Artists Must 'Makeup' for HD Demands

As HD grows, apparently so does awareness among actors and makeup artists of the medium's unforgiving penchant for details. Such well-established stars as Helen Mirren and Judy Dench have publicly complained (mostly in jest) about how HD unfairly makes them look their "real ages." British makeup artist Sandra Exelby,
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As HD grows, apparently so does awareness among actors and makeup artists of the medium's unforgiving penchant for details. Such well-established stars as Helen Mirren and Judy Dench have publicly complained (mostly in jest) about how HD unfairly makes them look their "real ages."

British makeup artist Sandra Exelby, a member of the National Association of Screen Makeup Artists and Hairdressers, told The Stage publication that most HD video is "virtually like being in the same room as someone. Every flaw will be visible unless makeup artists re-train in new techniques and even something as basic as what colors to use has to be adapted."

Exelby, who runs her own makeup shop in Shepperton (home of the world-renowned Shepperton Studios) said that broadcasters are increasingly asking for HD-trained makeup staff. "Within the next two years, this is going to snowball. Everyone in the industry will need to be able to do it."

A spokesperson for the Broadcasting Entertainment Cinematograph and Theatre Union in London said one of the implications for HD is "all art and design work [in TV] is up for scrutiny on-screen in a way that was perhaps only true before for people [who] worked in big-budget feature films, so now such skills have to step up. At this stage we are working with colleagues... into perhaps establishing qualifications or finding some way of validating people's experience in the makeup and hair profession."