Costume is at the core of a film or TV drama. As well as contributing to the overall look, it helps actors feel emotionally connected to the character they are playing through wearing the character’s clothes.
How is the production costume designed?
Costume designers design, create and hire the costumes for the cast. They start by working with directors, producers, writers, production designer and hair and makeup to contribute to the look and storytelling of the production. All costumes are researched, sketched and drawn onto mood boards of characters and clothes to communicate the style.
They then break down the script, working out what they need to create or hire. Working within tight budgets and deadlines, they recruit a team, organise a schedule of purchases and ensure the costumes are created on time for fittings. With the help of the team they schedule fittings and take photographs. These are then discussed with the producer and director and signed off.
Background Artist role in costume
The costume brief needs to be followed because it is essential that Background Artists blend into the scene and communicate the mood, period, style and emotion of the production just as the Actors, Set and Location all do.
Before you go on set you will be checked by the costume department who will let you know what to wear and for what scenes from the selection of clothes you bring.
To achieve this Background Artists must always take a good selection of outfits that are washed, ironed and match the costume brief sent out in the check in email.
It is helpful to bring your costume options on hangers in a suit carrier.
Handy Hints – A few hints to help get your costume right
- Costume options must have no spots, stripes or visible logos on shoes or clothes. Try to avoid black, white and red where you can.
- Please wear soft soled shoes – so the sound mics don’t pick you up clicking across the set.
- If you are outside – take a jacket to keep warm in-between takes.
- Please arrive wearing your preferred outfit that matches the costume brief.
- Make up and hair should be clean, tidy and natural
- No fake nails, lashes or tan – unless specified
If you haven’t got exactly what the costume brief asks for take options that are as close to the brief as possible. If you are worried about your costume options – please just call us so we can help.