Monday, 12 April 2010

Character 1: Jodie

Influence: 28 Days Later, 'bloody zombie shoot' and 'editorial girl zombie'

I've used a combination of make up from the photo shoots I did such as the 'bloody zombie shoot' and the 'editorial girl zombie'. I used the wound from the 'bloody zombie shoot' but extended it down one side of her face to the neck, as I wanted to exaggerate it in order for it to show up in the film. I decided to pick that design as it looked extremely effective in the shoot and I wanted this character to be the distinctive gory one out of the group. I curled her crazy afro hair backcombing sections to give plenty of height as I wanted it to be big and full of volume, as a zombie state of mind is full of rage and anger, and the hair would also be wild. I used the idea of a head bandage from the 'editorial girl' shoot only because, as I previously explained, the hair substitute wouldn't have worked in the film so I went the literal route and placed a blooded bandage round her hair as if she had injured it. This went with her whole image, as the way she was asked to act was very erratic and vicious therefore she would have crashed into a lot of things once she had turned zombie, resulting in her massive wound, big hair and bandage to stem the bleeding. I finally added white contact lenses which completed the whole zombie look and made her look extremely terrifying.

How I created the make up:

I started with the make up base using Mac full coverage a few shades lighter than her skin tone to create a pale pallor. As we are using an HD camera I needed the foundation to be thick enough to give full coverage but not so thick that you'd see it on camera, so I blended it in well to create the right consistency and set it with powder. I applied black eyeliner quite thickly to the top and bottom lids but blended it for a smokey look which 'glammed' her up a bit and gave a slightly editorial edge. I then began building up layers of gelatine mixed with tissue randomly down her face and neck. I made sure that the tissue was cut unevenly so that it wasn't in a straight line, as the wound would have an irregular shape to it. I heated up the gelatine in the microwave and tested it on my hand before placing it on her face as I wouldn't want to burn my model/actor. Once it had dried I started to paint over it using the technique with greasepaint as I did for the bloody zombie make up. Once I had finished the wound taking it right into the hairline which I learnt looked better and more realistic from my mistake in the 'bloody zombie' shoot. I put on the bandage which I had soaked in blood and tied it at the back tucking in the end so that it looked good from all angles. Lastly we put in the contact lenses that had been soaking in the solution overnight. I wanted to put them in last, as they are quite irritating to have in your eyes and I wanted my actress to feel comfortable. I made sure both our hands were extremely clean before I got her to wash the contact lenses again in the solution and gently place them in her eyes. I have found through practice that its much easier to show the model/actress how to put them in themselves, rather than for me to do it for them. We managed to get them in near enough straight away thanks to this technique, and without watering eyes.

What I would improve:

Given the short time I had for this design which was the hardest and took the most time I was very happy. If I did it again, I would have used more layers of tissue and gelatine on the eyebrow to make her look like she had a swollen eye, and I would have done a little more bruising and dirt over her face and neck, as her character was a crazed zombie crashing into things. I also found that throughout the day, the blood and tissue started to peel off due to movement, so perhaps I should consider using other make up such as latex which would stay on for longer. I will have to experiment using it, as if it looks as good as gelatine and stays on longer I'll use it instead, in future.


I got Jodie to wear a plain white tank top so that I could ruin it with blood stains and dirt. She wore comfortable jogging bottoms as I wanted her to be able to run freely in them and I wanted the clothes to look like everyday clothes.

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