Hello everyone. So, to start off, here's a little about me: I am Olivia, a 21-year-old former student from Cheshire, England. I have just finished a degree in Biomedical Science and am an SFX make up addict in my spare time. I am also musical and ride horses. What a combination! I have always loved SFX due to my love of the arts.
So where to begin? I don't really know how I got into special effects make up, really. I was never into normal make up growing up and I would hardly ever wear it. I first started wearing make up in my last two years of school, and even then it was the bare minimum.
I was a massive tom boy for most of my time in school. Talking about school, I hated the academic subjects and when I was older I would make excuses to be in the music, art and drama departments at break and at lunch times. I am a musical person, growing up in a family of classical singers. So I carried on the classical tradition of singing, joining Chester Cathedral Choir when I was seven, and over the years I have sung on many TV and radio programs as well as CDs, and performed all over the world. I just love singing and performing.
I also love art and anything creative. I think this is where the love of special effects make up came from. I had very supportive teachers as I was terrible (and I mean terrible) at classical art (i.e. portraits and anything that had to look real), but I loved textiles and abstract works such as sculpture and dress making, and this was the route I went down for the rest of school.
I think loving the arts has made me a very creative person and I love to explore and experiment with different things, whether it is with special effects or music and acting.
One of my main influences in special effects make up was of course cinematography as well as theater. I have always loved films and stage productions and, as much as I love acting, the behind the scenes of a film or play interest me a lot more. The crew works so hard to make a film or play come to life and I find that amazing! I love all types of films (maybe not rom coms) and I am always studying the make up. Most of the time I will go home and have to re-create a look I have seen in a film or play. It always interested and fascinated me how artists could make cuts and prosthetics look so real that when on-screen you would believe the whole effect.
I first properly got into special effects when I was at university in Manchester. I was studying Biomedical Science. I know, I said I didn't like academics but I love Biology and it has really helped me with the realism of special effects when creating realistic looks. It really helps to know the biology and anatomy of the body!
My first prosthetic I did was for Halloween in my first year. I saw a movie where the main character gets shot in the head and an idea for Halloween hit me. I really wanted to go as Wednesday Addams, but well, my hair was blonde and I wasn't going to get a wig. So I went to the closest Halloween costume shop and bought fake blood and liquid latex. I then started practicing using YouTube as my guide, watching as many tutorials as I could.
I would practice making prosthetics with tissue and latex as well as making prosthetics and applying them to my face and working out how I needed to blend everything in. The look worked really well, I don't even know what I intended to be really. I kind of put it as a dead, crazy asylum girl. The best bit was managing to fool some drunken girls who thought that I really had shot myself as they couldn't tell the difference. It was so much fun that I just carried on making prosthetics and experimenting with looks.
Word soon got out at university and the next two Halloweens I was drafted in to do people's make up for them (the guys included).
From then on I have been making lots of different prosthetics and lots of different looks. I mainly focus on looks that you would see on stage, film and TV, and I really love to focus on making them look as real as possible, doing lots of research and using lots of research photos.
I have also recently started body painting. Like I said earlier, I am terrible at drawing but I am hoping the more I do, the better I will become, as I find it amazing how creative people can be with it and I can't wait to start experimenting.
I would love to be an SFX make up artist for the arts. That would be my dream as the more I create the more I love it! I would love to go and train and gain proper knowledge in how to mould and cast and make more complicated silicone prosthetics. I am really proud of how far I have come, however, as I have self taught myself the basics. I now feel confident enough to do my own tutorials on YouTube. I started my channel a few weeks ago and it is starting to get a small audience, which I am really happy about. I don't care about how big an audience I get, if I can inspire or help out one person than that's good enough for me.
My channel is beauty based with all aspects of beauty and make up as well as (of course!) the SFX make up.
I could talk for hours about my love for SFX make up, but for now that's it. I am really eager to post regular blogs on here about everything I am doing and new looks that I have created. I hope you enjoyed this brief introduction about me and how I got into the magical world of SFX make up.
You can find my YouTube channel here.
You can find me on Instagram here.
You can find my blog here.
Any enquiries you can email at : [email protected]
Check out more of my work below!