A Journey Back in Time: Collaborating with Oaklands College Hair and Makeup Students

As a professional photographer based in St Albans, Hertfordshire, I’ve had the privilege of working on various exciting projects. One such experience that stands out is collaborating with the talented hair and makeup students from Oaklands College. Although I didn’t initially consider the 1980s as a historical period (since I grew up in that era, making me feel a tad old), it turned out to be a delightful and creative journey back in time.

Oaklands College: Fostering Creativity and Skills

Oaklands College, located in Hertfordshire, is renowned for its commitment to education and skill development. It offers a wide range of courses, including those in the creative arts. The college provides a nurturing environment where students can explore their talents and hone their skills. This collaboration was a testament to Oaklands College’s dedication to fostering creativity and innovation.

Exploring the Theme of the 1980s

The project involved working with hair and makeup students who were tasked with creating looks inspired by a specific period in time. To my surprise (and initial reluctance due to nostalgia), the students chose the 1980s as their theme. It was a period known for bold fashion choices, vibrant makeup, and distinctive hairstyles – an excellent choice for a fashion photography project.

The Challenge of Time Constraints

As I set up my photography equipment, I could hear the countdown ticking away. Time was of the essence, and the students had a tight schedule to complete their work. They worked in pairs, with one student taking on the role of the hair and makeup artist, while the other became the model. The pressure was on, but their enthusiasm and creativity shone through.

Collaboration in Action: Students as Directors

Once the hair and makeup were complete, the students seamlessly transitioned into directing the photoshoot. This was a unique aspect of the collaboration. As the photographer, I usually take the lead in guiding the shoot. However, in this project, the students took turns as directors, telling me precisely how they envisioned the photographs and the looks they wanted to achieve.

Fashion Photography: Lighting the Path to Excellence

Fashion photography is a dynamic and ever-evolving field, and lighting plays a crucial role in achieving stunning results. Throughout the shoot, I worked closely with the students to ensure that the lighting complemented their vision. Whether it was capturing the bold makeup, the intricate hairstyles, or the vibrant clothing choices reminiscent of the ’80s, the right lighting was essential to bringing out the desired aesthetic.

The Reward: Excellent Results

Despite the time constraints and the unique challenge of having the students direct the shoot, the collaboration was a resounding success. The students’ creativity, passion, and dedication shone through in every photograph. We were able to capture the essence of the 1980s while adding a modern twist, resulting in a series of striking and memorable images.

In Conclusion

Working with the hair and makeup students from Oaklands College on this ’80s-inspired fashion photography project was an enriching experience. It showcased the immense talent and potential of these budding artists and photographers. It also reminded me that even a period as recent as the 1980s can be a source of inspiration and creativity in the world of fashion photography. It’s a testament to the enduring influence of the past on the present and the future of the fashion industry. Collaborations like these, where creativity knows no bounds, are what make photography truly exciting and fulfilling.




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