Exploring art of special effects makeup

By Carrington G. White
Times-News correspondent

Carrington G. White

After watching multiple special features at the end of movies, I became interested in special effects makeup.
This past summer, I daydreamed about becoming a makeup artist and researched how to make fake blood. Making fake blood is a great way to experiment with special effects makeup techniques. (See Kamryn Guye’s story today for details on that).
When presented with the opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at the Original Hollywood Horror Show in Snow Camp on Oct. 11, I was ecstatic. Alamance County natives, Starr and Dean Jones, are Hollywood makeup artists. The brothers utilize makeup and special effects techniques in the Horror Show, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.
Upon entering the makeup trailer it was set up exactly as you would imagine — multiple makeup stations along with many prosthetics, masks, wigs and other makeup supplies.
Throughout the visit, I observed the makeup team applying prosthetics and other special effects. Watching the transformation of an actor to the character of a zombie was amazing. The original plan was to watch and learn, but instead the makeup team needed an extra hand. After a short lesson, I was asked to black out the actor’s eyes and apply makeup to their hands, making them look grungy. At first the task was nerve-racking, but it became natural, almost relaxing, and of course, fun.
Volunteering at the Original Hollywood Horror Show was a fantastic way to explore the art of special effects makeup. After spending an evening with the makeup team, this is absolutely what I want to do as a profession.

Carrington G. White is a home-schooled eighth-grader and a Teens & 20s writer.

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