Aside the struggle of reducing food intake for the fear of adding weight, and the stereotype associated to male models that questions their gender, there are other problems models face.
Lilian Bongnia, a model who hails from upper west region of Ghana after winning Model of the year in the upper west creative arts awards highlights some challenges models especially in northern Ghana faces as well as provides solutions on how to scale over them.
1. Unstable income
The modelling business in Ghana is still growing and yet to have a proper structure, therefore some models, especially the up-comers, may not have stable incomes. In some cases, models are charged to enroll in agencies and pay for their own photo-sessions in order to get on the gram. Therefore, there’s no guarantee of getting paid, fairly and on time.
Tips: Be forward about your payment terms before the actual event commences so you make an informed-decision whether to take the job or not if you are offered nothing or something meagre.
2. Inferiority Complex
Hearing “you are fat and ugly” is the last thing any model wants to hear as this can demoralize even the finest and tallest girl who has low-self-esteem. Also, the light skinned girls seem to be making more waves than the dark skinned ones and this can make the later feel inferior in a pack of the fairest.
Tips: Find your uniqueness and appreciate your body statistics and colour just the way it is.
3. Sexual advances
Due to the high competition in the modelling industry, some models may be lured and blackmailed to exchange sex for a casting job. From casting directors to modelling agents and photographers, models are exposed to a whole lot of different personalities every step of the way and can fall prey if care is not taken.
Tips: Know your worth and draw the fine line between work and pleasure. If your statistics can’t land you a good casting, your sexual submission won’t earn you one either.
4. Substance Abuse
Models share this common challenge with musicians – abuse of substances ranging from alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, caffeine, ecstasy, heroin, etc. Some models are very shy and reserved people, therefore resort to getting high on some substances just before hitting the runway as an escape to their fears and worries.
Tip: Build your confidence and people management skills with books and consciously make effort to do your next photo shoot or runway show clean of any substance.
5. Muscle Pull
Have you ever felt the brunt of standing for long or walking a distance on heels? This is the reality and regular work life of an active model. From rehearsals to photo shoots, and shows, wearing heels is inevitable and muscle pull is just the nerve’s way of reacting to that kind of stress.Tips: Shop for heels that are balanced and has small room for your legs to breath. Go on flip flops during short breaks or at any free time you can grab and massage your feet from time to time – it’s one of your most useful assets you know.
About Lilian Bongnia
Lilian Bongnia is a Model of 20 years of age, she was born on the 12th of August 1999. She had her basic and Junior High education at Tender Care Preparatory in Wa the regional capital of the upper west region of Ghana,attended Jirapa Senior High School in Upper west region, recently in the Sunyani Technical University. She love to cook, listen to music, sing, play volley, basketball, learn new things and fun to be with. For her favorite meal, she chooses “Tubani”.
She is much focused on her health and diet, keeping fit as well. As a model she always believe in handwork and determination and with passion and enthusiasm she says always:“the sky will rather be my starting point not my limit“.
Follow her on Instagram and Facebook @ Lilian Bongnia