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modeling & talent ● modeling By Eve Matheson Following Your Dream Nobody is going to deny you the opportunity to follow your dream of becoming a model, but that doesn’t mean the journey will be easy M odeling is one of the toughest, most sought after careers in the world. Every year, hundreds of thousands of young people decide to follow this dream. There is no magic formula or set of rules for becoming a model, but there are spe- cific requirements. The first thing you must do is to make an honest assessment as to whether you really do have what it takes to be a model. In order to do this, you must learn about the business. Read books, watch videos and do not be influenced by the so-called reality television shows on the subject. Unfor- tunately, they are anything but realistic. Then do a bit of soul searching. Do you have the stamina? Do you have the patience to wait for your career to develop? Can you deal with rejection on a daily basis? Do you have access to fi- nances which will support you in the beginning? Will you behave professionally no matter what the situation? Take stock of your height, weight and appearance. Are you well proportioned? To model on the runways of Milan, Paris, London, New York and other international cities, a girl must be at least 5’9” and a male 6’0”. There are a few ex- ceptions to this rule, but not many at this time. Modeling can be both a glamorous and ugly business; glamorous because of the gorgeous clothes, exotic locations and staggering amounts of money to be earned, and ugly because of the many risks and dangerous pitfalls. Being tall, 40 PAGEANTRY thin and beautiful is not enough for survival in this billion dollar business. Mental stability, self-confidence, good health, a great attitude and family support are essential. A dream, however, is a dream, perhaps even a calling. I don’t believe there is an industry professional who would discourage any young person from pursuing his or her dream if he or she has the passion and an awareness of at least some of the facts above. I had the pleasure of interviewing model scout Kim Luret, who is also an author and former international model. I have known Kim for many years and am aware of her deep concern for young people who want to be models. I always admire her genuine sincerity and her willingness to share her thoughts and advice. Kim lives in Paris and scouts globally, for the renowned Crystal Agency and its subdivi- sion Slides. The two entities encompass all areas of the modeling industry with Slides focusing on fashion shows. Recalling her early career, Kim told me: “I can remember as if it were yesterday when I was that young girl with a dream of becoming a model and not knowing where to begin. I strongly believe in the power of a dream and I be- lieve that if something is calling to you, it is for a reason. In my case, I knew suddenly out of the blue I wanted to be a MODELING Continued on page 78