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Evalutation of my project.

January 24, 2011

during this project, i have investigated the build up of a character in musical theatre, exploring the movements made to express a character, a brief exploration of costume and an investigation of the makeup used to portray characteristics that are needed to make the character believable. my project deviated away from the inital plan of fashion photography mixed in with musical characters as i found that i was more interested in how the characters were interpreted rather than trying to manipulate them myself. this mean that although i had studied a fashion photographer, the fact that he had used characters in his photography was enought to still create inspiration. my other artist was the costume designer of ‘Cats’ – John Napier. ‘Cats’ has become the main influence of my project as the makeup needed to transform from one being to another is far more complex and detailed than that of on human playing another. i felt  that  this mean i had more to work with and so i studied more about characters that were different to a normal human being.

i started my project looking just at the movements, facial expressions and gestures of people who were interpretting my characters and i did this by creating ‘fact files’ for each character to give a better insight into how they would be feeling. after this i looked at costumes and experimented by scanning material in to try and take my own spin of the suit from ‘Jersey boys’. i felt that costume would take long time to recreate in my own style so i quckly looked more at makeup as i felt i could have my own artistic take on orginial characters that are well known to lovers of musical theatre.

my final pieces:

I then developed this final piece further by manipualting a small photograph and sewing wool into it to give a texture, mixed media effect and to try and create more of a cat feel to the picture. i also scrated into the photograph, enhancing the white areas, such as the whiskers and making them stand out more against the black of the fur.

i decided to chose this as one of my final pieces becuase i felt that it represented my project well and that it shows a lot of skill. i frequently worked with the ‘layer mask’ tool in my project – creating step by steps twice to show how i achieved different things. with this picture, i felt that my skills were shown sucessfully because i was able to use this tool in order to create a rounded face and thus make it appear more ‘human’. although the picture is not central i feel that this adds to the picture because it makes it feel more like a ‘snap’ that would suggest that this is the norm and that things like this are not seen as strange. the plain background allows the face and clothes to stand out as there is nothing to deviate the eye away from the work i have produced and the clothes worn are just simple ordinary clothes that again, make the picture seem more normal and real. i changed the eyes of the cat to very saturated yellow because i felt that this had a link to the logo of ‘cats’ that depicts very yellow eyes. although the cat i used does not bare any resembalence to a character from the musical ‘cats’, it fits in with my theme of using every day things that we find around the house to maniuplate to create characters.

i chose this as my second final piece becuase i felt tht it represented my project in contrast to my first final peice. this was a non digital manipulation because i used facepaint to create the image onto my models face. i then changed it for my final piece by editing it slightly in order to make it more bright and to let it stand out. i chose to change the background to black because the character portrayed is that of macavity and because this was originally a poem by T.S Elliot i had a lot of description to focus on, for example Macavity is ginger and tiger like – which influenced me to put the black stripes onto my models face. macavity is also seen as very evil which is why i have made the facial expression like a ‘snarl’ so that people will feel intimidated by it.

overall i fell that my project has developed very well throughout its various stages, if i could change anything i would say that i would do more digital and non digital manipulations of characters to show the difference between the two.


Non-digital manipulation – ‘Cats’

January 12, 2011

After deciding which of my digital manipulations was better, i chose to do a non digital recreation of it with face paints. in relation to the pictures that i have taken to represent the makeup from ‘Cats’  i have taken my own spin on the makeup based on the cat ‘Macavity’.

Influence for my Non-digital shoot:

January 11, 2011

the musical ‘Cats’ is based on a book of poems by T.S Elliot called ‘Old possum’s book of practical cats’ in this book there is a particular poem about the character of Macavity – one of the most famouse characters associated with the musical.


Macavity – the Mystery Cat, by T.S. Eliot

Macavity’s a Mystery Cat: he’s called the Hidden Paw –
For he’s the master criminal who can defy the Law.
He’s the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Flying Squad’s despair:
For when they reach the scene of crime – Macavity’s not there!

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
He’s broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity.
His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare,
And when you reach the scene of crime – Macavity’s not there!
You may seek him in the basement, you may look up in the air –
But I tell you once and once again, Macavity’s not there!

Mcavity’s a ginger cat, he’s very tall and thin;
You would know him if you saw him, for his eyes are sunken in.
His brow is deeply lined with thought, his head is highly domed;
His coat is dusty from neglect, his whiskers are uncombed.
He sways his head from side to side, with movements like a snake;
And when you think he’s half asleep, he’s always wide awake.

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
For he’s a fiend in feline shape, a monster of depravity.
You may meet him in a by-street, you may see him in the square –
But when a crime’s discovered, then Macavity’s not there!

He’s outwardly respectable. (They say he cheats at cards.)
And his footprints are not found in any file of Scotland Yard’s.
And when the larder’s looted, or the jewel-case is rifled,
Or when the milk is missing, or another Peke’s been stifled,
Or the greenhouse glass is broken, and the trellis past repair –
Ay, there’s the wonder of the thing! Macavity’s not there!

And when the Foreign Office find a Treaty’s gone astray,
Or the Admiralty lose some plans and drawings by the way,
There may be a scrap of paper in the hall or on the stair –
But it’s useless to investigate – Mcavity’s not there!
And when the loss has been disclosed, the Secret Service say:
`It must have been Macavity!’ – but he’s a mile away.
You’ll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumbs,
Or engaged in doing complicated long-division sums.

Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity,
There never was a Cat of such deceitfulness and suavity.
He always has an alibi, and one or two to spaer:
At whatever time the deed took place – MACAVITY WASN’T THERE!
And they say that all the Cats whose wicked deeds are widely known
(I might mention Mungojerrie, I might mention Griddlebone)
Are nothing more than agents for the Cat who all the time
Just controls their operations: the Napoleon of Crime!

Edited digital manipulation of cats make-up

January 10, 2011

i edited this picture of the digital cats makeup manipulation to make it more like the iconice ‘cats’ poster, which depicts a black background and large yellow eyes. i used levels to make the picture oveall darker and then i used colour balance to make the eyes very yellow, adding brown in the corners with a small opacity brush and then i saturated them so that they would stand out. i like this picture because it all seems very mundane and then the viewer sees the cat face and the striking eyes, i think the idea of a plain background and clothes ass to the more human element but also allows the cat to stand out.

Cats makeup, digital manipulation.

January 7, 2011

for my second digital maniuplation, i chose to try and recreate the idea of makeup by taking a picture of my cat and putting it on my models face in order to recreate the makup from ‘cats’. i tried two different ideas, the first being the cats faced imposed onto the human body completely so the only idea of a human is the hair, neck and clothing around. the second idea was the use of the cat on the face but with it slightly less opaque so that the features of both faces can be seen equally. i chose to do this because i felt that the respresentation of makeup is not shown by just changing the face comepletely because human features cant be changed. i did both of these by using the ‘layer mask’ tool so that it was easy to control where and how much of the cat was put on the models face.

Observations from my shoots

January 7, 2011

Digital manipulation – Elphaba

January 6, 2011

i decided to use everyday objects to represent the ‘makeup’ side of characters from musicals.

to create the character of Elphaba i thought i could use a green apple because i though it would give a good texture rather than the flat texture of something that was just green.

to do this, i frst of all airbrushed my model so that she would have a smotth face to manipulate the apple to.

after this i made a new layer and put the apple ontop of my models face. i had to resize it so that it would cover all the places needed. then, using a low transparency, i matched up everywhere that needed to be green.

after this, i then made a layer mask and painted over all the skin coloured parts of my model so that it would appear like she had green skin.

i played around with different hues and the brightness and contrast to try and get a more ‘magical’ green as the character represented is a witch.

all of this then made the final outcome, which i feel worked in some areas. however, it was difficult to create shadowing in the skin that would have ordinarily been there.