Implementing the project – Trigger warning – Some of the content of this page is quite gory.
Melanie showed me Bella Fryzer’s Insta gram and I loved her work:
I wrote an email to her and Melanie forwarded it on…
An Email from Bella
Its lovely to hear from you and its awesome to know that you are interested in looking at doing some SFX for your art award!
Whilst I am not personally heading down that route for my career I love doing it whenever I have the chance – however sadly not as much as I would like now I am at Uni. However I am more than happy to answer your questions.
To your first question my main answer is Amazon. When I was starting out Amazon was the cheapest option for me, and Tesco as well. What’s amazing about SFX is that whilst there are a few specific things you may need to buy the rest you can find all around you. A few staples I would recommend is:
- Liquid Latex,
- Scar Wax,
- Fake Blood (make sure however it is From a professional sfx brand – this is the one thing where for it too look real sadly you do have to get more professional ones otherwise it looks like you have used ketchup -look at Mehron Fake blood on Amazon)
- Then body paints, if you are willing to spend money look up a thing called bruise pallets. If not simple colours are a good basic to start at (green, yellow, blue, red, black and white)
- Then look around you things like loo roll and cotton are the main things I use in my work to create a torn skin look etc and they have never failed me!
For your second question I would say that there are few things to keep in mind:
- Patience is needed, the more care you put in the better it will be.
- Don’t compare your work to the images you see online and be upset if it’s not the same. The things you see online are people with keys worth upwards of £2000 sometimes! Instead focus on improving aspects of your own skill, for me I am great with 3D effects but not at body painting. Find your talent, the bit you enjoy the most and work on it. You don’t have to be good at all of it, SFX artists usually work in teams, so whilst its good to have a general idea of everything they often want specialists on certain areas.
- Have fun, this shouldn’t be a chore, its hard and frustrating at times but do it because you love it. It may take a while to find the specific part you love but have fun, you’re a beginner at that means nobody has any expectations so you have total freedom!
For question three there are plenty youtubers but for me one called GLAM&GORE held the most influence for me. Look at her playlists and back in the day she did great ones for beginners so maybe start there.
For number four, If there is a movie that you like the sfx in look at the credits to see who the artists were and go look them up see if they have a blog, a website and Instagram page. Everyone was a beginner once and to get to where they are know they would have had to do what you are doing. I also recommend a brand called Kryolan, they are one of the top makeup providers for theatres and films in the UK, they have a blog and they sell very good tutorial books which are a great place to start!
Number five is kind of what I’ve said already. Explore, have fun, there are no limits with sfx, trial and error is key, I’ve messed up many times and whilst it annoys me because I wanted it to work, without messing up I wouldn’t have discovered an area I am good at. Also depending on what you are doing it for SFX looks different on camera then real life. So sometimes you have to make it different to look real on camera and then it won’t look real off camera. It annoying but I am sure. You will figure it out!
Feel free to follow my sfx page on insta if you want and then you are more than welcome to message me any questions you may have on there. It is @specialeffectaf
Otherwise best of luck! I am sure you will be amazing!
My message back to Bella:
Learning How to use Horror Make Up
It was very messy! My advice to anyone trying this is to use an apron!
Based on Bella’s email, I found supplies on Amazon and asked the school to order them, this is my email to Celine, I had already got approval from my headteacher and told Celine I would be emailing her:
Here are the links to the supplies I found:
Then I had to practice using the make up. I followed two online tutorials to get started based on Bella’s reccomendations:
The Final Project – I made my tutorial in Word and then transformed it into a PDF that could be sent out to people and published in the school magazine.
How was the project shared
The project was shared in two ways:
- It was sent to teachers and students who were still able to attend school during lockdown for them to have a go at as all my supplies were still at school for them to use.
- It was published in the Art Magazine made by Arts Award students
People who tried out the tutorial
Celine and Alex gave me feedback about the tutorial and you can see this on my next page about working with others. I also sent feedback to them. It was all done by email because of lockdown. But neither of them had done this before and the only thing they used to get their results was my tutorial.
My Tutorial in the Art Magazine
This magazine had a private view at the end of term and here you can see one of the guests reading it at the private view: