Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Advertising for cast and crew!

I need to find people to help with my trailer... I will be doing make up and directing, along with Anthony Roberts, a friend of mine who will be co-directing. My best friend Steph who's an editor at the BBC, will do the final cut.

Therefore I need to find a lighting/camera operator, and of course actors to play zombies.

I have put up castings calls on advertising sites such as '', 'model mayhem' and 'purestorm' not only for cast and crew, but also for models for my photoshoots...

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Graduate Make up filming....

Today I did the 'Graduate Film' make up.. My model looked amazing as she had a detailed tattoo across her chest, which went really well with my quirky make up and the funky tweed jacket, designed by one of the fashion students. The make up looked exactly as I wanted it. I was going to scrape her hair back and put it in a low bun, but as the make up was quite hard and angular already, I wanted a contrast and thought it would look better backcombed and pinned to the side allowing her fringe to sit softly across her face. My model's hair is shaved on one side so the hairstyle I picked complimented it well.

From the research I did on Club Kids, in this shoot I was able to incorporate elements of the shapes and patterns they used on their eyes.

Here are some of the pics:

Monday, 29 March 2010


There has been a major problem...earlier on this evening I found out that my model (from 'model mayhem') can't make it tomorrow!!!

What do I do???

Ok, well after hours of searching and asking around in total stress and panic, I have managed to find a fabulous model for tomorrow called 'Katerina Graef'.

She is a friend of a friend. I've looked at her photos on facebook and she looks great for the Club Kids theme as she's got a few facial piercings and plugs in her ears - a great sign of individuality! She sounds really nice and reliable so fingers crossed...!

I have told her to come with a black tank top for the shoot - simple and uncomplicated...

This major 'problem' might just have turned into a major 'positive' as from her face book pictures she looks like a great Club Kids model!

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Alex Box - inspiration from Make Up Artist Magazine

This image is for me a work of art and I see it as more of a painting than an editorial photoshoot.
...But what makes it so artistic?

Alex Box uses blocks of tonal colour and shades to create a sculptural element in her work and this is something that I want to take and use in my own style.

For my next photoshoot I will be using the image as a main source of inspiration and I will use similar techniques. I want to create in my image a sinister, edgy and somewhat deathly atmosphere, therefore I will use a build up of colour laying techniques with cool, moody tones and shades. I will emphasise the contours and create structural shapes and definition to enhance my models features for the headshot. I will concentrate on defining the key elements that suggest horror and fit with a zombie related design.

For Example:-

The mouth area where a zombie would bite and chew off anything it can get its hands on, there would be a lot of dirt and blood on the mouth, therefore I will use dark red tones on the lips mixed with the grey inky tones.

I will be using a white Mac full coverage mixed with a touch of grey greasepaint as a base to re-create the sinister look inspired by Dumas' paintings.

The nose, where the zombie has aggressively crashed into things breaking or damaging the skin and maybe breaking the bone and altering its shape.

The eyes are important as on this particular shoot I may not use contact lenses, so therefore I will have to lighten her eyes underneath to make them stand out and look blank and staring, I will accentuate them further by adding some red underneath.

The cheek bones will have to be defined to make them look gaunt and deathly. I will angle the eyebrows to fit in with the veins that will branch off towards the forehead to suggest anger and frowning.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Slight change of plan...

In my initial statement of intent I said I was going to include a trailer for a zombie film and a blog that shows the process of how I got from my initial design right through to the finished trailer, as part of my final product. Also, that I will be writing a 'Reflective Diary' that shows the progress of my work throughout my project. However, I've decided to change this and incorporate my blog showing the development process as my Reflective Diary, in one. The reason for changing is that I feel that by combining the two together, I will be able to carry out a far more detailed and thorough reflection on the development process. By 'blogging' the Reflective Diary, it will be posted on the internet and therefore available for anyone to see. This might be useful in the future should potential employers wish to know more about my work, as I can link it to my portfolio.

Friday, 26 March 2010

Practicing my Graduate make up..

I have practiced using greasepaint and aquacolor on the skin, to see which would work better for my Club Kid/zombie design.

I have concluded that aquacolor is easier to use and looks the most effective. When I applied the greasepaint I had to keep powdering over the top and for some reason it went really patchy. Also, if it dropped and I had to wipe it away, it would smudge a lot easier which made the make up really messy and took more time. The colour of the aquacolor wasn't as intense, but once I'd powdered and blended with a similar shade, it worked well and was quicker.

We have been told that 'Illamasqua' are supplying us with some of their make up. I have looked online and seen that they have a black lipgloss, so I will have to baggsy that as it'll look amazing on my models and will tie in with the dark make up.

List of make up I will need...

Aqua pallette - White and purple for the eyes/black eyeliner

Mac pallette - I will blend the purple on the eyes and also use as a
blusher, with pearl as a highlighter

Bobbi Brown eyeline gel - Black under the eyes

Mascara - Black on the eyes

Mac full coverage - White for foundation base and neck

Powder - Translucent to set the make up

N0 7 Lipstick - Black for the lips

Lipgloss - Clear (hopefully the Illamasque)

Thread - In Black to stick across the mouth

Spirit Gum/remover - To stick and remove the thread.

I will bring my normal kit as well, but if I pack all these essential things it will save time.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Club Kids inspiration...

This image is Club Kid style. I like the way his face is really pale and the make up is dark and vibrant around his eyes. The blusher and shading on the contours really sculpts his face and adds depth, which is something I want to achieve in my design.

This is a typical Club Kids style make up, especially around the eyes. I like the way he has outlined his eyes bringing it to a point towards his nose giving a defined shape and pattern. I also like the layering of colour, although I'm not a fan of the colours he has chosen. I want to do a similar design, but will use more muted colours and darker, edgier colours and tones to accentuate my zombie design.

The make up on this Club Kid is really well applied and the eyes are perfectly clean and neat. I like the use of white and black eyeliner which give a great shape. I want to use white on the eyes of my model to lift the dark make up I'll use under the eyebrows, which will also draw attention to the white contacts I'll be putting in my model's eyes.

These three images are all great examples of contrasting Club Kids. I'll be able to pick out similar factors from this make up and apply these techniques to my designs, making sure it it remains within my zombie brief.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Inspirational colour tones

I came across this picture of a zombie on google. I have observed the cool colour tones used which I associate with death as they consist of different shades of grey based colours. I have printed this image so I can follow some of the tones and colours when I apply a foundation base on my zombie characters.

Monday, 22 March 2010

New Design Idea

I have a new design idea for my next shoot on the 20th April. It's inspired by a number of things. I have been researching Marlene Dumas work recently, and looking at how she paints with ink and the different tones and marks she creates just by adding water. Therefore I want to create something a little similar but as a make up base. The shades in her paintings are monochrome as she uses ink, and are therefore based on greys. I want to re-create the marks and different shades on my model's face to enhance certain features and make her look more zombied and vacuous.

Whilst at the library I managed to find a copy of Make Up Artist magazine number 83 issue, which had one of Alex Box's images as front cover. I love the way Alex Box uses blocks of colour on the face to create depth, I will try and use a similar technique and apply it to my model's face but keeping with cool colours to make the face look sculpted.

In the same Alex Box image, there are twig like lines coming out of her eyebrows which are drawn on extremely finely. I will practice applying them to my model, only making mine look like veins to fit with my zombie horror theme.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Infintity Zombie shoot - CONTACT LENSES

You can see below the step by step edit of my infinity zombie. It shows the initial make up look to the retouched version.

For my first zombie editorial shoot I used white contact lenses. However on the day of the shoot my model couldn't get them in his eyes... After a few attempts we had to move on with the shoot otherwise we would run out of time. Therefore the only way to complete the zombie look would be to edit the eyes to make them look white and zombiefied. The photographer managed to photoshop the eyes by taking another image of white zombie eyes and pasting it onto my models eyes. It ended up looking extremely effective as it was in fact a brighter white than the contact lenses would have been.

I managed to turn the negative of not being able to use the contact lenses into a positive, as they looked just as effective if not more. However I will need to practice putting the contact lenses in as gently as possible, so that in future it won't take up so much time or ruin the make up. Photoshopping the white eyes in is effective but too time consuming and expensive to do. Even though I used this negative to my advantage for the photograph, I will need to use contact lenses for the trailer.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Looking to the future.....

I'm in a very comfortable bubble down here in Southampton, flat, friends, and plenty of (uni) work. But soon this is all going to come to an end, and I have to face the fact that I'll have to find paid work.

So far, I have done a great deal of work experience of all kinds, and had a great deal of professional work experience (i.e. they've paid me) in some cases really well. My first professional job was doing the make up for an up and coming singer Stacey Jackson, who wanted me to do her make up initially for her son's barmitzvah. I did a practice first for free, and she loved it, and for the actual day of the ceremony and party after I did hers and her mothers make up. After that she asked me regularly for parties and her gigs. She then went on to record an album and I did the make up for the cover. Since then I've done quite a few music videos, some paid, some not - all good work experience - such as Ozzie B feat JME and Leathal Bizzle - Maybe ting and Maydaz - Afro Funky. Although I thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere of working on a music video, its not an area I want to pursue when I've finished as I am dedicated to work in TV and Film. As a freelance make up artist, I will take as much work experience to start up in the industry and any paid work, but my aim is to specialize in TV & Film. I would like to learn more prosthetic make up, and will write to SFX make up artists in hope to assist someone to learn. I admire Rick Baker my favourite SFX make up artist, who made all the amazing prosthetic pieces on Planet of the Apes, Nutty Professor, The Grinch and many more. It will be be extremely hard and competitive to get chosen to work as part of his team I will certainly write and ask.

Recently I did all the make up for a company called Working Voices. They are a corporate training company who were renewing their website. They have a total of 22 consultants, all had to be made up to look professional yet glamorous for the photograph. The shoot took three days and they paid me really well, although I earned every penny of it!!! It was very hard work.
They were very pleased with the results, and emailed me a very nice thank you. Have a look yourself its

A valuable and useful work experience I did was at QVC, shopping channel based in Battersea. Everything there is live, and it was so useful to be able to do someone's make up, then ten minutes later see how it looked live on TV. I worked there for a week. I had to be there at 7.30 am and finished at various times during the afternoon. I found that almost everyone whose make up I did was very happy, and quite a few people took my card for future reference. It took me quite a long time to set this work experience up, and I was cancelled and postponed a few times, but the opportunity of doing TV make up which I learnt a great deal doing as it is less heavy than photographic but heavier than normal day to day make up, and seeing the results each time was really useful.

As well as that, I have a regular job here in Southampton working at Double Take Studios. I've learnt about photographic make up and what comes out well under such strong lights, applying make up to a diverse range of people of all ages and ethnicity and has also greatly improved my time efficiency for doing a make up.

I will consider doing a hair course after I finish Uni as production companies often employ make up artists who can do hair as well as make up. I'll work for free to get to where I want to be, and will aim to work on major movies, or TV productions. I'll write to make up artists to see if I can assist, and also make up artist agencies. I'll also carry on doing more work experience if its going to gain me valuable contacts or new experiences. My ambition has no limits!!

My interpretation of Wound Magazine front cover...

Friday, 19 March 2010

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Club Kids...

In order for me to create an idea that's Club Kids themed, but still fits my zombie trailer, I'll have to combine the two themes. I'll use elements of horror to tie in with the outrageous and eccentric Club Kids.

Here is some information on what Club Kids are ...

The 'Club Kids' were a group of young New York City club characters in the late 1980's and early 1990's. The Club Kids group were mostly led by Michael Alig and James St.James, and were distinguished by their outrageous costumes and extensive drug use. The Club Kids influence grew quickly and nightclubs started to pay leader Michael Alig just to show up with his entourage of Club Kids to draw in more customers to the clubs and add a little variety to their night life. Micheal and the Club Kids began holding illegal parties in various public places including a donut shop, the old high line tracks, and the New York subway.

The Club Kids style and influence is still evident in fashion today only adapted slightly to suit a certain trend. In Soho there are a lot of Club Kid style social places and nightclubs.

Micheal Alig as a club kid:

A modern day club kid:

Club Kids style can be shocking, individual and quirky as it's a way to express your personality, and how you like to be perceived.

'Illamasqua' is a new make up brand which takes its influence from the 'alternative Club Kids scene' and believes its an 'expression of their darker side and release of their alto ego'.

Graduate Make Up Film preparation...

Next week, I will be doing make up for our Graduate Make-Up Film. I have found a model who looks right, and will be confident in front of the camera. I want my design to be adaptable for the zombie trailer so I can include it as a design idea for that as well as in my portfolio.

The theme for the graduate film is 'Club Kids'. The make up students are designing the make up for the film that will be shown at the Graduate Fashion Show in June.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Sketchbook page

Here is an image from 'Wound Magazine'. I collaged over the top to make it fit with my horror zombie theme. This has given me inspiration and direction for my next zombie shoot.
I like creating mood boards so that I can look at them from a distance and imagine how they could work on a face.

Friday, 12 March 2010

Infinity Zombie Shoot Inspiration

I took my inspiration for composition and lighting from the front cover of ' Wound Magazine'. I liked the way the model had his head tilted back so the readers eyes scan vertically down the page. Therefore, if I place my make up design of the engraved infinity sign in the centre of my models neck then it would automatically be the main focus of the image. My model wears white contact lenses to represent a zombie and has a 'live life love life' tattoo across his chest. I have carefully thought through the composition; each zombie element is positioned so the point of focus leads the viewers eye vertically down the image, picking up every zombie characteristic.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

The Infinity Symbol.

In my trailer... once bitten by a zombie an " infinity symbol" will brand the skin.

I decided on an infinity sign as it means never ending, which fits with the 'new world' in my trailer - the world of zombies. The symbol looks like the number eight on its side and is a perfect design as it is bold, simple and symmetric. The zombies brand their symbol onto their victims' skin once they have been bitten and converted into a zombie.

I knew I needed a symbol of some sort and this was the simplest that I would be able to do on a large number of actors in a short space of time, and still look effective. I looked into a variety of different shapes such as triangles, hearts, diamonds, etc. However, this one had the meaning behind it, was simple to do and had an interesting design that was also adaptable in different sizes.



[in-fin-i-tee] Show IPA
the quality or state of being infinite.
something that is infinite.
infinite space, time, or quantity.
an infinite extent, amount, or number.
an indefinitely great amount or number.
the assumed limit of a sequence, series, etc., that increases without bound.
infinite distance or an infinitely distant part of space.
a distance between a subject and the camera so great that rays of light reflected from the subject may be regarded as parallel.
a distance setting of the camera lens beyond which everything is in focus.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Trailer Narrative

Anthony and I got together for a meeting how I was going to adapt his script to fit my brief. We went through each scene carefully, and discussed how we could make the script more make up focused. As we thought of ideas, we wrote it down and this is what we finalised:-

The story is...... A boy is given an 'infinity' pill by a dark and mysterious man, and is told to take it if he wants to 'stop time' and 'achieve the impossible'. The boy takes the pill and finds that the city has frozen... He steals money from shops, a laptop from a house, and explores this new experience. He begins to realise that the world he has reached isn't as fun as he thought, and then zombies begin to appear. He goes back to the man who gave him the pill, and is told that the more bad things he does, the worse it will get and the more zombies will appear. He tries to redeem himself by going back and putting things right, but its too late. After a vicious zombie chase he is bitten on the neck where an 'infinity' symbol is branded on his neck. The infinity symbol scars the skin once you have been bitten - does this mean the boy has become a zombie?

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Renaissance shoot

Today I did another of my photo shoots with photographer Kimberley Garrod, who I work with at Double Take Studios, which is where we did the shoot. This was based on a mixture of styles contrasting the traditional Renaissance hair, pale skin and elegant figure; with dark almost gothic eyes, lips and structured cheekbones. I wanted this shoot to be fashion and editorial based whilst taking elements from old school horror films like Dracula where the heroine is quite glamorous with dark, edgy make up, which ties in with the zombie aspect. I didn't want the make up to be a typical zombie style as I wanted it to contrast with my other shoots, and use subtle qualities in the make up and hair to simply suggest it. For example, her poses - quite awkward and zombie like, but totally different to my other shoots. The hair is based on a typical Renaissance hair style - I wanted to create shape and texture to the hair and this old school hair style contrasted well with the modern make up. My model who Kimberley found at a model agency in Bournemouth, had beautiful bone structure, however she had really bad acne on her chin which I managed to cover with a thick Dermacolour concealer, so that it wasn't seen on camera.

Instead of using white contact lenses, I used black and white eye shadow to represent the white eyes of a zombie. I also edited some of them in black and white with a grainy filter which creates the traditional old style horror movie element.

I was really pleased with the pictures and the only editing needed was to achieve grainy effects.

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Illamasqua talk

Spob O'Brien and Adam Sidwell are 'Illamasqua' make up artists who came in to give us a lecture on the new founded Illamasqua make up brand by Alex Box, which is only 19 months old.

They told us all about their branding and how it is about self expression and exploring your alto ego which is every person's darker side. It is all about not being afraid to try new things and experiment with bold colours.

I feel I learnt a great deal from this talk as Alex Box has come from a fine-art background and she expresses colour and texture within her work which is similar to how I like to work, therefore I can relate to her creative thinking. This has inspired me to be more free with my make up and loosen up with brush marks and colour, a distinctive theme of Illamasqua's brand. They like bold colours, shapes and structural shading techniques. Alex Box treats each make up design like a painting and that is something I should acknowledge within my work also.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Suzanne by Plan B

My General Inspiration.....


One of my main aims is to create a piece of work that expresses my individuality, and passion to create unique ideas. I have an eclectic range of inspirational sources that I have applied. Through previous professional experiences such as Charles Fox, art foundation, and a variety of work experience, I have learnt a great deal and will incorporate my observations and take into account feedback, both negative and positive. Much of my influence is taken from general day to day experiences and things I've seen in: magazines, TV dramas, film, harrowing news stories and music. The latter is a highly influential part as I relate a great deal of my work to music and songs, such as hip hop, grime and dubstep.


I was listening to the solo artist Plan B's second album and there is a song called 'Suzanne' its a macabre song yet I can't stop listening to it, it tells a story about a young girl who gets murdered by a man dubbed the 'Camden Ripper'. I wasn't sure if it was a true story, but it made me want to research it in more detail. I found a great deal of information on the a man who had murdered several girls and hid their bodies around Camden. The disturbing and shocking information created a visual in my head of what might of happened, and gave me an idea of what I could include as a make up design. From writing this post I have just realised that actually Plan B's first and second album have been a major influence in many of my design thoughts especially the ones based on distortion, disfiguration, murder and gore. I often listen to his music as he is one of my favourite musicians and many of his songs are about dark issues and I'm combining these influences with a mixture of quirkiness, fashion and editorial, film, fine art and graphic design. Plan B addresses issues of urban violence relating to street culture, and generates different characters for each story. He has taken much influence from his childhood experiences and expresses his anger towards people who didn't listen to him and the forgotten kids of society, the underclass. They were getting written off because of the violence and stabbings that had occurred, but what Plan B understands and is trying to get across is why they were doing these things and he explains this in one of his songs. Also other events that have happened in his life such as his best friend who got pushed off a tower block and his fury when his mother fell in love with a 'crackhead' have all encouraged him to write and get across a message in his music, and these things have made his writing so dark.

He has taken influence from The prodigy, Johnny Cash, Kurt Cobain, Nectro - who is an artist that raps about murder and explicit issues but tries to turn it into humour. Plan B doesn't particularly like Nectro's music but finds the lyrics interesting, that our society try and make jokes about serious situations everyday and so in some of his music he shows how this can be done.

I empathise with Plan B's way of thinking and writing and I really like the way he makes me think about what I am creating and for what purpose sometimes without realising it.

I design make up ideas using mixed media and collage to re-create a story. I want to do the same thing for my final designs, and think of the story behind the creation and question myself on each step. Why have I applied blood to her mouth? What sort of implement would have caused the wound? How old is the wound? What sort of blood should I use - congealed blood, runny blood, dark or bright in colour? I also need to think of the amount of pain it would be causing which would show in lines/frowns on her face, the other effects like bruising, dark shadows through pain and stress under the eyes, and burst blood vessels in the eyes and around the wound. Also the circumstances of the event, in relation to the victim.


For the editorial zombie girl shoot I described how I used thread wrapped around my models mouth to symbolise blood. This blood was bright red not dark red because it was a fresh wound it was right round her mouth and taken up to her cheeks as she had been eating a limb and the blood had splattered all over her mouth. I then painted on black bottom eyelashes on one eye. This was because deep down inside her zombie facade she was crying out for help and the tears, black from mascara, were streaming down her face from her white zombie eyes.

The idea I have for another shoot will capture someone getting gagged before they are strangled to death. I will have to consider what gag is used as it will have an effect on any marks or dents to the face. The tighter it is the more purple the marks will be because of the lack of blood circulation. The lips will be dry and cracked as they'd have no saliva. What situation was the person in as this would effect the state of their skin. If my story was about a zombie that was found dead in a garden he would have dirt, grass stains. Why was he dead was he murdered, with what? Was he burnt to death? What by? This would be evident in the make up as I would have to create a different type of burn depending on how it was produced. These are scenarios I have to question not only for my photoshoots but for the characters in my trailer in order for it to fit within the context.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Another Photoshoot required!

I was really happy with my graduate make up design as it ticked all boxes such as the Club Kids theme, zombie theme, quirky with a hint of horror. UNFORTUNATELY... I wasn't totally happy with the images for use as part of my final design therefore I will be organizing a re-shoot.

I have found a photographer called Lee Knight who is on the fashion photography course to take the photos. The model has kindly agreed to help me again and so I have booked the studio for the 16th!

I'll try and get the same clothes from the fashion show that she wore before, don't know whether this will be possible..