Volvo approached me with the idea of using me with some real mannequins. The event was a three day exhibition for Heavy Plant and Construction, held in the middle of a working Quarry in Buxton, Derbyshire UK.
The idea was to have a couple of mannequins around the equipment and me, dressed in the same clothing.
The two mannequins needed to be realistic, similar with one sitting and the other one standing. They were going to be dressed as road workers, placed around a road laying machine, as if laying a road.
I would take the role of the third mannequin and of course, come alive as visitors passed by, to create some amusement on the stand.
I contacted Roz from mannakin.com, who I'd been talking to only a month or so before about a combined living and mannequin hire scenario. The challenge was to find two matching realistic mannequins, one sitting and one standing.
In order to match the make-up, I asked for one of the hands to be sent to me by post (quite gruesome), which I then took along to Kryolan (formally Charles Fox) in Covent Garden in order to match the mannequin colour with the closest matching pan stick make-up.
Three matching sets of protective work wear were ordered, comprising of orange hi-vis overalls, boots, black work gloves, white hard hats and yellow hi-vis padded jackets if it was cold or wet.
The real mannequins were dressed in the safety gear and then placed around the road laying machine, one sitting the cab as the driver, and the other operating the machine at the back; The mannequin standing at the back was placed on a metal stand, using the leg fixing so he could wear the boots, and to stop him falling over, he was secured to the machine by some black tie wraps around his wrist.
One the first day, I had a closer look at the mannequin's make-up, and matched the cheeks and lips with a darker reddish brown make-up, I then donned all the safety clothing, got a matching tie wrap for my wrist, and placed the matching metal stand at the second operator's position, opposite the standing mannequin; then I took my position, and adopted the pose of the other mannequin and waited for some visitors to scare.