One of those lucky people who knew exactly what she wanted to do pretty much from birth, Bridge’s work fizzes with the passion and knowledge of a lifelong devotee to her craft.
You can see the clear influence of her mother’s stack of 1980s Vogues in the sharp angles, bold colours and strident confidence; she counts the legends Tim Walker, Miles Aldridge and Eugene Souleiman among her collaborators.
When was your big break?
I was living in Shoreditch and got on the number 55 bus. I had crazy make-up on, orange hair, glitter eyebrows and loads of blusher. Two guys were staring. I was very close to saying, ‘What the f*** are you looking at?’
They got off the bus and one of them handed me a note that said, ‘Hi, I’d like to take your portrait’ — it was Tim Walker. He took my photo for i-D magazine — it gave me the confidence to leave my job at MAC and start freelancing.
London is the one city in the world where you can express yourself – that’s why I still live here.
Which song would you take to the grave with you?
Enjoy the Silence by Depeche Mode or I Ran by A Flock of Seagulls. Very Eighties.
Which book most inspires what you do?
One of my prize possessions is a book about tribes in Papua New Guinea. I searched for it for a long time and found it at Comptoir de I’Image, a great bookshop on Rue de Sevigne in Paris, which is just a man and piles and piles of disorganised books. How the tribes-people express themselves, what they can do in the middle of nowhere with materials, colours and textures. You don’t need a bloody make-up kit and ten cases rolling around.
How did you get into make-up?
Through my Mum. She always had a full face of make-up on everyday. I’d rummage in her bag and go in her Chanel and Dior eyeshadows. She had a lot of magazines around the house, Vogues from the Eighties, and I was instantly attracted to the make-up. At the age of ten I told my Mum and Dad I wanted to be a make-up artist. And they were always very supportive. I went to Manchester for two years and studied for a HND course in make-up, prosthetics and wig making.
The second I finished that, I moved to London. I was a party girl and made friends with lots of people in Shoreditch. We went to Boombox and Ponystep and that’s where I met [the fashion designer] Charles Jeffrey. At the time everyone was expressing themselves through clothes and hair and make-up. I wore crazy make-up everyday, I walked the streets during the daytime with glitter eyebrows.
What’s your USP?
I like to think I’m fearless when it comes to make-up. I like to create super bold, unique looks and I’m not scared to use different mediums. Picasso is an inspiration for me, I know its a bit of a cliche, and I also love Marlene Dumas.
What has been your pinch-me moment?
Working with Tim [Walker] on his V&A exhibition. We did a shoot based around Audrey Beardsley with Katy England and Malcom Edwards, which didn’t feel real.
There is nothing that can compare with working with Tim – the way his mind works, the way he wants to push his shoots. He loves make-up and I’m never scared to push it with him.
What has been your pinch-me moment?
Doing an Italian Vogue front cover beauty story with Miles Aldridge. Growing up Italian Vogue was such a huge influence and it is the epitome of where all makeup artists want to be. Also, I took a picture of Tim [Walker] taking a photo of James Crewe on a shoot in Dorset, and then it ended up being blown up and being used as the exit photo in Tim’s V&A exhibition. I went to the opening with my Mum.
Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Maybe with the Tate to create an exhibition of looks I have created inspired by artists.