Featured Fashion Stylist: Penny George

"The world is your canvas, so take out your creative brush and show the world your creative strokes – don’t wait for the right moment."

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 you are passionate about what you do, and your journey so far. Like most girls, I have loved fashion ever since I were a teenager. But I belonged to a time when being overly fashionable would land me in trouble, well, at least in my part of the world (Kerala, India). So to satisfy the majority, I opted for a degree in Mass Communication and went on further to pursue a master’s degree in Business Administration. After 10+ years of being in the fast paced corporate world, I finally quit. Although I took a three year break following the birth of my daughter, I went back to the same boring corporate life. But it was just a matter of time before I realised how stuck, uninspired and unfulfilled I felt there. So one day, I just decided to call it quits and, let my passion for fashion take control. Today, I love what I do...fashion styling. This has been my dream job and I am so happy to have finally taken the plunge - use my business sense and skills into weaving my own little fashion world. I love the work I do now, as a fashion stylist. It's so fulfilling and I am always observing the magnificent world around me, looking for inspiration. There are no rules for fashion really, so sky is literally the limit! What are your goals and how do you see yourself progressing in the field? Although I know a lot about this field, I am self-taught. So I would like to gain some formal education, perhaps in fashion history, so I will be able to better relate with the different periods of time and the vision of photographers and designers during those times. I love renaissance and vintage fashion, so it would be great to focus on some its sartorial details and incorporate a bit of that into my modern styling. My short term goal is to establish myself as a fashion stylist for a reputable, fashion magazine, and in the long term, set up my own fashion agency, complete with a pool of photographers, models, fashion stylists, hair/make up artists et al. How do you communicate with people? Are you patient? Are you friendly? How open are you to clients’ requirements? I am very patient with everyone but my husband. lol. No I'm just joking. But I must admit there are moments when I am guilty of being impatient. I like to act fast and gallop through things - most of the time. But I am a very open and friendly soul, easy going with no major hang ups, really. I live by some very strong values yet I love hearing people's point of view and perspective on pretty much anything under the sun. I believe every person is a unique individual with their own unique perspective. So as a stylist, I like to project their own individuality through their clothes and style. It has to be a beautiful reflection of who they are. So yes, for me everything begins with an open mind and this realization of giving people a choice. If you had to do it over again, what would you change? My education. I would go back and get a degree in Fashion Designing. I took a degree in Mass Communication only because, at that time, in my city, there was nothing more creative than that. A few years later, I went on to do a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) from Australia. I guess my parents thought I’m a little older and wiser (wink) so it’s okay for me to study abroad now. But the truth is, as much as I take pride in my MBA, it wasn’t something I loved. Yet, I passed with distinction. So imagine what I would’ve achieved if I were to study something Fashion related! lol Who is your hero, and how have they helped you get to where you are? My husband has been my biggest supporter and strongest motivation. Without his relentless support I would not have had the courage to kiss my corporate career goodbye and chase my dreams. He is always there to cheer me up when things don't go as planned and I sit there wondering whether it was worth it all. He's there to constantly remind me that nobody has it easy - basically, No Pain No Gain. I like such positivism. It keeps me going and focus on the bright side of life. How important are creative education courses? Have you taken any, and did you find them useful? I am a campaigner for anything creative. So education with a dollop of creativity is definitely a recipe for success – in whatever field it may be; and once you have developed an appetite for it, nothing can stop you. Now unlike what most people believe, you need not be ‘born creative’ to be able to sit through a creative course. Creativity can be learned. It’s is a way of looking at life or approaching life differently, from a different perspective. To say the least, when you study anything creative, you are not afraid to try new things. You are up for challenges, and more often than not, the risk you take is worth the reward. I studied Creative Marketing as part of my specialisation when doing my MBA and it was the best part of the course. I was able to channel my thoughts in a completely different manner – something I did not know until I was told HOW. My professor taught me how to incorporate fun into work and not be afraid to propose something that may sound silly, especially when brainstorming a new idea or a solution to a problem. It may just turn out to be the right thing or best solution to that particular problem. I had the great opportunity to work with him as an intern on several of his Creative Thinking Workshops, mostly within various corporate companies, and I learned some great things - to think freely, to be expressive and open to all ideas and, most importantly, to break out of our traditional mindset. I saw some great ideas come together when people started thinking out of the box. Things they saw in a completely different environment or work space were being discussed as prospective ideas within their own area of work – ideas from here and there were being jammed together and it was brilliant. This is how we can be inspired by the world around us. Some things or ideas may not be connected to us in any way, yet it can be just perfect for our purpose. This is the beauty and infinite scope of creativity. So tying education with creativity is a definite YES - it fuels innovation. Do you have any tips for someone who is just starting out in the industry? I am no expert to give tips but I hope my thoughts have inspired you to follow your dreams. The world is your canvas, so take out your creative brush and show the world your creative strokes – don’t wait for the right moment. Get started as soon as you can – take the moment and make it the right moment, the perfect moment.

Photo Credits: Photo Credits are all within the picture itself. Contact Details: Instagram: @penultimatefashion Email: pennygeorge@gmail.com


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