Barber Connect Meets: Tommie McGuckin (Hard Grind)
Recently we caught up with Tommie McGuckin from Hard Grind Barber Shop. He’s been cutting hair since he was 16 years old and has been in the industry for over 8 years. He will be appearing at Barber Connect 2017 on The Modern Barber Live Stage (supported by American Crew), representing Scotland in the Regional Round Up which consists of 5 barbers, 5 chairs from 5 different regions all on one stage.
Hi Tommie! So, tell us how you got into the barbering industry?
When I was 16 I began my apprenticeship in hairdressing, I knew from an early age I wanted to do something creative and the idea of being able to change the way someone looks or feels by giving them a haircut was an idea that always fascinated me. The salon I worked in was next door to an old traditional barbershop and I became slightly obsessed with the short clean haircuts the barber produced so he agreed to train me at nights and that opened up the world of barbering to me. Social media has also played a huge part seeing guys like Colin Petrie, Ryan Smith, Simon Harvey, Frank Rimer and Schorem showcasing perfect work makes me want to push to reach that level, and hopefully one day I will.
What inspires you to be a barber?
I’m inspired by my peers around me! I’ve made so many friends in this industry many of who I consider genuine family. They produce such high quality work all the while encouraging others and helping whenever and wherever they can, it’s impossible not to be inspired.
What would you say was your key to success? And what makes people lean towards your particular style?
Success is such a crazy word! I guess if I had to credit anything for where I am in my career, it would be feeling incredibly lucky to do this for a living. Not many people get to wake up in the morning, wear what they want, look how they want, and go hang out with their best friends every day and cut hair! I work very hard to ensure I never lose that, I push myself because I take nothing for granted and I want to be at the top of my game at all times so not to let myself, The Hard Grind family or our awesome customers down, ever. You’re only ever as good as your last haircut,and I hope that hard work and passion shows in my work. That’s why I feel people have a good reaction to my work, because they know it came from honest hard work.
The Modern Barber Live Stage at Barber Connect sees 5 chairs with 5 barbers from 5 different regions. How does it feel to be representing Scotland?
To be representing Scotland on The Modern Barber Live Stage at Barber Connect is such a surreal feeling for me. It’s such an honour to be sharing a stage with barbers who I look up to in this industry and who I look to for inspiration. It hasn’t really sunk in yet and I’m not sure it ever will. I’m a proud Scotsman and hope to bring a little bit of Scotland to that stage this year for people to enjoy.
Be sure to catch Tommie and many more barbers on The Modern Barber Live Stage at Barber Connect 2017. You can get your FREE tickets here