When Oribe Hair Care challenged its network salons with creating a photoshoot inspired by a vignette shown at the brand’s annual Backstage event, it didn’t take long for runner up Gary Croteau, the education director for Boston’s salon Mario Russo at Fan Pier, to visualize his entry.

The shoot took place at a private residence in Dracut, Massachusetts, that had always inspired him. “My friends have joked that this photoshoot was 15 years in the making,” Croteau says. “When I heard the home was going to be renovated I knew we had to make this shoot happen.” For this collection, his goal was to showcase the glamour and luxury of a woman who feels terribly alone in the world, as inspired by Oribe’s Amor Eternal vignette. “Much like Marilyn Monroe, this woman is the envy of all women,” says Croteau, who, as a former theater major, finds comfort in telling a story through delving into the heads of others. “She lives a glamorous life, in a beautiful home, but she’s a very tortured soul who feels terribly alone and sad.”