CMU School of Drama

Thursday, April 20, 2017

This Makeup Artist Can Transform Her Face Into a Glitch in the Matrix

TwistedSifter: Mimi Choi (@mimles) is a makeup and visual artist from Vancouver, Canada that has built a huge following online for her incredible makeup transformations.

16 comments:

Angel Zhou said...

I remember seeing a video about Mimi Choi’s creative makeup illusions on Facebook. But, it’s one thing to watch a moving video of her illusions – it’s another to see them in still frame. I think the images on this article really showed me that her illusions are very much so creepy – they play into our internal fears by using dark space and blackness to mess with our idea of what does and does not exist. For example, the first image of her touching the mis-aligned head took me a while to figure out because of the addition of her hand. When I watched the video, I found her art to be extremely cool and her use of closing/opening her actual eye added a really nice touch to the entertainment factor. However, with the images, I still find her art fascinating, but I feel like I would be creeped out the next time I see her on my feed.

Vanessa Ramon said...

I remember reading the article from last week about this make up artist and being really impressed. I think make up artist really don't get enough credit for how skillful they really are. I am first glad to see that this article included more photos of her work. From looking at these photos its clear to see that she has a style of illusion. Another thing that I really liked about this article was the fact that it was mainly just a quote from Mimi herself. The quote says a lot about who Mimi is an an artist. I like what she said about how she tries not to look at the work of others because she wants her work to be as original as possible. I think its neat how she chooses to only better herself and not try to compete in a way with the other artists out there.

Delaney Johnson said...

This article is so amazing. Not only is this artist insanely talented, but she is also crazy creative! In high school, I graduated with a girl that loved doing special effects makeup. She had an Instagram account with over 50,000 followers and every day she would post amazing body art photos. I remember think it was so cool that I sat next to someone that talented in Trigonometry class! She too did illusion style makeup, and that is when I discovered the interconnected community between online makeup artists. They all learn and create based on inspirations from different artists. I am always intrigued to see how artists can have hundreds of different takes on the same theme for design challenges. This, however, is not so uncommon to us as theatre designers as we too learn based on the work and style of those around us. Yes, we do create original ideas, but even an original idea had to be inspired by something!

Annie Scheuermann said...

This is some really interesting and cool make up art. It looks like an optical illusion that is lined up perfectly with a camera, and if she changed the angle the the photo was taken, it would not look nearly the same. However, a few of the pictures had links to videos where she moved her head around a little bit and it still looks like her face was transformed. This is one of those odd careers that has really soared with social media in the last few years. Mimi is probably making money off the photos now and could probably be picked up by makeup artist company. I really like how she took a look that was done not with makeup and with special effects technology, and did it physically with makeup. I would be interested in seeing her complete one of the photos and the time it takes her to do one of the looks. I appreciate her quote in the article and how she likes to challenge herself to create different looks to improve her own skills and for herself.

Julian Goldman said...

I’d love to see what these look like in person. They are all really mesmerizing, probably because I’m trying to wrap my brain around my eyes seeing something impossible. One of the main reasons I’d like to see them is person isn’t actually that they look cool, but because I wonder how they look from different angles. I suspect a big part of the illusion might have to do with the camera angle, and photographing the make-up is part of the art. Then again, maybe these actually do work even in person from multiple angles. Either way, this is definitely really impressive, and also very distinctive. I have seen some make-up artists that do looks that are similar to these in some respects, but taking the illusions to this level is pretty rare as far as I know. I wonder how Choi got into this style of make-up, and I’d be curious to see a progression of her work from when she first started to now.

Taylor Steck said...

To start with, these images of makeup design are so impressive! I know that that is stating the obvious but for the most part I feel like makeup design and the people who create those designs don't get enough recognition. I wish the article actually went more in depth in regards to the execution of these designs, especially since we don't get that much training here in makeup, let alone special effects makeup. Not that the designs in the article would be very practical for theatre, I would still like to know more about how she learned to do this, what types of makeup she uses, and how she got into makeup artistry in the first place. I rarely see articles posted on here about makeup design so this post was a nice refresher, and makes me want to continue researching more about makeup designers and their craft, especially with how important it is to the realm of costuming not to mention the rest of the production itself.

Marisa Rinchiuso said...

Wow! These photos are absolutely stunning. It is amazing to create such visual art on the human form. It is truly incredible to see the two worlds collide, especially because the illusions also contain images of her face. I enjoyed viewing all of the photos attached to this article, however I felt like it lacked depth. There was simply just a brief bio of her in the article. I wish the blog had gone into further detail about the illusions, or had a question session with her. I feel like people would be even more impressed if they got to see even a snip-it behind the scenes. Although this is incredible, one-time art, but I think her art would seem even cooler if it was incorporated into something that people could attempt to replicate. Tutorial videos tend to bring popularity to makeup artist. I feel like it would help publicize her work as well as reaching out to a larger audience by doing online and in person tutorials.

Megan Jones said...

Oh my god I can't even draw my eyeliner on straight and this artist is able to make it look like she has three eyes or four noses!! Mimi Choi's work is so impressive, and I can't imagine the time that it takes to just create one of her looks. I feel like make up artists are taken as seriously as other visual artists because people believe that make up is something that anyone can do. Well I've been wearing makeup since middle school and I can't even fathom being able to do what she does. Right after I read this article I looked her up on YouTube and I was shocked to see that she doesn't have a channel. Makeup tutorials are extremely popular on that site and I think that her work would be able to be seen by so many more people if she posted videos there. I know that I would definitely watch, as she has created something truly unique.

Lauren Miller said...

Get with the times David, I saw this on Tumblr a week ago. That being said, I am always amazed at the young talent that is blooming on social media. It seems as if Instagram and similar networks have provide a once-missing outlet for amateur make-up artists to display their work to a new and welcoming audience. Back in high school (my dark days spent as a cheer leader and on color guard) makeup was this mandatory task to be completed everyday and the only way to be respected was to maintain the illusion of perfection. I used to spent hours everyday on hair and make-up application and research. The people I turned to were similar to Mimi Choi - artists in their own right who honestly enjoyed the work they did. I am happy that she is seeing the success she deserves and is enjoying the work she produces. However, can we please not pretend that this is a skill that everyone should aspire to. I can't even look in a mirror let alone devote time to applying pigment to my face.

Emily Lawrence said...

I am continually amazed by what people can do with makeup and how detailed and realistic it can look. These pictures look like something that would be edited on a computer, not something that someone can do with just make up and their hands. Being someone who has never really been good with special effects makeup, I cannot even begin to fathom how long it took for her to achieve this look or even what it took to achieve this look. The amount that goes into creating looks like these are very intense and the people who do it do not get enough credit. The people who are in charge of wigs/makeup for shows are insanely talented because they have to be ready to do the same look every time they go into a night. For movies, if they are filming over multiple days or even weeks, the makeup artists have to be able to recreate the same look many many times. I am amazed because I could not do it once. These pictures just go to show how cool and challenging make up can be.

Sarah Battaglia said...

I love these makeup videos. I have probably wasted to much of my life sitting on my computer watching people cut theater faces in half with makeup or turn into different celebrities. It think it is unbelievably cool and I am so excited that makeup is starting to be treated as the true art form that it is. The skill that it takes to apply makeup well, just in every day life is something most people never learn, and to be able to paint on any surface like this woman does on her face is pretty impressive. I think more than anything it is important that as a culture we start seeing makeup as more of an optional art, rathe than a requirement for women. For too long many women felt like makeup was a necessity or something that they had to learn how to do at a young age. But now we can start seeing it as an art that some people can learn, and some people don't have to. I look forward to seeing how this art form develops as it moves out of its beginning faces and into the history of art.

Claire Farrokh said...

That is literally insane. I've been taking makeup for designers this past semester, so I clicked on this article thinking, "oh I know all about makeup artistry, I'll be able to leave a comment about how easy this design was." I was definitely wrong. I have no idea how the hell she did that. For both, but especially the second photo, she has to comeplefely disguise most of the natural architecture of her face and then repaint it on in a way that looks natural. That is insane. She also is able to create sort of cavernous voids on her face that look realistic due to the shadow detailing that she does. This is incredibly gorgeous work. If there is a tutorial video then I am definitely going to watch it to see how on earth she is able to shift the architecture of her face over. All of that being said, it is wonderful to see makeup artist getting more recognition. Doing something with that level of detail and realism is extraordinarily difficult and takes hours upon hours of trial and error to perfect.

Zak Biggins said...

For some reason make up artistry is so engaging and almost calming for me. The make up artist is a painter and the face is their canvas, and I mean that literally. When we discuss make up in a commercial theatre setting we usually assume its part of the costume designers wishes, well rather they are there own designer. Make up has become an integral part of commercial theatre. Shows like wicked have extensive make up plots and require multiple artists to make the show possible. However, this is not a luxury every broadway show has. In fact, mostly the actors do their own make up by following a plot left for them. This describes how important it is for actors to know how to do their own make up. Carnegie Mellon used to teach a class to actors about doing their own make up and I think it is vital that they revive it. During Playboy of the Western World I was asked (by the male cast) to help them with their make up because some of them couldn't identify what eyeliner was. Make up helps create the show, so lets best prepare our students for the industry by training them in all faucets.

Ali Whyte said...

I love this article. In high school, we had the makeup designer for Wicked come in because he was a fiend of the director's to show us how to do old age makeup for our production of The Crucible. That's when I realized why Hair and Makeup Design was definitely its own separate thing. We spent 6 hours going over the three different ways we would be doing makeup for the show, and how ti was to be tailored to the specific actor and his or her corresponding character. I think articles like this really help people to see how much of an art form it truly is and that it deserves to be treated as such. So often in the theatre world it is just lumped in with costumes, but especially for a show where makeup is an integral part of creating the characters, I think it should 100% be its own department.

Claire Krueger said...

While this is cool there are practically hundreds of artist just like her. Instagram has brought ridiculous tutorials and wild make up styles. While Mimi Choi is undoubtable good she is one of many to create similar illusion. The only unique style that I have seen no other makeup artist do was the tunnel illusion with the stripes around her eyes, other than that i have seen dozens of make up artists do incredibly similar effects, and sometimes even better than her. I’m surprised she got her own article, she must have some sort of connections, otherwise there's practically a sea of artist that could be used and an article using multiple different artists and styles would probably attract more website traffic and more advertisement revenue. Not to mention the variety of photos, seeing how this article is pretty much %90 photos a wide range of them would be more interesting.

Mark Ivachtchenko said...

It's really impressive what "digital" effects you can create using "analog" media. Artists like Mimi Choi--including makeup artists, prop artisans, entertainment technicians, etc--have extremely impressive skills that achieve things certain digital programs can't. Even though traditional make up skills like these are as demanded as they were before, It's good to see people still doing it. Like prop artisans, I'm sure make up artists also struggle to get jobs sometimes because digital effects have taken over slightly and cost a fraction of the price. Choi demonstrates excellence in originality, creativity, and finding motivation for her work. I really hope that she's doing this stuff professionally somewhere and not just leaving it for herself or leaving it posted on social media because she has serious skills that someone is definitely going to want. Although there are probably hundreds of artists like her, they all have a place--after all, there are practically hundreds of artists just like us.