Allie McKay Q&A for Dove

Here at Mark Summers we have been casting for Dove for many years now. Each campaign is different, but their ethos does not change much: they want real and relatable women who also inspire us.

Allie McKay was part of our latest group of Dove women and in this Q&A she shares her first experience of being in front of the camera for this global brand.

Allie McKay w/ Dove

Allie McKay w/ Dove

What is your background, where are you from and what is your job? 

I’m American.  My background is in law, religious studies, and sales.  I currently freelance and am project manager for a biography project for a tech icon.  

How did you hear about the Dove campaign? 

It was posted in one of my expat pages on Facebook.   


Dove Logo

Was it a lengthy casting experience? Did you find this process fun, stressful or both? 

I don’t think it was lengthy at all.  I guess that could be pretty subjective though.  There was the initial audition, a call back and then final word.  It was a very exciting process and definitely something on my bucket list!

How was the actual experience of filming? 

Filming was so amazing.  The entire crew and staff were so kind and welcoming.  They all contributed to making me feel so special – like it was really just all about me.  It almost didn’t even seem like it was a process to make an advert to sell things.  It really just felt like it was all about me.  Making sure I felt good, was comfortable. 

The director was very encouraging – even when I didn’t know what to do.  Saying things like “that was great” and “perfect”. It was a really encouraging and uplifting experience. 

What was the hair prep & wardrobe?

There was a wardrobe fitting before the actual shoot day, and it was just as good of an experience as the shoot.  I tried on several pretty dresses, hairstyles and we talked about my hair and makeup. I was also asked about what makes me feel the most comfortable, so I really felt like it was all about bringing out the best in me, rather than dressing me up, or making me into something I’m not. 

Where did you shoot and what was the best part of that?

The shoot was in a loft in London.  The best part was the attention,  LOL.  From the minute I woke up that morning until the minute I got home, I felt soooo special!  Also, I got to have a salt beef sandwich while I was in London, so that was pretty great.  I really enjoyed meeting all the people on the shoot. There was not a single awkward moment or interaction. The best part was lying goofily on a chez lounge whilst having my hair and makeup done simultaneously.  Talk about the princess treatment! 

Anything that surprised you about the shoot?

I was shocked at how professional it all was.  I’ve never experienced being “the talent” before.  I’ve attended shows, and tapings, and things like that so I’ve seen cameras and crew and things like that, but I’d never experienced such a thing as “talent”.  I was shocked how efficient it all was. It went so quickly (too quickly).  I think the part that surprised me the most is the amount of physical labour that goes into putting something like this together.  The number of people carrying stuff, putting stuff together, and just constantly working, working, working while the shoot is going on is really hard to wrap your head around unless you experience it.  When you see a commercial on tellie, it’s like nobody else is there!

I was also very pleasantly surprised at how down to earth every single person I came across was throughout the whole process. I think I always held some preconceived notion that “show biz” people were somehow different than me, so when I was on the shoot, and everyone was just so lovely and easy to get on with – that was a really great surprise  – and also taught me a good lesson (to stop the preconceived notions).

Where you are hoping & planning to go from here?

Well, I’m hoping to keep on keepin’ on, as it were!  I loved doing the commercial, and I’d love to do more stuff like this, but I wouldn’t even know how to start, really.  I’ve learned not to plan too much in life….otherwise life will happen while you’re busy planning it.

Any life lessons learned?

Yes! That show biz people are no different than anyone else!  People are people.  Fortunately, everyone at Mark Summers and at DOVE are pretty awesome to work with.  

By Clea Myers @camtweak

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