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Back in the room… with a magic mix of MWIT pics to celebrate 20 years of Most Wanted

A glorious gallery to mark a momentous occasion. Feast your eyes on this! (MWIT20 Grand Final guests, you might want to get ready for your close-up…).

For more than a decade, we’ve had the privilege of shooting with photographer Jon Baker for dozens and dozens of Creative HEAD projects, but our very first collaboration was a cork-popping, talent-packed photoshoot, taking place amidst all the Most Wanted Grand Final action way back in 2008.

Incidentally, this was the year Most Wanted moved from a lunchtime shindig to a later and larger evening celebration; we hosted the event at Banqueting House in London’s Whitehall. It was also the year we introduced a brand-new Most Wanted category for stars on the ascent: One to Watch (scooped up by Skyler McDonald), which turned out to be the genesis of The It List, launched as a competition in its own right two years later…

Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2008

Featuring Nick Irwin, Errol Douglas MBE and Sally and Jamie Brooks, this photo – one of Jon Baker’s first for Most Wanted – graced the front cover of the 2009 entry form

Back to 2008! Photographing groups of glamorous guests in various set-ups throughout the venue and for the duration of the event, not only did Jon capture the spirit and sparkle of the occasion, he shone a spotlight on all the wonderful characters coming together to celebrate Great British hair talent. Raw, real and in the moment, his awesome eye for a stellar shot set a precedent for the years that followed…

Ever since that night, Jon’s snapped thousands of faces in some incredible London locations (Natural History Museum, Royal Courts of Justice, Guildhall, Tate Modern, Printworks…) – away from the main event and often in spaces and places out of bounds to everyone else!

Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2009
Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2009
Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2009
Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2009
Creative HEAD Most Wanted Grand Final 2009

Hundreds of personality-packed portraits have made their way into multiple souvenir supplements up until and including the 2019 Grand Final. The pages above are lifted from the 2009 magazine; the shoot featured hairdressers and their creative gangs, and included the likes of Adam Reed and designer Henry Holland, Zoë Irwin and presenter Lisa Snowdon, Louis Byrne and DJ Scarlett Etienne, Mark Hayes and fashion historian Caroline Cox and our Grand Final host that year, Jimmy Carr.

Most Wanted and The It List Grand Final souvenir supplement 2020

Pages from the MWIT19 souvenir supplement, showcasing the results of another memorable Grand Final shoot…

These memories made us nostalgic. And given 2020 is a BIG year for Most Wanted – it’s the competition’s 20th birthday! – we felt it was high time to dive into the archives, dig out some corkers and pull together a mega mix of pics for your viewing pleasure. Scroll on down…

All photography by Jon Baker