Colorado native Drew Hazelhurst understands the importance and the value of living creatively. Drew serves as the Visual Production Manager for Youth To The People, a skin care brand recently acquired by L’Oréal that focuses on sustainability and vegan formulas.
Drew, who received his FIDM degrees in Visual Communications and Advanced Study Entertainment Set Design & Decoration, wears many hats. We caught up with him recently, and he was kind enough to share his story and offer advice to those interested in pursuing creative career paths.
Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from? What inspired you to attend FIDM and what did you major in? I am from Grand Junction, Colorado and I was always an eccentric kid who loved to color and make things with my hands. I went to Catholic school where I had to wear uniforms, so it wasn’t until high school that I really found my love for fashion and creativity. I initially applied and was accepted into the FIDM Fashion Design program because working in the fashion industry was always what I thought my path was. During my first meeting with my admissions advisor, she recommended I take a look at Visual Communications as a major. I was hesitant at first but the variety of skills I learned during that program have brought me to where I am today. I was also able to be a part of the Entertainment Set Design & Decoration program which was an experience I will never forget.
Tell us about Youth To The People: Youth To The People is a skin care brand based here in Los Angeles. Our focus is sustainability and pro-grade vegan formulas. We are activists who are working to support the community both locally and globally. We create skin care for all people, all genders, all skin types, and all ages. YTTP was started by a good friend of mine and his cousin who are third generation skin care pioneers. We were recently acquired by L’Oréal, so it has been a fun experience watching the brand grow from the very beginning to what it is now.
What is your role at Youth To The People? How long have you been with the company? My role here is Visual Production Manager. I manage in-store merchandising across all of our Sephora doors as well as our future brick and mortar store planning. I also oversee all photography and event production. I have been with the company since its inception in 2015, helping Greg and Joe build the brand, but have officially been a part of the team since 2018.
What has been your proudest moment working within creative industries? What has been the biggest challenge? I feel blessed to have many proud moments in my career but the one thing that links them all is the moments when I see people react to my work in a positive way. Brightening someone’s day or impacting their life in a positive way is such an amazing feeling! It’s what drives me to want to do more. That hardest part has been trusting myself and knowing my worth. You have to be willing to push yourself to grow but that is the scariest part.
How did FIDM prepare you for the career path you’re currently walking? One of my favorite things about FIDM was that my instructors never sugar coated anything. They told me the cold hard truth about what was out there for me in the real world and helped me prepare for that so I could leave with confidence. I am grateful to have had the support system I did while having people be completely honest about my work and how to grow as a creative person.
What advice would you give to a young person who wants to pursue a career in a creative industry? The advice I always give to young creatives is to just try everything even if you aren’t sure you are going to like it. Make connections with everyone you meet because you never know when your name will pop into their heads for a job. Also, never be afraid to express yourself in your work. Set yourself apart and you will be noticed!
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us? Any hobbies or new obsessions? Well, now that the craziness of Covid is over I am looking forward to lots of travel. I find most of my inspiration from experiencing the outside world and seeing new things. Also, lots of hang time with my dog!