Meet the Team

Fiona McNeill

I'm a Professor of Physics and Astronomy at McMaster University and I have been studying the effects of lead on people's health for thirty years. I very much enjoy physics because it gives me so many tools and techniques to solve scientific puzzles. In addition to enjoying physics, I am fascinated by poisons, love make-up and really enjoy reading history, so a project investigating the toxicity and light reflecting properties of 18th century make-up is a perfect fit for me! This is a such a fun project where I get to work with a great team of people. I look forward to going to work every morning because I am so excited about what we might find out!


Shaelyn Horvath

I am a Medical and Biological Physics student in my final year of my undergrad at McMaster University. I absolutely love Mac and everything it has to offer, especially their supportive and welcoming community. As for classes, my favourites are medical physics based; I love learning about anything dealing with medicine and helping others, all while applying it to my favourite branch of science! Physics has always intrigued me for its unique way of looking at both everyday systems and complex theories. This project in particular really piqued my interest as it combines my extracurricular love for makeup and history with my academic love for physics. Every aspect of this project has been interesting and surprising and I am so excited to see what else we discover!


Taren Ginter

I’m going into my second year in the Integrated Science program at McMaster University in the Physics concentration. Apart from research and physics, I love reading, running, and cooking, although right now my life largely revolves around school. My favourite aspect of physics is getting to dive deep into everyday aspects of life that don’t always seem complex, and trying to discover explanations for some of the many unknown phenomena. I love being involved with this project for the unique interdisciplinary perspective it brings to an under-researched subject. This project is so interesting for its combination of historical concepts and common misconceptions surrounding lead makeup, and I can’t wait to see what we discover along the way!


Ryan Tretter

I’m in the last year of my Chemistry undergrad with a minor in History at McMaster University. I am always amazed by the diversity of problems which can be solved with the assistance of Chemistry. Chemistry continues to remain relevant to real world problems while also delving into incredibly abstract phenomena. I have also had an interest in history as long as I can remember and was immediately captivated by the idea of using chemical theories and techniques to help solve a historical mystery. This project also has modern applications and may help advance our understanding of lead toxicity. I am very excited to see what we discover.


McMaster University

We are very happy and proud to work and study at McMaster University, one of the top 100 universities in the world. Mac (as it is affectionately known) is famous for its research impact and innovative learning. It also has a beautiful campus, which is a great place to live and learn!