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Greyscale Body Makeup

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Greyscale Body Makeup

Post by nathangello on Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:29 pm

Hello, I'm not exactly in the facepainting business, but I could use some advice from the experts. I am producing a play for a local theatre and we are doing the entire show in black and white greyscale, basically so that it looks like the audience is watching an old film live in front of them. It's not a wholly original idea, but none of the tutorials we've found have worked in our tests, so I'm coming to you guys for help.

We went ahead and bought 2 large tubs of Mehron Clown White and some Mehron Silver. These are grease paints that, with the application of some setting powder and finishing spray, should give us the effect we need.

Now to my questions!

When we mix the white and silver to get a kind of light grey skin tone, we start to look blue somehow. I don't understand where the blue pigment comes from, but it always appears (and we've tested several different paints before deciding on the Mehron grease). Does anyone have any ideas on how to mix these and create a more pure grey?

Also, setting and sealing the grease paint, does anyone have any ideas about what kind of powder to use? The woman that sold it to us recommended Baby Powder (corn starch free). Does anyone have any experience with that? What about using Mehron's Barrier Spray on top of that for an even better seal? It's a 1.5 hour show and there will be some sweaty actors doing a lot of movement, so we're trying to really keep this stuff secure.

Thanks for your help!!


Number of posts : 1
Registration date : 2013-10-08

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Re: Greyscale Body Makeup

Post by leapinglizards on Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:58 pm

You would be better off buying grey makeup. Also, the lighting in the theatre will cause colors to shift.

Problem with Grey (silver etc) is that it typically has other colors in it. That's where the blue is coming from. Also, the Mehron silver has metal in it which might be oxidizing in the clown white.

Kryolan Supracolor (not AQUA color) is available in grey, black, white, and off white. Using those mixed in various ways, should give you base, highlight and shadow colors as needed.

Also, make sure you get white or translucent poweder, or this too will cause a color shift.


Number of posts : 1061
Registration date : 2009-10-31


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Re: Greyscale Body Makeup

Post by Guest on Tue Oct 08, 2013 7:52 pm

I use baby powder when doing mixed colours and it works fine, way cheaper than setting powders.

Dean is right about the colours. I wouldn't use silver or any metallics on stage unless you want the metallic effect as the do react differently in the lights.


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Re: Greyscale Body Makeup

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