I was incredibly proud and happy to be able to pass the Basic Make-Up Course with the make-up I did on my brother so the next step was to apply for the Advanced Course which I did as soon aswas possible funds wise :S
Please check out the pages above to see the full extent of the course because it’s unbelievable how many subjects are covered within it. I was so excited when I received the three massive texts packed full of just pure gold as far as information goes if you’re even vaguely interested in anything to do with the practical effects industry. It is a little bit daunting too to be honest but only because I’m so impatient to be able to do everything and there’s obviously an enormous amount to learn.
In order to pass the course I have to provide 3 make-ups to a high standard that are assessed by a professional Hollywood make-up artist via the internet who also is available for advice should I need it (which I obviously will). They suggest that two of the make-ups are old age transformations as these are the hardest to do convincingly and another of some sort of humanoid character rather than a monster or gore. The course actually includes animatronics and radio controlled elements which is simply amazing to me. Haven’t a clue how I’ll manage that but can’t wait to try!
With the old age figure in mind I had a good think about what kind of character I’d like to try first. Obviously this doesn’t have to be included in the final entry but if it turns out ok it might be possible so would be useful. Instead of just general ageing prosthetics I wanted to base my character on a more gothic, interesting figure so I decided upon the terrifying Miss Havisham from Dickens’ Great Expectations who was jilted on her wedding day and remains as an embittered recluse in her decaying mansion still wearing her wedding gown with the uneaten cake beside her. She was only supposed to be in her mid fifties but the lack of sunlight had aged her and she was described as a cross between a waxwork and a skeleton with moving eyes. Perfect!! I loved the idea of her sitting with cobwebs draped over her and pasty skin. She gave me a lot of scope to work with and was also quite interesting from a costume point of view with an old Victorian wedding dress and jewellery.
For the make-up itself I was quite keen to use Bette Davis’s character in Whatever Happened To Baby Jane (which is fantastic film if you haven’t seen it btw) as an influence as she is an unhinged, elderly character who paints her face in thick make up to try to retain her youth as a child star but in fact looks horrendous.
Hope you can see where I’m coming from with these influences. I really liked the idea of being able to kind of exaggerate the prosthetics and make up, being such a horror fan. It appealed to me lot more than attempting to just age a figure. Whether I could actually pull it off remains to be seen …