A year a go today I was lucky enough to be part of a fantastic crew in the middle of working on a brilliant short film called Tanglewood.
The shoot was hard work, as most shoots are, but a lot of fun, and very rewarding. One year on, and having just viewed the film for the first time, I am still incredibly proud to have been able to be a part of it.
Written and directed by the
incredibly talented, and all round wonder fella, Mr Jordan Prosser (keep
an eye on him kids, he’s going places!) with David Rusanow Director of Photography (another one to watch out for), with some superb acting from our two main characters Anna Samson (Hunters) and Tim Ross (Wonderland) and some outstanding “creepers” artfully done by a team from Wicked of Oz.
film was shot part in a studio in Melbourne, and part on location in the
Oatways and the Dandenongs - both of which have their disadvantages and
Filming in studio is
(most of the time) a lot more controlled - generally speaking you have a
lot more control over the environment, although you often have to build
the set from scratch, (luckily we had a stand out Art Dept for that!)
and having a lot of warm bodies, with lights, in a locked up room can get very hot very quickly.
on location, often means that you can work in a stunning location,
which simply can’t be faked or build in the same way, but you have to
bring in everything, (which if you are at the top of a very steep hill
can be a fun time!), and have a lot less control over your surrounding
When I saw the first screening of Tanglewood, I
was blown away with it. I knew it was going to be good, because Jordan
put together such an fantastic crew of talented people, passionate about
their jobs - but I was not expecting it to be as beautiful as it was.
I can’t wait for people to see it!
I can’t talk about the film any more than that just yet, but I thought I’d talk a little about the makeup.
is set in a post apocalyptic world, where there is no easy access to
drinking water. The only water that can be ingested is rainwater, which
is very precious. Our two main protagonists are living in a camp in
the middle of a forest, and to highlight the fact that they don’t have
easy access to water, we wanted them to be quite dirty, with dirty on
their faces, under their nails, on the body, along with grimy dirty
clothing, and slightly oily hair.
The products I used to create the dirt on the face body and hands, was a mix of Skin Illustrator by Primar Products with Ve Neills Pirate Palette, and Ben Nye Dirt. I mixed these together, applied the Skin Illustrator (which is an alcohol activated ink) first and then layering some of the Ben Nye dirt over top. I did this mostly using a stipple sponge, and a chip brush to crate a light wash with a “splatter”, which looks great for dirt makeup.
Both Anna and Tom have brilliant skin, and most importantly we
didn’t want them to look like they had makeup on, so I used Makeup
Forever Face and Body foundation, which is my favorite foundation at the
moment. It is very light foundation, and the texture is more like a
gel than like a liquid or cream foundation. It sits beautifully on
almost every skin type, and doesn’t sink into the pores like a lot of
foundation can. Most importantly, it is a very light foundation,
although can be layered up well if you need a little more coverage, or
mixed in with other foundations. Just a very light power to minimize
shin is all that you need over top, and as it’s designed as a water
proof foundation (although I haven’t actually tested that myself yet) it
has fantastic longevity.
Both actors were suppose to be
slightly sleep deprived, from tough living and stress - “Sarah” more so,
so we wanted to create “bags” under the eyes.
To do this I used another great product from Premiere Products - their Skin Illustrator Glazing Gels. On the website they are listed as
“Introducing GLAZING GELS - a collection of water based transparent colors which allow you to do
bruise and injury work directly onto the skin. Designed for extreme close-up work,
GLAZING GELS wear exceptionally well for the demands of High Definition Film and Television work. From subtle to over the top,
GLAZING GELS allow you to create realistic sunburn, freckles,
shadows and illnesses that look like they’re ‘in’ the skin, not ‘on’
and they really do just that.
They look like they are intrinsically in the skin, coming from
underneath, not something sitting on top of it like a cream would be
likely too. Alcohol activated inks often have the same type of effect,
but I think the Glazing Gels are slightly easier to blend out than the inks, with a little less practice. Being water based,
they are also a lot safer, and more comfortable for the talent to use
around the eye area, as the talent isn’t likely to cop the fumes
directly into their eye and they are very long wearing even though they
are water based, which means you don’t have to jump in for touch ups as
I have been in love with them since I first got them,
and I’m so glad I gave them a try. They are a really fantastic product,
and I think a must for a SFX kit.