How to Choose Your Best Shots for the British Hairdressing Awards
Choosing your best shots for awards submission from a wide portfolio can be difficult, but it’s absolutely essential for standing a chance at winning at the British Hairdressing Awards 2022.
The process will undoubtedly include some hard work, late nights and tough decisions, but it offers the opportunity to showcase yourself at your absolute best.
With the submission deadline for the British Hairdressing Awards 2022 sponsored by Schwarzkopf Professional being 1 July 2022 at 5pm, we spoke with previous winners to get their advice on making the most of your entry this year.
Preparation is key
Sally Brooks, winner of British Hairdresser of the Year 2020, 2018 and 2017, says: “It starts with an idea of what I want to create – the feeling, concept and vibe of a collection. I work quietly at home making sure the idea has a backbone before I involve other people so that I am clear on what I am trying to get across with regards to photography, styling etc. Once I have my team involved with a clear brief, I work on the hair ideas.”
Sharon Malcolm, winner of Northern Ireland Hairdresser of the Year 2021 and 2019, says: “I was clear in my mind with what I wanted to achieve with my winning collection. After several months of planning and gathering inspiration, I created two mood boards which I presented to my photographer, make-up artist and clothes stylist at a meeting prior to my shoot.”
Think bigger than just the hair
Michelle Thompson, Hall of Fame 2019, says: “The first question you need to ask is whether the image jumps out at you. If so, then why? Is it because it was exactly what you envisioned before it was executed? This applies to the whole image – the lighting, the styling, the make up, the model, the concept, how the image was captured. When I’ve looked at my past winning collections, the answer has been yes to all of these questions.”
Nathan Jasztal, winner of Eastern Hairdresser of the Year 2019, says: “Selecting the right images is just as difficult as creating them. For us, it’s important to make sure the hair is being shown in the greatest light and that it contains an element of something you haven’t seen before, making it a unique image of your own.”
Teamwork is crucial
Michelle Thompson says: “I’m a strong believer in the notion that you’re only as strong as your weakest link, so if you put your whole heart and soul into your collection, and the team you are working with puts their entire effort into your vision, then you’ll always have a winning collection. It’s all about teamwork.”
Sharon Malcolm says: “Choosing the best models was very much a team effort, and I’d always choose my final images on the day of the shoot. For me, it’s about a feeling from within my heart that I just know is the one. ‘You know when you know,’ as they say.”
Sally Brooks says: “Each time I shoot, I have a vision of the end result so that, on the day, it is about managing the image, but also allowing each person in the team to bring their individual skills. Every shoot is different with different implications – for example models cancelling, heatwaves, etc. – but you have to stay really focused and be prepared to stay on track.”
Show a range of skill
Jon Wilsdon, winner of North Western Hairdresser of the Year 2019, says: “Picking the first four is the most difficult part of the process as they’re the ones that are going to determine if you finalise or not, so I obsess over trying to show as much variation as possible. I print all the potential pictures out and lay them out on a table or the floor and, like a jigsaw, just move them around until they fit.”
Keep it cohesive
Jason Hall, winner of Scottish Hairdresser of the Year 2019, says: “Personally, it’s all about each individual image telling part of the same story, as well as the whole collection having balance. Last year, we shot a few images where we loved the hair but we didn’t use them in our final collection as we felt they told a different story from the rest of the collection. The way each image is cropped is all important and – remember – your collection is only as strong as the weakest image in it.”
Marcello Moccia, Hall of Fame 2019, and Karen Perry, North Western Hairdresser of the Year 2020 say: “Our Cool Fibers collection was all about celebrating unconventional shapes and textures and we knew we wanted the images to be all about the hair. The crop was really important and we worked with photographer Richard Miles to ensure they were eye-catching. We decided on black and white before the shoot as we wanted the collection to be uniform and the textures to tell the story. Above all, we wanted the images to be strong and powerful.”
Jacky Chan, winner of International Collection of the Year 2019, says: “The image should be able to translate the mood or story that you are telling, and always look at the image that shows skill, manipulation and innovation of hair. Importantly, I question whether the woman would wear the hair I’m presenting in real life. This is the most important part as it makes the story you’re telling believable.”