Face Off Season 7 Episode 4: Woe Is Trees!

Published August 13, 2014 by vfdpixie

This week, the gang talked about Stella’s win and Jason’s desire to show his talent.  The 12 artists left met with McKenzie and models dressed as superheroes.  For the Foundation Challenge and immunity, they were to choose a model and create a hero inspired by their costumes.  Their guest judge was makeup artist Mike Elizalde, who worked on Fantastic Four, X-Men Last Stand, and got an Oscar nomination for Hellboy.  He wanted them to integrate the costume into the makeup so that the character told a story.  They all had some interesting ideas, and all of them did great jobs.  The standouts for Mike were Vince’s chameleon type superhero with a great layered paint job and Rachael’s elegant alien assassin with her choice of colours, beautiful contouring, seductive look and lashes.  Mike chose Rachael as the winner.  She was relieved for the immunity.

For the Spotlight Challenge, they gathered in the lab where McKenzie stood with a giant tree.  Films like LOTR, and Evil Dead had trees with human-like traits and intelligence.  They had to work in teams of 2 to create a tree character with traits of a specific species of tree AND, since the trees from the aforementioned films were either evil or angry, they had to incorporate a common tree malady to create a darker character.

Stella and Sasha teamed up to create a White Birch with burls.  They came up with a sacred Native American tree that was upset that it’s people were driven away, so he had eyes all over to watch the land.  When Mr. Westmore checked out their progress, he warned them that the design should be a personification of the tree, not a person in the tree.  Stella used L 200 to create a paper-like birch bark, and Sasha created hands that didn’t quite work out, so she made them out of foam.  Stella used a dry brush of white paint to create a birch bark look and in last looks, she realized how much she hated the hands but loved the character overall.  It turned out great and the judges loved this character too.  They thought was well rendered and a full head to toe coverage.  They thought it was clear that it was a birch, loved the gorgeous paint job, and Lois loved the “crumply knees”.  Because of the paint job and malady driven character, they were in top looks.

Jason and Doc got together to create a Bristlecone Pine struck by lightning.  The character was a guardian of the desert.  Mr. Westmore felt they hadn’t done enough to convey the character.  They took his advice, but both were nervous.  Doc was concerned because so far, he had been in the bottom for every challenge, and Jason because this was the biggest sculpt and mold he had done and was worried about their time.  Doc encountered disaster as his arm molds broke in several places.  He had to scrap that idea, and was discouraged by this.  In last looks, they figured out a way to work out the arms.  Their character came out really well.  I loved the tree bark texture.  Glenn thought “the form language was exquisite and awe-inspiring”.  Lois loved all the small details like the knees and feet, and although the malady was not defined, Neville thought there was finesse in the cheek area.  For a duo that started off in trouble, they were also in the top looks.

George and Keaghlan picked the Silk Floss and choking vines.  They came up with an environmentalist that fell when the tree was cut down and became a warrior.  Mr. Westmore told them to take out the human features.  They worked well with their time, with George creating a gang mold for a large and quickly done piece, leaving them of day two for fabrication and a little dance break!  George thought there could have been more variation of colour, but it was complete.  On the reveal stage, I thought it looked a touch too human, and the judges acknowledged all the work they put into it.  They didn’t like the vine aspect, calling it an afterthought, but they ended up safe.

Vince and Damien got the Sequoia and tree rot.  They decided on a zombie tree.  When it came time to create a colour scheme, they were at odds.  Damien wanted more red, but Vince wanted to go with a more grey tone to convey the zombie aspect.  Their second skin on the latex was ripped but they worked with it since it looked like the tree was rotting.  In last looks, Vince changed the paint.  I didn’t mind the look, but Glenn thought it was great if they were going to an office Halloween party.  Ouch!  They thought it was limiting with the tree stump on head and it was not cohesive.  Neville thought the hands were well sculpted but the left eye was crippling to the whole look.  They were in the bottom.

Rachael and Dina chose the Banyan and fungus.  They wanted to go for a really twisted tree look.  Dina was nervous right off the bat because Rachael had immunity.  Mr. Westmore thought their design didn’t look like a twisted banyan at all, but like vines or fire.  They girls had to start over with their design.  In the end, Dina didn’t like the final character.  The judges didn’t think it read tree bark, and Neville thought that “fungus wasn’t the only malady” the design suffered from.  Yikes!  Rachael was really worried because she had immunity and would be devastated if Dina went home, but they were safe.

Cig and Drew got the Weeping Willow and insect infestation. Mr, Westmore suggested they make the holes for their emerging insects obvious.  They had plans for large branches to convey the willow aspect and arms to grab victims to feed these insects.  Drew decided to attach the branches at last looks which was risky because they were the defining feature of the character.  To their shock and dismay, the model came out sans branches because they were way too heavy for her to function.  The judges felt there were missed opportunities, and that the colour was too uniform.  The bugs didn’t work and although there was some definition, it got muddy in some areas.  Drew took full responsibility for the branch issue, which the judges admired.  They were in last looks.

Among the top looks, the judges were impressed by Doc and Jason’s elegant flowing lines and paint job, and Sasha and Stella’s colour and malady driven character.  They picked Jason as the winner because of the amount of detail in the tree.  What a great feat for him since he was hoping to impress the judges!

They judges felt that they couldn’t judge something that wasn’t there, i.e. the branches, with Cig and Drew’s Weeping Willow, although they did like Drew’s face sculpt.  Vince and Damien’s design suffered because of the prevalent crippling concept.  Vince was the artist going home due the makeup’s head and cowl issues.  Boooooo!!!  Boooooo, I say!!!  I liked him and was sad to see him go.   He was really chilled out and talented, but I know with his experience, he will go far.

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