Often, a script demands the impossible. Some characters need horns sprouting out of their heads, some need fins, others need giant pointy ears, or skull-like cheekbones. It's the makeup artist's job to build these fantastical parts and convince the audience that the actor was born with them. 'Construction' makeup skills allow the artist to 'scratch-build' these body parts using a variety of materials such as nose putty, derma wax, tissue, cotton and latex, and other out-of-kit sculpting mediums to create 3D makeup the "old school" way. Construction makeup is the forerunner of today's more advanced prosthetic makeups and is still very common in theatre and independent film. When combined with other aspects of character design such as hair laying, or "paint and stipple" aging, construction makeup can transform an actor with only a small budget and even smaller prep time.
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