Make Up Designers: The Artists Who Create Character
- OnStage New Zealand Columnist
The word artist is ever-so-apt when it comes to stage makeup. An ordinary person sits down in the chair and succumbs to a metamorphosis at the hands of the make up artist.
Working within a very small space with harsh lights and impatient people only too willing to interrupt their thoughts, these clever people remain calm on the outside whilst they transform.
With fine motor-skills and attention to detail they’ll create and generate characters to look better than imagined. Blue lips on the Ice Queen and she’s suddenly cold and the Sun Princess is warmed with gold sequins and lashes.
The Sky Witch was going to be a challenge. The ‘canvas’ being a face of love and friendliness but it happened. A contact lens to harshen and frighten the eyes, a sharpened cheek and reshaping of the brow to look sharp and mean. Transformed.
Small eyes become larger and lips full of pout. Skin tone is transformed and age or youth enhanced. It’s all down to a precision flick of a brush, a swipe of a pencil or dab of a sponge.
They bend at 40 degree angles entering your personal space and never complain about the pain or the closeness, they put you at ease.
They’re there for touch ups whenever required and occasionally the crew will pop in just for a bit of TLC and a bit of lippy.
At the end of the night it all goes away, the lotions, the lashes and 345 different shades of beige, each one with a purpose and a power to create.
I salute you the artist of color, who masks the performers in their facial attire.