Monday, April 14, 2014

Taking a break: Skip Demon - Angel Season 4

The blog break continues as I am still overwhelmed elsewhere. In my absence, here is some stuff I have never shared from my days in the Makeup FX industry! Today I have for you the Skip Demon from season 4 of Angel...

Skip came about in season 3 of Angel, long before I was ever part of the show or had anything to do with it. The design and original creation of Skip are not my story to tell. What I can share is when he returned in season 4 when I had a chance to be one of the painters on all the pieces and parts that went into him as well as accompanied him to set. Since this was an established monster and makeup I followed the art lead and did what he did to make sure Skip stayed consistent.

While I was one of the painters and went to set with it there was an entire team of my skilled coworkers that saw the the sculpting, molding, casting, and everything else that went into seeing this creature come about.

Enough talk, here is the Skip Demon...

Skip returns to Angel to meet his maker.
Say goodbye, Skip... 
"Goodbye, Skip."

The original plan was to have Skip receive a fatal blow to the head which would crack and break his face. A new face piece was sculpted by the design lead... and was never used. Too much time and effort to switch out the face piece on set since the filming of 'clean' face and 'broken' face would happen on the dame day and loosing hours to switching out the makeup is not in the schedule.

This was the extent of the design work that I did for this episode. I took the photo of the makeup and added the wound color to show production the look for the planed makeup. All of this work went into the before production finally gave the word that it was not happening. We would have to do something else that was quicker.

One of the old Skip suits is cleaned up and readied to be the stunt suit.

Here is all the parts and pieces that go into Skip besides the suits.
I was one of the two painters that made these happen.

Skip and a stunt Skip filmed for two days, so we needed four cowls and four face pieces and a backup of everything else.

Here is a compromise to the broken face makeup... not ever sure this was actually used except as a reference point for the makeup department to figure out something on the day.

Skip on set hanging out.

Showing a little leg for the fans...

Broken face is happening...

A detail of broken face coming together.

Final broken face. Not much more then makeup at this point. A far cry from the separate all new sculpture it could have been.

The actor that played Skip at the shop with a huge painted banner of Skip. And yes, that is the guy that originally dated Pam on the Office.

Mr. Beefy and Skip are best buds... or not...

That is all for another exciting Monday on the blog, see you back here on Wednesday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Friday, April 11, 2014

Taking a break: Bohg'Dar Demon - Angel Season 4

The blog break continues as I am still overwhelmed elsewhere. In my absence, here is some stuff I have never shared from my days in the Makeup FX industry! Today I have for you the Bohg'Dar Demon from season 4 of Angel...
 
If there ever was a demon on Angel I would have liked to had done more on, it was the Bohg'Dar. The Bohg'Dar was and is right up my alley when it comes to monsters - big and full of character. Sadly, I was out of most of the loop when it came to this monsters. I did however get to design the contacts for Bohg'Dar. Something is better then nothing. Not much else to add on this one... just look him in the eye next time and think of me...
 
While I only designed the contacts there was an entire team of my skilled coworkers that saw to the sculpting, designing, molding, casting, and everything else that went into seeing this creature come about.

Enough talk, here are the Bohg'Dar Demon...
The jowly Bohg'Dar Demon... RAWR!

My initial concepts for the Bohg'Dar contacts. For most of my contact designs I looked to medical books dealing with eye injuries and illnesses for inspiration and reference. The nature world is so much better at coming up with disturbing imagery. FYI, keep bleach out of your eyes... just saying.

Decided to go with a nice asymmetrical look for the Bohg'Dar Demon's contacts. You can compare this image to the photo of the final makeup above to see how well they recreated these designs in the actual contacts.

Here is an added bonus of thing to come at a later date. This is me in the Bohg'Dar makeup and suit! RAWR!

That is all for another exciting week on the blog, see you back here on Monday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Taking a break: Fu Manchu Demon - Angel Season 4

The blog break continues as I am still overwhelmed elsewhere. In my absence, here is some stuff I have never shared from my days in the Makeup FX industry! Today I have for you the Fu Manchu Demon from season 4 of Angel...

The Fu Manchu demon demon was... ah... you know, I have no idea what or why the Fu Manchu demon was made. Just one of the many demons that passed through our shop. I think it reused a cowl from another demon... or maybe other demons reused its cowl. I know the face was new... casue I watched it get sculpted. I did not design it... but I sure did paint the makeup! I was all over the paint work for this one.

While I was the painter on this monster there was an entire team of my skilled coworkers that saw the the sculpting, mechanics, molding, casting, and everything else that went into seeing this creature come about.

Enough talk, here is the Fu Manchu Demon... 

Still trying to figure out is this is racially insensitive.
Maybe I am reading too much into it.

Here are some images of the face sculpt for the Fu Manch Demon.

These were all handled by the shops design lead who designed and sculpted this one.

RAWR! Monsters in clay.

Another shot of the makeup and the hand/arm appliances that went with the makeup.

I really need to go back and watch episode 14 of season 4 to see if this thing even made it into the show and if it did anything.

That is all for another exciting Wednesday on the blog, see you back here on Friday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Monday, April 7, 2014

Taking a break: The Beast - Angel Season 4

The blog break continues as I am still overwhelmed elsewhere. In my absence, here is some stuff I have never shared from my days in the Makeup FX industry! Today I have for you The Beast from season 4 of Angel...

The Beast was the BIG BAD MONSTERS for season 4 (or was it?) and a lot of work, time, blood, and tears went into it. I lost a lot of sleep painting almost all the makeups for this monster and his stunt double as well as being on set for almost all the times it was filmed (and then some). Actually, I am getting ahead of myself. The designs for this were all over the place since production was HEAVILY involved. They really wanted us to make a rock and lava version of the Hulk meets Darkness from Legend... and after many attempts to give them something different and new the art department gave up and gave them what they wanted. ...but by then I was working on other things and not really designing the monster.

The Beast appeared in a lot of episodes through out the bulk of season 4 and this required new makeups for both the actor and stunt double for each day of shooting. We also had to replace the suit halfway through the season since they have a limited lifespan. Fun side note - on the first day filming of the replacement suit both the actor and stuntman torn the right arm nearly off their suits. There was some panicked repair work going over the lunch break that day. Without the amazing help of my two other coworkers there is no way those suits would have been film ready in about an hour.

Often I would spend a VERY long full day on set with the two Beasts and then go to the shop to paint the makeups for the next day of filming. After they were painted, I would go home for just a few hours and then get up and head back to set with the new set of makeups for the new day of filming. More then once I would grab a couple more hours of sleep in a makeup chair in the trailer after the makeups were delivered and before we had to start suiting up everybody. Not being in the Makeup Union we could handle everything dealing with an actors makeup as long as it was below their necks. The union makeup people were lords of everything from the neck up.

I had a lot of fun and a lot of great memories working on set during this time as well as interacting with the actor and stuntman that portrayed The Beast. Not sure why this popped into my head now, there was an Assistant Director on Angel that CONSTANTLY referred to all of us from the shop by one name... Allen. He called ALL of us ALLEN. SERIOUSLY. "Where's Allen?" "We need Allen here to fix this." "Tell Allen..." ...you get the idea. So weird to look back at it now, and funny.

While I was did some design work, a ton of paint work, and a lot of other assorted work on this monster there was an entire team of my skilled coworkers that saw to the sculpting, molding, casting, and everything else that went into seeing this creature come about. This, as with everything I share from these day is a team effort!

Enough talk, here is The Beast...

Our hero photo of The Beast. He turned out looking good and the fans loved him... we just could have made it "more".

That GIANT signature can only mean one thing... this is one of my designs.
This is the only one of my Beast designs that made it to a finished state and was done in the early staged of the concept period. I was working closely with the design lead and pulling a lot of direction and influence from him. I was told after the fact that when this was shown to production that someone claimed that this looked my a moose and they all sat around giggling that is was a moose.
Yeah... looks just like a moose.

I did design the contacts for the beast. I designed a lot of contacts actually for these shows. Often I would never see the final product but I did get to see the contacts for The Beast up close... like they were in my own eyes.

SPOILER ALERT! The Beast *might* not have survived season 4.
I was asked to design the melted Beast blob. This first version is not so good.

This second Beast blog is better and then final pile looked more like this. I painted the pile and wish I could find my photos of it.

Since The Beast was such an important monster the sculpture team actually had a chance to work up a maquette of The Beast. This also allowed time to work out some design issues... like the horns... that were still coming together.

More images as the maquette takes shape...

...and even more.
 
This is an image of the clay maquette that has been panted over to show production what it will look like. once this maquette had served it usefulness and was approved a mold was made of it and we cast an army of mini Beasts.

I painted SO many of these Beast maquettes. SO. MANY. The sad reality is that I never took the time to cast and paint one for myself. That is the thing about being surrounded by this stuff everyday, you loose sight of how rare and special these things are. I didn't realize that I never made myself one until a few months after I moved away from Los Angels and it was by then a impossibility to have one. Of all the objects that I dealt with while working in the FX business, this is the one I regret not having now. A lot of memories are associated with this monster. Oh well... I still have those memories :)

The sculpture team was all hands on deck for The Beast.

I think there were four to five sculptures in total that worked on the suit alone. It came together really fast... because it had to!

Turning mud into a monster.

Rocky monster butt.

Some rocky monster gloves for all your rocky monster glove needs.
I was a hand stand in for The Beast in some second unit shooting. The Beast jabs his finger into the abdomen of a character... that was my hand in the glove jabbing a replica torso. RAWR!

The Beast cowl and horns coming together.

Beast face makeup sculpt.

Vlad going under the foam latex.

Early stage of the makeup going on the actor for one of the first days of filming.

The very... VERY first paint scheme of The Beast suit - not done by me. The suit over all became a lot darker and more even in pattern. I never thought this read well and to me appears to be burnt flesh rather then rock and lava. The earth tones continued, they just were spread throughout and the entire suit and makeup were unified.

The suit in a more finalized state on set. Notice the "suit boots" bottom right. They were built over boots with lifts in them and were for normal wear and were not meant to be filmed below the ankle.  Stilt feet with hooves were also made for 'hero' shots. They were said to be a little hard to walk in.

The stuntman getting all suited up as The Beast.

More hero shots of The Beast. Notice those great looking contacts!

And more of The Beast looking moody and introspective.

While the boss man painted the first set or two of the makeups to establish the look but this time I was painting everything including the suit. I painted so many of these makeups. Lost count actually!
The actor is posing here wearing a sword through the head rig for a dream sequence.

All kinds of weirdness here... what on earth?

The Beast is looking a little weird...

Oh... This is a rig used for the shot of the sword entering the head. There is a slot under the shin spikes that the sword slides up and out the back of the head. I painted this entire thing. It was fabricated by others. When to set with it too. Once of the other guys held the sword and I stood behind this thing and held the head up in a more realistic position and when the sword 'stabbed' the head I let go so that the head would rear back as if stabbed.

Even the Stunt Beast enjoys the holiday season.
Ho Ho RAWR!

More Christmas time filming antics on set with the stunt Beast.
This was a fun set too.

Last, but not least, Mr. Beefy and the Beast.
No comment on those goggles.

That is all for another exciting Monday on the blog, see you back here on Wednesday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com