I met Nix Nova for the first time at a house party back in San Marcos Texas about four years ago. It was during a cold weekend night and I was with some friends who talked about a party across town so we decided to go. Once there the music was loud and the people were happy. I was introduced to him and his roommate who welcomed us in and I immediately felt his sincere personality. Since then I’ve been one of his admirers. Seeing and hearing about everything he did and still does, standing out as someone who isn’t afraid to be true to themselves, was something I always looked up to for myself.
So far, at 24, Nix Nova has been able to establish himself as a professional drag performer and Makeup artist in the Central Texas area. I recently met with him at a local coffee shop in San Marcos where we had a one-on-one over his accomplishments as a creative. Here is what he had to say.
Nix Nova’s beginning started when he was in 5th grade where he played in the school band. He played the trumpet and other musical instruments he had at home. Music came first before the makeup. Growing up in a conservative town, it wasn’t easy for him to express his love for makeup and if he did, it would be done in private, away from his family’s sight. At 14 years old, he would shoplift eyeliner from local grocery stores and years later, once at Texas State University, his supportive friends would gift him their extra makeup. But starting school at Texas State wasn’t all that perfect. For a while he was depressed and would miss out on class.
“I was pretty depressed when I was at school so I spent a lot of time in my dorm room practicing makeup instead of going to class. So really I think that trial and error phase was really integral to my success as a makeup artist.”
After practicing on his own, he finally managed to do makeup for someone else, which was at a local boutique in town and soon after he was introduced to Chasca. Chasca is a local glam band and a National treasure as Nix Nova mentioned. In 2011, during Weirdfest at the Texas Music Theatre as it used to be known, he met the band through a mutual friend who was hosting the event, which allowed him backstage access.
“... after the show, Junior the bass player he approached me and was like, we really like your makeup, would you want to try to do makeup for us sometime?”
Right after that, Chasca had a show at the Triple Crown and Nix Nova has been doing their makeup ever since.
“... and that was the first time I got to do makeup in public, like at a venue, which I’ve done hundred of times now… I did their makeup and they liked it and I’ve done their makeup ever since for the past five years.”
Creating the bands look has allowed him to see how both music and makeup can create a different type of depth within a live performance. It allows the performers to be in control and feel as expressive as they have to be. In a way it’s a mask, empowering the band members no matter their gender.
“... especially since there's this stigma against men wearing makeup, which has seemed to clear up some in recent years, but we’ll see how that goes... ”
Being able to experiment with makeup within music has allowed Nix Nova to develop a sense of self. Without this creative skill and the experiences he’s had so far, he wouldn’t be Nix Nova. As part of the LGBTQ community and culture in San Marcos Texas, the community itself wouldn’t be what it is without people like him. Something that he and others in the community came to appreciate was the opening of the Stonewall Warehouse. With the establishment of a gay bar in the small college town, things started to get better for everyone and still are. Since it’s opening back in 2014, its allowed people to give back to the community by hosting events, events that Nix Nova himself has been part of. The Bobcat Ball which was hosted there recently was one of them, including other events such as The Bobcat Pride Scholarship, The Trevor Project, and Drag Out Funny, which The Root Cellar Cafe has hosted.
All in all, Nix Nova puts himself out there for the LGBTQ community in the San Marcos Texas area and beyond. Using his talent and creative skills in use for the better of the community.
"... I volunteer to give my time and attention to those who need it. I hope that raising funds for those who need it most makes their lives easier."
Today Nix Nova is also grateful for the purpose that Chasca has given him as a makeup artist and the things he's been involved in because of them.
"It definitely gave me some purpose in life, it gave me hope and I think if I hadn't participated or been involved with Chasca I might of done something stupid. Mentally, the creative space that they’ve given me helped me as a person."
Today he is still pursuing his goals as a performer and makeup artist, inputing his skills where they are most needed. By doing so he hopes in making his makeup artistry more of his profession. And how will he get there you ask?
"Die without regrets, live in a way where I don't regret my actions... Be happy more often than not, that's a choice. A hard choice to make sometimes but you know it's a choice we all have to make... and love as hard as I can. That one too can be difficult when there are people you disagree with... it can be hard in those moments. But being aware of my emotional state and my thoughts, hopefully I can maintain my inner peace."
UNICO is an LGBTQ online journal focusing on the lives of various people who are making a difference within the community as individuals. Creatives, activists, entrepreneurs, artists, or anyone who is active within their passions are welcome to join the conversation. We recognize sexual identity as a vast spectrum and respect everyone's identity and likes. For further questions, concerns, or inquiries contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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