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Melanie Smith: Department Head Hair Stylist
It's pretty self explanatory what her job is, she is in charge of doing the actor's hair for the show. Mel has been working on Grey's Anatomy since season 4 and has been the department head since season 6.
How did you come to the decision of doing hair for TV and Film?
She is from a small town and she worked in a small hair salon. She made the decision to move to Hollywood to pursue doing hair for television and film. She had no idea where to start so she went to Rodeo Drive in Beverley Hills. She went from having a full clientell to back down washing hair again. Over time she started talking with people and letting people know her plans and then an actress got her a non-union show for 3 years and was able to get into the union. Grey's Anatomy is her first television show, she did a couple non-union movies and shows before but her main goal was to get in the union so that she get better jobs.
What does your job entail?
She is usually the first person in her office and she reviews what is going to be going on in that day. Her main focus is to keep continuity.
Did she do last nights episode?
She states how it was one of her favorite shows because since their were not in scrubs at the hospital there was a lot more variety.
Do you have anybody working with you?
She does have 2 other people working with her and on double days she has a total of 6 working. Mel makes a point to divide up the cast with the hair dressers so that they have an equal share of girls and guys.
What are some must have skills needed to do your job?
Of course being able to think on their feet, be organized, but Mel adds that you need to keep current on hair styles and try out different hair products. Make sure it's something that can be done quickly and can withstand a whole day of shooting.
Where do you get your hair ideas?
She looks through magazines and keeps up on the current trends.
What's your favorite part about your job?
Being a part of Grey's Anatomy. Being able to keep working after 250 episodes and enjoy working with the different people not just the actors but the crew.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to work in your profession?
Go to cosmetology school is the first thing and you want to work for a television production or film move to Hollywood, CA. "Just set a goal and work on it everyday."
What's the average time to do hair?
"20 minutes is all we've got."
Did you do April's wedding hair?
No she did not. Jason (I'm not sure his last name) did her hair.
Do you prefer the more outrageous things, more glamorous things like the dinner party?
She really likes accident or catastrophe shots. Having blood in the hair, bits of pavement because its fun and creative. For scenes such as those they do have prep, she doesn't have to come up with it on the fly or anything.
Last two week there was no #GACrewCall but if you go on Karin's twitter she answered some fan questions to make up for no crew call. Make sure to follow @karingleason for future #GACrewCall news or follow Melanie herself @MelaniesHair. You can also follow me on twitter at @TheAmandaAponte. Don't forget to catch new episodes of Grey's Anatomy Thursdays on ABC. Special thanks to ShondalandTV on youtube for posting the #GAcrewcall videos!