I swear I've done just about every pose found in this picture - image courtesy of freepsdfiles.net
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I can't help but notice that the posts about my modelling past attracts quite a bit of attention from readers of this blog. That's cool to know and I'm happy to write about it, occasionally.
As I've said in previous posts about modelling, time has given me a better perspective of my fashion sentencing. What's even better, is that I'm also realizing the time spent looking pretty may be playing a bigger part in my ongoing career pursuit within the world of food that I originally thought.
I suppose in some ways you could tie the two industries together in a positive way, and I think, thanks to the blog, I'm doing it, right here, right now. Ah, you just knew it was coming, the musical tie -in! Why hello there Jesus Jones, where have you been all these years?.
It must be said that the modelling industry is a total trip. Anyone who has been in it, still in it, passed through it, whatever would have to agree. When I say it's a trip, I mean it's just so out there that again, when I think about my time in it, I sometimes wished I had felt a bit more comfortable and relaxed about the whole experience.
The things you see, the things you wear. Hell, even the things you have to do to get jobs. No, nothing gross I quickly add, just really random, stupid things they'd make you to do to get a "glimpse" of your personality.
It could range from hilarious to humiliating. Hilarious, when your story about getting lost in Paris and nearly choking on a baguette actually makes people laugh and you end up landing that great campaign. Humiliating, when you're forced to make out with some random stranger and ultimately discover the reasons why some actors are paid very well to fake passion and make it look so real for an audience.
You've got to develop a very thick skin to handle the ups and downs. Of course, not literally develop a thick skin because you know, it is modelling, and any sort of weight gain is not the goal (ahem). More importantly, you have to take very, very good care of that thick/thin skin.
Here's a tip future fashion girls and boys: starving yourself is not the way to take care of yourself. Of course I have twenty years of hindsight and therapy to back me up now, but I sure didn't and wouldn't understand those words of wisdom if I was told back in the day. Hey, better to understand it later rather than never, right?
Oh modelling, what a weird world you were. It's very true when it's said that guys really aren't a big deal when it comes to that world. Ok, maybe now that's changed thanks to the incredible rise of male supermodel David Gandy, but he's like one in a million who actually makes money!
Seriously though, it is by no means a lucrative way of life for men as it is for women. So you can just imagine how small potatoes I was on that farm. Hey, did you see the food reference there? I knew I'd continue to find ways to tie the two industries together.
After leaving that insane (but fun) world behind, I began the pursuit of a career in writing, communications and food including culinary school and ended up here, in this hard to define world of whatever life throws at me. All these adventures in modelling, cooking, writing, makes me wonder what my life would have been like if I just stuck to an actual career that could be defined?
It definitely would have been easier. Having an actual word or words, or some description that defines your career really helps people relax around you. It's quite something to watch how unsure people become around you when you tell them you don't know what you're doing, but dammit you have a plan and you'll just see where it takes you. Career fluidity is not embraced as much as we'd like it to be.
I've realized, with an ounce of humour and a cup of trepidation, that I am once again in a world where you can't make any money unless you're well known. Struggling is never fun, and although it's necessary, I don't really recommend it. I will, however, say that learning about the world, whether it's been through modelling or cooking, or writing about both, has been the absolute best part of travelling down this less known world of an undefined career.
I still wonder where all this 'experience' will lead. My friend said hopefully he won't see me picking up garbage by the side of the highway. I said that if you do, I'll be the best dressed, well travelled guy doing it! Which reminds to put this little mind bender out there. I read this on my twitter feed and its stuck with me ever since. If you were given a book that was all about your life, right up to the present day, but then actually goes on to tell you how your life will end, would you read it?
Food for thought.
*UPDATE. Oh yeah, and one more old modelling pic from 1994. Man, you just couldn't escape the 'grunge' look even if you tried! Please scroll down, but before you do, I'll share a little story about the picture.
I remember this shoot the most out all the things I've done, because it was the only time I really hated modelling. The photographer was a complete asshole who kept calling me Mike no matter how many times I told him my name. Not to mention, he LOVED the model who is walking beside me in the picture. He made that very, very clear, and kept pushing me and the other model to the back. Hence, the shitty lighting on both of us, while long haired model looked amazing. To be fair, long haired model was a really nice guy and the days events were not his fault.
I sincerely didn't give a shit whom the photographer preferred, then or now, but I do recall the creative directors in charge of the shoot had to tell him to stop doing that and get us in the shots. I know. Drama. But Holy F*ck I wanted to kill the photographer (and yes I remember his name, but no snitching allowed in this story)! I must say though, that I'm pretty proud of the fact that the picture turned out ok and that I'm smiling somewhat naturally on what was a very shitty day. Oh well, I got paid for it so it's all good.