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As a Costume Designer, my job is to let the character shine

through the clothes...


The biggest rush for me as a costume designer is finally seeing the actor walk out to set in costume and slowly adapting to his or her character’s attitude. It’s a subtle change, but you can see the transformation: the actor adopts a different posture, maybe walks in a swagger, or becomes unbelievably prissy— all guided by that costume.


UCLA’s Department of Theater introduced me to this way of “seeing”. I studied theater history as well as all technical processes for the stage: lighting, stage design, directing, acting and costume design. Through working on a variety of projects, including dance shows, puppet building, the UCLA Soap Opera, period style plays and my friends’ student films, I learned early on, that no matter what the project, the common element was movement of the actor.


My technical training continued after college, including a stint as a dresser and stitcher at the Old Globe Theater in San Diego, a stock person at E.C.2 Costumes and Warner Brothers Studios, and as a set person and shopper on various projects. My experience as a Costume Supervisor, working on feature films and episodic television shows, has enabled me to develop a working knowledge of the entire process which results in not only good looking designs, but working designs.


I enjoy collaborating as an integral part of a creative team, working within the project’s framework, set by the director and producers. The keys to creating a costume appropriate to the situation include resourcefulness, versatility and research. With these tools, I can design for the given circumstances…regardless of what they may be!




Jennifer L. Soulages

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