Can you hear me chewing? I really owe everybody who is earning a living through modelling an apology.
The person who is without guilt may throw the first stone, but I believe that most of us consider the modelling business as superficial and people working as models as not being the brightest under this planets sun – ‘dress hangers’, really! Oh well, there are some with a business oriented mind, but nevertheless: They get told what to do, and they do it! How smart does one have to be for that?
Since one week my photographer friend is here and I changed my mind entirely. Taking photos and having photos taken is a lot of fun but nevertheless tough business. There are so many more aspects to be considered than I thought.
What is Working - And What is Not!
Well, in a professional photo shoot there might be a lot of people with specialist knowledge about the location, the light, the clothes and props, while we are just us two amateurs, but my point is that the model has to know a lot about these things as well because otherwise she wouldn’t be able to deliver what is asked of her. If I had a pretty face and you would throw me into a professional shoot they would kick me out so fast that all you would see of me were the con trail of me flying.
So girls – and parents: all the mirror posing, trying out hats and hair-dos, looking at magazines and testing every makeup on the market, and walking the catwalk walk - if you are seriously interested in this business it has to be done until everything becomes your nature. Otherwise it just looks fake.
And take photos and get them taken on different light, different location to find out for yourself what works and what not. Only now that my friend is leaving soon I’m starting to understand what he wants from me, but all I had ever taken was passport photos and snapshots. So what the heck do I know!
Food – when on earth is one supposed to eat?
Not that I would be able to do my friend the favour of getting the most gorgeous legs within one week just by starving myself. No, it’s about the timing of the shoots. We did the gym photos in the morning – that was good!
But wait, the night before I didn’t have too much food and nothing with peas, beans, onions, …. For obvious reasons. In the morning I only had the protein shake – Thank God that we are on that stuff otherwise I wouldn’t have had anything. We worked throughout until 1PM and then went home for breakfast. Me – smart girl – not really thinking and hungry like hell had bread (wholemeal with nuts and seeds) and garlic cream cheese. Any comment needed on that one?
In the afternoon we went to a lovely location and luckily the daughter of a friend wanted to have pictures taken. So I didn’t have to try hiding a big belly from the camera. Some days ago I had a horrible chocolate binge – again! – didn’t make it through this cycle either. Wasn’t so much of a problem for the figure, but got a nice fully grown headache. Really have to remember that for next time round. Headache equals water retention equals bloated everything. After that dehydration! I can’t drink water fast enough to refill and it refuses to stay in the cells. So I become all wrinkly. Everybody tells me that only I can see that – but unfortunately the camera sees it as well.
Hmm, imagine that your living depends on that! There is not a lot of food variety left over that you will want to eat.
Given that you have learned what is working and what not, and given that you found a good and healthy diet which works for your work schedule, then there is the matter of being pretty all the time. Ever travelled with these little trolley thingies? How often do you knock that thing into your calves? Mine are usually looking like a Dalmatian after a while. But you are a model, you can’t have bruises and cuts. Nope, no gardening either, and better don’t have your cat scratching you. OK, well! They can Photoshop your pictures (software with which they fiddle images) and they will do that anyway, but if you constantly produce more work to them then the other models they might not like to book you that much anymore.
And the hair removal at the right time for not having red skin, the ‘tanning/sun protection’ without having stripes in the wrong places and not looking orange from fake tan, and then there is this little matter of beauty sleep. I’m starting to look like a ghost now. I’m guessing here, but I gather that a lot of models have a normal life with shopping, house and garden and family and friends. I find it hard to appear well rested and buzzing from energy all the time.
And this is only from this little glimpse I got from playing model for a few days. I can imagine that there are issues I can’t even think of when one does this for a living.
The more I think about all this the more it appears to me that modelling basically is a normal job, where you need to know a lot about the subject, have to have skills and talent, and have to be determined to become good in it – and that I was quite a hypocrite criticising this profession. Adoring actors, but looking down on models? They are performers as well. They deliver a show and we should appreciate and enjoy. And we always think of the glamorous super models, but what about all these online stores and catalogues we love to look at and to buy from. Without these models we wouldn’t have that, would we?
So thank you all you lovely ladies who help creating all these beautiful pictures for us, who make it easier for us to choose our clothes and give us inspiration and joy. I wish you good health, lasting beauty and a full schedule!