Girl Model – A film
We all know that fashion is all about the image. As a consumer, you want to buy items that will give you a desirable image, and one tends to buy into the image of a brand. As a designer, you are in control the image of your brand. This starts with choosing your ideal model, one who fits the image of your brand, and many designers spend a LOT of money to get the right girl/boy.
It is well known that in Japan, youth is desired as the ideal form of beauty, and that women go to great lengths to preserve theirs. Not only this, but in all advertising and marketing the models have been getting younger and younger. Girl model is a very important film to watch for every designer, but especially for our students, as you are in Japan studying in the fashion industry and will someday have the responsibily of choosing models for your other other brands.
This film exposes the realities of exploitation in the fashion industry in Japan, and worldwide. not only this, but it brings to light the side-effects of a culture that is obsessed with ‘Kawaii’, and the image of a foreign face. As a designer, it is your responsibility to know this activity is happening, and to take measures within your own endeavors to avoid or stop exploitation at every level of the industry. Please visit this website: http://modelalliance.org/ for more information about activism and labor rights in the modelling industry.
Here is the synopsis from the official website:
Despite a lack of obvious similarities between Siberia and Tokyo, a thriving model industry connects these distant regions. GIRL MODEL follows two protagonists involved in this industry: Ashley, a deeply ambivalent model scout who scours the Siberian countryside looking for fresh faces to send to the Japanese market, and one of her discoveries, Nadya, a thirteen year-old plucked from the Siberian countryside and dropped into the center of Tokyo with promises of a profitable career. After Ashley’s initial discovery of Nadya, the two rarely meet again, but their stories are inextricably bound. As Nadya’s optimism about rescuing her family from their financial difficulties grows, her dreams contrast against Ashley’s more jaded outlook about the industry’s corrosive influence.
GIRL MODEL is a lyrical exploration of a world defined by glass surfaces and camera lenses, reflecting back differing versions of reality to the young women caught in their scope. As we enter further into this world, it more and more resembles a hall of mirrors, where appearances can’t be trusted, perception become distorted, and there is no clear way out. Will Nadya, and the other girls like her, be able to find anyone to help them navigate this maze, or will they follow a path like Ashley’s, having learned the tricks of the labyrinth but unable to escape its lure? (Written by Kristina Aikens)
Watch the film here: