We had the good fortune of connecting with L. Duane Sevelin and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi L. Duane, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I pursued my artistic career because in high school I was in advanced science I wanted to be an oceanographer and a marine biologist advancing into high stakes mathematics I just could not comprehend and my guidance counselor said stick to the arts that is what I did not really knowing how I would proceed considering this is the 70s down in Tampa Florida where art was not really on the top of most peoples list I pursued modeling, art, dinner theatre and community theatre I finally got a small gig with Estée Lauder / Aramis as the traveling model spokes person for Devin The country cologne by Aramis. loving the arts and working with other make up artist and models at V department stores I thought I could really do make up so I trained for one year for free going to all of the department stores where there was an Estée Lauder counter I finally got my job as a make up artist for Estee Lauder and then reach to the first male Beauty Advisor / counter manager for Estée Lauder.
I got store of the year and in return Lauter sent me too Bloomingdale’s in New York City in 1978. after a while in Bloomingdale’s I moved over to Revlon where I became the regional training Director for Macy’s and B’Altmans . I work next to Sophia Loren when she launched her perfume as well as Elizabeth Taylor and Diane von Furstenberg in the Herald Square store in New York City. I also have the honor of launching Bill Blass, perfume with Bill Blass, himself as seen on the program “rags to riches” also presenting Calvin Klein and Tommy Tune In 1980. I then was recruited as international make up artist in Hong Kong Australia Singapore Indonesia Thailand Japan where in Bangkok 1982 I had an audience with Her Serene Highness Princess Grace of Monaco
after my years with Revlon I went freelance where I went from New York City working with all major advertisers and catalogs for major department stores working for Nickelodeon Rugrats blues clues noggin working with the soap magazines celebrities for all my children one life to live bold and beautiful and many many soap programs after my travels to Paris London Milano Germany working with
Armani Gian Franco Ferre Valentino and mini major designers
after 20 years in Manhattan I decided to take my production company to Barbados where I was working often on for many years since 1989 I worked with Paris vogue with Erte and that’s when I fell in love with the island working with many interesting celebrities from the UK Caribbean and that part of the world returning to the states in 2015 I’ve been calling Austin Texas my home but after working on the La Jolla fashion film festival this year I have decided to relocate to Los Angeles and launch my cosmetic lineMy cosmetic line consists of colors simple products for every day use state of the art fragrance free vegan friendly and I look forward in the near future as it is very exciting thank you so much for your time and your opportunity to express myself and hopefully I can continue to spread the beauty i’ve also launched my CBD lip gloss line and will continue Cosmetics. I will be using hemp, bamboo with other sustainable products to create cosmetic packaging without paper. I’m also creating an interesting line of wearable art that will hold cosmetic products again made of hemp
I do a lot of fundraising and charity work for women’s groups and support many women’s issues
I will come collaborations my work can be seen on all social mediaand at sevelin.com
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I will admit that this life is not easy and honestly I don’t recommend it to the faint of heart I have seen things that would make your eyeballs pop out of your head nothing is easy about this world of fashion TV and film
I was very lucky because I was given the gift of gab Sure I am very creative but you have to sell yourself you have to be a Chamaeleon and re-create yourself every day you go to a different job . my big source of inspiration is the art itself I love to create lots of Big hair beautiful make up without taking away from from the natural beauty . I create big hair pieces from natural earth products like tree limbs and sticks and leaves flowers. I am inspired by natural beauty of plants and flowers as I have traveled around the world I get a lot of ideas from my cosmetic line with the colors I see in beautiful gardens
My brand is all about fun , color and love
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well if anybody comes to Austin or you know Austin it’s all about cool bar music, Barbecue and being a good Texan everybody is really nice to each other here and love to eat we would definitely have to go downtown and go on sixth Street and see all the different venues you got jazz you got country and western do you have everything from LBGT to a good Willie Nelson band
We would definitely have to go out to a ranch and go horseback riding and see how beautiful Texas really is it is an amazing journey this is my first time in Texas
then we’d have to go to a place called The OASIS It is an icon an incredible restaurant, musical venue, local shopping /entertainment, craft beer, International “go to” extravaganza All overlooking the world renown Lake Travis
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
my major shout out would be to my sister she has supported me when I was successful and when I was not so successful we all know in this business there are ups and downs second of all I would like to think a very dear friend Angie Lake when I left Revlon she gave me my first job in the catalog business which launched my career in New York City she said “if you’re good enough for Revlon you’re good enough for me”I didn’t even have a portfolio at the time And we are still friends to this day she introduced me to the New York high society and East Hampton high society but mostly she is a dear friend She launch so many careers from Chelsea photographics .Many celebrities that you see today started at Chelsea photographics doing catalog the bread and butter of our business And also a big shout out to Jacques Silberstein one of the first photographers that gave me a chance he was very well known at the time for L’Oreal cosmopolitan health and beauty guide and many many others and recently invited me to participate as artist at the lLa Jolla Fashion film festival Where I saw jacques for the first time in many many years and has again influenced my career in the positive direction it’s going to be fun when I get back to LA
Linkedin: Duane Sevelin
Facebook: Duane Sevelin
Youtube: The official site of L. Duane Sevelin Cosmetics
Other: tictok:sevelincosmetics snapchat sevelincosmetics
Mani H Zonoozi Vaughn Luciano Jacques Silberstein