Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Grit during The Making of a Fashion Model- NPR segment

Hey Girls!

Listen to this segment on NPR TALK OF THE NATION, it covers the book Pricing Beauty: The Making of a Fashion Model by fashion model-turned sociologist Ashley Mears. And I know not all of you are fashion height, not many are, but no matter your height the segment may be of interest on some of the gritty realities of being a model, no matter your size. Modeling is competitive, it is extremely unstable, and a pursuit all about rejection, and you've prob already read about my own experiences, highs and lows, from my books and on my blog and podcast, but tune into this NPR segment...

This proves to me even more why working as a fashion model would suck and my point about why fashion isn't the end all within modeling. I don't want to just be a milk carton here this week gone the next, and although commercial print modeling has it's challenges, there is no age requirement and it's more about personality than about being a certain measurement. Girls often email me upset they can't work in fashion, when actually fashion sounds like shit.

I've met girls on the job who want to get out their modeling contracts who can't stand their fashion agents. And I always tell them and think to myself, Why not work as a print model instead? 

In print modeling you can also use "more of you" your able to smile, laugh, jump, and express happiness....sounds like more fun than being sent on no pay casting calls and being told to fuck off by the time you are 26 years old by your fashion agent.

Recently on my blog, I've posted excerpts of my book Almost 5'4" and my own struggles, grit and luckly I overcame my mistakes and went on to gain great experiences in modeling, and the truth is, modeling is a pursuit that involves a strong self-love and strong-will and a strong confidence, things I think you need to have already inside of you before you pursue a business based on perfection and being what the client is looking for today, rejection will happen, no matter your height.
Ashley Mears recently shared with  But of course, female models have their own struggles. Because many are scouted at a young age -- with an adolescent figure -- they struggle with body image as their physique matures into womanhood. “It becomes a fight for them to hold onto what initially was valuable for them to get into market: a prepubescent body,” she says. Read more here.

Girls, I've made 250 a day for editorial hand modeling, sometimes I'd be there a full day, sometimes just a few hours but then I'd get $1000 for just modeling one shoe for a product ad on a different day...modeling the product for an ad always pays more, advertising within commercial print modeling pays more, ironically it is the area best for shorter girls to pursue.

Ashley Mears shared with Slate that, " the fashion world, there is typically an inverse relationship between the prestige of a job and how much the model gets paid. A day-long shoot for Vogue pays a paltry $150, for instance, while a shoot for Britain's influential i-D magazine, which Mears calls "one of the most sought-after editorial clients for a model," pays absolutely nothing, not even the cost of transportation or a copy of the magazine for the model's portfolio.

The alternative to high-fashion poverty is to be a "money girl," working for catalogs and in showroom fittings, jobs that pay well and reliably. The best-paid model at Mears' agency, for instance, was a 52-year-old showroom model with "the precise size 8 body needed to fit clothing for a major American retailer. She makes $500/hour and works every day." But the commercial end of modeling is widely derided within the industry as low-rent, as mere work without glamour. Once a model has done too many commercial jobs, she is thought to have cheapened herself, and it's exceedingly difficult for her to return to high fashion." Read more here.

With “Pricing Beauty,’’ Mears has produced a fascinating study of an industry in which female models are paid twice as much as male models. She knits together her revealing interviews and draws on the work of sociologist C. Wright Mills, feminist theorist Catharine MacKinnon, and other social critics. Yet the greatest strength of “Pricing Beauty’’ is Mears’s own story, one that she artfully threads throughout the book. It ends with Mears getting dumped by her agency in an e-mail with the subject line “Hey Doll!!!’’


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