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Old 08-24-2019, 10:58 PM   #1
Phantasm
 
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Default Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

Basically, I have a character whose day job is a makeup artist for a studio that does a lot of sci-fi series (along the lines of Star Wars, Star Trek, and Babylon 5) as well as some "game face" vampire series (Buffy/Angel-verse style). In addition to the usual Disguise and Makeup skills for applying the rubber prostheses to the performers, he is also engaged in making them.

Any idea which skills would be used to make things like a Twi'lek's head-tails, a Klingon's brow ridges, or a Minbari's head-bone (to name a small sampling) for application to the human head?
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Old 08-24-2019, 11:06 PM   #2
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

Possibly Artist (Sculpture)?
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Old 08-25-2019, 01:02 AM   #3
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

Absolutely Artist (Sculpture). You're designing an object for its looks, sculpting it and casting it, all of which are covered by that skill.
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Old 08-25-2019, 02:54 AM   #4
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

What about Artist (Prosthetic)?
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Old 08-25-2019, 07:05 PM   #5
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

Nothing wrong with using Artist.

But Disguise already explicitly includes the use of prosthetics, as well as makeup. If you're looking for the "adventuring applications" of a supposedly mundane job, you might prefer Disguise.

If you're a fan of the design-repair-use triads, then Disguise is "use" while Artist can be "design". ("Repair" is left hanging, but you could file that under either or invent a third skill.)
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Old 08-25-2019, 07:18 PM   #6
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
Nothing wrong with using Artist.

But Disguise already explicitly includes the use of prosthetics, as well as makeup. If you're looking for the "adventuring applications" of a supposedly mundane job, you might prefer Disguise.

If you're a fan of the design-repair-use triads, then Disguise is "use" while Artist can be "design". ("Repair" is left hanging, but you could file that under either or invent a third skill.)
Disguise is the use, yes, but I'm looking for the Design/Build angle of the prostheses.

I think I'll go with Artist (Sculpture) for this, as Artist (Sculpture) can do double duty for both the design and build angles.

(The character in question is actually a not-Hollywood actor turned makeup/effects designer who got roped into a covert ops squad as the resident disguise creator specialist.)
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Old 08-26-2019, 01:46 PM   #7
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

It would be unique from disguise.

You'd be specifically looking at an Artist skill like Artist-Makeup, or Artist-Effect prosthetic.

Bear in mind this would be the ability to craft prosthetic used on camera or stage-lit to appear real from a distance or angle specifically. It would be very different at most every skill level to the ability to convince someone in your personal space that they were dealing with an alien or demon or a Chris Hemsworth. Building a prosthetic assembly that would convince someone speaking to you that you were another being a-la Mission Impossible would be a skill-by-ten roll at my table, and it would involve hours of design and hours of application onto the actor.
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Old 08-26-2019, 02:21 PM   #8
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

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Originally Posted by Black Leviathan View Post
It would be unique from disguise.

You'd be specifically looking at an Artist skill like Artist-Makeup, or Artist-Effect prosthetic.

Bear in mind this would be the ability to craft prosthetic used on camera or stage-lit to appear real from a distance or angle specifically. It would be very different at most every skill level to the ability to convince someone in your personal space that they were dealing with an alien or demon or a Chris Hemsworth. Building a prosthetic assembly that would convince someone speaking to you that you were another being a-la Mission Impossible would be a skill-by-ten roll at my table, and it would involve hours of design and hours of application onto the actor.
Seeing as actors need to move around, talk, and physically interact during their scenes, unless the studio is making use of CGI to cover things up the prosthetics will likely be fairly convincing. Also note things like Undercover Boss make extensive use of prosthetics for interacting with actual people, and nobody seems to be the wiser.

Finally, we’re talking about a spec-ops group that has apparently felt the need to recruit some random makeup guy into their squad. The campaign is obviously cinematic.
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Old 08-26-2019, 08:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: Special Effects/Makeup Artist Question

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
Finally, we’re talking about a spec-ops group that has apparently felt the need to recruit some random makeup guy into their squad. The campaign is obviously cinematic.
Yes, obviously cinematic, think Mission Impossible crossed with Solo or Rogue One. I should probably have mentioned that near-human aliens exist in this setting.

And hey, when you somehow end up with a bounty on your head while behind enemy lines, being able to become - on the surface at least - a member of a different species altogether is quite helpful. If they're looking for a human, they generally won't look twice at the Klingon/Twi'lek/Minbari/Sleestak/whatever walking past them.

Time to make the prostheses will vary, of course.
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"But mom, I don't wanna go back in the dungeon!"

The GURPS Marvel Universe Reboot Project and its not-a-wiki-really web adaptation.
Ranoc, a Muskets-and-Magery Renaissance Fantasy Setting

Last edited by Phantasm; 08-26-2019 at 08:16 PM.
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