Collaborators – lend me your hair (stories…)

Collaborators – lend me your hair (stories…)

01 Jun 2015, Posted by kate_mercer in Inspiration, Out & About, Work in progress

Afternoon folks – another damp Monday morning after a busy weekend, but today I’ve hit the ground running. With plenty of projects running on in the background, recently I’ve been researching for a project of my own to start, and which I happened to spend the morning experimenting how to photograph. As such, for all those reading this post, I’d like to invite you all to collaborate on this project with me – all you need to do, is share with me stories you have about hair.

Test shot for Project #101 - Triptych

Test shot for Project #101 – Triptych

Initially this project started out of curiosity; I wanted to save money on getting it cut and see how long I was able to grow my hair (admittedly also with the intention of selling it) but also to see what I would actually be able to do with it.

The pictures above I took this morning to get this exceptionally long hair fully out for all to see. (In case you’re one of the growing amount of people confused by where all this hair has come from, I normally wear it neatly tied back and hidden under clothing…)  However, as the weather has got warmer and more people have started to see it, it’s initiated some interesting conversations and recalled some potent memories for people regarding their own stories and associations with hair. Some involve family, some rites of passages, others social conflicts, attitudes and friends. People have even started coming up to me and touching it on the street! Safe to say, hair is a unifying and relatable identity ground for us all.

In photography, fashion, history, art, literature, politics, the length of peoples’ hair has caused no end of interest, whether it be via consumerism, body image, gender and expressions of sexuality or culture. The more I’ve read into it, the more intrigued about it I’ve started to be – now the project has take on a new momentum, and I’m keen to get others involved if possible.

There’s a whole host of research to go with this project (far too much for a blog post – definitely enough to discuss over a pot of tea). For me, I’ll be working with the gifted and talented Daryl Wood ( to create 101 hair styles before I get rid of the whole lot. Until that time however, if you would like to get in touch and collaborate with us on this project either with references, memories or you would like to suggest a hair style, please get in contact via or via twitter at

Thanks everyone – more photos coming soon x


  • peter

    Wow, it is long, Why do you tie it back ?
    it is weird but I made a promise in !996 to keep my hair long yet, I tie mine back.
    As I bloke, I have several stories.
    I also find the history of men’s hair length interesting.
    Men in South Wales are often challenged by other men’s hair when it is long
    In Africa my hair is even more extraordinary taking on a mystical status and people try to touch it as often as they can.

  • kate_mercer

    I have to tie my hair back for practical reasons – it’s so long it get’s in the way. When I’m eating, when I’m working, when I’m sleeping etc etc. I love to have my hair down as it instantly makes me feel more relaxed, but normally i do it at home.

    You have already been generous enough to send me your hair stories – do you have any references for men’s hair length I can look at?

    Is your hair mystical because of it’s length or it’s straightness?

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