Tuesday, September 13, 2011

playing dress up. oh, and joe manganiello.

One of the reasons I like runway modeling so much is that it serves as an escape while simultaneously allowing me to perform a bit. I get to dress up, put on a different face {hello, makeup!}, and get my "hair did." It's a temporary transformation that takes me away from the real world and transports me into a bit of a make-believe world.

This past Friday night, I did a runway show for a fundraising event for Partners for Quality. I love doing these types of gigs. The guests aren't hoity-toity fashion critics or designers who take it all so seriously. They're regular Pittsburghers who are there to support an important cause and be entertained. We're allowed to smile as we walk down the runway, make eye contact with the members of the audience, and just have fun. That's how I think fashion should be.

My hair and makeup were pretty simple for the evening: a slick side-swept, bobby-pinned 'do, and a tiny bit of an edge to otherwise classic makeup. 

Backstage at Jay Verno Studios on the South Side was gorgeous. I'd been there before for this same fundraiser a couple of years ago, but this year, it was really well-lit and cleaner.

I got to wear some pretty sweet stuff, including that adorable red dress you see in the center of the photo below. I had my own dresser {that's someone who helps me in and out of my clothes during the quick changes} and my won little area next to the clothing rack. I plopped my stuff and myself down right next to it as soon as I got there, pulled out my script {which I now carry with me like an extra appendage everywhere I go}, popped in my earphones and listened to soothing sacred choral music on Pandora on my iPhone for a bit.

Because the Pittsburgh modeling industry isn't as large and crazy as that of New York or Chicago, a lot of the same models get booked show after show, so I end up working with a lot of the same girls each time I book a job. It's nice.  This is Anna, who I've worked with before, gettin' her hair touched up:

And this is me and Anna bein' silly backstage before the show:

The one thing I don't like about runway shows is that they put the men and women models in the same area backstage, so it's not exactly private and modest when it comes to changing clothes in between passes on the runway. I try really hard to hide behind other girls while I change, but sometimes you just have to be quick and hope that the dudes aren't eyein' you. And I don't flirt with them, by the way. I find it incredibly unprofessional, and quite frankly, I think it just fuels their egos, which are already big enough. I just get in, chat with some of the girls, take some goofy pictures with one or two, work the runway, change into my street clothes afterward, maybe stay for a bit if there's an after-party or reception, and head home.  

But I didn't stay for the after-party for this show because I was alone, didn't feel like hanging around a gaggle of other models who were ALL wearing skin-tight, short, spandexy dresses and stillettos and drinking, etc. I felt horribly out of place and lonely, which told me that the temporary transformation into another world was over and it was time to head home to my elastic-waist pants, couch, and remote control.

Although, had I stayed at the after-party, I would have seen this guy, who made a guest appearance since he was in town for a fundraiser for Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. He's a huge star now, but I remember auditioning with him over a decade ago here in Pittsburgh.

{No offense, Joe, but my comfy pants were worth it. Still, sorry I missed you.}

I finally got home around 10:30 p.m., and, a tradition I'm starting to do after modeling gigs, I took a photo of myself in my bathroom before washing off all the makeup and getting a hot shower.

I'm usually utterly exhausted after a runway show. I feel flu-ish, which is weird, yes, but true. I think it's because it's a lot of fast-paced physical activity, from getting to the salon prior to the show for hair and makeup, to the fast-changes backstage, to the actual Strutting Of My Stuff on the runway. I love going home afterward, to the quiet of my apartment and the comfort of my couch or bed.

Runway is fun, it's an escape, and I love to play dress up. But nothing beats the feeling of coming home to peace and sleep.

1 lovely bits o' feedback.:

Laureen said...

hey beautiful. i love seeing what you're doing. but even more, i love the comfy pants & peaceful home you -- and to call you friend. praying for you, thinking good thoughts & positive energy to you. and tea awaits when you are ready.