Last year, Matrix created a unique opportunity for six recent beauty school graduates with the Spread the Love campaign. Two hundred beauty school students and recent graduates applied. The final six would travel in pairs throughout the United States meeting salon professionals and finding out what we as hairdressers do. They would share in the diversity of our craft and how we affect our community and country, or as Matrix says, "6 Students, 900,000 Stylist's, One Million Lives Changed." At Matrix Imagination in January, the six students met their mentors for the their journey and each was surprised by being paired with a Matrix Artistic Director.
As a Matrix Artistic Director, I was lucky enough to have Sam Ritter from Guy's Beauty Academy as my mentee. After meeting Sam at Imagination in January, I saw him at shows and communicated on Facebook and Skype. When I found out that he and his partner Jo Pick were going to be traveling through Pennsylvania, I called my friend Matrix friend Rhonda who handles their schedule and asked if I could have them for a few days. I had an idea and got the team involved. Eliza/operations director, Nathan/fashion director and Leah/VP,GM (and my wife) were the first gathered. Eliza took point, Leah support, Nathan creative and we put together a great experience for Sam and Jo.
Saturday Morning 8:15 a.m.
After a quick drive to the hotel where I met Rhonda, her husband, their young son, Sam, and Jo were soon in my car and we headed to the studio where they were enthusiastically greeted by our applauding team. Sam and Jo spent the day shadowing our team, asking questions and getting fashion week tips from Nathan. After a great day at the studio, the guys and I drove up to our family lake house where we hung out and kayaked. Though Jo pitched over three times in our cold lake water before joining me in a double "sit on" kayak during our Saturday night kayak, Jo did get some video after Sam pitched over later in their stay. Leah and my girls joined us Saturday night and we played games, watched movies (TED Talks and video from Color America NYC), talked, laughed and Jo even went for a walk with my daughter Claire.
Monday 4 p.m.
Jo, Sam ands I arrive at Sam Lavella's, Salon Moxi, for a Matrix mixer that was truly a star studded event. Matrix MAE Michael did an amazing job sharing ideas with about 30 stylist's talking about Chairs of Change, color techniques, styling ideas and even a cool way to tame fly-aways with a make-up brush. Then, we were treated to stories about people they have met from Sam and Jo, then Colin Walsh, Matrix VP/GM, talked about how stylists lift us up using Martin Dale, VP Education, as his model in a styling chair. If that was not enough, we were treated to words about Matrix around the world from Karrie Fonte, The Voice of the Matrix Hairdresser, it was an amazing event.
Then, after a two-hour ride back, I packed the car for our exciting next day.
Monday Morning 9 a.m.
I arrived at the studio to find Nathan already setting up the backdrop and Adam Raymond joining in soon after. Our models Lauren and Lisa arrived and then finally our make-up artist, Lauren Bennett. Nathan and Adam set up a shoot with Eliza organizing the models and Adam put together the storyboards, both under Nathan's direction. With clothes from a friend who has an on-line, high-end, second hand, clothing business and hair by Sam and Jo we had fun and I shot pictures of the work they did with the director of our team. The set up for Sam and Jo was that this shoot was planned by a client with the photographer and two other stylists had already done the tests but were now stuck in Europe because of the erupting volcano. So, we needed them to create two looks each based on the storyboards Adam/Nate put together and they had to use the models that were already onsite. What a learning experience - it was so much fun and we shot some really good images.
At 3 p.m. it was over and with Rhonda, Sam and Jo packed up their tools and headed back on the road to New Jersey - Spreading the Love, meeting stylists and touching lives.
Patrick McIvor, Matrix Artistic Director—the leading professional haircare and haircolor company in the United States and part of the L’Oreal USA Professional Products Division. He owns patrick mcivor color studio (Bethlehem, PA) - the hottest hair studio in the Lehigh Valley. McIvor mentors his team by involving them in runway work at New York Fashion Week; fashion/beauty editorial shoots and interviews with publications like Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Real Simple, Seventeen, Family Circle and Allure (editors named him best colorist in the USA); and television segments on “The 10! Show”/NBC Channel 10, WFMZ “Channel 69 News” and “Good Housekeeping Reports.” His studio provides stellar hair services inspired by international cosmopolitan influences such as fashion, cultural and global trends. In other words, guests leave with beautiful, sexy believable hair. McIvor is also featured in the book “50 Hairstylists.”