Genius Jon at work

Make-up effects and illustration designer Jon Moore.
Make-up effects and illustration designer Jon Moore.

WHAT do Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean, Dr Who and Holby City have in common?

They all include the work of make-up effects maestro Jon Moore.

The 39-year-old artistic genius has a CV which would match most illustrious designers.

Since landing a role in horror feature Evil Aliens in 2003, Jon has never stopped.

He secured a spot on BBC’s Doctor Who the year later and has since worked on television programmes, including Emmerdale and Bodies as well as a hugely impressive list of films such as Robin Hood, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Captain America and Pirates of the Caribbean – On Stranger Tides.

And it all started out at the Hartlepool campus of Cleveland College of Art and Design.

Jon got in touch with the Hartlepool Mail after he was sent a copy of a recent Memory Lane page in which he featured.

He spent two years in town studying a HND in design and crafts in the entertainment industry from 1992.

After graduating, travelling around Australia and America and then doing work in television and theatre back in his home city of Leeds, he moved to the capital where got his big break and secured a spot with Millennium FX.

It was then he started showing off his skills on the big screen and despite the detail and lifelike designs, none of them include the aid of computerised special-effects.

“It’s very much a case of getting your hands dirty,” said Jon.

“We use clay and plaster and sculpture the designs.”

John says he is a “bit of a geek” and his favourite projects include Captain America and the recent horror film World War Z, starring Brad Pitt, where he travelled to Budapest and Malta for filming.

But he says he finds realistic projects such as Holby City the most challenging.

“When you are designing aliens and fantasy you can do whatever you like really because there are no particular colours or designs you have to go along with,” added Jon.

“But the realism of projects such as Holby City is challenging.

“My favourite bit is actually going on to the set and sticking on the make up.”

Jon admits he often gets a positive response from people when they find out what he does for a living – and he even gets some personal use out of his skills.

“I once made my dad a severed arm,” laughed Jon.

“He saw the one which I designed for work and said he loved it so I thought I would surprise him with one of his own.”

But the majority of Jon’s time is spent on set and he admits he often works 20 hour days.

And he even hinted that another Hollywood film could be around the corner.

Watch this space.

l Mail view: Page 8