Last update: 07-Dec-2013 3:12 am
Saturday, December 07, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Sian the model...owns the spotlight
Sian McIntosh’s image has been everywhere lately. She is the face of the new model search competition, Face of T&T, and a much sought-after model for top Carnival bands and ad agencies.
After the recent launch of Tribe’s 2014 presentation Tribe 10, a blogger reporting on the event described the 32-year-old as, “being able to make sackcloth and ashes look sexy.” It probably isn’t a coincidence that Sioux, the costume she modelled at the launch, is one of Tribe’s fastest-selling sections.
Away from the glamour and limelight, McIntosh, the daughter of Opposition MP Patricia McIntosh, is a secondary schoolteacher at a co-ed school. She talked to the Guardian about getting into modelling, keeping her teaching and modelling career separate and how her parents feel about her work.
I balance modelling and teaching by trying as much as possible to keep them separate. But this does not always work out. My students are aware of what I do but they always remain respectful. There are actually girls I have taught who are now getting into the industry and seek advice from me. I understand my responsibility as a teacher and someone who sets standards for children, so I am very careful with the types of modelling that I do.
I got into modelling to gain more confidence. I was always very shy growing up. I was also a chubby kid. I started modelling when I was 23 but my first band launch was in 2010 when I was asked by designer Sandra Hordatt to model her section Xi’an Warriors (for Tribe’s 2011 presentation Way of the Warriors) and the rest is history.
I have been a body model for the past eight years. I don’t really like being described as a body model because I find it sort of conceited. I have learned to change this mindset by allowing people to see the real me, which is a very down-to-earth, fun, geeky and very approachable person.
Being a model has given me a lot of exposure professionally in terms of getting different types of modelling jobs and again, it has definitely given me the confidence that I did not have when I was younger.
My experience as a face model was different to being a body model because it was the first weave I have ever worn, but it was fabulous. Secondly, I was not accustomed to having the focus solely on my face so that took a bit of getting used to. But I must say, working with Kirk Thomas was really an amazing experience, he is so talented and he's fun to be around.
I was recently compared to renowned model Iman after I did the face shot for Face of T&T. This was a big deal for me, because I wouldn't compare myself to her, she is just such a huge fashion icon.
I am good at being a model because I think I’m very easy to work with and I think I take direction really well. The key to staying grounded is being humble and never letting this profession go to my head.
I work independently because this better for me, I get to have more say in what I do.
My mother supports what I do. Initially she was nervous about the kind of modelling I’d be doing, but when she saw my work, she was proud. She is very supportive and she collects everything I do. I’m the only daughter, and my Dad’s “little princess”, but he is also quite cool with what I do.
I keep in shape by doing a little tae bo and going to the gym but tennis is my real sport. I don’t make joke with my food either because I love my belly.
My diet consists of everything that can be consumed by a human, except caraille. Yuck!
I prepare myself for a shoot or show by clearing my head and focusing on executing my routine at its best. I don't really feel that pressured nowadays but if anything, I just take a shot (drink), and I’m good to go!
Some beauty tips I swear by include using moisturiser and not staying up too late or over-partying. I soundly believe in the old people’s advice, ‘stay way from night dew.’ And you must have a chapstick, because crusty lips aren’t cute.
I think I am going to be modelling as long as the good Lord will smile on me and keep me looking young. But you must also know when to stop too! And leave on a high note.
I am at my best when I am home wearing a vest and shorts, hanging with my boyfriend or when I am at the beach. I am a real beach bum.
I don’t think the modelling industry is bad, but I do think that in T&T we should be a bit more selective with models. Not just because you are pretty means that you are a model. This is a serious profession for those who want to do it professionally and there are specific requirements that should be adhered to. I am not stating that you have to be six feet and skinny, nowadays there is a healthier standard for models and there are different categories of models. Find what works for you!
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