I found Pricing Beauty Chapter one most interesting of the reading for this week. Probably because I am mystified by the rail thin women designers employ to promote and sell their clothing designs. Also, I understood that models are signed to agencies that set up their appointments and take a cut of their earnings, but I was surprised how big of a cut the agency takes. What baffled me was what set the girls I see in campaigns for my favorite designs from the all the other girls aspiring to be them. I thought it always had to do with their ‘look’ and maybe a bit on who they knew. Never did I imagine that their personality and networking would account for so much. I guess it makes sense, since all of the girls around about the same build and there are only so many different variation in their face. Once again, we are working with signs in a system.
What different individuals value as beauty sets the price tag for the model. I never realized how much that relates to art, especially with current artist. When art is put into galleries, the gallery takes a chuck of what ever the art sells for. To get into a gallery depends on who the artist know sand that is based on where their work has been showed before. From there, the artist develops social connections and then much of their current success springs from there. Again, for current and upcoming artist. So Mears was right, models are truly cultural products. And the more their world is left hidden the more we buy into the idea that they are genetically superior, rich, and live a life of fashion and glamour. While even the models we see in our favorite campings may become rich, their lives are not full of glamorous tales. And, for every ‘winner’ there are thousands of girls who spend their youth looking for their ‘Big Job’ and many end up in thousand of dollars in debt in search for the glamorous life. Even Mears admits to being caught up in the glamour and not wanting to quit in hopes that she might actually make it in the industry. It almost reminds me of wanting to be a fashion designer. We know the obstacles in our way and not to mention the thousands of others that want the jobs just as bad as we do but, will most likely make or break us will be what others price our ‘look’. Looking outside in, we all seem crazy for desiring this.