I feel like one of my jobs as the makeup manager for Team Demon Fabulous which is the makeup crew for The Devil’s Attic haunted house is to keep brushes in the artist’s hands in the off season. A couple weeks ago Rebecca Rhodes messaged me and told me she was going to play in her makeup. I liked the idea of playing in makeup just to see what happens so I asked her to send me images when she was done. What she sent me inspired our first of hopefully many challenges. Rebecca’s was a beautiful cool toned makeup with a snowflake of her cheek she called “Jill Frost”. This would turn out to be her test makeup for the challenge.
The challenge I came up with was Wintery seasonal makeups. Since we are all versed in different kinds of makeup I opened it up a bit. We normally do special effects makeup as a team but I wanted them to be able to show what they could do with any style they wanted. I decided I wanted to do a frostbite look. I started research and looked at photos of actual frostbite. After looking at a lot of reference I was a bit discouraged. All of the images looked red and irritated. They almost looked more like charred flesh than anything. I wanted my makeup to have cool tones so I knew I was going to have to take some artistic liberties with the coloring.
I did a test makeup to see if I could make it work. I used wax to give the bursting skin look to reveal the blackened flesh below. Then I used a lot of pale coloring. I did some speckling with a chip brush and molded on some darker colors to denote skin rot. I wanted to use all brush work to give it a very organic look. This is why tests are important though. After looking at the photos of my test I realized it looked more white than I wanted. That’s when the bulb in my head clicked to make it more of a character look and not so much a straight up frostbite makeup. I would add more blues and some cool toned high lights and even a bit of glitter in my eyebrows and facial hair. I wanted it to be a more tragic brooding portrayal of Jack Frost.
The amazing Danny Alexander as always helped us out with the photos. Not only that but he opened up his home studio to us. We usually shoot photos in the makeup room at the Devil’s Attic. With it being a winter themed shoot also being shot in the winter the haunt was too cold to work in. This also meant we had to show up in makeup. Usually we are all together when we do makeup and can feed off each other’s energies and sometimes get inspired. It was interesting to show up in makeup not knowing what everyone else had done. It also made for an interesting drive.
Phoebe Conrad showed up in a Jack Skellington style makeup. "I chose to do a Jack Skellington makeup because I’m not in to this whole Christmas thing and if you asked me to pick my favorite Christmas movie, I’d of course pick the one that’s also a Halloween movie." said Phoebe.
I would venture to guess that Nightmare Before Christmas is a lot of haunters favorite Christmas movie so It made sense. She was able to pull off a near porcelain finish. It looked as good in person as it does in the photograph. It was very controlled and restrained. I really liked the beauty route she took with it. She could have gone way overboard with it but what she did hit just the right tone.
Having seen Rebecca’s test I thought I knew what to expect but I was wrong. She used airbrush to create this awesome color-blend on her chest and carried it up to her face. For having never done a color-blend with airbrush before I was very impressed. The highlights she added just made all of the cool tones pop. She changed the color of her lips and snowflake from her test which I though was a good choice as to not match too much with her chest and give depth. The final look was extremely clean and elegant.
I pretty much did the same thing I did in my test makeup. I added some more blue and more speckling. I used more purple around the perimeter of my face and hairline too to give more depth and contrast. I made the skin in the nose opening smaller so It wasn’t as over powering. The final touch was adding iridescent highlighter. I am very happy with the way it turned out.
After looking at the coloring of Rebecca’s makeup next to mine and them being based on Jack and Jill frost it only made sense to get a photo together. Three photos in and we nailed it. Danny did such a good job it looked like a promo for a movie or TV show on the CW we joked. It turned out to be my favorite photo of the shoot. I always want to be inspiring my artists and pushing them forward. As it turns out this time one of my artists inspired me. It just goes to show that we are all on the same playing field and you should never discount inspiration from anywhere.