WE HELD OUR #CRUXEATHOME CHALLENGE FOR THE FIRST TIME AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MONTH, ENCOURAGING OUR COMMUNITY TO STAY CREATIVE AND PRODUCTIVE IN THE ONSET OF SUCH AN UNCERTAIN TIME FOR MOST OF US. A VERY CREATIVE STYLIST, FRIEND AND #CRUXEABSTRACT ADVOCATE SPARKED THIS IDEA FOR US INITIALLY. SHE SENT US PHOTOS, USING HER COMB AS A PAINTBRUSH IN ABSTRACT AND CREATIVE WAYS. WE DECIDED TO KICK OFF OUR CONTEST WINNERS WITH HER IN HONOR OF HER INSPIRING WORK AND FOR HER LOVE OF #THECRUXELIFE.
Danielle LeoGrande : @color_by_danielle
Vanity Room Salon, NJ
What is keeping you moving forward right now during our distancing and industry shut down?
What keeps me moving forward at this time is the knowing that with everything going on, it will pass. We all have the opportunity for a fresh start, a new adventure, a new outlook.
During such an abnormal and emotional time, how are you able to channel your feelings and energy?
Through art, painting, exploring and pushing myself to discover new things, even if it may only seem our options are limited. They are as limited as we believe them to be. Most of all being completely still, taking it all in.
What is your biggest struggle or darkest corner at the moment?
That one is hard to say. I have had many! However, no matter how dark or difficult I always remind myself that some of my greatest moments of creativity or clarity come from those times. I breathe it all in, and breathe it all out. Taking all the lessons it comes with, even if I don’t like them.
How has your experience in the industry shaped your outlook on your future in the industry?
My experience in this industry has had its ups and downs (always will) just like everyone else in it. Through the years I have always stayed in that fight mode, meaning consistently going 100 miles an hour working nonstop. Creating the same image everyone wants. Although there is absolutely nothing wrong with that! I hope the outlook on the future will be one with more artists collaboration. Appreciation for all art regardless of how beautiful or how strange. Just slow down and really see.
What is the most important part of your work to you?
The most important part of my work is to create with, value, authenticity and heart.
How do you approach learning/education?
I approach education from all angles and with an open mind.
Tell us about your creative process and how it has evolved since the beginning of your career?
My creative process has changed so much through the years. In the beginning it was doing what I was taught. Never deviating from that path. Fearing that it was the wrong way. As the years passed, I decided to step outside that box more and more. Embracing all the mistakes. Realizing every time I did, my heart felt full, free and un afraid of the mistakes that I will still continue to make. This is how I continue to evolve.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
The best advice I have ever been given would be to never give up, to never stop dreaming, or to my authentic self.
I have many, but at this moment in time I’ll choose Christian D. Larson.” Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle “.
Top 5 books?
Definitely need to read more. Pretty eclectic in the things I do read. Books on Human anatomy for artists, even certain medical ones, special effects artistry’s, human behavior, architecture, and all conspiracy theories I’m a sucker for.
Top 5 Albums?
Same as with the books. Of course, there is the anything of Nine Inch Nails. I love Shinedown, Biggie, Chevelle, Godsmack, Marilyn Manson, Foghat, Halestorm. Only certain songs that I pick, rarely albums. Anything that causes an emotional feeling regardless of what it is. That’s what music is to me.
Top 5 Fashion Brands?
Favorite fashion designers/brands that I like are many! All have something different to offer. Chanel, Alexander McOueen, Vivienne Westwood, Christobal Balenciaga, Yohji Yamamoto.
If you were able to go on a vacation trip for work training/inspiration, where would you go?
I would say any place rich in culture or architecture. Sure, there are all the incredible places like Paris, Italy, Spain that are full of it. However places off the beaten path I am drawn to. Egypt fascinates me for some reason, but again there are many.
Most iconic hairstylist?
Honestly, I don’t have one. Sounds awful I know! Truth be told I love and appreciate all the legendary ones past and present. There is so much art and beauty that is shared in this incredible industry I cannot pick just 1. Like with music I gravitate towards whatever makes me feel something. Dark, light, and everything in between.