Featured Model: Tara Nichol



"Recently I have been more proactive in working to create my own career and am excited to continue expanding my skills and talents in new directions as I discover myself as a model and develop my own signature style."

Model Citizen App is the platform where we recognise fashion models, photographers, designers, makeup artists, hair stylists, creative directors, bloggers, stylists, and labels around the world. Every day, we feature an individual on Model Citizen Interviews. People get to know each of them - their hopes, challenges, aspirations and inspirations in life.

Tell us about yourself: Why do you want to work as a model? Why are you interested in modelling as a career?

While I've always had a love for art and creation, I didn't get my start in modeling until just a few years ago. I was discovered by Kelly Mallory Photography, an amazing photographer who over the years has become a wonderful friend and asset on my journey into this new and exciting industry. Throughout my modeling career I have been published in a number of different magazines, calendars, and a hardcover book, and have even been blessed enough to receive a couple covers and interviews. I've always loved trying new things and modeling has allowed me to delve into a new form of art while also helping others achieve their creative goals. It's always a blast trying out new concepts and ideas when modeling, and I love how challenging it can be. I'm always looking to push the envelope and be different, and am always looking to grow artistically. The more unique, the better. Modeling is exciting for me because it gives me the chance to express myself in a new way, with all of my being. Currently I am a college student and also work part time in addition to my modeling endeavors. Recently I have been more proactive in working to create my own career and am excited to continue expanding my skills and talents in new directions as I discover myself as a model and develop my own signature style.

How important is modelling education: Have you attended modelling courses? What related courses or studies have you taken?

In my personal experience it really depends on the model. I have never taken any modeling courses and know many models who have skipped this step. I don't think there's anything wrong with modeling courses, in fact they probably help you hone your skills faster as you're being specifically taught what to do, but that being said there's nothing wrong with learning by trial and error either. I think of modeling as another form of acting, when I arrive on a shoot I consider what the general mood of the shoot should be, and what are we trying to portray or take away from these images when we're all done? It's helpful to have good communication with your photographer and team, and also to know what the images are going to be used for in the end, that way you can keep your audience in mind throughout the shoot.

What do you think makes someone “fit” to be a model?

This is the best question yet! When I first started modeling I was extremely insecure and would often find myself getting jealous when I looked at other gorgeous models and their recent shoots, thinking to myself "Am I really fit to be a model? Look at these girls!" but over the years I have figured it out! Like your parents always said, the best thing you can be, is YOU! And this is especially important to remember in modeling! I realize now that I am not in a competition with these other girls as there are so many different types of models and different "looks" the clients are after. So to answer the question, "what makes someone 'fit' to be a model?" nothing and everything. Anyone can be a model because the world needs all types of different "looks" to achieve different goals!

What are your goals as a model? How do you see yourself progressing in this field?

Currently my modeling goals include gaining more experience by continuing to work with new photographers, (as there is always more to learn!) and to continuing to push myself out of my comfort zone to find out what I'm really capable of. I hope someday to have a somewhat steady career in modeling while still having enough time make art, have friends, and eventually start a family.

What do you know about the advertising industry?

As a college student I have taken a couple psychology classes and as an art major I have learned some basic advertising tips and tricks. Photography plays an immense role in the advertisement industry today, because as the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words! Because photos communicate so well, they are widely used today especially to help convey emotions, such as happiness, excitement, frustration, love, and more! Photography is a great outlet for expressing yourself and can also become an exciting career choice as well!

How do you communicate with people? Are you patient? Are you friendly? How open are you to clients’ requirements?

I personally have worked in customer service positions for over 6 years and have no problems communicating or expressing myself to others. I'm very outgoing, friendly, and patient, and I tend to thrive off the energy I get being around other people or when working as part of a team. I am honest and open whenever a client has specific requirements for a shoot, but I also let them know my boundaries as well and stand my ground. Models have to work with client requirements often but that doesn't mean you should be pushed around or disrespected, be clear about what you are and aren't willing to do and follow through, if a client wants you to do something you're uncomfortable with, this should be addressed long before the day of the shoot so there's no surprises for anyone. As long as there is good communication between everyone involved it's really easy to stay on the same page and have a great time working together!

Do you eat nutritiously? How often do you exercise or go to the gym?

Of course! Although I splurge every now and then with a little fast food or takeout, I do try to maintain a healthy diet. Nothing too fancy, usually just the basic, fruits and vegetables, grilled chicken, salads, oatmeal, granola, etc. I sometimes struggle with getting enough of my daily nutrients so I recently added a basic women's daily vitamin to my mornings and I also work on my fitness at home!

What is your dream role as a model?

Eventually, I would like to have enough influence as a model to organize community events and or organizations in my area to help raise awareness and combat bullying in public schools. As a victim of childhood bullying myself, I know how much it has affected me and still continues to affect me even to this day, and I want to speak out and help those who may be going through something similar in their lives.

Do you have any limitations? How do you define your boundaries when choosing to accept a modelling request?

I do have boundaries! When shooting with a new photographer, or when being approached by one, I always make sure I am open and honest about my policies and what I am and am not comfortable with. I personally do not shoot boudoir/nude and also always bring my assistant to a new shoot. In the instance that a photographer wants me to do something I'm not comfortable with, I politely remind them of the boundaries I explained to them when I first met them and even recommend other models I know who would possibly be interested in doing that type of a shoot. As far as bring my assistant with me, in most of my experience photographers have had no problems with me bringing someone with me to new shoots in areas I haven't been to before, and after I get to know them better I usually feel comfortable enough to work with them again on my own, but this is just a personal policy of mine to make sure I am always safe and comfortable when shooting. Keep in mind, that doesn't mean you should bring your boyfriend or a bunch of people who are going to distract you from doing your job., this is a job after all. In short, be honest and upfront about your boundaries and stick to them, if a photographer is pushing you or ignoring your limits, let them know that "while you appreciate their interest in working with you, you just don't feel this is the right shoot for you," and with that you can dismiss yourself, but remember to always thank them for their time.

State your availability: Would you travel? Work full-time, part time? Any hours?

Currently I am going to college and working part, but I'm always scheduling shoots whenever I can. I prefer to treat my modeling career as just that, a career, so I usually am booking my shoots out a couple of weeks in advance so if I need to I can take the day off work, and it also gives me enough time to gather anything I may need for the shoot. I do travel often for shoots, typically a 2-hour drive in any direction is my limit, although I have no problem traveling farther as long as we schedule the shoot far enough in advance for me to make the necessary accommodations. I definitely think that sometimes location can be everything and I'm always willing to do whatever I need to do to get the best shot!

What is your most memorable experience?

I have had so much fun throughout my few years of modeling so far, but have also had many mishaps, such as getting poison oak, shooting in a freezing snowmelt waterfall, climbing hills in 4 inch heels, being chased by bees, melting in the heat in a huge ball gown, breaking my big toe, and more, but in the end the fun I have and the awesome images we end up with far outway all the little inconvienences.

Booking Information:

Instagram:@taranichol

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/taranichol.artist/

Email: taranichol.artist@gmail.com

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