Creating a fashion event is a huge amount of work. There are so many elements that go into it. So many people. So many places for things to go wrong. When it comes to show time most people in the audience have no idea what the event planner went through to make it all happen. They are just there to have a good time, and look at pretty girls. Then they leave.
Since I have been doing the body painting for some of these events I have noticed some things that seem to be the “norm” for the shows. It seems that several or many models cancelling is an absolute certainty. You never book exactly the number of models you need you book more so you can get the number you need. Another absolute certainty is that something that belongs to the models is going to be stolen. Sometimes it is a wallet, phone, cash, outfits, shoes, or anything else they brought in the door. Somehow it magically disappears by some invisible means by the time they get off the runway.
Everyone is hoping to get their big break. The hairstylist will do shows for free until someone sees how amazing they are and pay them for their artistry. The make-up artists are in the same boat and so are the photographers. And of course the models. So the guest artist event I did last night should have cost the show $500 at a minimum (everyone involved getting ONLY $50, plus paying for supplies). The models should have gotten $100 a piece. The hairdresser normally gets $150 for a photo shoot. I normally get $200 plus supplies. The photographer is normally $250. We also bought pizza since we started at noon and the show finished at 10pm. There was also a run to Walgreens for other supplies. Each of the models also had to buy underwear for the shoot. So in order for everyone to be paid their normal fee, it should have cost somewhere in the ballpark of $900.
Like I said. I think most people have no idea. That was just for two models! I know that before I started doing this I had no idea, which is why I wrote this.
Which brings me to my second point. The assumptions of these events are that stealing is normal, saying you are going to be there, and not showing up, is normal. Not in my world! I want to create events where people participating, in general, aren’t afraid that their things are going to be stolen. I also want everyone to get paid something! This has got to change! Lastly I want the audience to stay and actually talk to everyone! I mean people should get to meet the human beings who put hours of their life together for two to three minutes of runway time! These are artists! The models are NOT just bodies, they are people. We have to start caring, and I want to create special events where everyone WANTS to participate they are treated like real people, they are respected, their things are safe and don’t go missing, they get paid for their time and effort, and everyone stays to talk, dance, and have a good time past the runway show.
How is that possible? Easy. Relationships. You spend time getting to know the people that are on time, show up, do good work, and have awesome attitudes on and off the runway. Drama queens, flakes, lewd audience members and jealous boyfriends can go to other people’s shows. The idea is that the people who do all the bad behavior may want to get into my show, but it requires them to be better than anyone has thought possible of them before.
If we don’t like how business is done, then we should not be resigned. We should reinvent the wheel. The same is also true for any system, from families to our government. I like the idea of having a business model based on integrity and love.