Slashies

October 27, 2015 58 Sydney, Australia

Perhaps it’s the frequency at which model-slash-musician-slash-actress-slash is hammered in Hollywood press releases that has turned the world off slashies.

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to shoot a whole campaign in the few hours before class. Sarah has a mature pragmatism about her work that you don’t even come across in people double her age, despite being every bit the perfect 21st Century ingénue.

Something we’ve discussed at length is people’s inherent allergy to an individual pursuing multiple channels across a range of fields. I will agree that society at large has begun to accept the possibility of successful career transitions – Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s shift into ready-to-wear, for instance, has been much more successfully received than most, and Cara Delevingne seems to be at least half way to media recognition as an “actress” over “former model”. More than one skill, though? Perhaps it’s the frequency at which model-slash-musician-slash-actress-slash is hammered in Hollywood press releases, to very little credibility, that has turned the world off slashies. I do understand that for a professional photographer, someone who thinks that a few iPhone snaps legitimises the title “Photographer” in their Instagram bio is annoying. I also understand, that editors and publishers have every right to turn their noses up at a blogger with no ethical standards and terrible grammar.

But for those working on every role as if it were their full-time job and to the industry standard, why should their contribution be diminished in value? Does one person have a finite bank of capacity to excel, or even learn to excel? If, god forbid, one might dare to explore and develop a skill other than their vocational training, does that diminish their aptitude in their original expertise? Would simultaneously pursuing two avenues of work (or even pure interest) mean that you could only ever reach half the potential of those who focussed solely on one?

Obviously – obviously – the answer is hell no.

When people tell you to focus, they mean stop watching cat videos and Jimmy Fallon lip sync battles, stop procrastibaking and telling yourself how

relatable The Fat Jewish is as you consume the fruits of your misplaced labour. They do not mean for you to abandon all of your interests for one job that may or may not stand the test of time. Gone are the days when the concept of a “career” is solely attributed to the straight-line skill set you honed in University, or even the one your current job is dependent on. Why is Kanye West pursuing fashion? Why is Kim Kardashian building an app?

If that’s your tune, I’m not even going to sugarcoat it: you’re out of touch.

I will give some pity credit to the old school of thought. There are only 24 hours in a day. Admittedly, I stayed up for 26 straight the other day to get through some necessary study and life admin. You have to do what you have to do. But, the idea that an ambitious person cannot legitimately divide their passions to great results is as problematically ingrained in society as many other prejudices we rage about for an on-trend second, before lapsing back into our closed-minded stupor. The red-carpet sexism so many actresses have called out in the past year is an easily digestible example. How do you balance your family life with workIs your husband supportive? These questions are just as indicative of the media’s imbalanced attitudes towards men and women as it is of the limiting view of one person’s capacity – that if a person needs to channel their attention into a family, surely they can’t be as good at their job. Or that one must choose one or the other. There is no denying that there is time payoff – many of my friends have young children and there is a huge element of sacrifice for those who have your unconditional love. But it’s not (or shouldn’t be) an area of contention, or a controversial choice. It’s a baseline expectation.

With exception of specific areas like the law, medicine and sciences (you guys keep doing what you’re doing), it’s no longer possible to just do the one thing. To invest all of your resources in one place, whether that’s on an Instagram following, or becoming complacent with one product, you just won’t find any longevity. Everything is so transient now that diverse skills or at least interests are absolutely necessary. Even expertise needs to be refreshed and refined to stay abreast of today’s lightning speed change.

Slashies unite.

Over and out.

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  • Shivan Patel (Gathum)

    LOVE the PICTURES..

    SERIOUSLY GOOD EDITORIAL IMAGES!!!

    check me out for some editorial images

    http://www.gathum.co.nz

    xx

  • Anea Duratovic

    This is a FANTASTIC article and resonated with me a lot. Thank you so much Margaret!

    http://www.hercouturelife.com

  • Sarah looks gorgeous in the photos!

    And I agree, we aren’t defined by one career anymore – people are doing loads of things. The internet has given us a chance to look at what other people are doing and we are all learning from it. And why shouldn’t we? Great insightful article Margaret!

    http://www.theavantguardian.com

  • These are such beautiful pictures Margaret. You keep outdoing yourself with your amazing photography! Well done xx

    Helen x
    http://CH1K.com

  • This is everything I believe in, succinctly put in one post with some added photographic magic. As a junior lawyer slash freelance writer slash fashion blogger myself (and with friends in medicine and banking who are the same or similar), I would even challenge the view that certain industries restrict one’s ability to pursue more than their day jobs. Thank you for continuing to promote this perspective as the standard and not the exception.

    Now, back to my spreadsheets…

    Jasmine x
    http://www.afiaandjay.com

  • She is gorgeous and you’re really a great photographer and stylist :)

    STYLE VANITY

  • zahra

    this is really amazing, you are my inspiration

  • “Gone are the days when the concept of a “career” is solely attributed to the straight-line skill set you honed in University, or even the one your current job is dependent on. Why is Kanye West pursuing fashion? Why is Kim Kardashian building an app?

    If that’s your tune, I’m not even going to sugarcoat it: you’re out of touch.”

    This spoke volumes to me. I am a musician, photographer, videographer and blogger and I LOVE IT!

    Thank you Margaret. You are amazing!

  • Awesome dresses!!!

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    Kisses from http://www.withorwithoutshoes.com

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  • viktoria

    amazing shots

    thedaydreamings.blogspot.de

  • Eerika

    I always love your posts ! Great messages and points and beautiful photos !!! :)
    -Eerika

    Dreams and Sunshine

  • Shloka Narang

    This is truly an inspiring post – I completely agree with your point of view. Gone are the days when I could graduate from university with a business degree and expect to do just that – It’s all about being multi talented and having a range of skills. But I wouldn’t want to put all my eggs in one basket anyways, where’s the fun in that? I find it so satisfying to be able to develop skills and expertise in a range of topics, and the fact that the world is moving in that way is amazing! x

    Shloka

    The Silk Sneaker
    thesilksneaker.wordpress.com

  • Margaret, both your prose and photography is impeccable, you are living proof of the success of slashies.

  • Rockashion

    thank God your blog exist , excellent writing and pictures <3

  • Amazing<3

    Shall We Sasa

  • fixatedfaiyaz

    So much of slaying in this post. YOU TELL THEM!!

    xx Faiyaz
    http://www.fixatedf.com

  • Dean Corno

    This was such a great post! Please never stop blogging.

  • Love your writing, damn you are always on point!! Diversity is the way to go, and the only way we can adapt to the constant change in society and its expectations. Only way we can survive… What you say is not only on point but you bring amusement in your writing too, and I am unable to put a compliment into words in a way which encapsulates just how worthy your work is of being complimented. Photos do not even need to be mentioned, breathlessly skilled as always… Just urgh, good work!

    http://www.thefacelessstyle.blogspot.com

  • Steven Willem

    Incredible article. Thanks for continuing to be inspirational!

    http://www.STATEOFSILVER.com

  • Stunning shots as always, and I absolutely LOVE the article as well. This “editor/stylist/photographer/web designer” totally gets that if you put in the work and learn a craft…and especially if you are getting paid for it (which is even harder and takes risk to do as a freelancer), no amount of slashes should diminish the hard work we put in.

    ~Krisztina
    http://www.krisztinawilliams.com

  • mcboodles

    Well said! And I need to move into a yoga studio apparently

  • Those pictures are amazing!

    Your weekly inspiration and motivation on http://www.letucc.com

  • Wow…so beautiful.

    Have a look at our new collection: http://www.shopsaul.com/collections/f-w-15-products

  • Lovey Fleming

    This is so magical. I love your thoughts and outlook on life. Beautiful images– as a fellow renaissance woman I always admire your intuitive blog~

    xoxo

    http://theindiegirl.com

  • Nicole Avien

    Stunning photographs as always with great writings x

    Nicole
    // ncavien.blogspot.com

  • Loooved this article and shoot! So gorgeous!

    MargaritaChi.co

  • Good luck with your friendship!
    Photos are absolutely stunning :)
    xo
    Róża – http://perkadesign.com/

  • Celia Spencer

    such insight and beautifully written,
    another beautiful and thoughtful post by
    Margaret Zhang xx

    check me out on celiaspencer.wordpress.com

  • looove this! I feel like over the past few months I’ve freed my mind of this. I used to panic about whether or not I could do it all and have as dynamic and full a career as I dream to. It’s still an issue though, as an employer who hires you to work within a certain job description doesn’t really want to hear that your mind goes in 5 different directions… guess I’d better hurry up and upskill so I can start working for myself. :)

  • jasminaparade

    Your blog post couldn’t have come at a better time for me at this point in my life. Thank you so much xx

  • This post blew my mind! Great job!

    http://thestylecter.blogspot.com/

  • Stephanie

    So stunning! Btw I miss to see you at Fashion Blogger on E!

    http://www.stepfromsteph.blogspot.com

  • Amazing photography. Green dress looks stunning… reminds me of of a magical fairy tale movie :)

    ~Yuli
    http://www.banarsidesigns.com/blog

  • Love the article and all the photos are da bomb, how do you always able to get such amazing and luxurious looking outfit for your shoot?

    xx
    Xin

    http://xincerely.blogspot.com

  • mc

    Beautiful photos and absolutely loved this post!!!!
    Everything was wonderfully said =)
    -mc
    http://www.looksbymc.com

  • These shots are AMAZING

    Love,

    http://www.thestyleventure.com

  • Your perspective on the generation of multi-hyphenates – especially us creatives and content producers – is right on the money. You can no longer afford to maintain a sustainable livelihood with just one job or skill alone!

    xo,
    Tommy
    http://www.mybelonging.com/

  • Lee

    So was this the low budget client who you complained about not being able to fly you to Paris?

  • The Digital Age Blog

    You are a woman of many talents Margaret – love your words, images and styling :D

  • Shante Gumede

    lol. I’m part of the slashies unit too! thanks for this. xxx

  • This article was made for me to read at work, while I’ve just searched for some kind of inspiration. I just finished law school, and I love reading you, since I found myself in your words. Essentially, you summed up the whole difficulty of being a baby of the gen Y, where you don’t know what to do with your life, while still be happy with yourself and your surroundings. Somehow, a boring desk job is not enough, and I totally am part of the slashies generation. How to be okay with some people saying you have to focus on one path? The one, the classic such as lawyer? So, I guess I can’t and if being a blogger also can be considered as a misconception of what our job should be, I let them at the misinterpreted conclusion. Exception is that I constantly go back to your job, and you’re still, after so many years one of the most wonderful source of inspiration. I really do hope we meet someday! x

    http://tomboychronicle.com/

  • May

    Totally agree with your perspective on the importance of having diversified interests and (if possible) careers. I, myself, grew up in a family of successful entrepreneurs and we all understand the value of being slashies. Focusing on only one career path, not only outdated, it’s shortsighted. There is absolutely no reason why one cannot excel more than one career path simultaneously. There may only be 24 hours in a day, but a lot can be done in 24 hours!
    x
    May
    http://happinessinmay.com

  • Well, I am excited to see how your career will continue to pan out after law school and the years to come after reading this article. :)

    Velveteencockroach

  • Refiloe

    From an Engineering student slash blogger slash wannabe renaissance woman, I thank you.

    I wish more people could realise the undeniable truth of this message.

    Also I’m in love with that green dress.

    http://allzuri.blogspot.co.za/

  • Jennifer Chong

    Well said Margaret! You do so well in all of your ‘slashes’, and you see all the hard work in each thing. Keep it up!

    Jen.
    http://www.tnightwedream.com

  • Amazing photos! xoxo from Europe 2leave.com fashion blog

  • “A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write if he is to be ultimately at peace with himself. What one can be, one must be.” – Abraham Maslow

  • Who makes the nude dress?

  • Munchkin Mëredith Gëorge

    Very well said MZ! Sarah is my cousin and I’m so proud of her. Thanks for loving her on/off the internet. :) Keep it up girls!

    Cheers, Meredith

    http://meredithgeorge.com/

  • Amazing!! Love from Europe 2leave.com fashion blog

  • Hey Margaret! What aperture are you typically shooting at? Your images always seem to have sharp focus throughout the important features so I’m curious. Thanks!

  • Aces of Armor

    We love the sneakers with the classy dresses. So gorgeous!

  • What a stunning shoot and a wonderful insight into your thoughts! I couldn’t agree more. Careers are changing and if you can turn your interests and passions into a job then surely that’s the ideal… (coming from a COO/model/blogger…!)

    Stephanie x

    http://www.thestylememo.com

  • Marylane

    Not a usual fashion that we normally see to a model like gown plus hill. But this one is perfectly unique, very nice and appealing. I like the formal gown with a combination of a rubber shoes. You nailed it. Keep it up!!

    Marylane
    http://styletomystreet.com

  • I just stumbled across this post and even though im a year late i couldn’t keep quiet. this post was brilliant and i couldn’t agree more. it is quite impossible as a creative to just zone in one job and it’s something that i’ve been finding difficult. i thought i was the only one to have problems with this. I really loved the shoot and the contrast with the elegant dresses and sports shoes is very modern chic. just wonderful.

    http://www.thewhimsicalwildling.com/

  • neha goyal

    I love this photo shoot & pictures. Thank you for such a wonderful blog.
    https://www.orientique.com.au/categories/maja.html

  • neha goyal

    Dresses are quite fashionable & wonderful. Thank you for sharing it.
    https://www.orientique.com.au/categories/kew.html

  • nishtha jain