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Graphic content: Young special effects ace is a cut above the rest

Thatcham schoolgirl is making a name for herself in the industry

Graphic content: Young special effects ace is a cut above the rest

A THATCHAM girl has been spending her time inflicting ‘wounds’ on her family and friends. 

But the nasty injuries are all the work of talented teenager Amy Layland, a self-taught special effects makeup artist who is being watched by industry professionals.

The Kennet School pupil took up the craft after looking for Hallowe’en costume ideas last year and stumbled upon a YouTube tutorial on realistic wounds. 

What started as a Hallowe’en costume idea has led to a full-on hobby and possible career avenue for Amy.

Speaking to the NWN, she said: “I went from there and started making my own cuts and gunshot wounds. 

“I just find it really interesting. I’ve always been intrigued by it and thinking how did they do that? 

“It just really fascinates me and the more I practiced, the better I got at it.” 

Indeed, the work of the talented 13-year-old has attracted international offers.

After seeing Amy’s gruesome work on her Instagram account, one filmmaker asked if she could provide the makeup for their zombie film being shot in New York.

But she had to say “sorry I’m only 13 and don’t live in New York”.

Further interest has come from Boots, which asked her to become a Hallowe’en ambassador, leading Amy to create zombie schoolgirl makeup for a campaign. 

And after attending a prosthetics and sfx (special effects) event and meeting big names in the industry, Amy is being watched by industry professionals. 

“They said I’m very talented for my age,” she said.

She said that Hollywood sfx artist Steve Painter, famous for his work in Saving Private Ryan, Hellraiser and 28 Days Later, had offered her help in finding a career. 

She said: “It’s definitely something I really want to do. I find it so interesting and unique.

“I do a lot of acting at my school and do a lot of stage makeup, but this is making things look worse. 

“I really like it and I’m completely self taught. 

“It can get extremely expensive, especially for a 13-year-old so I just use things from home.”  

Her mother, Donna Layland, said: “To be honest it’s such a shame she’s so young.

“She’s been offered so many opportunities and  when she went to the event a few weeks ago they said she had a gift.

“To be on first-name terms with them and them seeing how she getting on is quite nice really.” 

“At least she knows what she wants to do.

“I don’t know if that will change. She’s been doing it for a year and she’s very good at it. 

“I don’t know where she gets it from. I’m a chef at Newbury College and her dad is an engineer, so maybe the mash of us has created a monster.”

You can check out Amy’s work on her Instagram account sfx_makeup_by_amy 

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