Thursday, March 13, 2014

Chris Carpenter at Shakespeare Theater Company

At Shakespeare Theater Company, it is so nice to be able to work on one show at a time, unlike OSF which had nine shows in the shop when I left. It allows for the privilege of concentration. This is certainly needed with the show we are working on now, Henry IV, Parts One & Two; yes both parts at the same time. The costume designs are by Anne Hould-Ward, who I worked with at the Old Globe. By the way, she was nominated for a Tony as the designer for  Into The Woods. Henry IV is huge. It has over 200 costumes with multiple layers and pieces to each costume, and Anne likes all her costumes to be touched by paint.
I have been learning some fabulous tips for painting  and distressing of costumes. Joshua , the crafts artisan and painter/dyer,  paints in all his highlights first using a thinned Neopaque with a broader tip airbrush.  This gives  a wider then necessary highlight, but when the mid-tone color is  applied  afterwards, it has much more clarity and visibility on stage. The pigments he uses are Dynaflo.  The use of these paints and the wider tip eliminates the need for straining, quite a time saver when detail is not important.
Another great time saving feature is the distressing techniques STC uses in the construction of garments. Costumes are sewn with the seams on the outside, even the  darts. A contrasting lining gives another accent of color.  

They also pink the hem edges and sew on lace in a haphazard manner. Both techniques are great ways to achieve frayed edges while keeping the garment sturdy.

Last Monday was a "snow day" and the costume shopped was closed.. I was excited because I had plans to hit the museums, but they were closed too. Even Starbucks was closed.  Only a couple inches of snow, but very cold and very icy. It stopped snowing and I made the trek on ice  to the Vietnam War Memorial.  It was worth it. I found the names of my sister's partner's two brothers. With the reflections of the light & snow the wall became a mirror of me taking the photo. With the weather conditions it was quite empty and a very moving experience.

More to come later,  this has been so rewarding.

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