The thinking of this Essex businessman and educator is that in the midst of the tasks that can be mundane and feel far away from the creative career that they aspire to, putting creativity into the mix from day one can really excite. In short, the thinking of CROP can make way for a veritable harvest of creative youngsters of the future who belong, stay and grow within the industry.
The word ‘crop’ conjures immediate pictures of production and growth, and in this sense, crop has been borrowed in relation to seeding, feeding, growing and ready for a bumper harvest of keen, excited and cared for talent. This is how CROP was developed, and also forms an acronym for:
The idea of embedding creative values of hairdressing into young careers began to take shape as Paul Falltrick considered the role that hairdressers can play in changing up the offering to young hairdressers and shift the approach. In his own early career Paul remembers being exposed very early to having creative opportunities, “I believe this really lit the flame and it’s something I want to find a way to pass on to others”, commented Falltrick.
In light of this thinking, the CROP programme has been thought through to plant the seeds of creativity, to provide a positive, encouraging environment to experiment and the chance to be with peers who are also putting themselves out there, so we learn from each other. The purpose of CROP is to connect youngsters with the life-blood of hairdressing: creativity.
“Every hairdresser is acutely aware of how little in-take there is within the industry, and I feel strongly that we need to look at ourselves and take responsibility for this in terms of really owning up to why we are not meeting the needs of today’s intake of hairdressers.” Falltrick added.
One of the key reasons that Falltrick believes the industry is ‘getting it wrong’ is that aspiring, young hairdressers are not getting the opportunity to step into creative work early enough and so their interest wanes and they leave. He believes offering a creative intervention and opportunity early can open up the excitement and feed the creative spirit in these young future hairdressers.
The first intake creative session of CROP21 was in October 2021, where two immersive days were spent educating six complete ‘newbies’, who have just left college. These six keen individuals were given the space and encouragement to express creatively using mannequin heads (kindly supplied by Zen Hair) and the days flew with the youngsters creating mood-boards, cutting, applying colour artistically and even adding extensions. As a follow-up, the team of six were invited to the get the chance to join the Essex hairdressing community of hairdressers at the Essex Hairdressing Event on Monday 1st November. Paul Falltrick proudly presented their work, “the team felt they wanted their work to be shown and discussed but didn’t feel ready to step into presenting themselves, what is very important about CROP21 is that it is all about encouragement and meeting the youngsters where they are, nudging them forward but very much is not about over-whelming them! I am so proud of them, they did good!” concluded Falltrick.
If you are interested in being part of the next CROP sessions contact Paul direct on @paulfalltrick @gfchairdressing @ministryofhairacademy and prepared to be encouraged, inspired and to get your creative juices flowing.