Intervening through Hairdressing

For this assessment, I have chosen a topic that is socially relevant and reflective of what we have learnt during the semester. It is focused on developing a case study for corporate social responsibility and how this can be a powerful tool in combatting a global issue that my audience is likely aware of, but very removed from. In this case, hunger and malnutrition. It is estimated that around 45% of deaths among children under 5 years are linked to under nutrition; this is an issue that continues to be prevalent throughout society (WHO, 2018).

My intention was to create an evocative and memorable piece of content that juxtaposed an issue that is tragic and saddening, with hope and empowerment. Colour with Care is an initiative created in 2017 by La Biosthetique Australia CEO Robert Aubin and Karen Aubin. The initiative advocates for Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), to help support the not-for-profit and provide much needed food and aid to over 70 countries.

Due to the nature of the initiative, I chose to make a mini clip, which highlights the cause and effect of the intervention. Colour with Care has used its initiative as a concept global media to intervene for hunger and malnutrition through fundraising, social media and hairdressing. Intervening through hairdressing, I have found is a unique strategy, especially when examining campaigns that are advocating for similar issues. The hairdressing industry is often underestimated; it provides a platform for interventionists to connect with their audience on personal level through beauty and self-worth (Ellery, 2014).

In order to convey that hairdressing not only benefits the client, it extends to an international level, I wanted to showcase the issue and strategy in order to help and donate towards an every-growing matter; I achieved this through a specific selection of footage, titles, effects and music.

“The ability to perceive and understand emotional experiences is critical” (Satpute et al., 2016), in order to effectively convey the tragedy and direness of this issue, I utilised the black and white effect. By doing so, I wanted to remove the audience from their surroundings to take a moment to empathise with an issue we have never lived or have been exposed to during our day-to-day lives. This is further complimented by the soft and sombre backing track, I felt it engages and causes the audience to provoke emotional engagement and contemplate how this issue evolves and can be further dealt with and to understand how the functions of the intervention work.

To further engage and convey how La Biosthetique are intervening through hairdressing, I used colour and coloured subtitles as juxtaposition to relate to the western culture and desire of having your hair done as a beauty necessity and ritual (Ellery, 2014). Coloured subtitles were used to make the facts stand out, and show why Colour with Care is intervening. Furthermore, colour footage towards the end not only showcases a fresh colour for the client, rather it also showcases that as a result of this ‘every day’ activity, it having a broader impact on a global issue. Showing the process of colour allows the audience to recognise the extensive reach on a western audience who not only have the desire to feel good; rather it provokes gratitude and empathy. Through the gradual introduction and inclusion of colour, I intended to unveil how this process provides a resolution.

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