Hairdressers Journal
Hairdressers Journal


Behind the Scenes of the British Hairdresser of the Year 2020 Photoshoot

I always wanted to do a shoot with beautiful swan neck mannequins – and what better time than during a pandemic. I wanted to make them look as real as possible so I had to really think about the placement and the amount of hair I used.

The swan neck heads were much smaller than real heads, they had no ears to create depth or shoulders to create form. Plus, they were all looking in the same direction so I had to chop some of the heads off and reposition them.

The biggest challenge

The next challenge I faced was buying hair that was not too expensive. Most of the hair I used came from the bargain bucket at the back of the shop.

The biggest challenge I faced was trying to make them look elegant and not like a college project. Once I worked all this out I started to line them up in my living room. I kept looking at them and pulling bits off and repositioning hairlines to make them work.

They were in my living room for months with bits of hair all over the place.

Character creation

To complete each image I went to a fabric shop and bought some fabrics to help bring each mannequin to life. I contacted a stylist friend of mine who dressed them – the whole idea was to treat each mannequin like a real person with their own personalities. As each mannequin has the same facial expression it took time and patience to make them look individual and original.

The photoshoot was different from any other because all of the models were mannequin heads, which meant the prep and the day itself was unique to say the least...

1 Each mannequin head was given a make-up check.
2 The hair was placed ready for the day ahead.
3 We had to find the right outfit for each mannequin.
4 All of the mannequins were given a lighting check and we chose the background colour for the entire collection.
5 It was a long day for everyone, including the mannequin heads.

Entries for HJ’s British Hairdressing Awards 2021, sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional, are open until Friday 2 July at 5pm. Go to enter now

This article appears in the July 2021 Issue of Hairdressers Journal

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This article appears in the July 2021 Issue of Hairdressers Journal