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Modeling a dress
Modeling at Fashion Week 2007

A model (from Middle French modèle),[1] sometimes called a mannequin, is a person who is employed for the purpose of displaying and promoting fashion clothing or other products and for advertising or promotional purposes or who poses for works of art.

Modeling is distinguished from other types of public performance, such as an acting, dancing or mime artist, although the boundary is not well defined. Appearing in a movie or a play is not considered modeling. However, models may be considered to express emotion in their photographs, and many describe themselves as actors.[citation needed] Models are generally not expected to verbally express themselves unless to visually enhance a photograph.[citation needed]

Types of modelling include fashion, glamour, fitness, bikini, fine art, and body-part models.

Contents

Social construction

Not all models are considered "beautiful": character models portray ordinary people and humorous types, mostly in print work and in commercials.[citation needed] Photo manipulation and cosmetic surgery also enable people who formerly displayed body imperfections to act as models and change their looks to suit a certain role.[citation needed] Many high fashion models have "quirky" attributes and memorably unusual faces.[citation needed] High end brands often use these unusual faces as people are likely to remember their brand name and associate it with an interesting face.[citation needed]

Various representations of beauty and fashion using models have caused controversy and is known to have some social impact, particularly on young people - both male and female.

Fashion models

General

Fashion models on the runway.

Models may be used to display and promote clothing. Fashion modeling may involve catwalk or runway modeling or editorial modeling, covering photography for magazine spreads, ad campaigns, catalogues, print etc. The emphasis of fashion photography is on the clothes or accessories, not the model. Fashion models may be used to display or promote various types of clothing, such as lingerie, swimsuit, and bikini. Models may be used in showroom, fit modeling, fitness or sporty modeling. Some are used for petite modeling or plus-size modeling.

The first person described as a fashion model is Parisian shopgirl, Marie Vernet Worth. She was a house model in 1853, to her fashion designer husband, Charles Frederick Worth.[2]

Female body type

The British Association of Model Agents (AMA) says that female models should be around 34-24-34 in (86-61-86 cm) and at least 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m) tall.[3] The ideal measurements used to be 35.5-23.5-35.5 in (90-60-90 cm) which were the alleged measurements of Marilyn Monroe. However, today's fashion models tend to have measurements closer to the AMA recommended shape, although by no means all models have these exact statistics, and fashion houses may require other sizes for their models.

The unusually thin shape of fashion models has been criticized for allegedly warping girls' body image and encouraging eating disorders.[4] Organizers of a fashion show in Madrid in September 2006 turned away models who were judged to be underweight by medical personnel who were on hand.[5] In February 2007, six months after her sister, Luisel Ramos - also a model - died, Uruguayan model Eliana Ramos became the third international model to die of malnutrition in six months. The second victim was Ana Carolina Reston.[6] Luisel Ramos died of heart failure caused by anorexia nervosa just after stepping off the catwalk.

Male body type

The preferred average dimensions for a male model are a height of 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m) to 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m), a waist of 26–33 in (66.04–83.82 cm) and a chest measurement of 32–40 in (81.28–101.60 cm).[3]

Supermodels

Supermodels are highly paid, high profile fashion models. These (usually female) celebrities, also known as cover girls, appear on top fashion magazine covers, in catalogues and in fashion shows.

The first model to pave the way for what would become the supermodel was Lisa Fonssagrives.[7] The relationship between her image on over 200 Vogue covers and her name recognition led to the importance of Vogue in shaping future supermodels. Her image appeared on the cover of fashion magazine during the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s from Town & Country, Life and Vogue to the original Vanity Fair.

Model Janice Dickinson has asserted that she was the person for whom the term was coined, as she popped the term herself while talking to her agent at the climax of her career by saying, "I'm not superman, I'm a supermodel".[citation needed] In the 1980s, regulars like Gia Carangi, Carol Alt, Janice Dickinson, Cindy Crawford, Christie Brinkley [8], Kim Alexis, Elle Macpherson and Paulina Porizkova began to endorse products with their names as well as their faces, getting in front of everything from Diet Pepsi to Ford Trucks.

Glamour models

Glamour models posing on the red carpet - Hollywood, CA 03/09/2008

Glamour photography emphasizes the model and the model's sexuality rather than products, fashion or the environment. Glamour modelling often focuses on the body of the subject and insinuations of sexuality serve to enhance a product's attractiveness. Glamour models may be used for mass-produced calendars, pinup and for men's magazines, such as Playboy magazine. Famous glamour models include Pamela Anderson, Jordan, Jodie Marsh, Lucy Pinder, Louise Glover , etc.

Fitness models

Fitness model posing with dumbbell

Fitness modeling centers on displaying an athletic physique. Fitness models usually have defined muscles like bodybuilders, but with less emphasis on muscle size. Their body weight is usually similar to (or heavier than) fashion models, but they have a lower body fat percentage due to increased muscle mass relative to fat mass.

Bikini models

Bikini models are also usually required to be obviously fit and with an appealing body shape. Bikini models can usually be shorter, around 5 ft 5 in (1.65 m) to 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)

Artist's models

Artist's model at work

Art models are models who pose for photographers, painters, sculptors, and other artists as part of their work of art.

Models are frequently used for training art students, but are also employed by accomplished artists. The most common types of art created using models are figure drawing, figure painting, sculpture and photography. Although commercial motives dominate over the esthetics in advertising, its 'artwork' commonly employs models.

Throughout the history of Western Art, drawing the human figure from living models was considered the most useful tool in developing the skill of draftsmanship. In the art school classroom setting, the purpose is to learn how to draw humans of all different shapes, ages and ethnicities, so there are no real limitations on who the model can be. In some cases, the model may pose with various props, one or more other models, animals etc., against real or artificial background, in natural or artificial light and so on.

Models for life drawing classes are often entirely nude, apart from visually non-obstructive personal items such as small jewelry and sometimes eyeglasses. In a job advertisement seeking nude models, this may be referred to as being "undraped" or "disrobed". (Alternatively, a cache-sexe may be worn. Eadward Muybridge's historic scientific studies of the male and female form in motion, for example, has examples of both usages.)

In Western countries, there is generally no objection to either sex posing nude for or drawing members of the opposite sex. However, this was not always so in the past, particularly prior to the 20th century. In 1886 Thomas Eakins was famously dismissed from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art for removing the loincloth from a male model in a mixed classroom. Similarly, Victorian modesty required the female model to pose nude with her face draped (illustration). European arts academies did not allow women to study the nude at all until the end of the nineteenth century. Up into the present day some rare art classes prefer male models to wear a jockstrap.

Masked nude, drawing by Thomas Eakins (c. 1863–66)

Policies vary regarding male models having an erection. Some instructors don't mind at all (especially with younger or inexperienced models), while others, including the Register of Artists' Models (RAM) in the United Kingdom, consider this as cause for termination.[9] In any case, it may be inconvenient for the artists, as the subject is not exactly the same as when the drawing session commenced.

Gravure Idols

Alternative models

An alternative model is any model that does not fit into the conventional model types, and may include emo, punk, goth, fetish, tattooed models or having a distinctive attribute. These mix with high fashion and art models. Publishers such as Goliath in Germany have enabled alternative models and punk photography to become known to a larger audience.

Body part modeling

Some models are employed for their particularly attractive body parts. For example, hand models may be used to promote nail care products, leg models are useful for showcasing tights, and wrist models are used to showcase watches or bracelets. Petite models or females who are under 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m) have found success through body part modeling.

Working conditions

Despite the stereotype of modeling as a lucrative and glamorous profession, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics the median wage for models was only $11.52 per hour in 2006.[10] MarketWatch listed modeling as one of the ten worst jobs in America.[10]

See also

References


Simple English

File:Gisele
A fashion model on the catwalk. (Gisele Bündchen)
File:Anthonis van Dyck
Painters use models to paint pictures such as this one. It is called Amor and Psyche. It was painted by Anthonis van Dyck around the year 1638

A model is a person who has the job of posing, or displaying works of art or fashion (clothes), usually for promotion of the product. They are often used for advertising in television and printed media, for example newspapers and magazines.

Types of models

There are many different types of models. Some models only use certain parts of their bodies. For example, a hand model is a person who only uses their hands. A hand model would be used to display certain items, for example rings and watches. These types of model are usually only used for advertisements.

Fashion models are used to sell clothing or cosmetics. People who make clothing will often use fashion models to wear the clothing they make at fashion shows. The models will walk up and down a raised section of floor called the catwalk or runway to show the clothing to other people.

Fine art models are hired by photographers, painters and other artists to pose for their art.

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