I decided to base my moustache on the character of father christmas from the film miracle on 34th street. I wanted to use a character from a TV program or film as this is what I was also basing my ageing make up on. I didnt want an unrealistic moustache on a TV make up. I started by looking closer at the style of his moustache and the growth direction of the hairs and I wanted to consider what type of hair would be best for this style. From my research I decided that Yak would be best as it is available in pure white and is much coarser than human hair. I found the template process achievable and I was happy that the shape of my moustache outline reflected the shape of my chosen character.
Unfortunately my knotting skills were not the best and I missed the end of two lessons during this learning period. This led to me knotting my moustache slightly wrong for these reasons.
I started at the top of the moustache instead of the bottom. This meant it was difficult for me to see where I was knotting, or what I had already knotted.
I used 4 – 5 hairs at a time instead of just a few with yak hair. This resulted in some of the knots being quite messy and I ran out of hair.
I knotted every row instead of every other row which led to a very thick moustache.
It took me a while to master the knotting technique and I found it very time consuming, probably because I was making it very hard for myself. Yet I did find it quite theraputic and I could imagine If I had the correct equipment, including lighting and hackle, that I could enjoy it more and get better and quicker. I ran out of hair at one point and had to cut some from the parts I had already knotted, this resulted in my moustache being several different lengths.
Cutting and Styling
When I had finished my moustache was pulling to one direction, my tutor said this must have been my style of knotting and that next time I should hold my board in a different position. The night before my assessment I started to one by one pull the individual hairs in the other direction to create more of the appropriate style for my moustache. However I pulled them completely apart giving my moustache a ‘partin’ instead of being straight down at first and then pulling out at each side. I though this would be able to be fixed when I trimmed and styled my noustache but unfortunately we ran out of studio time and I had to cut my moustache during my assessment. This meant I was quite rushed and I am not happy with my final moustache. As I have no barbering skills I really struggled to create the same style as the character I was basing it on. I did try using moustache wax but because I had knitted my moustache so thick it was sticking out far too much to achieve the father christmas style. Instead of looking realistic my moustache looked obviously fake to me and more for theatre or fancy dress rather than TV. However I am glad I had this experience as It has given me an understanding of how to use this technique in the future.
If I was to try knotting this moustache again I would change the following…
Use less hairs per knot and miss every other row, therefore creating a thinner style.
Start knotting at the bottom of the moustache to avoid any confusion.
Knot my moustache and tighten into place depending on the direction of growth of hair from the character I am copying, this will make it easier to style.
Attaching and Removing My Moustache
I had already done quite a bit of research on how to attach my postiche and I had found most techniques the same. I looked in Penny De LaMer’s books and Richard Corson and I decided to attacth my moustache with spirit gum. I have used this product before in special effects work and there fore I was aware of the health and safety and removal techniques. My model felt comfortable throughout the application and the skin was not irritated after.
Overall I am not completely satisfied with the outcome of my postiche and I wish I had researched different techniques into more depth, and had attended the last part of my two ventilating lessons before I started knotting. However I have learnt a considerable amount from this task and I now have a log book to look back on in any future postiche work. I fell I could confidentally take on some work shadowing in this field however I understand I have still have a lot to learn and my skills can be developed with experience.