artists from MAC walked in with bags of makeup. I suddenly realised I wanted bags of makeup too and I asked them where they worked. The rest is ancient history. It started as something transformative and now its more than that, it’s truly expressive. 

Referenced by the illustrator @likrotable

You come up with the most insane makeup looks for yourself on pretty much a daily basis, where does your inspiration come from for these looks?
Everything. If you’re observant enough anything can inspire you. Books. Film. Art. Plants. Pop culture. Music. History. Shapes. Colour. The inspiration knows no bounds. Sometimes I get low on creative steam, then you have to force it, and it ends up inspiring you to use a new technique or look at something from a different angle. Always be open to learn. And don’t be afraid. If you screw it up, wipe if off and try again. It’s not permanent. Making mistakes is learning. And for goodness sake, READ and do research. Learn. See things. 

TJ, Second Princess of Miss Gay Western Cape and I.

What app do you use the most?
Instagram. The first visual platform I joined years ago. My handle is ancient. It’s who I am. The Black Mage. We are one. 

Based on Suspiria by Dario Argento.

What is the story about behind the name of your @thelastblackmage
I’m a bit of a gaymer, drawing inspiration from jrpgs (Japanese role-playing video games) for some of my looks. The Last Black Mage is a direct reference to my favourite game series – Final Fantasy, specifically Final Fantasy IX and its endearing Black Mage called Vivi, being the last of his kind. A black Mage in FFs world is a wizard or magician of some sort that uses colour and elemental magic. Seeing that I create magic with colour on faces and that I’m almost always wearing black when at work, the title seemed fitting.

What is the best part of your job?
Wow. There are so many awesome things about my job its difficult to focus on one. For starters, I get to play with makeup and create things while getting paid for it. I get to do this while being myself 100%. I get to make someone feel good about themselves, and always meet the most amazing people. Making lifelong friends while working. 

Where do you see makeup going in the future?
The future is very fluid. The rules have been shattered and anything goes. We see men with beards in drag. Girls pulling those euphoria looks just for a random night out. Heck, straight men seem to realise that there’s nothing wrong with using a bit of makeup to enhance and refine. Naturally, history seems to repeat itself and I’m excited to see how far we can push it. Pretty is boring and beauty standards are being flipped on its head and I’m so ready for all of it.

My boyfriends demonic spider teddy mask for Diskoteka. (For orders dm @christo_bearrrr on Instagram)

How can people get hold of you to book you?
You can contact my agency, Hero Creative Management at info@herocreative.co.za for all your Black Mage needs. 

“Hey Nancy, no running in the hallways.” – A Nightmare in Elm Street