Maxine Leonard is a Makeup Artist with broad experience and extensive knowledge in the fashion industry. Editorially, she has contributed to Vogue (British, French, German, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish and Chinese), Harpers Bazaar, Numero, i-D, Man About Town, Teen Vogue, LOVE, W and V.
Maxine’s career began when, on completion of her course at London College of Fashion, she worked for the Shu Uemura Artistic Team in Japan. During this time Maxine helped in the development of Shu Uemura’s product line, trend forecasts and concepts, which she regularly demonstrated on stage – during master classes and seminars.
“Mr. Uemura is truly inspirational and placed great emphasis on creativity and perfecting my individual strengths,” she says. And it was during this time Maxine not only discovered her own unique approach to makeup, but also determined the practice of creating beautifully luxurious skin - part of her training involved learning the 16 ways Mr. Uemura had devised for cleansing the face.
Upon returning to London Maxine has continued to direct international fashion shows; brands including Hugo Boss, Just Cavalli, Karen Walker, Peter Jenson, Levis, Fake, Louis De Gama, Boyd, Custo Barcelona, Missoni, Ralph Lauren and PPQ have benefited from her sophisticated and modern approach to makeup.
Additionally, it was during Maxine’s four years as Beauty Director at Wonderland that she was able to direct beauty stories: translating briefs from luxury houses, including: Yves Saint Lauent, Chanel, Christian Dior, Givenchy, Vidal Sassoon and Shu Uemura – editorially and through film. Working closely with photographers Maxine commissioned teams; and created concepts through mood boards and narratives for these shoots and films.
In 2015 Maxine launched Beauty Papers with Valerie Wickes. Beauty Papers is a bi annual publication that aims at being smart, funny, shocking,and inspirational. Looking at beauty from intellectual perspectives with quality writing and trusted opinion for a more fierce and intelligent reader. The underlying agenda is reigniting readers appetite for ambiguity and contradiction, fostering a greater appreciation of the reality of beauty.
Punk said 'screw the formula' Beauty Papers says liberate creative beauty, give beauty a braver, flawed and more honest face. There is nothing more inspiring than beauty when the chains are taken off.
To ask what is beauty......
Today is to come face to face with the changing definition of beauty. Perhaps more than any other time in history, we are preoccupied with, even confused by beauty: its power, its pleasures, its style, and its substance. Beauty may not be the most important of our values, but it affects us all; today more than ever, because we live in a Media Age where our visual landscape changes in seconds, and our first reaction to people is sometimes our last. Given this reality, the so-called "triviality" of beauty suddenly seems not so trivial after all.