Me and My Bright Ideas

When inspiration strikes, make it count!

Everywhere I go I’m asked where I get my inspiration from. It’s a very valid question. But what do people actually do when I tell them? Normally, they smile and move on with their lives. So why is everyone so interested in the inspiration? This got me thinking as I do clear breakdowns of my inspirations for every shoot I do, I create a full story – so why don’t I teach this? That way, when the next person asks me about my inspiration, they can take that information away and create their own techniques, colour formulas or textures. Sharing, inspiring and learning all together.

This step by step is going to be focused on colour, but the overall techniques can be used to break down and create anything:

      • Let inspiration find you, don’t go looking for it – you’ll just get frustrated. Snap a picture on holiday, screenshot something you love on your phone. I personally like something from a raw source, something from nature.


      • Start to analyse the picture. What do you actually like about it? Look at the tones to start with, is it primarily warm or cool, or maybe it has elements of both? Write down the colours you see.


      • From these colours now write down all the potential hair colours you could use. If there are dark elements, how dark? Are they as deep as a base 1 to 2, or maybe sitting more at a base 4? You’ll find at least 20 hair colours in a single picture – that’s a week’s worth of colour formulations!


      • Try to not overdo it with the colours: choose two dominate ones, or play with your creative colour wheels; triadic or complementary colours schemes work beautifully.


      • Now consider the textures in the picture: are they blended or very solid? This becomes your application technique, so break it down further: how blended is it and where are the blends? This will become your new technique. Blended pictures lend themselves to freehand techniques very nicely, whereas more solid or graphic pictures are great for monochromatic or panelling applications.


      • You’re inspired, you’ve got a great new bank of colour formulas and a rocking new technique – but which clients would it suit? Know your clients, look at the trend drivers for the season, the Pantone colour forecast and pattern curator – what would your clients gravitate to? What will they be wearing most of and what will they be adding pops of into their homes? This is really important as the hair colour you create will either be blending or clashing with what they see at home in the mirror.


      • Now when your client sits in the chair you have a thoroughly thought-out new hair colour for her, so explain it. Break the bespoke colour down in the consultation and show off your uniqueness – they will love you for it!