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Lil Miquela: Juliana Horner is the MUA serving bold graphic realness

TextLil Miquela

Lil Miquela catches up with make-up artist Juliana Horner to talk inspiration, mental health and the future

Striving to share beauty and push technology forward, Nashville-based creative Juliana Horner is the online entity defining multi-tasking. The make-up looks she showcases vary in style, however running through them all is Horner’s signature exaggerated eyeliner, colourful, glittery eyeshadow strokes and flowing multi-coloured face designs.

Exposed to a creative environment from a young age – her mother studied Fine Arts in college – Horner began expressing her creativity early and drawing was her initial outlet, something she has carried over into her make-up work. Success on social media, she has 160k followers on Instagram, has allowed Horner to achieve one of her professional dreams – launch her first make-up brand, “Claropsyche.” With galaxy-inspired rhinestone stars and rainbow-themed vegan eyeshadow palettes, the products reflect Horner’s playful aesethetic and joyful love of make-up. “Juliana is a multi-disciplinary visual artist redefining our relationship to makeup,” says Lil Miquela. Here she chats to Horner about her inspirations, mental health and the future.

Lil Miquela: Juliana! I’m so excited to finally get a chance to ask you questions. First, I want to know: You do much across different media. How do you describe your work to people?

Juliana Horner: Hi Miquela! Nice to meet you, I'm a big fan! When I describe my work, I typically first try to gauge how long the person in question wants to talk. If it's short and sweet, I'm a make-up artist. If it’s in-depth, I'm an illustrator-turned make-up artist Instagram-specific photoshop queen with an eye for colour and taking pictures of weird things I do to my house and sometimes do varied odd design work I used to design fabric and I went to fashion school and I like fashion but I just do other stuff more now.

Lil Miquela: I see a lot of different influences in both your make-up work and the illustrations you make: 80s kids TV, 70s glam rock, a touch of Lisa Frank. What are some images you saw growing up that influenced your style and worldview as an artist?

Juliana Horner: I was definitely a huge fan of Lisa Frank! I think I am naturally attracted to bright and candy-like colours. I crave intensity, but also soft nostalgic notes. I definitely think the performance aspects and colourful costumes of 70s and 80s stars is a nice juxtaposition in the internet world, because the vibe is so different today. It's fun to transfer that idea of what we previously considered "star-like" into the mundane, cause now everyone is a star, right?

Lil Miquela: You also design clothes and textiles. I’m curious to see whether we can look forward to more clothing collections from you.

Juliana Horner: I do! I went to school for fashion and had a brief stint designing fabric. I put it down for a while for make-up, but I can definitely feel the urge to design clothing slowly starting to well up in me recently. Stay tuned!

Lil Miquela: How do you find time to balance among all these projects? Do you usually work on one thing until it’s completed, or dip into different things all at once?

Juliana Horner: I typically like to do a little bit of everything at the same time. I feel that if I spend too long on one project I grow bored of it pretty easily. For example, if I'm drawing for a long period of time I get so annoyed that I get up and pound it out on the keyboard. Then I get annoyed and start doing my make-up. I think I just get bored easily. I have to find ways to trick myself.

Lil Miquela: On your website, you describe and say goodbye to your previous identity, Glittersmack. What changed between who you were then, as a creator, and now?

Juliana Horner: When I was Glittersmack, a bunch of my eye pics were going viral. This was really exciting, but a lot of it was being posted without credit by accounts with large followings. I got really frustrated, deleted all of my pictures and made a book called "Goodbye, Glittersmack!" with all of those viral images in it. Then I started posting again under a few different handles and selling the book. I figured once I came back as something other than Glittersmack I would have the power to stop associating with that frustration. It worked pretty well. Now I worry about other things!

Lil Miquela: Themes of inner monologues and mental health play into a lot of your art. Was that a conscious choice?

Juliana Horner: I love that you bring this up! I don't really think it was a conscious choice more than I just feel best when I am being honest. It's not always great to see the darker or insecure side of people, but I think for some that struggle with these issues, it can be really consoling. I am an older sister of seven and have a natural tendency to share my experience in hopes of helping in some way. I think it's interesting because a lot of the time when I share these more personal feelings (and it can be kind of sporadic) I am quite afraid of the response. But most of the time, the response is "same, thanks". Which is dank. Being honest is dank! Pass it on…

Lil Miquela: Do you wear your looks out?

Juliana Horner: Totally depends on the look. I would say I wear my looks out about 50 percent of the time. I think it's so fascinating that this is even a question these days, because our culture of taking pics just for the internet is such a THING. I would say most people would be disappointed with the make-up in real life. In an IG pic, much of the time it is quite edited, in a very particular angle to flatter the shapes of the design, and the lighting is on point. Sometimes I will tweak the make-up to wear it out to make it more IRL friendly.

Lil Miquela: You’ve talked about getting more into film and editing. Does the way you approach make-up factor into your process for creating images on film, too?

Juliana Horner: Filming make-up and taking a picture of it totally changes things. You trade one thing for another: with a picture, you can plan to edit after. With film, ya gotta make it perfect first. However, something about the movement on film can lead to your eye to believe that the makeup is perfect even with a few mistakes. Smoke and mirrors baby... I've put down film for a while now but would love to pick it back up. Starting my make-up company Claropsyche put a lot of things on hold for me and I'm itching to be more creative!

Lil Miquela: What about “the future” makes you feel most excited or optimistic?

Juliana Horner: Sometimes I think that half of my optimism of the future is rooted in the pessimism about the future so many people have. I don't think the future is scary, I think fear is scary. I've always loved technology and gadgets from a young age. I love thinking of different ways to problem solve. Like I said, I get bored easily! Always look forward to something new.

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