Vancouver Film School (VFS)

Makeup Design for Film & Television

  • 12 months

Program Description

Career Prep 01

Career Prep is subdivided into four parts (Term 1 and 6). This course gives historical and current context of the Make-up profession. It introduces students to the many different fields within makeup artistry, and also focuses on developing the research and practical skills that students must have in order to be a working makeup artist.

In term 1, the exploration of stage, film and television history, and the history of makeup art – mostly via lecture, visual imagery and film clips - will provide relevance and fluency to the language of the production environment the student is about to enter. Subjects covered include makeup usage in theatre, the development of and significance of cosmetics throughout history, and the evolution of makeup artistry within Hollywood. The effect of evolving film stocks, digital cameras and lighting is also studied through various film clips from the 20th Century.

Glamour and Fashion 01

This course introduces the student, by demonstration and practical application, to creating a specific character or communicating an idea through make-up. They learn common glamour techniques including false lash application and ‘smoky eye’ blending, as well as more advanced fashion based classes that allow them to creatively explore various forms of beauty. The course will consist mainly of live demonstrations and lectures followed by in-class practical exercises. Glamour & Fashion 02 introduces the students to the evolution of make-up styles throughout the 20th century, via demos and practical application. These classes further refine the students understanding of creating “period” character.
The developmental history of makeup styles and their influences are closely examined. It also has application to create character or communicate an idea in a way that meets the expectations of the fashion industry. Makeup for black and white photography, bridal makeup, and runway makeups are also explored. Written and visual reference materials reflecting current industry practices are also supplied to students as they are immediately relevant to class activities. Additionally, students’ retention and knowledge will be measured and reinforced by a practical application assignment at the end of 01 and 02.

Visual Art

In its most basic sense, Visual Art exposes students to art theory and technique in mediums outside of makeup application so that their understanding of makeup can be supported by this wider scope. Instructors cover subjects, such as colour theory, life drawing, photography, chart design, oil painting, and airbrush technique. This course extends through Term 2.

Production Skills 01

Here we introduce the students to the ‘language’ of the film set and gives broaderscope of the makeup artist’s duties, and introduce them to the concept and importance of continuity. This course also serves to integrate the students with people from other departments (FILM, ACTING). Field trips to industry suppliers also serve to de-mystify the materials procurement process. This course also expands the students product knowledge, and to educate them in how to shop wisely and avoid the pitfalls of advertising. They are also exposed to film and television set etiquette and mechanics, and introduced to the basic workings of a film set, by preparing to participate in film shoots. It also focuses on developing their time management skills. The students will then participate in actual film shoots and production meetings (Terms 3 and 4) as well as a fashion photo shoot (Term 3). Outside of the classroom hours, Instructor supervision is occasional during the film shoots to check in and deal with any practical issues. There is also an historical research assignment of 20th Century Make-up Artists and their achievements. This course is in terms 1, 3 and 4.

Corrective Makeup

This course lays the groundwork for all future Corrective, Beauty and Glamour makeups.It introduces the students to the fundamentals of corrective application, product and equipment choices and then develops their “eye”, or ability to discern the needs of each particular performer and bring shape and form into aesthetic balance. The course will consist mainly of live demonstrations and lectures followed by in-class practical exercises. Extensive written and visual reference materials reflecting current industry practices are also supplied to students as they are immediately relevant to class activities. This course also familiarizes the students with the basics of facial anatomy in terms of bones and muscles specifically, so that they have a better understanding of the system that supports the canvas (the skin) on which they must work. Students develop an understanding of the responsibility of the Makeup Artist (to the actor, the production, and themselves) to safeguard the performers skin. Additionally, students’ retention and knowledge will be measured and reinforced by a practical application lab and a practical application assignment.

Digital Media and Design 01

This course introduces students to Adobe Photoshop – the world’s most powerful image editing software. For design use, the industry expectation has increased for every department to use it. For Make-up Artists, knowledge with this software can be invaluable as it streamlines the design and approval process. Whether one is creating a design for a monster or a new fashion look, a photo-realistic rendering can be generated and easily altered into many versions, negating the need for costly and time consuming tests. Students will learn the basics of the interface and solid skills like painting on layers, creating selections as well as basic color adjustment culminating in a design assignment that features character work. Featuring a Photoshop design in their portfolio becomes a useful item to showcase as part of their skill set. In later terms students are encouraged to do their design charts on computer and will continue to re-visit Photoshop regularly in every term to build their photographic portfolios. Students will see many samples of actual working portfolios as they are guided into assembling their own polished, professional caliber book. This course culminates in a review panel of industry professionals who critique the students’ books before they go to print so vital final changes can be made. This course extends spans all Terms; 1 2,3,4,5 and 6 (listed as 01, 02 and 03).

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Vancouver Film School (VFS)

Program level:
12 months
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Starting Date: Submission deadline Status
January 1970 January 1970

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