By Stylist Jenni Sellan
They might be masters of “off duty style” but do models require a fiercely fashionable sixth sense, or is their value best seen in the ability to present as a blank canvas, a chameleon of sorts ready to be transformed for the unveiling of fashion’s most creative minds?
We all agree that beauty is more than skin deep and in the same way models are so much more than their style we want to steal.
Fashion is a fun and accessible part of our everyday, but there’s more to this industry than meets your in-vogue eye;
Instrumental in product sales, brand awareness, development and growth, representing the designer and conveying the emotion and attitude of the brand, models play a critical role in the business of fashion.
Modeling in part is also theatrical. Just as great actors have a way of ‘becoming’ the character, the most successful models posses the ability to put their ‘person’ aside in order to breathe life into the creative vision; perhaps the key to longevity and success lies in their versatility and ability to adapt not only to seasonal changes, but also in their willingness to step into the creative mindset of the client. The result? Draw dropping moments, magic on the runway and colour to the canvas.
During her Ted Talk, Model Cameron Russel describes pictures of herself as constructions. Constructions by professionals; hair stylists, make up artists, photographers, stylists, all of their assistants, and pre and post- production teams. Talk to the top modeling agencies, Elite, Ford, IMG, and they will tell you that they want to see new talent as “Raw” as possible and with the latest looks changing from season to season, its not surprising that the decision makers are looking beyond the face that stands before them, because time after time these beauties will be created into someone else’s image for a particular shoot or runway show.
But what of that enviable style that we see snapped street side?
Does street cred and fashion sensibility guarantee super model stardom?
There is no doubt that models are in the perfect position for developing steal-worthy style by nature of their roles which include being surrounded by fashion’s creatives every day with all the tricks of the trade at their fingertips. So do these models become fiercely fashionable or are they born with it?
Either way, more and more their personal style is on show and there is no denying it’s influence on what’s hot and what’s not!
The most successful models have become brands unto themselves, and as this element of their career grows, there is surely an expectation from fashion’s followers and the industry that their style will be on point, because every step both on and off the runway is a reflection of fashion’s current moment.
Fashion is a complex business, and a model’s success not solely dependent on one factor but a multitude; aesthetics play a part of the game along with many personal qualities that require a constant call to action including resilience and the ability to position themselves in confidence, energy and self expression; in the words of Donna Karen
(referring to girl of the moment, Cara Delevingne), “Far more than the clothes she’s wearing. She’s a personality full of energy and spirit. She’s totally fearless in her unique sense of style”.