By Andrea Gettler
Let me take you back to 2005 at Pacific Lutheran University. There are smiling faces everywhere you look, and even parents crying tears of joy, because their little kids grew up so fast and are now graduating from Eatonville High School.
Kelley Hallman was one of the many students to graduate that day. Her whole life was waiting for her, and she never thought she was going to be presented as the best makeup artist in the United States.
Hallman, now known as Kelly Radke, once was a band geek at Eatonville High. She roamed the halls with a flute in her hand, wanting to become a band teacher later in life – not knowing that her career choice was going to take an abrupt turn for the best.
After high school, Kelley decided to go to Pierce College on a scholarship for softball, but after a bad shoulder injury, her scholarship ended. After trying to do a couple of jobs in the medical field, she soon found out that it wasn’t for her. So after a long day, she went into Clover Park Technical College on a whim and signed up for esthetic classes, and was in them in a week.
When she finished up school at Clover Park, she got a couple of jobs at spas. Even though she liked it, she found it was too hard of an industry to get into, so she soon found a job at Macy’s being a counter manager for Shiseido Cosmetics.
Now, we all know you can’t suddenly become the best makeup artist in the country. There was an entire competition that Kelley at first didn’t even know she was in. Kelley’s boss at Macy’s had entered her, knowing that she had the talent to do it. She went to Southcenter, thinking it was for training, but it was to actually get into the competition. She soon got an e-mail that would let her enter a whole new life.
Kelley went to New York City for a competition of a lifetime. The competition was full of supportive people who from Kelly’s view were “pinpoint perfect in everything they did, but still very nice.”
She never felt a lack of confidence. It was a nerve-racking experience, but she felt a sense of pressure to not disappoint, and she most definitely did not. Kelley ended up winning the competition and is now going to Japan in a couple of months for another competition.
When Kelley first found out she was soon going to fly to Japan, she almost passed out from being so excited. Now she says that it’s finally sunken in and she’s excited because of it being a fashion capitol and wants to see where it takes her career.
Kelley’s advice to aspiring makeup artists is this: “Practice and find your edge, be versatile and open-minded. Look to other artists for guidance, and find inspiration wherever.”
If you would like to contact Kelley to get a facial or your makeup done, she now works at Nordstrom as a counter manager for Shiseido.
On just a whim, Kelley changed her whole life and is becoming a very successful woman, going through life day by day. She lives in Puyallup and just recently got married and added a new family member, her dog, Leia. So don’t let living in a small town effect what you’re going to be when you’re older. Anyone can be anything if they just put their mind to it.