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Bonfire Night/Media & Postiche Progression.

7 Nov

This week it was Bonfire night!

I have fond memories of attending bonfire night celebrations when I was younger. I think it’s something to do with fire and a undertone of anarchy – plus the mixture of cold blasts and red hot heat across your face. I always enjoy watching firework displays, the bigger the better. They’re even more spectacular when choreographed, sending you into trance, like a deer in headlights.

Standard Firework Picture.

Standard Firework Picture.

Each year, Leeds University Circus Society do some fire performance, although this year I didn’t feel quite confident enough, it’s been a couple of years since I played with fire. Next bonfire night I will be performing for sure, perhaps in London!

In work related news, I have been progressing with my media and PDP work, I’m trying really hard to not allow the amount of work I have to do stress me out and keep to the thought that so long as I’m doing some kind of work, I’m moving forwards. I’ve been creating mood boards, drawings and tonight I did some mini makeup practice for my task three character.

Using Lara as my model, as she it up north (or in the North of England as I was corrected today) for the weekend, I set to work on an initial test piece for the Task Three makeup. This makeup will be for an acrobat character, starring in a film piece. There is much more I would like to do with this, with some added complexities to stretch my skills. I didn’t touch the skin and instead focused on the eye design. I like it, but I feel there is something missing – fake eyelashes for a start. More research and experimentation to be done.



I also created V for Vendetta makeup on Bonfire night, but as I had just missed the daylight and I was in a rush to get to piano/boxing (and didn’t fancy going with makeup on), I didn’t manage to get a worthy enough picture. I have also been totally failing with my 30 days of Sci-Fi, this time of year is so busy; I’ve decided to save that for January when everything slows down. I will however be still trying to do daily makeups to encourage my creative flow and not get too enslaved by academic work.


Bradford Film Festival

11 May

To be completed


The British Academy Awards 2013

15 Feb

I jus wanted to do a quick post about the BAFTAs as I have just watched it, I thought it was great and there were so many good films, acts, directors, producers, artists and more. It was fantastic to watch and I have a few films I still need to catch up on such as Argo and Lincoln.

Best Hair and Makeup went to for Lisa Westcott for her work in  Les Mis.

Read here for more information on her work in the film.

SFX – Tracks & Facial Deterioration for TV & Film

8 Feb

Today we looked at Track Marks created by drug injection – both old and new ones along with deterioration in the face due to long term drug abuse.

Dirty Down – First Attempt


Track Marks – First Attempt

I’m not really happy with what I did today, however with our new sfx teacher I have been able to pinpoint areas of improvement.

1. More careful selection of foundation – the one I used was too pink and coloured my face too much and took away from the attempted contouring.

2. Contouring needs to be darker – for instance the image above was taken on a camera without a flash and some of the detail has not shown up.

3. Whilst acceptable to be using greasepaints as we’re learning, they really just have too much coverage and end up giving a real painted effect. Not what we want!

4. Improve line & colour of veins, use the powder brush that was used at the end to create a more realistic, 3D under the skin effect.

5. Just generally more experimentation of colour application and more research into heroin/crack cocaine users.

However one thing i did enjoy was diluting the the greasepaint to create a thinner less vibrant product and flicking it with the brush onto my face, I think this helped break up the flat colour used for foundation. Though it’s pretty hard to get the right direction on your own face – especially when having to close your eyes to stop alcohol flicking into them aha!

Adhering to my new action plan.. here is some industry comparison with one of my FAVOURITE films.


This film by director Danny Boyle (Book by Irvine Welsh) Tells the story of a group of friends, mainly from the point of view of main character Renton, a heroin addict attempting to recover.

This film is awesome. If you haven’t see it please do, I give it 10/10 for everything.

So, here are some images of heroin user makeup for TV & Film….

This is the only real sort of comparison I can find… one of the Characters Tommy doesn’t take Heroin but ends up taking it…. and deteriorates. You can see how is much skinnier in the face, his skin is sallow, spots and sores have developed and he is generally looking more unkept.


Did you spot the meaning in the film title?

Film Focus: American Mary (2013)

17 Jan

On Tuesday just gone, I went to see American Mary at Hyde Park Picture House.

I hadn’t actually been before and I think I need to go see more films there as they support up and coming directors and show films that the big cinemas don’t want. Its an opportunity to see films not done up in hype and I like taking the risk. Plus it’s cheaper which is handy seen as I’ve become gradually addicted to cinema-going.

The Twisted Twins (directors) who originate from Canada, were touring the film with Fright Fest and were there to answer lots of questions at the end. They were really giddy and quite entertaining to watch, they seemed quite nervous but gave some great answers. After seeing the film I’d love to work with them one day.

I’d give the film 7.5/10, I think I would have rated it higher if not having an dry english sense of humour – as the twisted twins said; in Canada some of the viewers were disgusted by some of the comments and actions in the film, whereas in English cinemas people laughed. It used some wacky ideas and the use of special effects was brilliant (although at one point when Mary (Katharine Isabelle) is pouring blood on herself it’s pretty damn pink and ruined the shot for me). I liked the way it explored a unique area, but the feel of the film was kind of universal in that you didn’t have to be a lover of body mod to appreciate the film.

My favourite character by far was Beatrice, the Betty Boop wannabe (Tristan Risk). Plus her friend but I don’t want to explain why – go see the film. I won’t say anymore as I’ll spoil it, go see it and support the girls – you’re in for a twisted surprise.

Film Focus: Les Misérables (2013) [SPOILERS]

17 Jan

Last night I went to see Les Mis, directer by Tom Hooper (Also did  A Kings Speech (2010) which I love).

I thought it was a great musical film; the singing was beautiful (especially from Anne Hathaway and Amanda Seyfriend). I loved the fact that they recorded all the singing on set, accompanied but the orchestra. I think this brought a much more raw an emotional sense to the film.

The cinematography was great and one of the main things I liked about the film was the focus on peoples faces and the expressions; each actor showed emotion to the camera incredibly well, however, I think this is also one of the downfalls. The emotion was mostly 1:1 with the camera, their own personal thoughts and feelings (often a feature of most musicals) and so sometimes I found it hard to relate that emotion between the characters. The songs were beautiful but I just couldn’t connect the characters as much as I really wanted to.

One thing that slightly confused me was the amount of cockney accents – I thought we were in France? Anne Hathaway gave my favourite performance, I loved her ‘uglyness’ and really believed her tears, plus it is awesome she let them actually cut all her hair off. She deserves every award she WILL get. My favourite shot what when the little Gavroche (Daniel Huttlestone) was singing on the back of the wagon, I think he has a great look and feel to his acting that will take him far..

I really wanted to cry to this film, I had been told by many people to take tissues, however I did not cry. I did not even feel the need to cry at all. I think the main reason I was slightly disappointed with this film is I thought it would move me massively, I thought I would feel so much and give it top marks but for me personally it just didn’t quite hit the spot. It seems so strange to be saying this as I thought it was a great film! I think the reason for my reluctance to character attachment is because I love the 1998 version, directed by Billie August and I’m not a massive musical lover, although this film did warm me to them.

My least favourite character was Eponine, I found her to be quite whiney rather than heartbroken but the bit where she died brought it back for her a little. Sasha Baron Cohen played my favourite character (the Inn Keeper), he brought a (if very slightly cheesy) funny and lighthearted edge to the film and played his character brilliantly, when he came into shot I knew it was going to be a good one. Sacha’s on screen wife (Helena Bonham Carter) was also brilliant but acted in a character style I’ve seen so many times now from her – I’m so sure she can do more than this and I want to see it!

I thought the makeup was awesome for every single character. Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) in particular, his transformation from committed criminal to reformeed mayor was bloody amazing.

Overall, I would give this film 8/10. I would still recommend seeing it but don’t anticipate your own response or allow others to tell you how you will feel!

Film Focus: Life of Pi (2013)

9 Jan

Today for the first time I went to see a film on my own. I totally enjoyed it, I’m not sure if it was the film but everything felt so much more intense; even before the film! It felt more like it was just for me and although I’ve never thought about it like this, I felt like I realised more of my own raw emotion rather than feeding off those around me that I knew. I pretty much forgot about everyone else in the cinema (apart from the annoying bag crunching, giggling girl behind me).

The film I went to see was Life of Pi. I hadn’t seen any trailers or read anything before seeing the film, only seen the images of the tiger and mosaic patterns on the back of MUA and Total Film magazines (for some reason I’d not even read the articles about it, I just knew I wanted to see it). It was a brilliant choice, the film is beautiful and the use of CGI is amazing, the best I have even seen in a film (I saw it in 3D as they didn’t have a 2D showing, I’d like to see it to compare).  The pictures below are from two of my favourite scenes.

The film is based on a novel written by Yann Martel (published 2001) and tells a unique story of friendship and endurance. I love the indian backdrop as it adds a fantastic cultural dimension to the film and it is presented in a way I have not seen before (such as the more cheesy slumdog style). I’d give the story 9/10 and the visuals 10/10.

Please go watch it, I will be buying it when it comes out on Blue-ray. (Also, read the book, I will be getting it this week!)