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Do I really need a Make-up Artist?


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#1 Michael King

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 01:57 PM

I know that having a pro make up person on set is going to add so much to the production value of a movie. But I'm shooting such a low budget movie, inspired by no makeup features such as Primer and El Mariachi, that I want to see if I can do away with it. I want as few people around as possible.

Will having no make up really destroy my film or will it just look like it was made on the cheap.

Shot on a DVX-100 Pro lighting and sound.

thanks.
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#2 Dimitrios Koukas

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 02:15 PM

I know that having a pro make up person on set is going to add so much to the production value of a movie. But I'm shooting such a low budget movie, inspired by no makeup features such as Primer and El Mariachi, that I want to see if I can do away with it. I want as few people around as possible.

Will having no make up really destroy my film or will it just look like it was made on the cheap.

Shot on  a DVX-100 Pro lighting and sound.

thanks.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


A make -up artist,
is somebody that most of the times uses it's knowledge to achieve the director's vision.Whice means if you want no make-up at all , you also need a make up artist!
Natural looking of someone is also a make up tecnique.
But on the other hand, it's your choice.
Now that the summer season is finishing, I am sure that you will have some actors that will have a whiter nose because of their sunshades somehow, or someone that maybe has some physical characteristics that u maybe want to point, or hide.
That's some of the make-up artist's job.
But also if you don't need all this or there aren't no big production demands, u can just go and do your shooting.

Dimitrios Koukas
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#3 Laurent Andrieux

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 02:25 PM

Will having no make up really destroy my film or will it just look like it was made on the cheap.


I guess it won't destroy your film, but for sure, it will look cheap.

You say you have a low budget, so may be you have to assume a low budget look !

But... I think you defenetly need a make-up artist, but if you have a very low budget, you can try to find someone who won't charge you too much, or even find a make-up student... Is there a make-up school nearby you ?

Thing is even the lower your budget is, you plan to pay for somethings like camera, stock or tapes, lab, etc. and maybe do you plan to even pay -even low pay - a cameraman, gaffers and grips etc. You then have to consider a make-up artist is just as necessary and worth as a cameraman, gaffer, grip etc.

If no one is paid, ok, find a make-up artist to work for free ! (If you pay the cameraman and wish to find a make-up artist to work for free, forget it !)

Good luck on your project !
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#4 Lars.Erik

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 03:07 PM

My advice is this: get a make up artist. Trust me...you won't regret it.


"A close up is only as good as it's make up"
John Alton
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#5 coolbreeze

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 03:37 PM

As a former make up artist ive got to chime in here and say absolutely yes, you do need a make up artist. And a professional at that, not a girlfriend who fancies herself as a make up artist. It may look like they just sit around all day throwing powder at the talent but it is lot more complicated than that. As your shooting on video you'll need all the help you can get to keep the skin tones looking natural and consistant. Do yourself a favour.
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#6 Michael King

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 03:44 PM

Thanks for all your help. I see the value in a make-up artist now. I live in Hollywood. Shouldn't be a problem finding one. :)
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:27 PM

Hi,

I like having a makeup artist around for more reasons than just the job in itself. I know it's a cliche, but they do end up rather looking after the cast; if I'm producing something (as I very occasionally do) which involves a cast, I tend to find that I get bothered about half as much if I have a makeup artist for them to talk to...

Phil
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#8 Laurent Andrieux

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Posted 29 September 2005 - 04:44 PM

you'll need all the help you can get to keep the skin tones looking natural and consistant


It's even more than that. A make-up artist makes a real job in serving your script and directing, in studying the script and your intentions, as to make the make-up serve them. For instance, just like there is a continuity work for what's about the talent's play, the light, etc. there is also one for what's about the costumes and make-up.

A make-up artist would study the script and propose an evolution in the make-up that will serve the script and your intentions the best.

I would say that the make-up is as important as the photography, the framing, the directing, the set direction, the costume direction and the quality of your talents. Because the image look is the result of all these collaborations, with no hierarchy to be made about each of them.

Sorry if I am insisting on this, but, once in my life, on a feature, a make-up artist made me understand that and become aware and conscious about this, though I had been working for nearly ten years before without caring much about that (thought it was just a technical need, before that) and that defenetly tought me a lot.

I can say, thanks Margarida, I love you (still) ! :)

One funny thing is, my students, who's plans are to become cinematographers, are very willing about having a make-up artist to join them in their exercises at school, as we were when I studied in Louis Lumière, because it's the make up we light, before the skin. They don't yet get all for what's about the make-up artist's job, but, that they get !

The fact that, on the call sheet, the first thing a talent has to do, is the make-up, making so many people to wake-up so early in the morning, is there to remind us ! The fact that so many people arrive after them on the set, unfortunatly, often makes them not to see that.

I think a lot of cinematographers consider them as close collaborators, not in vain.
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#9 Grainy

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Posted 04 October 2005 - 09:52 PM

My advice is this: get a make up artist. Trust me...you won't regret it.
"A close up is only as good as it's make up"
John Alton


I think there's more than one way to look at this.
Yes, makeup artists give you control, but like Dimitrios says it depends on the look you're going for, and I'm not just talking "low budget".
The easiest example of a very artfully done film with NO makeup is Carl Dreyer's b&w masterpiece "La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc", which you should see anyway even if you're not interested in makeupless actors.
Check it out:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0019254/
good luck
G
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