Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Tuesday, April 25, 2006 - Channelling Donatella

One of the more interesting aspects of the job I find myself on at the moment is that the team works with a different international hairdresser each day. This is unusual as the team is usually fixed for the duration of the shoot. To be a (photo) session hairdresser takes a huge amount of skill (over that of your average High Street Crimper) but also dynamic results need to be achieved fairly quickly. Now we all have tricks of the trade - for the session hairdresser life would not be the same without the humble doughnut (a mesh nylon ball) that you wrap hair around to give the illusion of greater volume or shape. Working with hairdressers who are top of the game in their own salons, often find the transition to a session shoot quite difficult. Generally their standard is far lower and it is our job to push them to make looks that are worthy of editorial coverage. For this job, enough fake hair has been dyed, cut and generally manipulated to keep Cousin It happy for years.

Today the guest Spanish hairdresser is on the set. She is a delightful happy woman but just one minor flaw, she is channelling Donatella Versace as her style icon. There is so much collagen pumped into her upper lip that I keep thinking she is going to trip over it. Now there are also badly done cheek implants and a buy 10 get the 11th free course of Botox that she has willingly under gone. She didnt hold back when striving to achieve her look of hero worship. The flowing Latino brunette has been replace by what can only be described as Polenta yellow hair and the orange tinge of liberal slashing of St. Tropez.

To compliment her hard work she has dressed herself in turned hem Capri jeans with Candies (high heel open toed mules with Diamante buckles) and a white knock off Chanel box jacket. As I mentioned at the beginning of this description she is lovely but you can understand my difficulty in trying to keep a straight face when discussing the intricacies of style to her.

I try (although not always successfully) not to be the Fashion Police however all of this, on a 50+ woman, it was too much for me not to share it with you.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Monday, April 24th 2006 - Museum of the Politically Incorrect

The past 10 days have been taken up on the job that started out as hell in hair dye, but I have to admit it has vastly improved; given that the client finally settled on the clothing direction they desired. The most astounding aspect of this job however has been the location. The Museum of Hunting and Nature.

At present, I am typing in the Petit Salon - which in the normal universe is actually the size of a single bedroom flat in London. Looking down on me is a 2m x 1m portrait of Marie Antoinette in her Hunting attire. Everywhere you look it is books on hunting with titles such as Hunting Game with Gun and Camera, Hunting Boar and my favourite Large Game, Small Gun

Now regardless of your position on hunting (which I refuse to go into here) this is a stunning location and a memorial to a bygone era. Every nook and cranny is crammed with all kinds of hunting items. From stuffed Polorbears to Rhino, Monkeys to Cheeta. There are stuffed animal heads hanging from the walls, bronze statues of Deer, Boar, Lions and Tigers. Solid Silver Candelabras of Hunting scenes, which are so elaborate it makes you believe they will race across the tabletop at any moment. The wall tapestries with delicately woven Elephants, pheasants, unicorns and stags. In the hall is a large gothic stone staircase which I am sure they based the set design for Phantom of the Opera. It is absolutely magical. The cellar resembles a mad dungeon, its now converted to a private dining room where we have been served an amazing lunch every day. The room still has large hooks for hanging meat for the kitchens. If you were that way inclined, it would make a superb venue for any Mistress with room for a rack in the corner.

With a venue like this, it is almost understandable that when the Nazi Army came marching into Paris, the city fathers allowed them in with out a fight, thus protecting their heritage. Places such as this would have been bombed to smithereens. I dont profess to question how the French handled themselves but on the flip side they dont have the same affliction that London shares for Concrete post war painful architecture as a result.

Imagining this venue as my own private residence (it is now the Museum and a fancy expensive gentlemans club) is far far too easy. Perhaps I l suffer from my own illusions of grandeur. I know I spend a good deal of my life own little fantasy cocoon but a girl could get used to this!

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