What’s the most obscure material you’ve used when styling on shoot/set?
Light-up shoe laces – I wove them into scalp braids. They were clear, so invisible in the hair, but when illuminated they gave the hair style a futuristic vibe.
Why do you like to work with different mediums?
In the salon I work with hair as nature intended on a daily basis. When I’m working on a project I look at hair from more of an artistic perspective, with no limitations, sourcing and collecting interesting materials while navigating through briefs and different sources of inspiration.
What’s your go-to for inspiration?
I’m lucky enough to live in London, so I go to a lot of exhibitions. The V&A, the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum are great sources of ideas!
What the most boundary-pushing style you’ve created?
I’m still working on it… It should be ready for 2020 and think the timing will be right too
Give us your top five tricks whilst on a shoot…
- If it’s a stylised or art-directed project, then research/decipher the brief beforehand. On shoots with a more spontaneous vibe, learn to go with the flow.
- Get the best possible prep in the hair that will last the shoot and that you can easily add to/take away from with little effects. Blow-dry primers are excellent for this or a volumising mousse is pretty fine…
- I always wax my hands a little if braiding
- Always have some pre braided extensions at ready
- A toothbrush is essential for smoothing hairlines
Share with us what skills/attributes you look for in your team
I always cast my team specifically for each project. Initially I look for someone who is interested in the idea and can take direction well. I need someone who’s dedicated and has respect for the projects. When you have these attributes combined with natural talent – no matter how early in their career – you can build dynamic teams. I am very lucky to have a superb pool of talent working within the company, as well as a core team as my go-to with whom I can openly discuss my ideas.
Your favourite ever project?
When Fyodor Golan collaborated with the digital artist Ignasi Monreal for their spring summer lookbook. Ignasi did the animation artwork and the editor of Garage magazine art directed and styled the shoot. The results were beautiful, examples below.
Most difficult project?
As above. It was the best, and also the hardest one to date. Probably that’s why I love it so much!
When working digitally, it’s got to be Roger Spy [an award-winning British filmmaker, multimedia artist and visual storyteller who has done work for the likes of L’Oréal, VH1, Ministry of Tomorrow and Sony Pictures]. When working with photography, Grant James Thomas is the best I know.
Above: Grant James Thomas
Above: Roger Spy
Your dream brief?
An exhibition space in Somerset House or at the V&A in London, and a space in Tokyo to present an idea. Both with no budget limits, ideally!