The Journey Of A Thousand Miles

September 21, 2010

... must begin with a single step.
Or, in my case, two days in my new, exciting course!

So today was my second day in the college and already it's been a bit of a roller coaster ride. There are 9 other girls in my class, but I'm the only one studying barbering, which I am hoping will mean I'll get some great one-on-one tuition. The other plus side to that is that I will also pick up a lot of the hairdressing skills along the way too, which can only be a good thing in my opinion. My mind is open and ready to learn and boy has the information been pouring in!

There's another college not too far from here that does the same course but in 12 months; my college teaches it in 7 so it's very intense. No time for bleary-eyed starts or daydreaming. In fact, it's kind of like going to work everyday in a job that needs a lot of focus and learning.

On day 1 we were thrown straight in with minimal faffing around. We spent the morning chatting about the college rules, getting folders, registering and talking a bit about ourselves. We each had to stand up and talk for 60 seconds. I've plenty of experience waffling on about nothing in particular from my photography job, so knowing I have this basic skill down pat gave me quite a confidence boost and helped to calm the first-day nerves which had been chasing the butterflies in my stomach. As the tutor explained; she can teach us how to do almost anything with hair, but if we can't have a conversation with our clients then she can't help us with that, and it's one of the most important things we need to do. I was kinda surprised how hard some of the girls found this and how shy they were, and I did note that both the other 2 girls who are in their mid-twenties, and myself, find it the easiest to do. The rest are in their late teens and I guess it's only natural that I have ten years more stuff to ramble on about! We'll have to do this 60 second talk twice a week to help everyone build up confidence with this, and I'm sure I'll end up telling my life story during that time and man, will I feel old in comparision!

Once all the basic welcomes etc. were covered we were given our mannequin heads and taught how to do a straight blow dry. We were told how important posture is and the tutor is so very right about this. While we were doing the blow-dry, each time she passed by me I found myself correcting my posture, not having noticed it had slipped a bit.
Barbers and hairdressers are on their feet all day with their arms raised at roughly chest height, so if your posture isn't good you won't last 5 years without seriously damaging your back or hips.  I'm also a bit taller than the others in my class so I need to watch this even more.

This morning we took off our coats and 'BAM!' we were straight back into doing another (timed) blow dry. And another. And another. Each time trying to speed up while also doing a better job than the last. We're in a room that has 14 stations/workspaces in it so it's small enough and that heat sure builds up! So another important thing the principle mentioned to us really came into play today and that is hygiene. You WILL sweat doing this and showering daily, as well as having fresh clothes and using a good deodorant, are a must.

Then, after our break we learnt how to do a 'brick-set' with curlers. The tutor apologised to me as it's not really anything I technically have to do on my course (I had to borrow the equipment for it too as I don't have rollers in my kit) but, being the only barber in this semester, they are catering the course to me as they can. At this stage though I'm learning lots from everything I do. Learning how to do a brick-set really helped me with creating clean sections/partings in the hair which is something I struggled with yesterday. 
Here's a picture of how I did as I was very happy with it!

After lunch we worked on client consultation: finding our what they want, their hair type etc. We did some role play and again I found this part fairly easy, though you do have to remember to get a lot of information.

The course is great and very hands-on which is good, but I've been making sure to make notes after each day, and on breaks too, so I don't forget everything by the end of the week!

Initially my course will be the same as the hairdressing one as the first 4 modules (health and safety, washing hair etc.) are the same for both courses. Then, as time goes on, I'll diversify, which should be great.

Of course there's also my work experience every Friday in a barbershop down here, so I'm very excited to see how that goes. I imagine I'll be making enough tea to float a small island on but I'll keep my eyes and ears open to take in everything I can!

Just call me the human sponge! And speaking of sponge - I still have some birthday cake left from yesterday so I'm off to have a slice. 



Brian said...

I thought I saw that girl blink.... boy I must get my glasses changed......Boy I wish you were over here for barbering.... at least I would know where to get a great shave

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