Nutmeg, Nosebleeds and Nasty Surprises – July 2011

July proved to be a bit of a mix as far as work is concerned. A little bit of Look Good Feel Better here, a bit of Violet City there, throw in my continuing work at Hurricane and my diary was quite busy.

At Hurricane, we’ve started work on a video for the new Museum of Liverpool, researching the history of the world, and how Liverpool fits into it. I’ve particularly been focusing on the nautical side of things – pirates, slavery, emigration, naval races and wars. In another life I’d have studied History at uni instead of Surface Pattern, but seeing as I can’t afford a purely self-indulgent degree, studying it for work reasons is all the more beneficial. I mean, who knew New Amsterdam became New York as a result of a series of wars over nutmeg? (I’ve ended up buying a couple of books on the subject – does this make me a geek??) Thought so.

one of my zombie masks from Turn In Your Grave

I’d also been asked this month to go back and visit St Margaret Ward school in Stoke on Trent. I went there last year for their summer arts day and spent the day teaching the kids how to make realistic wounds and was asked back again this year. I’ve always thought that kids loved the grotesque and it turns out, I was right. I never thought I’d have a queue of teenage boys waiting to get make up applied an hour after the end of the school day but there I was, merrily splashing the blood around, secretly terrified of their parents reaction when they arrive home late from school, covered in blood and bruises. Thankfully there were no parental complaints. Quite the opposite in fact and so I returned for another day of black eyes and nosebleeds. It’s official – boys like make up!

one of my zombie masks from Turn In Your Grave

Also this month I went to a screening of a zombie film I’d been involved in last year, ‘Turn In Your Grave’. I’d believed it to be a straight forward psychological zombie film (essentially the living versus the undead) and yet, as there had been a closed set whilst we were filming I was completely unprepared for what the resulting film was. Turns out, it was a politically motivated film, promoting anti EU beliefs. To say I was shocked is an understatement, especially during the scene of a burning swastika. Not entirely sure how a film can morph this far away from the original script, but I was really disappointed to have been duped. Still, at least I can say the make up looked good!

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