It felt odd. I was here for a haircut and there were my photographs, hanging on the wall between the mirrors. While in a gallery, people could wander around and spend as much or as little time as they wanted looking at a photograph. Here, they are forced to stare at my photograph for as long as it took to have their hair done.
I hadn’t thought of that when Luc and I discussed the prospect of putting the photographs up on his still bare walls. I’ve been going to Luc for few years now, and about a year ago he moved to his present location on the west side of Toronto (on College St. at Dufferin St.). As he cut my hair, he talked about an artist acquaintance who had mentioned showing his work there, but had never followed through.
“Would you be interested in photographs instead of art?” I asked. He would, so I started thinking about what would work. The salon has bright walls and a lot of black accents, so I thought something abstract and colourful, leading me to my collection of Fargo pickup truck closeups. I posted them to my Smugmug account for his feedback and then printed, signed and framed them. I gave Luc a supply of business cards directing interested individuals to my web sites.
“I saw your pictures hanging,” she said. I was at a neighbours Christmas party and couldn’t figure out what she was talking about until I discovered we shared the same hairdresser. At that time, I hadn’t seen them hanging, but today, I did.
“I’ve had quite a few comments on the pictures,” said Luc. “I’ve given your card out to a few customers.” There isn’t the volume through a salon you might want, but it is cool being publicly viewed, if not a little intimidating. We started talking about putting black and white photographs of my performing artists in the back where you get your hair washed.
I’m thinking of this as an experiment. I’m finding inexpensive ways to mount the photographs and I do my own printing, so I have control of my costs. If I find some other locations, I can cycle a set of photographs around different neighbourhoods and perhaps get some traffic to my site. I really do believe that people like to see art before they buy it.
Luc owns the Linus Salon and you can find a little more about it at http://www.blogto.com/fashion/linus-inc-toronto