Saturday, 12 March 2011

Hair raising adventures.......

Wednesday night found me prostrate on the sofa, flicking through the channels. I'd slept super-badly the night before despite a jolly night up The Royal Court......saw The Heretic, not brilliant but very enjoyable.....and perhaps that was why I railed into the son for one of his numerous, although usually minor, misdemeanours; or perhaps it was the discovery of many, many tiny dead flies floating in the red-wine-vinegar-without-a-top-bottle and then accidentally splashing it all over the cluttered work top, bringing home the true nature of my slatternly ways. Either way the shouting and the squalor had left me spent and wretched, unable to focus on anything until I found...... The Model Agency on Channel 4. I hadn't watched this show before but was quickly drawn in, such is the power of car-wreck-telly. It was hilarious, the life-and-death-drama going code red as tensions grew and tempers flared while a petulant booker had a hissy fit during fashion week and wanted to ...... leave the table......

Once in another life time, I dabbled on the fringes of this world when as a young naive I wanted to be a make-up artist. I just wanted to paint faces and make fabulous pictures like the ones in Italian Vogue. Needless to say, Italian Vogue forever alluded me...... although I did once 'groom' Paul Smith for Mexican Vogue...... I soon learnt that the glossy end of editorial is along way from the catalogues and advertising that fills the 'jobbing' make-up artist's day and that in order to get booked, one needs to 'do' hair too. Now I am, some might say, blessed with thick, dark, hint-of-a-kink, glossy hair and apart from randomly changing it's colour from white-blond to puce through my heady youth, I know nothing about haircare: wash-and-go means just that, a blow-dry is flinging my head upside down for a quick blast. And I'm a stranger to the subtle variations of gel, wax, frizzese, mud, mould, fine-hold, firm-hold, hair products. So I watched and learnt...... a couple of easy styles and the right words to say..... I assembled a kit of brushes, tongs, and heated rollers I'd seen the 'others' use, to get away with what I would call, 'doing basic hair'. But to be honest if filled me full of dread especially after getting a brush stuck in a model's hair, wrapped tightly and glued to her scalp, a law suit waiting to happen, but that's a whole other story......I kid you not, the thought of it still brings me out in a cold sweat. Imagine my surprise then when, while living in LA, I rocked up to a three-day commercial shoot to discover another make-up artist already installed in the trailer and was presented with a large box of hair products........ And then I discovered that I'd been booked as the hair stylist on a hair commercial for a big American brand....I am not at liberty to say which as they could probably still sue..... I laid out my motley collection of brushes, plugged in the tongs and lined up the bottles and sprays and tubs (honestly, they didn't stint on supplies, I was using the contents of that box as gifts for a year.....) and then I felt sick. Logically it was their fault, or my agent's, not mine. And logically I could have made my excuses and left. No one was actually going to die if I did (see The Model Agency....) But fear sort of propelled me on in the lie. I stuffed my many pocketed-oversized-dungarees....... please it was a long time ago and in LA......with every brush, comb and curler I had and kept referring to the super-sized-hairspray I wielded as 'product' .......just like the professionals do. Mercifully, the stylist, a really lovely girl, was getting it in the neck from the director who'd suddenly had a flash of inspiration on route to the shoot and wanted an entirely different wardrobe, so the spotlight was off me. I didn't sleep much that night for fear that scrutiny of the footage would reveal the truth, but next morning it was all coffee and bagels and smiles. I'd been booked as the hair-stylist therefore I was. Actually, I was just lucky, the three models had been cast for the hair they actually had: a curly red-head, a wavy blond and a gleaming brunette bob, who turned up on set looking curly, wavy and bobbed..... job done and the ad ran on telly for years.....

Top tip: Cold-pressed Rapeseed oil in place of extra-virgin olive..... drizzled on everything it's full of omega three and 'local'....

12 comments:

  1. Oh god, I can just picture how scary that must have been having to be a hairstylist. I'd love to have known which brand it was. xxx

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  2. Yep, I was trawling my addled-memory for ads that had a blonde, red head and brunette; colourant? hairspray? give us a clue!

    ps the model agency's a scream; unless it involves swearing or crying, none of them can do it...

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  3. Dear Jo, what a result with the ad!

    I feel for you having got round brushes matted into my hair on numerous occasions.

    The funniest review of The Model Agency here...

    http://www.sabotagetimes.com/tv-film/the-model-agency-best-taken-with-a-pinch-of-salt/

    xx

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  4. As a hairstylist this is a nightmare LOL ...xx

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  5. I laughed when I read this. Just goes to show, look confident and its in the bag ... ;0)

    Shirl x

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  6. Thank you for your visit in my blog. i will be expecting you everytime I post. Such an honour!!!
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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  7. Jut been watching the Model Agency and thanking
    Heaven the days of 'going to be seen' are over.

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  8. I absolutely love going to the hairdresser.

    :-) Sorry -- I'm all distracted now. Having my hair done is one of my favorite things.

    Pearl

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  9. I always enjoy the posts! Looking forward to many more (:The things given are unanimous and needs to be appreciated by everyone.
    Wedding Dress
    Wedding dresses this season for the details of the deal more attention. Designer for the details of the deal is simple continuation of the overall shape of fashion, more emphasis on the shoulder, neck and waist of the design, engraving, embroidery, flowers and other elements are widely used.

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  10. Great post - I hate going to the hairdressers. Some of them have sent me out looking dire!!! Sorry I made you a bit weepy. When I came across that track, it reminded me of when I first heard it on the radio and fell in love with the idea of falling in love - never realising the amount of heartbreak that would come along with it too! xxxx

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  11. Good post. It lets us have a glimpse into a wolrd I never really knew existed.

    But, I just don't understand what all the drama is about.

    Mind you I've been mostly bald for the last 20 years.

    The last time I visited a barber, I think the price was £1 2s 6d.
    Nowadays I just run my beard trimmer over my scalp every two weeks, as I have an abiding fear of the "Gregor Fisher baldie man with three long strands" look.

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  12. Nothing like 'winging' it! I too had dungarees at some point, you are not alone
    xx

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