Today was the calm in the eye of the hurricane, that brief respite before the inevitable storm that will be tomorrow’s BIG extended action sequence.  When I said that this was our most ambitious episode to date, I was, for the most part, referring to THIS particular scene.  Can’t wait to see stunt coordinator John Stead’s masterpiece come together.

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

As I mentioned the other day, I’d like to offer fans a chance to get to know the talented people behind the scenes by bringing back the guest Q&A’s.  And I’d like to kick things off by announcing our first Dark Matter crew member Q&A with our key make-up artist, the lovely Linda McCormack.  When she’s not back at her trailer creating nasty-looking wounds like this one –

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

Or getting in at 5 a.m. to cover tattoos for that day’s shirtless scene, she’s usually on set discussing Italian dishes with yours truly.  Having worked on a scores of movies, mini-series, and shows (Dark Matter and Lost Girl among them), I’m sure she has plenty of interesting stories to tell.  Let’s find out!

Post your questions for Linda in the comments section.  I’ll gather them over the next few days and then send them her way at week’s end!

Some set pics you may have missed…

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

Why so bummed, THREE?  c/o Caitlin Brown.

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

Between set-ups, we seal our cast in individual cells to ensure they don’t wander off.  c/o Jodelle Ferland.

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

Dinner is served on Hyperion-8!  c/o Anthony Lemke.

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!Me practicing my fake smile.  c/o Ivon Bartok.

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!Double trouble!  c/0 Alex Mallari Jr.

In addition to being a rest day, today was – after a week of early morning work-outs and clean eating – CHEAT DAY!  I still worked out.  And I still ate a healthy lunch and dinner.  But I DID snack on these…

January 10, 2016: A Rare Rest Day!

Astoundingly good eclairs from Nugateau, Toronto’s first eclair-only patisserie (717 Queen Street West).

The three varieties we sampled (dark chocolate, pistachio, and vanilla) were…well…unbelievably delicious.  The pistachio, in particular, was one of those bites the foodie in me will dream about for some time to come.

Or at least until next week’s Cheat Day!

28 thoughts on “January 10, 2016: A rare rest day!

  1. Wow those eclairs look amazing! You are making me hungry, and I just finished dinner.

    Question for Linda: how does one learn to be a key make-up artist? I can’t imagine they teach fake wound creation in Cosmetology school. Ewwww….

  2. eeeuuuuuu….dinner platters look like….well NOT sausages that’s for sure.
    I’ll just opt for the eclairs. THANKS

  3. I’ll have to think of a question or two for Linda – one thing I wondered (and it’s probably a super common question) was what is the most challenging part of her job? Is there an aspect of her job that she enjoys the best? I expect covering tattoos is probably not right up there.

    Why is THREE sad? He’s in jail, of course! Plus, having that poo-like food for dinner is probably not helping his overall demeanour.

    Those eclairs do indeed look delicious. *wants*

    Did a little more unpacking in the house today and finally got my light fixture from the Stargate Atlantis set up. I think it looks great!

    Also, here’s a pic of the new budgie, Mandu.

  4. Yum those eclairs look really really good. My husband and I will be starting the Daniel Diet next weekend… this is gonna be hard between the migraine diet and the Daniel Diet I’ll be making modifications to the modifications in the menus. Not all this is healthy is migraine friendly.

    FOR LINDA: that is an awesome wound. Being a retired Surgical Technologist and seeing more than I care to recount… I did a double take. Thought Joe got caught up in stunt scene and lost. I looks like it could be a little more “weepy” looking, y’know oozing with some interstitial fluid maybe a little greenish fluid too, just sayin’ 🙂 We love watching FaceOff and seeing the amount of work these people put into their work. It’s really amazing. How did you get into to special FX? What was the funnest project you worked on? Yes i said funnest,

  5. Ok, my take on the action sequence…
    One is off somewhere talking to the Warden, saying stuff like “I’m not the real Corso! Let me go!”
    Two is kicking butt, doing flips and all kinds of weird athletics in the process.
    Three is getting HIS butt kicked as a distraction.
    Four is carving people into slices for the celebratory BBQ when they escape.
    Five is looking from Two to Four and back saying “Y… k..k..k..killed…” each time someone goes down.
    Six thinks his goose is cooked when Two thru Four are finished with the guards.
    The dinner in pic 5 looks a bit…. suggestive. Really long sausages, right? 🙂
    I don’t anything about make-up effects, so the only question I can think of for Linda is: What’s the grossest make-up effect you’ve had to do?

  6. Hey Joe, Just wanted to pop a question for your makeup person……How long does it take for Zoie’s barcode tat????

  7. @gforce – that light fixture and budgie look fantastic. I had some Finches once. I discovered that I’m not a bird person. So, now I have 4 cats. I am definitely a cat person.

    FYI, Joe, Colin Cunningham just let Facebook know that Harlan Cutshall has passed away. He was in Stargate: Atlantis as a Marine. Specifically, in – Tabula Rasa (2007). He was born in Vancouver and seemed to be doing quite well, appearing in several popular films. Check him out here:
    Condolences to his family and friends.

  8. You know I love the pics as always. Having some eclair envy – those are some serious eclairs. Loving gforces light fixture! Some serious envy there as well.

    Questions for Linda:
    How long have you been a make-up artist?
    Who were your inspirations?
    Your favorite all time make-up effect from any movie or tv show?
    Most challenging make-up to date on DM? Ever?
    Favorite make-up effect on DM set?
    How tedious is Three’s scar or the Androids barcode tat?
    How hard is it to cover up Alex’s tats? Time involved?
    Average arrival time on set to get things started? When do you leave?

    Thank you for the opputunity to ask questions.

  9. Joe that is the sickest “food” I have ever seen. I can’t believe you make them eat that! What does it taste like? Hopefully lots better than it looks.

    Oh, and from the Periscope… I forgot to mention, Ivon is too cute. What does Lulu think of his beard?

    Some questions for LInda McCormack:

    Are you an artist also? Do you paint or draw, etc?

    What was your first favorite TV show you can remember as a kid?

    At what age did you know you were a little different and could create gross looking wounds?

    What is the grossest thing you ever created?

    Do you ever play practical jokes with your makeup skills?

    What was/is your favorite show/movie to work on and why?

    Thank you Linda for taking the time to answer questions!

    @ gforce – Pretty bird!

    Thank you everyone for all your comments. I will be listening to any advice, suggestions, or ideas related to elderly care you want to give.

  10. i agree with DP, that stuff is repugnant. it looks like the intestines of something. those gray gruel samples you posted a while back looked more appetizing than that.

  11. Linda- My sister and I go to Zombie Pub crawl every year. The make up we put on is prosthetics and they hurt to take off and it takes a while! Is there a cleaning solution that is good for removing them? Thanks 🙂

  12. Aah. Hope you enjoyed your quiet day ….
    Prison food n éclairs all on one blog – eergh! Not a fan of éclairs…. or prison food, come to think of it!

    Oi, you with the smile …. are you running for mayor?

    Some questions for Linda
    1) What do you use for inspiration for your injury fx makeup – medical books, articles, google (!)?
    2) Do you maintain a gruesome pictures scrapbook that you dip into from time to time!?
    3) What materials do you mostly use for the bigger makeup patches and how do you go about producing them? (Do you design then hand over to fx guys to make)
    4) When does a makeup fx become a physical fx?
    I thought it was great how Ones facial injuries from his interrogation changed/matured over time.
    5) Is it hard to keep continuity over a large number of scenes, with injuries and especially blood? Any tricks?
    6) And how do you manage to keep scars (like Three’s) and tatts etc from wandering around a main characters features throughout an entire series!?
    And one last silly, off the wall, question –
    What’s your favourite film of all time (doesn’t need to be makeup related) and why?!
    Many thanks. Have a great start of the week, shoot day!

  13. Let me guess…. The “MENU” sign at the CRAFT-SERVICES-TABLE today read, “DARK MATTER *SPECIAL*” and that colorectal-“core”-sample was the result..?

  14. Question for linda: do all your friend ask you to do their kids make up for Halloween?

  15. I adore eclairs, and cannot find good ones locally. The supermarkets tend to put whipped cream in them rather than custard. Sigh. Not like I could have one now anyway, I am on a weird post-surgical journey with my gut literally sliced in two for a few months. Food is not my friend. I am sad.

  16. Ponytail: We’re here for you when you want to vent.

    Gforce: Such a beautiful bird! Love the light fixture too.

    Maggiemayday: Feeling any better?

    The food on Hyperion-8 looks like the prescription food I’m force feeding my cat (Hills A/D). Or it could be pureed beans? It might be ok with some crackers. Too bad Hyperion -8 doesn’t serve éclairs. Those éclairs looked pretty tasty. Plus, they looked easy to eat. I bet I could get a whole éclair in my mouth with one bite.

    There were some great questions already. I’ll add three more for Linda McCormack: What’s the longest application (time wise) you’ve had to do? How did you learn this craft? Thank you!!!!!

  17. Oops, forgot to post third question for Linda: Do those battle wounds have to be made from scratch or do you have wounds, made ahead, ready to apply?

    Maggiemayday: So sorry about the food but glad you’re feeling better.

  18. Went to see Star Wars again, 7th grade me has been waiting 30 plus years for a sequel..

    For Linda McCormack, I’m loving that the DM androids and synths look human and not like mannequins as in A.I. and 2046. What choices go into making up the androids and synths?

    On Lost Girl which cast member had the most challenging monster makeup?

    And speaking of Wong Kar-Wai which films and shows influenced you?

  19. This should be fun!

    I tend to watch FaceOff a lot on Syfy, seemingly more for the way things are made and how they do it(my engineering degree acting up again), than why they chose certain colors and what their inspiration was for what character they chose to make. I love all the sculpting and molding they do. Truly amazing stuff!

    Questions for Linda:

    In the amount of time you’ve spent in FX makeup, how much have you seen technology change and affect the way your job is done?

    I assume it’s made things easier in some respects, but has it also made things quicker to fabricate, more repeatable, more reliable, more…?

    Do you use any kind of 3D modeling and/or printing?

    I imagine all ideas start out as sketches in a sketchbook. Do you ever look back through old sketchbooks at previous ideas you’ve drawn up that never made it to air and think about how you might be able to adapt it or modify it for use in something you’re currently working on?

    On the same side of the coin, have you ever had a sketch in the past that you loved but knew was nearly impossible to make and have recently realized that with the advances in technology in FX makeups that such a makeup or appliance or whatever is now doable?

    Thanks in advance! Keep up the great work!

    -Mike A.

  20. Eclairs #nomnom

    @gforce I love Mandu’s colours

    Many thanks, Linda for answering our questions
    What are your ‘must have’ tools that you wouldn’t be without?
    What is the most challenging environment to maintain the actor’s make-up in (indoor/outdoor, hot/cold, rain/-20*C in Toronto!) ?
    Although you’ll use non-allergenic ingredients, etc, has an actor had an allergic reaction?

  21. @gforce. Awww! the new baby is very sweet looking! How old is he? Has Brio begun interacting with his new sibling yet?

    @Tam Not much to tell about my karate exploits. Haven’t donned a gee in over 40 years now! I really only studied it to help me with my ice dancing. Albeit Was very happy to hear you are doing so well with yours. 🙂 Has Miss R Zilla improved well enough to eat on her own yet??

    mmmmm! Those pistach eclairs look mighty intewesting! Oh well eh. So much for my laying off sweets! Am going to the kitchen to bake me one HUGE absolutely bad ass! choc-O’-late chip cookie to fill the void! 😀

    (chubby ballerina takes rag and aggressively wipes off latest application of disgruntled tasting lip balm)

  22. Thanks for the comments about Mandu, everyone!

    @Drea: Yes, they are interacting already, and Brio is acting like a very annoying older brother so far. He likes to do the budgie version of “I’m not touching you!” by getting very close but not actually touching until Mandu reacts and he takes off. We’ll see how it goes.

    @Ponytail: The main thing I kept telling myself those years was “one day at a time”, both for your own well being, and acknowledging that there will be good days which everyone enjoys, and bad days that are not so much fun for anyone. Try to be in the moment as much as possible and not think about tomorrow when today is going well. Tomorrow will get here soon enough. Add in some love and patience and hope for the best.

  23. @gforce awww what a sweet bird. Enjoy him. WUCF here in Cent FLA covered a story on Pattys Parrot Palace where I volunteer, it’s real short check it out! Trish and Tony are incredible people. They have given these 60+ birds their home and dedicate their time and resources to these birds. Volunteers come in everyday to help tend to the flock. I still don’t know how they do it.

  24. Of the times I have visited Toronto I must have passed that pastry shop on numerous occasions. It is not far from the Burger Priest. I guess I was too worried about ruining my appetite for the main course. But, somethings are worth losing.

    The dinner plate reminds me of a Chic and Chong skit. It is a good thing you didn’t step in it. OR, it is just frozen yogurt and they ran out of cones.

    @gforce. Like the house and like the nice bird, Mandu. Parakeets are fun. Wish I cold “get me” a house like that but living in Chicago is a bit academic.

    For the lovely and talented LINDA: With multiple episodes being shot how do you keep things in continuity? I guess there are occasions with late scenes that need (re)shooting too. Who of the cast (be it main, reoccurring, or cameo) is/was the most difficult to do up? (I am not necessarily thinking of gossip tidbits, it could be on the technical merits.)

    Now is that a picture of Melissa (with some obscure shadow) or did I just have a brief anomalous angina episode? 😀

    Best of luck with this years production Joe!

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