By Ashley Mears
Sociologist Ashley Mears takes us at the back of the brightly lit runways and shiny ads of the style during this insider's examine of the realm of modeling. Mears, who labored as a version in ny and London, attracts on observations in addition to large interviews with female and male versions, brokers, consumers, photographers, stylists, and others, to discover the economics and politics--and the arbitrariness-- at the back of the enterprise of glamour. Exploring a principally hidden enviornment of cultural construction, she indicates how definitely the right "look" is chanced on, built, and packaged to turn into a prized commodity. She examines how versions promote themselves, how brokers advertise them, and the way consumers choose to lease them. An unique contribution to the sociology of labor within the new cultural economic climate, Pricing Beauty bargains wealthy, available research of the invisible ways that gender, race, and sophistication form worthy on the market.
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Additional info for Pricing Beauty: The Making of a Fashion Model
In the 1980s worldwide TV commercials paid initial fees upward of $1 million, with residual payments, or “use fees,” paid each time the commercial aired; a few hundred dollars for a 30-second spot could amount to checks made out to agencies for thousands of dollars every few months. TV commercials yielded lofty sums for extended lengths; they were the golden goose egg for fashion modeling agencies. 28 High-end fashion campaigns are no longer the sole provisions of models either, now that celebrity culture has catapulted Hollywood stars and pop singers into the new spokespersons for fashion and cosmetic campaigns.
Though both agencies experienced economic growth and expanded their offices throughout the early decade of 2000, relative to their competitors they are scrambling to keep up. The rise of editorial modeling as distinct from commercial modeling laid the tracks for a race in which agencies would hustle to find that rare fresh face, inflating supply and deflating rates in the process. Venturing into London on the train from Manchester two years ago, JD didn’t see his precarious position amid a broader structural transformation.
2. Models working at the far end of the Economic Capital axis earn high rates in catalogs, showroom, and commercial advertising but are Economics of the Catwalk | 41 essentially “stuck” there, in the land of “cheesy” catalog jobs, unable to move up into editorial work. Models working at the far end of the Symbolic Capital axis earn less money in magazines and catwalk jobs, but their prestige can translate into higher rates in commercial jobs as they move along the Economic Capital axis, and they can, so they hope, hit the jackpot by booking lucrative campaigns.