All posts tagged snakes

Face Off Season 10 Episode 3: Ancient Languages and Artifacts

Published January 30, 2016 by vfdpixie


This week’s Spotlight Challenge was really great!  The gang met at a hillside ruin, complete with ancient looking statues flanking the entrance.  Once again in teams of two, they would have to create a member from a long-lost race from one of six sets of artifacts found in the ruins.  The major factor would be to use a custom language created by language expert David Peterson, who created Dothraki from Game of Thrones, as well as languages for the shows Dominion and Defiance.  He created phonetic clues for each language in the challenge, and wanted to see them in the characters.  He would also be on the reveal stage to see if the makeups held up to their languages.

Kaleb and Mel picked a headpiece with snakes on it.  Their language involved lots of inhaling and exhaling, so they devised a bladder and breathing mechanism for their Snake Elder.  Mel sculpted the ears and hated them.  She waited until Mr. Westmore came around for his verdict, and he loved not only the ears, but the whole concept.  After that vote of confidence, they went full steam ahead and got to the mold room quickly.  They created a bladder with a tubing and a pump which worked well with the neck appliance.  I loved this makeup!  The face and whole costuming made it a complete character.  The judges loved the paint and bladder idea, and Glenn liked that it was the embodiment of the language, and that they made superb choices that shouldn’t have worked but did. David ignored the fact that the fangs would make speaking the language impossible because the look was so cohesive.  They were in top looks.

Walter and Rob had a lot of “K” sounds in their language.  they used their artifact to create a Nordic, feline warrior that battled wolves and wore their pelts.  They created a wolf skull headdress.  They were told that they needed a magnificent paint job to pull this off.  The guys went to work on casting Walter’s feet for a lion-like foot prosthetic.  Walter ended up painting the wolf head because he had no time to add hair like Mr. Westmore suggested.  their makeup turned out really well.  I liked the look, but the judges felt that the cowl wolf head and the quality of the face differed.  David thought he lips worked well with the language.  They were safe.

Robert and Johnny’s artifact had an octopus on it, so naturally, they went for an “Octo-man”, in Robert’s words.  The language was aggressive with clicks, so they also decided to go for a beak.  Mr. Westmore told them to be careful of the beak and paint.  They ran into trouble with the cowl mold because it was too heavy, so they used popsicle sticks to hold it up.  It came out well in the end, but their tentacle fabrication didn’t work out, so they had to scrap them.  The guys had different ideas about the makeup, and it showed.  The cowl and face weren’t cohesive, and the judges felt the face was muddy and looked inflamed. David said the beak prevented some sounds from the language. They also thought the squid was too literal.  They were in the bottom looks.

Yvonne and Anna’s language was fast and stern.  Their character was a tribe member who found a headdress in a cave, and became a powerful evil god after he put it on.  Mr. Westmore warned them against a caricature of an old man, so they took that advice.  Yvonne worked on the cowl, creating an intricate bejeweled look with a notched popsicle stick, and painted it black and gold.  The artists worked well together, and their final look was really beautiful.  It matched the language and the judges were wowed by the cowl.  This look put them in top looks.

Melissa and Kate created a Mother of Death from their language because it had a prayer-like cadence.  She had a facial anomaly that made her beautiful and terrifying.  The artifact was a winged figure, so the incorporated them on the character by creating wings on her back with scarifications and on a headdress.  Mr. Westmore thought it was a unique idea.  They worked well together, and Melissa did a great job with the scarification wings using alcohol paint to blend the edges of the prosthetics.  The judges thought the helmet was cool and the makeup was nice up close.  They were safe this week.

Njoroge and Ant got a sibilant language and they felt it was reptilian sounding.  They wanted a futuristic yet ancient creature with big eyes and ears.  Mr. Westmore was concerned with the concept and told them it may come out too cartoony.  They needed to give the design some thought.  Njoroge was freaked and knew there was no room for error.  The eyes were changed to a large almond shape, and Ant did the cowl.  He was concerned that the colours were too bright in the paint job, and toned them down.  The final look was a creature with a large head too bright paint.  The judges weren’t pleased.  they thought it looked rough, masky and too big.  The paint was too flat, thee details were confusing, and a good paint job could have saved the look.  They guys were in bottom looks.


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The top team was Yvonne and Anna for their compelling character that showcased the language.  The winner was Yvonne for the headdress that was symmetrical, artistic and framed the makeup.

The bottom team was Njoroge and Ant.  They thought the green Halloween mask was rough.  Ant went home because of his cowl.  The judges saw how passionate Ant was, and he was proud that he took risks.  He was fueled up to continue his journey as a makeup artist.  At the very least, he made it to the show, where I’m sure he learned a ton from the experience!

Face Off Season 7 Episode 8: Snakey Soldiers!

Published September 18, 2014 by vfdpixie

This week, the artists met on the Battleship Iowa which served World War 2 and the Korean War before being retired in 1990.  It now serves as a museum in San Pedro, California and was a fitting backdrop for their next Spotlight Challenge which was to create a G.I. Joe super soldier in honour of the iconic toy’s 50th anniversary.  McKenzie had several crates that hid different species of snakes, and in the tradition of characters like Snake Eyes and Cobra Commander, the artists had to chose one type of snake to inspire their soldier.  There was an extra prize for this challenge:  A collection of special edition G.I. Joe toys!

George chose the Green Anaconda.  His concept was a soldier called Nick Strangle due to the anaconda’s muscular body, code name “Manaconda”.  George fabricated a muscle suit that looked great, and he was happy with it.  The end result was a blocky looking dark green snake man soldier.  It actually looked like an action figure.  The judges liked the asymmetrical head, and he ended up safe.

Rachael got the Green Tree Python.  Her soldier worked for Cobra Commander and since the snake had heat seeking organs, she incorporated those down the character’s face.  Mr. Westmore liked this feature and told her to continue them further down the side of the soldier.  She ended up losing time and rushed finishing the cowl which she didn’t like.  As a result, she focused on the paint job.  She hated her design, and on the reveal stage, she cringed.  The judges thought it lacked a sense of form and didn’t feel like a snake, with Neville calling the head baboon-like.  The scales they called random and the paint looked blocky and lacked transition.  They felt it was rushed.  she was in the bottom looks.

Cig created a female soldier called Lashes based on the Christmas Tree Eyelash Viper, but he was left with a male model cast, so he had to change his concept.  Mr. Westmore liked his sculpt and instructed him on how the eyes should appear.  Cig was on the fence with the outcome of the eyes, and debated whether to keep them, but the finished makeup was really great.  It was colourful and fun and really looked like a toy.  The judges like the symmetry, with Glenn wanting to buy 2 of the figures, one to play with and one to keep in the box!  Lois loved the snake head epaulettes, and Neville felt the forms around the face was beautiful.  He was in top looks.

Stella picked the Namibian Coral Cobra.  She designed a motorcycle chick with body armour.  She had a major issue when her model ended up getting very sick, so they had to replace her.  Stella had already created her face prosthetic for the sick model, so she had to carry on and hope for the best.  She had to modify the face so that it fit the smaller face of her substitute model, and scrapped the helmet she had molded, chosing to style the model’s hair instead.  Her makeup was really good and the judges liked the small shapes and scales.  She was safe.

Damien went for the Gabo0n Viper and decided on an assassin character that was a snake/human hybrid.  He was one of the few that created fangs for the soldier.  It was an interesting looking makeup and the judges liked the fangs and the neck area.  He was safe this time around.

Kaeghlan got the Albino Reticulated Python.  She came up with a femme fatale character but was nervous because she was not familiar with the G. I. Joe world.  Mr. Westmore advised her to bring more snake-like features to her design and perhaps change the eyes.  She was so worried that she hoped for some inspiration from her dreams.  She decided to use a wig instead of making a cowl, and added white to the weird reddish tinted wig.  She was concerned the makeup was missing something.  The end result looked like an old aged makeup instead of a snake.  The judges thought the colour was too matte and looked dead.  The snake forms were diluted and looked more feline, and the colours needed more contrast, and to Lois, looked “mimsy”.  She was in the bottom looks.

Sasha worked on a Hognosed Snake soldier.  She created a ninja that attacked from the holes he burrowed.  She also had trouble with her design, especially with the nose.  Mr. Westmore gave her some guidance, but she struggled, getting input from the other artists.  Her scales looked a lot like her owl makeup, and her cowl didn’t line up with her face.  It was o.k.  The judges liked the colours, but could see the owl makeup as Sasha feared.  They also thought the shape of the head was too simple and round.  She was in the bottom looks, and was terrified that the judges wasted the immunity on her.

Drew chose the Tiger Rat Snake.  His idea went against the grain as he created a body modified human instead of a human hybrid.  His prosthetics were more subtle, and Mr. Westmore told him to focus on the paint  because of his smaller sculpts.  He made really cool claws that looked like steel, and used a paint spatter technique as well as tattoos for his character.  His was different from everyone else’s.  The judges noticed and loved the risks he took.  They thought the colour was spectacular, and felt the idea was brilliant and would look great as a toy and on film.  He was in top looks.

Diana picked the Brazilian Rainbow Boa.  She designed a super sexy soldier and used a cut popsicle stick to create scales.  She did well with time and seemed confident with her design.  She used an iridescent sheen overtop her paint job and it looked really great.  It was a really pretty makeup with a great profile.  The judges liked the precision of the scales, and thought it was “incredible”.  She made “perfect choices” and had phenomenal equilibrium and balanced forms.  They thought this character had great balance between a toy and something for on-screen as well.  She was also in top looks.

The winner was Dina!  The judges loved the nuanced forms and incredible details.  She also got the special edition toy collection for her boyfriend.  The person that went home was Kaeghlan.  They thought her colours were awful and the concept looked too feline and not snake-like.  They told her to use this experience as a platform to improve.  Very glad Dina won!  Not only because I know she can make cakes and I like cake.  Can’t wait to see what she creates next!

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