Today we’d like to introduce you to Eley Gonzalez Ayala.
Eley, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
My first love was photography and started doing makeup at the early age of 14 having a background on visual arts attending art school since elementary years. I decided to choose the face as a canvas using all that I’ve learned in terms of shapes, textures, color and light to create art that enhances and complements the subjects I was seeing through the camera lens. It all started by word of mouth. Back then, there was no social media to promote me, so one face told another face until I was working on all the weddings, holidays and quinces; beauty pageants where the next step, then photo shoots and fashion shows which became my obsession.
When I was old enough, I started working in cosmetics retail and that experience took me around the world. I left home in my little island Puerto Rico and moved to Miami, where I started working with global celebrities and bigger venues and events. I also directed my career towards education training Artists and Teams to hone their craft and passion for this incredible industry. Being self-taught, I know there is still very little places that can teach the realistic aspect of being a true makeup artist. After several years, and traveling for work I moved to Los Angeles, continued working with Celebrities and editorials and in Brand Education at a larger scale for about four years, then came the change in the industry, social media started taking over and with all the turns life makes had the opportunity to return to Miami where I am now refocusing on my freelance career.
Has it been a smooth road?
Is there a road that’s completely smooth? It’s been a real journey and I’ve been blessed with the people I’ve met and worked with, it’s been a continuous learning experience, where everyone and everything brings something new. I would say the biggest struggle has been trying to adapt to a world where it feels like the interest is more in you than what you do or can do. I’m a shy person which some might not believe being I worked doing public speaking the last 15 years, but to me it has always been more important to do what I love and do it well, being behind the cameras, then seeing what I created filled me with more joy and pride than seeing myself take center stage.
Please tell us more about your work. What do you do? What do you specialize in? What sets you apart from competition?
My main focus is on beauty. I love making people feel beautiful, regardless of anything. I specialize in fashion and editorial, it truly fills my heart and have to say one of the aspects of makeup I enjoy a lot is weddings, it reminds me of my beginnings and also I get so see my art immortalize in the expressions of a face celebrating one of the most important days of their lives. I’m most proud of the fact that I’ve been able to stay true to myself regardless of what is happening around me and I think that is also what separates me from others. It is never about me. It’s about the person in front of me.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
What I love about Miami is the diversity, that it is a vacation destination and with working here I’ve noticed people love looking good and are more adventurous when it comes to their makeup, this could mean something different to everyone but still they want to feel great because they look good. There’s always something to do or a place to be.
- Website: www.eleygonzalezayala.com
- Phone: 786-975-7129
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: eleygonzalez
- Facebook: Eley Gonzalez
- Twitter: elgonay
Models: Mariana Vicente, Marija Shatilo, Yalimar Feliciano, Gyvania, Ally Jacalone, Berit Hanna and Olga Bocharova. Photographers: Emmanuel Sanchez Monsalve, Dane Darden, Daniel Figueroa and Natalia Aguilera.