2013 had a slow start, and also a slow end. It’s actually really difficult to remember what I was up to January of this year. I believe I was still assissting part time in the salon, doing a ton of photoshoots, and taking clients behind the chair most of the week. I was getting into Laura Marling, Frank Turner and Frightened Rabbit and others from the UK music scene. I was kicking Richard’s butt to get re-enrolled at Pitt, which felt a little like torture to both of us at the time. It was a drag and it felt like it wasn’t moving towards anything and I was listening to “This Year” by The Mountain Goats while pretending to tidy up my house.
Well, I am still in love with Laura Marling, and I still jam to The Mountain Goats while I am pretending to be productive, but oh-so much has changed. It is remarkable to think about. Richard graduated a quick few weeks ago. I’ve been a full time stylist for awhile. And so many doors have opened in regards to my future as a hair stylist. 2014 will be a continuation of exploring which doorways to enter.
Obviously, nothing impacted my year more than winning the What’s Next Awards. I can’t say enough about how much my life has changed. I was so stressed about entering that competition, because I had an incredibly strong feeling in my heart that if I just styled my heart out and worked to my full potential, I could win and it could change my life. I know I am my own worst critic, and I do feel like both my piece for the finals and the one I won with had room to grow technically and stylistically, but winning was such an incredible validation. It was an honor to get that stamp of approval from Sebastian Professional.
My mentorship and friendship with Anthony Cress has been incredible, also. I have had a difficult year in terms of, despite being in my mid-twenties, I feel that adolescent sense of “Who am I?” and “Who should I be?” My life history is such a mish mash of contradictions and strange life paths. Sometimes I reminisce over my installation art days, and other times I curse them. Sometimes I just want to go back to being a dirty, androgynous teenager, and other days I feel like I need to grow up. Anthony has done a lot to inspire me and help me stay true to myself, even though I have great difficulty trying to figure myself out. But really, Carole, Christina, Marylle and everyone else I have met from Sebastian/Wella has been incredibly inspiring and supportive. They make me feel like I have more to offer the world.
In terms of hair design, I have grown a lot, too. I have had a lot of discoveries… of things that didn’t work. I have found some new techniques that I want to explore more. I am more patient, and don’t try to force so much into my pieces, but let them flow. I still have a very difficult time stepping away from a piece. I have always gotten lost in my art and in some ways it is a great feeling and in others it is the worse.
Outside of work, Richard and I made it a goal to not have another musically dry year. We hadn’t been going to many concerts, which was a big part of our early relationship. Between festivals and friends giving us tickets to various concerts and the small venue shows around town, we saw a lot this year. Sean Rowe, The Mountain Goats, Sigur Ros, Edward Sharpe, Cake, Belle and Sebastian, The National, Devotchka, Black Joe Lewis, Built to Spill, Father John Misty, the list goes on. My favorite show of the year, though, I saw without him. Two Gallants. Incredible energy at Brillobox that Tuesday night, couldn’t believe how packed it was.
2013 also featured a LOT of travel, which I absolutely loved. I had two friends get married, involving travels to Portland, OR and Fremont, MI. Plus some social travels to Chicago, Dayton, and more touring around Oregon. For work I had a few trips to LA, and then Vegas, NYC, Rochester, etc. In NYC I had the opportunity to do hair on stage at Intercoiffure, which was truly an incredible experience.
I’m not one for New Years Resolutions. And I am also generally one for posting my life goals. But I will say that I am looking forward to grow even more next year. This year I entered the Vidal Sassoon Scholarship Competition TWICE and was not selected either time, and I will try again… and again… and again… if necessary. I want to enter Trend Vision this year. I am not even as concerned with trying to be a finalist… I just want to enter. Color is not something that comes as naturally to me, and while I feel good about salon color, the world of hair color art is definitely out of my comfort zone. The trends this year are very much to my liking, though, so I am excited to give it a shot. Of course I am also entering the What’s Next Awards again. So wish me luck!
2014 will be off to a much better start, as we already have plane tickets to LA, Austin, Lisbon and Madrid! I am psyched to see some cool hair in all of these places. And to just live life. I turn 25 this year, and I think Lisbon, Portugal will be a great place to have my birthday. I can’t wait!
And of course, some family highlights of 2013 include my nephew Andrew being born, my niece Erin learning to walk and talk and all of the time we got to spend in OR. Richard’s family had some tragedy with the passing of his grandfather, but overall a lot of great quality time was spent with all of his aunts, uncles and cousins this year. Next year we are looking forward to more visits with his family and also my cousin’s wedding in July!
Alright. That was exhausting. Everyone stay safe tomorrow night and happy 2014!!!!