The model industry has been in an interesting stage of flux over the past three years. Beyond the political correctness of terms like ‘plus size’, the tables have turned such that, rather than the clients and agencies being in control of what look should be pegged as idealistic and desirable for any one season, and a model being somehow indebted to a brand in the sense of public perception and exposure, it’s the genetically blessed teens and young twenty-somethings with an aesthetic eye and consumer awareness who can create a brand that companies ranging from coffee body scrubs to million dollar diamonds will want a bite out of. So, while we’re on the topic of pocket rocket models of the moment with cult followings and fascinatingly distinct personal and content styles (whether or not that lands you a Louis Vuitton exclusive is another story entirely), let’s talk about Shelby Hamilton.
Shelby and I met a couple of months ago, in the corridors of our agency just after she’d signed with IMG. I’d seen a few of her colourful collages and daisy-earring selfies floating around Tumblr, and on first impression, was taken by how much she embodied her @meowshelbs Instagram tag – the girl is literally a kitten-cross-fawn-cross-Stitch incarnate. So much so, that I held off from shooting these two jackets and leather dress until we could lock in a sunny morning in my back yard with Tobi to capture the exact offbeat mod girl muse that Stuart Vevers and Gary Baseman had in mind for that particular collection. Wouldn’t you agree?
PHOTOGRAPHY & STYLING // Margaret Zhang
MODEL // Shelby Hamilton @ IMG Models