Monday, October 17, 2016

Know Your (Fake) Blood

I love beauty but of course, I would want to stretch and exercise my creative mojo so sometimes, I like to go crazy. Here comes Halloween, a more proper excuse to get crazy with my craft and my outfits, my face, and my posts.

I've had fond memories of Halloween starting with trick-or-treating starting with crude costumes (basta black and mask OK na) then asking the neighborhood mananhi to make me a witch costume. It was fun, the houses were really cool and scary and I'd go home with so much candy, which I would then sort into jars according to flavor.

When it was my nieces' and nephews' turn for Halloween, it became more awesome because the houses we went trick-or-treating had so much themes, not limited to just scary. Costumes also have evolved and there were more costumes that were readily available in the mall, although some still DIY. It just didn't limit itself to candy but other houses gave out popcorn, cotton candy, fries, mini sandwiches, etc.  Even adults played dress-up, making it an entire family affair.

As a makeup artist, this season gives me the challenge to use not just traditional or airbrush makeup that I use for beauty, fashion, or glam but also special effects makeup and other materials such as tissue paper, cotton, string, etc. Zombie makeup is one of the things I enjoy doing the most. It's a challenge because we have to make it look realistic going from beauty to scary and gory. It's also fun because it's a time where I can let go of symmetry  and just be messy and super random. The bloodier, the better! Now, whenever I watch horror films and look at the zombies and monsters, I go, "Hmm... I wonder how the artist created that?"

Several fake blood I use to create my special effects wounds
What is zombie and gore makeup without blood? It's the key for really awesome, crazy effects. When I did that blog post on fake wounds and all as a practice, all the special effects makeup  were not yet available here in the Philippines and had to be ordered online. Back then, I had to make do with lipsticks, face paint, Elmer's glue, and lash glue. Now, I do most of my special effects makeup shopping in Purebeauty, Kryolan, and Make Up For Ever. I went DIY with my fake blood and substituted liquid latex with lash glue and Elmer's glue (yep, the same Elmer's glue we put on our hand then peel off when they dry when we were kids). I'm so happy that I now have special effects makeup available here!

When I went shopping for special effects makeup, I found out too that there are several types of fake blood, depending on the effect you're going for. Mix and match and you can get a real fun, gory Halloween look. Although I can go DIY on my fake blood using pancake syrup and some red and green food coloring (why green? A few drops of green food coloring can make the color look more realistic and earthy), the problem I have with this is that it can get really sticky, especially if you're wearing your special fx makeup at a party. The food coloring also can stain the skin. I reserve this DIY fake blood for blood that I place in the mouth, since this is edible anyway (it's pancake syrup!).

Store-bought fake blood, on the other hand, is less sticky and tacky and won't attract ants. They easily wash off with water and soap and the color doesn't leave a stain on the skin. You can wear this in a shoot, and just peel off the prosthetic and use makeup remover or wipes and you're good to go to your next appointment.

Should you want to go all gore and zombify the life out of you for Halloween, I'll be showing you four types of fake blood that I have with me and what I use them for.

Blood Paste (shown: Graftobian Blood Paste, Php 380)

Blood Paste comes in a jar and it has a super thick consistency, The color is almost real, and mimics real blood. The look of this is blood that has sitting too long and already gelled or coagulated, but still looks wet. I use this on scabs, deep wounds, or on the corners of wounds or burns, or the wound openings, to look like blood clots.

Blood Gel (shown: Graftobian Blood Gel, Php 480)

Blood Gel is really thick blood that looks almost like thick honey. It's super viscous you can tilt your hand and it won't drip right away. It's got the shine we want in our fake blood (it looks awesome in photos and film).

We can use this if we want the "run" or "drip" effect without the blood getting all over the place.

Stage Blood (Graftobian Stage Blood, Php 380)

This one is really watery. Actually, I use a cotton bud or thin art brush to apply this. I use this to create splatter effects on wounds with a stippling sponge or paper towel, just to make the look more messy. I find this red though a bit too orange for me, but I guess on camera or film, it does look brighter. This one can be placed on capsules as well for gunshot-type shots or when blood comes out of the mouth, from what I read in the directions.

Artificial Thick Blood (Make Up For Ever Artificial Thick Blood Php 800)

When it comes to thinner type of blood, I actually prefer using this because it's less orange and runs less. I can use a really thin brush to apply this on "wounds" or create blood "tears". The color is also more realistic. It's more on the brownish or earthy side and this one really looks nasty on wounds. I like using them on zombies as well since the blood here looks "old" and more oxidized, since no fresh blood runs on zombies as they have been dead for a long while (unless of course, it's a newly-born zombie that you're making).

Combining the fake blood can produce awesome and realistic effects like the infectious boil study I did over here:

Sorry for those who are eating. It actually looks pretty cool with the blood and the greasepaints all coming together. I applied blood paste on the crevices with a small spatula and created texture using a barbecue stick. Then, for a slower pour and drip, I used blood gel and splattered out some stage blood and draged with a thin brush. The messier, the better! The colorings were done using Ben Nye bruise and cuts wheels and foundation and I used my gelatin-glycerin mix to make the boils. The feel is actually soft and almost flesh-like it's freaky.

How crazy are you going this Halloween? What's the story behind your zombie?

Store Directory:

Available at Purebeauty Serendra, Glorietta 4, and TriNoMa;;;

Make Up For Ever
2/F Mega Fashion Hall Building D, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City, (02) 631-5681; G/F Greenbelt 3, Makati City, (02) 621-5248; 1/F TriNoMa Mall, Quezon City, (0915) 990-9571; 2/F Main Mall, SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City (0919) 273-4805;;

No comments: