It might sound strange coming from an artist whose work is permanent, but Danielle Burke believes that failure isn’t just a thing to avoid, but a lesson. Failure often looks different depending on your standpoint when you’re looking at it, but for Danielle, looking at failure during a season of success doesn’t minimize it -- it affirms that the learning curve for PMU artists is steep but so worth it.
How did you first get into the beauty industry? The PMU Industry?
My mother is a cosmetologist of 40 years, so I grew up around the business. When I graduated, I decided I would go into cosmetology. I discovered PMU when I got my eyeliner and brows done 13 years ago when it was relatively new. I always wanted to do art. When I discovered PMU I realized I could combine the two, art and beauty.
I didn't really get into it until 3 years ago when I was dating my husband. He’s the one who pushed me to pursue my dream. I found Dermagrafix in Doylestown, PA - I was fortunate by being so close to Valerie Weber. My clients trusted me fully, so I got lucky in that. I owe it to them.
What makes you feel the most beautiful?
Above all, what makes me feel the most beautiful is when I am living with integrity and living to my fullest potential. That makes me feel best on the inside and radiates to the outside.
What failures have you encountered in your journey so far?
I regret not getting involved sooner. In the beginning, the lack of experience causes a lack of confidence. I had a case where a client did not like her brows immediately. Not getting that initial reaction of wow! made me doubt myself. I just had to reassure her to trust the process, the healing and everything with the skin. She didn't get a second session. It was hard -- I cried and checked up on her everyday. I thought, I quit, I’m done, I’m not touching anyone else. But my other clients liked what I was doing.
What does failure mean to you? How do you make sense of it?
Failure means setting a goal for myself, or expectations, and it doesn’t turn out the way I want or when a client doesn't give you the reaction you’re looking for. I try to learn from it and figure out what I can do differently next time. How can I be more clear upfront, what do I need to do to get to the final result?
What is your advice for someone who is struggling right now?
Find a reputable trainer and somebody you know who’s trained with them. They're always there to help after. Join Facebook groups. We bounce ideas back and forth with each other. Practice, don’t give up, take failure as learning experiences. Everyone’s at a different part of their journey. Believe in yourself, don’t let negative people make you feel bad. There’s no straight path. You're going to miss a lot of opportunities for growth if you don’t pay attention to the detours.
What’s one thing you’re going to keep doing and one thing you want to stop doing?
Moving forward and constantly trying to better myself. I never want to just be satisfied. That's a cliche but it's really how I feel. It’s a long road but it’s very rewarding.
What is one piece of life advice you would give to your 18 year old self?
To believe in myself and trust my intuition. It’s ok to be sensitive. I’m a sensitive person and take things to heart, but I’ve learned it’s a good thing to be emotional. Being sensitive along with being tough makes you a very powerful person. Being vulnerable helps me be my most authentic self.