Christine Blundell’s interview for Reel FEEdBack with host Kevin Dawson, talking about her career as a Makeup Designer in the UK Film Industry
A great aspect of the Makeup school is that when Christine Blundell begins a film, she preps most of it at the Academy. This not only allows the students to get a glimpse of certain actors but more importantly, where possible, Christine shares what she is planning and how she is prepping for the Film.
We had a full house on our Taster Day course. The students this time and our Tutor who was Makeup Designer Stephanie Smith. Stephanie is not only a regular tutor running modules from Casualty to Script Breakdown and “breaking down a character, ” but also trained at the famous Hair & Makeup course herself.
– Well done to our very own Christine for Paddington 2 for being nominated in the Outstanding British Film Category.
– Hugh Grant For best supporting Actor in Paddington 2.
– Our Very own Tutor Daniel Philips Nominated for Makeup And Hair for Victoria And Abdul.
– Tutor Lizzie Lawson, Hair Supervisor on Blade Runner Film nominated as best film.
– Tutor Tony Stasi, Barber, working on Nominated Films Victoria and Abdul and Darkest Hour.
– Graduates: Oonagh Bagley, Flora Moody, Darkest Hour. Holly Cady for Victoria And Abdul.
– Any many more graduates who worked on the films……
So filming in the desert isn’t so bad
We have been out here in Jordan for the last two weeks now filming “Aladdin” for Disney. As everyone knows Will Smith is our Genie and I have to say he is a pretty amazing person as well! He threw a “Welcome to Jordan” party for us all in the desert which will go down in filming history as one of the most generous nights: a feast was laid on, camels were brought in so we could go for a ride to watch the sunset and later on belly dancers and dancing, too – what’s not to love!! I have Lesa and Chloe with me whilst the rest of the team are packing down in Longcross after a mammoth couple of months of crowds which was run seamlessly as ever by Charmaine and as the years of having CB*MA go by, how proud am I to see so many of my graduates out as dailies on my films not to mention all the new graduates we had out as trainees!!
Goes without saying I can’t show any photos of filming so you will have to make do with me in a tent !!!! Xx
Makeup & Hair Designer
The book, written by Gary Christensen, a California based Makeup Artist and Patricia L. Terry, a Theatre Director, features 12 Oscar winners, 9 Emmy winners, and 5 Emerging Artists (the possible award-winners of tomorrow).
It’s a man’s world….as the famous James Brown song goes and in certain professions it most certainly can feel just like that. No more so that with special effects makeup, or even makeup itself! If you search on the internet, best or most influential makeup artists, at least eighty percent of the names will be men.
This is certainly understandable in the early years when men predominantly ran most professions. Yet, as time moved on so too did makeup artists and the skills and applications they used. One of the slight criticisms of today is that awards seem to go special effects makeup. The art of subtle period makeup or wigs etc seem to be slightly out of fashion?
After beginning the first Paddington film in the “darkest Jungle of Peru,” (Costa Rica), which was incredible by the way!! I sadly had to go one to the film “Kingsman 1” and so I could not continue. It was such a shame, so when the second opportunity came my way to design Paddington 2, I simple could not and would not refuse! The response to the film was amazing and well done to Graham Johnston for doing such a great job.
When the second opportunity did come by i could not refuse and could commit, so was very happy. I had my team of makeup artists that usually work with me and managed to get on board three full time trainees from the previous hair and makeup course.
With three full time trainees and many others coming in to assist, it looks like the new Aladdin film by Guy Ritchie is going to be very busy! We have not even mentioned the CBMA juniors and makeup artists that are rolling up their sleeve and getting ready for some great work! All these people are headed up by Christine Blundell, who is Hair and Makeup designer.
Will Smith has made his first post of him and the crew! As mentioned we have many of our girls working and assisting on Aladdin. We are lucky enough to have three fulltime makeup trainees, juniors and makeup artists working on Guy Ritchie’s latest project. Very soon we too should have a post about our girls’ experiences on set!
We were very lucky to have most of the actors coming into the makeup academy for makeup tests. Marwan Kenzari came in hot off his success starring in “Murder on the orient express.”
Sarah Brock, Gal Gadot’s personal Makeup artist, talks about Christine Blundell’s role as Wonder Woman’s Makeup Designer. Courtesy of Warpaint Magazine.
Bridal to Box Office
Last week she shared with us the step-by-step secrets of the Wonder Woman look she created for Gal Gadot. Now Sarah Brock lets Warpaint lift the lid on her experiences on set
WP: Congratulations on the beautiful looks that you created for Gal Gadot in Wonder Woman. You’re much better known for your Red Carpet looks – how did you transition into movies?
SB: It really was a fairytale story as to how I came to work on the Wonder Woman movie – after being in beauty and fashion for 18 years, the movie industry wasn’t something I had ever considered. Patty Jenkins, the director, was searching online for inspiration for the make-up look for Gal and she kept coming across an image from a bridal designer campaign that I did back in 2008. My name wasn’t on the image, so she asked the team in the USA to find out who did the make-up for the campaign – they found my website, Patty looked at my work and loved what I did (plus I was based in the UK where most of the filming took place, so it was perfect). I had an email one evening from Patty, I went to the Warner Bros Studios to meet her – we got on so well immediately and she offered me the job as the personal make-up artist to Gal on the movie and the rest is history.
Last Saturday CB*MA Academy opened its doors to welcome our prospective students, most of whom are keen to join us in September, for our next 4 Month Hair & Makeup course. We were privileged to have our Prosthetics Tutor, Dan Frye, “Game Of Thrones” and “Harry Potter” prosthetics Makeup artist, creating a Monster look and answering visitors’ questions.
Dan has been in the film makeup industry for many years and has a plethora of talent and stories. There are many parallels between a prosthetics artist and a makeup artist. Yes they make many things from the simple scratch to a gaping wound, but they must also fully understand makeup and colour. As once these pieces are made they must be painted and to appear to be flesh or Zombie or whatever!
We also had a number of our recent and not so recent graduates on hand, talking about their experiences of working on Christine’s latest film project, Mike Leigh’s Peterloo, currently filming in Manchester.
What an amazing two weeks we have just had and judging by the what the students have created the intensity of learning and understanding prosthetics makeup, has paid off. The prosthetics makeup module is one of the most anticipated of modules. These weeks are very different atmospherically to the other weeks here. A different mindset is needed. Calm and a zen like approach is needed.
All the makeup and hair modules we do, require students to focus and work on detail. These weeks require even more so. Just when students think they have finished moulding their pieces, Dan will come along and tell them that they need to work at it a little longer. The “Devil is in the detail.”