‘So you can see me, I put make up on my face’ – Modelling Zen, or ‘Am I thick enough yet?’

Sometimes people ask me what, in my opinion, makes a good art model. I have roughly a zillion different answers to this question, depending on my mood, but one thing remains (and I think would apply to more ‘mainstream’ modelling, as well): you’ve got to be thick skinned.

This isn’t as simple as it sounds.

The obvious things are these: you have to be prepared to see yourself as an object. I go through a flurry of indecision about my beliefs on this; are you objectifying yourself by modelling? Are other people objectifying you? If so, is that OK? Continue reading

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On Physical Beauty

I was talking to my friend about this just the other day (and forgive me, but it’s a topic I have often wondered about, doing what I do for a living); isn’t it weird that when you feel you look your worst (jet-lagged, ill, hot and bothered, no make up, mosquito-bitten), that’s when you get the most attention from men in the streets (and, er, from waiters…), whereas when you put the effort in, feeling you have really dressed up and look pretty good, that’s when absolutely no one notices?

I’ve also found many times that images which are favourites in my modelling portfolio were taken when I (secretly) know that I wasn’t feeling my best or most attractive. There seems to be very little rhyme or reason to this.

I think it’s quite a liberating thing; Continue reading

On Japan, Magic & Pillow Breath

Japan has been high on my travel lust-list for well over a decade; I even had flights booked to go there on my way back from Australia (via Bali) three years ago, but ended up forgoing them both to stay longer in Oz. Ever since, I have considered it, with yearning, each spring and each autumn (do I want the cherry blossom or the autumn leaves?) and have repeatedly had to cast the country aside for other ventures. I know I’ll go sometime and it will be magical; I think I want it to be a trip in itself – not just a stop on the way to or from somewhere else.

In the meantime, two of Japan’s most unrelated outputs (though halfway through this blog post I promise you a tenuous link) have shown up in my life recently.

Firstly (and I don’t want this to turn into a book review, but…), I have been caught in the avalanche of magnetising media surrounding The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying, a recent, clutter-toppling phenomenon written by Marie Kondo and published nearly two years ago. Continue reading

Why I Volunteer at a Homeless Drop-in Centre (and what’s the point of anything?)

There may be many things about my life which are far from perfect, but on the whole, my life is very good. Really very good. I have shelter, warmth, food, health and opportunities. Nothing makes you appreciate that more than plunging yourself into a world (or the world) filled with those who do not.

In writing this, I am reminded of an episode of Friends in which Phoebe is adamant that there is such a thing as an unselfish act and tries to prove it, while Joey believes it’s impossible. After several failed attempts (including letting a bee sting her so that it will look ‘cool’ in front of its bee friends), Phoebe gives up; as Joey says, there is always that ‘good feeling’ you get from doing something altruistic – that warm buzz which lingers even when you think you are doing something purely because it will help others. Continue reading