Creating ‘Believable’ Blood For Your Horror Film

First-time filmmakers often take a departure into the infamous and surprisingly celebrated B-movie stylings of horror flicks. The main problem most filmmakers have with this genre is getting hold of good quality make-up within a small budget. The following article explains how you can make very believable fake blood for your ghastly video productions for next to nothing:

The Ingredients
To get prepare your mixture you’re going to need to track down some mouthwash, coffee, water, golden syrup and some red food colouring. You’ll also need to get hold of a saucepan, a wooden spoon and a hob to provide heat for the mixture. All these items are readily available at your local store if you don’t already have them at home.

The Process
Grab your saucepan and fill it with 500g of golden syrup. Heat the syrup gently and stir well until it has become nice and fluid. Add half of your food colouring mixture, leaving the other half to add if necessary later on. Get a mug and dissolve a heaped teaspoon of coffee into half a mug of boiling water then add it to the saucepan mix and stir. Test out a few drops down your sink to check the consistency is as you require. Take it off the heat and let it cool until it becomes slightly gooey. Once it’s turned nice and gooey add 100ml of your mouthwash, which will help to slightly thin it again and then bask in your DIY make-up triumph.

The Problems
One of the biggest issues with shooting with fake blood is continuity and consistency. Not only do you have to make sure your actors get the right make-up treatment everyday they’re on set, but you have to make sure your set does too. Using the same set and costume over a day or two can make the fake blood mixture dry out and look very different to how it did when it was first applied. Pay careful attention to every little detail any time you’re doing the make-up on your actors or on your set as a whole.

The Little Extras
There are a lot of extra uses for fake blood from shooting out through prosthetic tubes or just throwing it all over the walls. You’ll always need to amend the formula slightly to make it the right liquid consistency for the job at hand. As fake blood can be made into a few consistencies it can also have a few little extra features. A great tip is if you boil down your mixture until it’s very thick and gooey you can put a few drops on your actors skin, which when dry will resemble very realistic scabs. Not bad right?

There you have it, your essential guide to creating realistic make-up for your next zombie-fuelled video production. By using such DIY make-up techniques you’ll be able to keep your budget low without settling for poor on-screen visuals.


About James Bryant

Co-founder of Skeleton Productions a UK based video production agency that helps brands to communicate their messages using creative and engaging content.

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