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21-01-2005
  1
Rebaptising my badness
 
Nemova's Avatar
 
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Model's Age - How Young Is Too Young?
I want your honest opinion: do you think models should start in the fashion industry at such young age as 13 or even less?

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21-01-2005
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in certain cases it's completely understandable, to start working young and become as successful as possible especially in harsh situations. in countries with more opportunities i think it's very important to finish schooling because what are you going to do when you're done? you need something to fall back on, if only a high school diploma so you can just go to college.

but i hate the way especially in america it's like people are giving up their childhoods away to fast. in parts of the rest of the world i understand that they are expected to grow up much earlier but when you have the opportunity to have fun and experiment without the responisbilities of an adult.

i 'uno. at least finish puberty please.

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21-01-2005
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I started working as a model when I was 14. I don't think it was too young and I actually had a lot of people looking out for me. I also attended school full time and maintained my grades. But, at that age I didn't really enjoy it, and quit when I went to college.

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21-01-2005
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I am not against commercial modeling on a part time basis for this age, but if you are talking about full time high end fashion I'm against it. I know what I'm talking about and I had to learn the hard way what it does to a young girl when she is thrust into the limelight at an early age. They are not ready for the pressure of being put in a situation where they are not comfortable. Everyone tells you its OK "it's the way the fashion industry is." You accept it because they tell you,"your going to be a star." We met a young lady in Paris who went to a fashion shoot and when she came back to the agency she was crying. I ask her why, she said," They ask me to pose in my panties and I didn't want to,but somehow they talked me into it, and now I am so ashamed." What do you say to a kid of 16 when she tells you this? In no other industry would you be able to put kids in this kind of situation and get away with it. The Fashion Industry is bigger than all of us and many people have tried to speak out about this issue but it always gets swept under the carpet. How can this type of behavior be justified?

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21-01-2005
  5
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I am completely against it. Its one thing to model at that age commercialy - for extra income like Model Mom said. But lately it seems girls are getting younger and younger. I am a booker and we have several younger girls and it breaks my heart to see them far from their country, their family, and everything they know. Of course its important to be independent and take advantage of opportunities to see the world - to learn about different cultures - to explore. But this shouldnt be done until you are someone what matured. 13 is entirely too young. I understand 17 a lot more - but definitely one thing I stand by is finishing your schooling. Thats the basis of your future and to not finish school just to dive into such an industry is unaccepptable in my opinion. Its a very rare few who make it big and no longer have to worry about their futures...

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21-01-2005
  6
Rebaptising my badness
 
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Well said, MM.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wyatt.
in certain cases it's completely understandable, to start working young and become as successful as possible especially in harsh situations.
But the problem is that the majority of the girls who come from those places don't succeed. That's what makes it so sad. Not everyone becomes a Gisele or even a Isabeli who can afford having a baby at the height of her career without jeopardising it. What's left for all those girls?

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21-01-2005
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I remember raging about this before, and I'm also whole-heartedly against it. It's a really sad state, when girls aren't mentally prepared to be going through with that type of a career. And the thing is, it is a career, and so much does have to be invested into it. I remember reading a modeling website not too long ago, and one of the major tips was that a girl should always have her cellphone on, just in case she was to get some last minute call. I can see a young model's life becoming dominated by that type of struggle. There are other major problems with the route as well, chief among them being young girl leaving school for the pursuit. I know that some do try to complete high school quickly, but what about university? I honestly worry about some of the models, as to what they're going to find themselves doing once that avenue is over and they find themselves "older" and out of a job. Besides, an extremely young model's figure and face is going to change as she grows.

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21-01-2005
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15, that's when I started and I felt it was the perfect time for me. I did very well because of it.
Other girls may not be as mature as I was so I guess it's a case-by-case thing.

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21-01-2005
  9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evexa
15, that's when I started and I felt it was the perfect time for me. I did very well because of it.
Other girls may not be as mature as I was so I guess it's a case-by-case thing.
May I ask if you had a parent with you or did you start out by yourself?

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21-01-2005
  10
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I know a lot of people think even 18 is too old to start but if you are level-headed and mature, and know what the industry is about, I think it's the best age to begin a modelling career.

Working in high fashion will involve many situations where you have to be naked, whether changing backstage at the shows or posing for a shot. I think you have to be pretty comfortable with yourself and confident about making the right choices.

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21-01-2005
  11
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If high fashion modeling was done through conscription, I'd have a problem with recruiting the pubescent, or anyone for that matter. But it's not. It's a matter of choice. And I'm not about to infringe on anyone's choice (unless it's the decision to put Chloe Sevigny on a magazine cover).

A girl that wants to be a high fashion model has it tough enough. She's got to fit the requirements. She's got to be wanted by someone. And most random of all, she's got to be at the right place at the right time. At 13, why not let your face be known by tossing your hat in the ring. Chances are you're not going to make it anyway because you'll either change physically or because someone else will get the job. But if you do make it, it'll be worth it. And if starting out early in any form contributed to you making it, well good.

As far as being away from home, etc., who's to say homelife is any utopia? There's plenty of pressure, traps, exposures, creeps and regular run of the mill stuff at school alone. I mean, most kids aren't models and some of them have problems, right? So why single out high fashion modeling as the corrupting career.

Also, I just flipped through the February fashion mags. They aren't dominated by models born in 1991 or 1992. The haute couture runways in a couple of days won't be either. Same goes for the upcoming RTW season. Let's not lose the trees and forest or the forest in the trees or however that cliche goes. Just because a few contest winners and a few new girls' profiles have eye-catchingly recent birth years doesn't mean everyone does or it's some kind of shocking development.

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21-01-2005
  12
Rebaptising my badness
 
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Atelier, if you'd seen the shows in SPFW you would notice how it's becoming a bigger issue. I know SPFW is not the best parameter, but it shows a lot about how this industry gives the works to those girls. And I think it's not only about the girls being too young for it, I keep asking myself how are we, women and consumers, able to relate to a bunch of pubescents?

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21-01-2005
  13
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Atelier, You say it's a matter of choice. Here's a choice for you. A young girl lives in a small town and decides she would like to model. She goes to see an agency and they sign you and tell you " Sweetie, you're going to be a star and make lots of money." Even though your moms with you and she should be asking questions you're both so star struck with the idea your theory is "Don't make waves they might change their mind." A week later you go for a "photo shoot with your kid and the photographer says "Oh my God this kid is great, we're going to need more time with her and you let your 15 year old go with him and his assistant at 10:00 in the morning and you don't see her again till 2:00 am the next morning. You swear if you ever get her back and she's Ok you'll take her home and never talk to these people again. On the way home you ask her what outfits she wore for her photoshoot and she tells you, " A swimsuit and a sheet.".....and you start to cry. The next morning you call the agency to give them a piece of your mind and they convince you its Ok that's the way the fashion industry works and it was done "all in good taste".....and you buy it lock stock and barrel. A matter of choice, all it takes is a star struck kid and a mom with no brain.


Last edited by model_mom; 21-01-2005 at 11:42 PM.
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21-01-2005
  14
Hoppity Hop
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemova
...I keep asking myself how are we, women and consumers, able to relate to a bunch of pubescents?
That's a different question, my friend. In an interview a couple of years ago Carolina Herrera asks outloud--paraphrasing here--if we even really want to see ourselves up there. From a psychological and marketing standpoint, we could argue either way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by model_mom
Here's a choice for you.
That's exactly what that scenario sounds like. Several freely made choices in fact. I don't see any coercion or duress.

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22-01-2005
  15
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At what age is one considered old enough to make that decision though?

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