Creating SFX Looks, One Eerie Creature at a Time

Published on in Miscellaneous

It's the time of year when zombies roam the streets and ghouls appear on your doorstep. Makeup and special FX artist, Danielle Wolf is no stranger to these creepy characters... she brings them to life! See how she got her start in the biz and why she loves the art of creating eerie looks. 

Q: Why did you start a career in makeup and special effects? 

A: Growing up I had no idea I wanted to get into makeup and special fx. I had always enjoyed makeup, and giving my mom, sisters and even sometimes dad makeovers. It wasn't until high school that I found my love for special fx. I was planning on going to college to pursue a business degree and I had gotten a job as a secretary at a law firm. My boyfriend, now fiancé had always had a passion for film making and editing. We would make short films on the weekends. Some of the films he made required some special fx. Of course being the girl I offered to research and work on all the makeup. It was then did I realize how much fun and how much of an artistic release it was to do special fx. I took time off of college and my business degree and went to Cinema Makeup School, where I grew to love and appreciate makeup and special fx so much more. 

Q: What do you find is the most challenging part of creating such gory and scary make up effects? 

A: The most challenging part of creating gory and scary makeup is the research and prep work. I myself like special fx makeup to look as realistic as possible. In order for things to look real is to know what the real thing looks like! This requires a lot of google image searching. It is not for the faint of heart. Once I know what I want it to look like there is a lot of prep work and shopping to be done. 

Q: Do you tend to be a bit more busy during the Halloween season? What projects are you currently working on? 
A: This Halloween season is the busiest I've been. Right now I am prepping for multiple makeup gigs, all being fx work. I'm excited about transforming a whole family into The Adams Family. I am currently working on getting molds done for them. There is also a shark bite victim being made for a halloween party. 


Q: What are a few major tips you would share with a production pro who is interested in getting into special effects? Any tips or tricks on success? 
A: When you are starting out try to work as much as possible so you meet more people. Once people like you and your work they will want to continue working with you on future projects. Never stop learning more about special FX. It's an art and there is always more to know! 

Q: What do you use to create your effects? What has been one of your favorite special effects looks thus far? 
A: I use a lot of products to create special fx. Some of my most favorite fx I have done were done using things I found around the house or bought at the 99 cent store. You can create a lot with imagination and creativity. 

Q: What horror movies do you favor and gain inspiration from due to the amazing makeup and special effects created?
A: When it comes to horror I favor the TV show The Walking Dead. When I started makeup school I was really into that show and I even did a zombie for my special fx final. The makeup and special fx I really appreciate is the makeup done in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies. I know its not all horror but every time I watch those movies my mind is blown by how great it all looks. There is so much detail and I know how time consuming it is. Those are the type of movies I gain inspiration from. 

Q: Anything else you would like to add?
A: Find me on ProductionHUB or leave me a message on my website

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