The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Clowning around » » "Clown makeup," and why Scary Clowns arent the problem (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

IncantoMagic
View Profile
New user
52 Posts

Profile of IncantoMagic
Warning: This is a rant. Sorry about the tone in advance.

Some information that seems to have been lost throughout the years is the fact that the style of clown makeup that has become popular since the mid 1900s, and has become synonymous with "clowns" was designed for a very specific performance environment. The exaggerated features of this style of makeup were developed during the hay-day of Trainshows, that played in multi-ring tents, and later in arenas as Ringling brothers, Cole bros, etc carried on the traditions of this style of show. It was designed, such that someone sitting in the 30th row could see the features of the performer, and that the comedy would carry all the way through the venue.

This style of makeup was then taken by people who wanted to be clowns, outside of this circus setting, and without any historical context, they felt that imitating this style of makeup was the appropriate thing to do. that's "clown makeup" after all. That notion wasn't helped by large "clown" organizations in the US that have makeup competitions at their conventions and the lot. Many of the clowns who are a part of these organizations are not arena circus clowns. These people went into industries like children's entertainment, balloon twisting, etc, and anyone who has worn this style of makeup knows that when approaching people, be they children or adults, there is often a sense of unease. As you approach a group up close, often times these fears are set aside, by an adult in a group saying "oh, its a clown, honey, arent they funny", but the truth of the matter is that this style of clown makeup IS terrifying up close.

The caked on makeup. The persons wringles cracking through. They heavy eyeliner. The masked identity. The grotesque features. Its aweful.

And why do we think this is appropriate.

You look at professional clowns from circuses throughout north America and Europe. On most of the biggest shows in the world, the clowns don't have this style of makeup. Because clown isn't about the makeup, The makeup is a tool to accentuate expression and give identity.

You look at Bello Nock or Housch ma Housch, or Fumagali. Bill Irwin and David Shiner. David Larible hits a middle ground. Even if you go back decades, and look at George Carl. None of the Biggest names in Clowning in the world wear "clownface".

"Scary clowns" arent scaring children. "Scary clowns" arent pushing away the audience.

You are.

I'm not going to say do better makeup. Do SMARTER makeup. Do LESS makeup. You are playing a fool. Not someone who tripped and landed on a painter's pallet. Unless you trip and land on a painters pallet. That could be a good gag.

/rant
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Clowning around » » "Clown makeup," and why Scary Clowns arent the problem (1 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2019 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.1 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL