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Make-up artists prepare for the Canberra Zombie Walk

Forget the smokey eye or the statement lip – when it comes to make-up looks, flesh wounds and bite marks are in. With a boom in the genre, somewhat thanks to the popularity of TV series The Walking Dead, zombies are now on trend.

Its popularity means that make-up artists are now training specifically in the zombie look. Owners of the Canberra Makeup Academy (CMA) Deborah Pobjie and Nina Schilling sent their two head trainers up to Sydney recently to get zombie-skilled.

"The thing people need to understand is as a make-up artist, one day you could be doing bridal make-up, the next day you could be doing the zombie walk, the next could be the prime minister," Deb says.

"It's a really diverse industry so you need to be able to be across everything and be able to produce anything."

Ahead of the Canberra Zombie Walk on November 1, which raises money for the Brain Foundation, HAUS Models and CMA teamed up on Wednesday to test out some zombie make-up looks.

The make-up artists transformed model Illana Davies into a zombie, a process which took about two hours, complete with bite marks, scratches and scarring.


Senior CMU trainer Jacqui Scott said that the students love creating the special effects and get to do everything, right from creating the plastic prosthetics.

"They get to do the whole process from making the prosthetics, to applying them and colouring them," she says.

"There are lots of different types of zombies out there. So it can really go really gory and really bloody, or they can be more pulled back where they look like real people and it's more about the actual prosthetics and letting them shine. We can also rough up the skin and add some vein work or some dirt work."

On the big day, CMA will transform 10 models who will join the throng of undead who will limp and shuffle through Civic. Find out more about the Canberra Zombie Walk at

Get physical for mental health

Coinciding with Mental Health Week this week, former Canberran and Australian gymnastics champion Di Westaway popped to town to promote the mental health benefits of walking.

As the CEO of Sydney Coastrek, a 55-kilometre trek challenge along Sydney's coastline, Di says walking is significantly beneficial when it comes to improving mental health.

"This ground-breaking study just came out of the UK last week which strongly shows the mental health benefits both in reducing depression and improving mood of walking – particularly group walks in nature," she said.

"Gary McDonald from Mother and Son fame said many years ago that he managed his depression with a daily walk and it stuck in my mind. And we see it with our clients every day – lots of clients have really cut back on their medication just by walking."

Coastrek sees people from all over the country head to Sydney to take on the challenging hike, which takes participants 13 hours on average to complete.

"We have about 100 people coming from Canberra for Coastrek next year, and we'd love to get more," she says.

"We see you guys running around the lake and the beautiful circuits you have there, and everyone looks happy when they're doing it."

Di grew up in Canberra, and left at 15 to study gymnastics. During her early training days, she even starred on the front cover of The Canberra Times in 1977. Di went on to become the Australian national aerobics champion in 1987 and Australian national fitness leader of the year in 1990.

As a single mother of three, Di then founded Wild Women On Top, a community to empower women through physical training and adventurous trips. She then founded Coastrek in 2009, which has so far raised more than $6 million for the Fred Hollows Foundation.

Di takes groups of women on adventures all over the world, and recently returned from a trek in Peru, where she also managed to squeeze in breaking a world record for the highest walking handstand, at 5780 metres above sea level on snow and ice.
"I just wanted to show women over 50 can still climb mountains, can still do handstands, can still walk on their hands. And the way to do that is to just keep moving and keep doing stuff – you don't need to shrivel up on the couch with preventable diseases," she says.

"Every day. I walk, I climb, I jog, I cycle, I swim – I do something. But the cornerstone of it all is walking, because if I can't be bothered with anything else or can't fit anything in, walking's so time efficient. You just go out the door."

Coastrek is on March 6, 2015, and registrations are now open at

Pump it up

While many of us are just starting to emerge from winter hibernation, it seems some very dedicated locals were still working through the cold to get in tip-top shape.

On October 4 and 5, the International Natural Bodybuilding Championships (INBC) was held in Brisbane, and the results were littered with winning competitors flying the flag for the ACT.

In particular, in the 'men's fitness model class 2' category, Canberrans Alistair Morrell, Michael Stachow and Zlatko Tanoski came first, second and fourth respectively.

Alistair, who had placed second in last year's competition, also took out the men's fitness Australia overall category.

The personal trainer decided to get into bodybuilding when he was studying at CIT a couple of years ago. He now works at Fitness First in Deakin, and sticks to a strict regime of training and eating.

"Basically I'm heading to the gym two to three times a day, just about every day, and I'm making sure I'm weighing out all my food and eating my meals pretty strictly five times a day," he said.

Looking at his photos, I can't say we're surprised. Alistair will now go on to compete at the world titles in San Diego on November 7, representing Australia. 

Save Jason

Canberra Big Brother contestant Jason Roses is up for elimination this week – and it's up to the public to save him.

The entertaining real estate agent has mostly made a good impression in the almost five weeks he's spent in the reality TV compound, with some even going as far as to name him as the favourite to win.

Earlier this week, there was talk among the housemates about how Jason was yet to be nominated, but on Wednesday night he found himself on the chopping block for the first time.

Now it's up to the public to vote to save the contestants, and the person with the least amount of votes will leave the house. Want to keep Jason in? Head to to vote.

Jason will learn his fate next Tuesday at the Big Brother eviction on WIN. 

New In The City out Monday

The new issue of In The City comes out on Monday. Gracing the cover is the gorgeous Courtney Martin and Olivia Mennie, who were chosen from a Facebook call-out for Canberran aspiring models.

Keeping with the local flavour, their hair and make-up was done by local day spa Zaija. Get your copy of In The City in Monday's edition of The Canberra Times, or find it throughout the Canberra CBD.

What's On

- On Sunday, dust off your platforms for a retro-themed Old Bus Depot Markets, celebrating all things retro cool. Browse fashion, homewares, furniture, jewellery and accessories. Free entry. 10am-4pm.

- Next weekend, Murrumbateman Field Days returns for its 36th year with two full days of live entertainment, exhibitors, rides, baby animals, wine tasting, cooking demonstrations, tractor pulls, antique displays and more. October 18-19. Tickets Adult $15/Concession $10/Children 12-16 $5/Under 12 free from