From her small make-up room in Dawesville, Courtney Hollins’ aims for the Face Awards, Australia’s biggest competition for make-up artists, were fairly grounded.
But that was a week ago.
Her profile has exploded following an interview last week in which she described her hopes to do big things in the industry, and the imagination which drives her.
Now, the Mandurah mother is finding the attention slightly overwhelming, but energising at the same time.
“Oh my God, it’s going crazy, I can’t believe it,” Ms Hollins said in a gap in the competition, which runs through a series of heats until August.
“I think I’m just going to hide in my make-up room for a little bit and wait for everything to die down.”
Ms Hollins entered the competition’s preliminary open category with her Storm submission.
The first heat, themed “National Pride”, saw Ms Hollins combine her love of high fantasy and sci-fi elements – here taking inspiration from George Miller’s famed Ausploitation series Mad Max – with a tribute to the natural surroundings of the Peel region.
That submission, which again encapsulates Ms Hollins’ unique take on the medium, unveiled her catalogue of intuitive ideas to a wider audience.
“I’ve had people contacting me from everywhere,” she said.
“All these different publications and websites, just wanting to know my story. And I’ve just been saying, ‘Oh, OK then’.
“I’ve even got a group who want to run a demonstration in Perth. Just me doing what I do and explaining it. It’s all really exciting.”
All of the attention has only made her more motivated, with the remaining heats of the competition whittling down what are sure to be the best make-up artists in the country.
“The stuff that I’m really good at, that’s what people have been noticing, which has been really motivating,” Ms Hollins said.
“Coming from an art background, I’m still maintaining that idea of the canvas, and I think that’s why people have been really getting into not just the work but the ideas behind it.”
Now, she is waiting with baited breath for the second heat announcement.
“They don’t let you know exactly when it will be announced, so it’s a bit nerve-wracking,” she said. “I’ve just spent the morning refreshing the page, trying to get ready.”
With the competition set to heat up from this point, Ms Hollins is extremely thankful for the support she’s received.
“The Today Tonight story, I think that got more than 200,000 views,” she said.
“Just all the people texting and messaging me, I can’t believe it. My mum can’t stop crying, she’s so proud. I think it’s getting to the point where I’m going to have to get a passport.”
To support Ms Hollin’s journey through the 2017 Face Awards, make sure to check out her profile here.