I guess modeling might be the most controversial profession nowadays. Hardly you would find another career that would be surrounded by such an impenetrable cloud of romance and daydreaming combined with prejudice, stereotypes, and dirt. There are millions of reasons for such judgment and you may speculate about them forever. But the main factor that calls such unmotivated aggression towards models is people's own ignorance.
It is simply buried in human nature to put labels and set stereotypes when they face something that they cannot comprehend. As a result, modeling has always been surrounded by stereotypes that have nothing to do with reality. Some people don`t bother to ask questions, some are simply shy. Nevertheless, it is ignorance that causes aggression and misunderstanding. As a result, many talented and beautiful people don`t even try to start a career in modeling being afraid of judgment and condemnation. The funny thing about many stereotypes is that they are as powerful as false. So when you are determined to build your career and become a serious professional, you learn to face those stereotypes and talk about them openly...if you have the guts...
The lifestyle of rich and fame
When people talk about models they mostly imagine carefree beauties that live in mansions, wear branded clothes and travel the world on private jets only. The funny thing is that when they imagine this lifestyle, most people think that this is exactly what models are being paid for. This is the main source of aggression that turned modeling into one of the most prejudiced careers nowadays. In other words, they simply confuse cause and effect. And the effect is not guaranteed by the way.
Behind those nicely draped curtains of luxury life, you find years of hard-working, tears, blood, and sweat. So eventually we find ourselves in a vicious circle. The stereotype of easy money and cheap success in modeling has become so strong that many people come to the industry with this heavy label around their neck from the very beginning.
This can even cause unprofessional behavior of photographers and agents and lead to a whole army of poor boys, girls, and enbies with low self-esteem combined with unrealistic dreams. Youngsters come to the profession and find themselves in a perfect storm of consumerism and cruelty. As a result, they might feel like all their dreams simply fall apart, with little or no support they might struggle with the feeling of isolation and loneliness.
If you aren't tough already modeling surely will make you quit, or tough. Just like diamonds are formed from ordinary graphite after enormous pressure, professional models have to go overcome unimaginable struggles. And who said that you might go through it undamaged? Hardly anybody talks about mental disorders, breakdowns, and personality deformations that are no news to the modeling industry.
Yes, being a model is constantly meeting new people. But while you meet those people, they don`t meet you. This consumerism combined with constant body shaming and professional degradation became part of the industry only because of ignorance and stereotypes that have been imposed by society for ages.
People Like Models. Models Like Humans
Show business generally and modeling particularly are the topics where people simply forget that they are talking about humans and human relationships. Let`s take the most common modeling stereotype “everything goes through the bed”. Would you imagine that an office manager would prepare better documents if he sleeps with his boss? Or a hairdresser does better trims having sex with clients? Of course, not.
Modeling is the same job as any other so there is no chance a model performs better or becomes more successful providing sexual services to agents and photographers. Or at least not better or worse than it may be in any other profession. Some say that models don`t eat anything. Just think that you have to run from set to set all day long, change images, moods, poses. How long would you survive on an empty stomach? Food disorders, sexual harassment, and aggression that mostly surround modeling can cause unimaginable harm to the individuals.
I am not trying to demonize the model industry, as a model myself I love all the different aspects of it. It has many challenging facets but they made me grow and stronger in many ways. When knowing how to make boundaries, assuring your safety, and taking care of your mental health regularly modeling can be a beautiful and empowering job and a great way to express your inner world to the outside.
Modeling is a huge fascinating world. Just like any career, it provides infinite possibilities for those who are determined to become professionals. It allows for translating beauty and fashion into everyday life. Stereotypes and labels are quite common hitchhikers of any successful trip. But distinguishing between them and not letting them mess with your perception of the profession help move forward and build a successful career.
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