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I have been modelling for about 3 yrs. I class myself as a disabled model as I have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, this can affect my mobility but I don't let it define my life.
I am currently involved in a campaign that challenges the stigmas around disability. The fashion industry has come along way in disability Inclusion and I'm hoping to see a disabled model on the cover of one of the mainstream magazines.
As a model a lot of my shoots have been shot with my wheelchair just out of shot, I have energy issues, so sitting between shots is how I manage.
I have done photo shoots with various photographers and have been told I am easy to work with, professional, organised and fun. Despite my challenges, we always get 'the shot'.
I am very passionate about modelling as it is something that breathes life into me. I spend long periods of time in bed as I suffer from daily chronic pain but I never let it interfere with a shoot and spend time beforehand preparing my body and mind to excel in what I love to do.
I have also been involved in the filming of a short film locally, although my part of the story is short, it does focus solely on me.
I've also done some filming for a well-known tv channel, which I thoroughly enjoyed and would like to pursue further.
I have a website that chronicles my journey through my short yrs of modelling and I'm very happy with the results.
I am extremely versatile and love to change my appearance often in my personal life as well as on camera.
I am a collector of tattoos, of which I have many, this is also a stigma I feel needs to be addressed. I can look beautiful and elegant in an evening dress and find this just as comfortable as I do in jeans and a t-shirt; I hope that my style of modelling, which is diverse, shows this to be the case.
I'm that little bit of something different, you didn't even know you wanted!
Our readers would love to get to know you more Kate. Tell us about yourself, what is unique about you?
I think I'm unique as I don't fit into a stereotype. Although my look is very alternative, I have a very different sense of style, which is all my own. I'm not a follower of trends, although I adore fashion. My style is very quirky, which I love.
Dressing up is a passion and I am able to achieve elegance and glamour even with my tattoos, I have been told that my stature is very regal.
Kate, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Model?
My passion and inspirations in life are to make a difference, not just in the world of modelling or bringing awareness to disabled models but in all areas of society,education being high on my agenda,as our children are the future and they need to be taught about how to manage this beautiful planet with the greatest of kindness.
I started modelling at 19 as a hair model for Vidal Sassoon in Glasgow, I did that for 10yrs with Sharz as my stylist. In between doing that I modelled for some independent boutiques around Glasgow,5 children later, I find myself drawn back to the light of the camera.
Who is your inspiration in life Kate? How do you keep inspired?
My inspirations in life are my children. They have grown up with a disabled mother, often having to look after me, more than I have looked after them. I am limited to what I can do physically but I save all my energy to help them cope with their emotional needs, make sure they feel safe and loved. They are my biggest fans and spur me on to do the things I enjoy and to always follow my dreams.
I also draw inspiration from @SAMANTABULLOCK an accomplished disabled model, tennis star and part of the British Paralympics.
Visually, great photographers inspire me, of which there are many Frederic Auerbach and Haris Nukem being just two, both brilliant at what they do at completely different ends of the spectrum aesthetically.
We all make mistakes Kate, we wish we could take back. Please tell us about a time being a Model, you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
I don't believe in mistakes, I see everything as a lesson, no matter the outcome you learn from every situation.
Kate, when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Model, how do you go about prioritizing your clients’ needs?
Because I have limited energy and mobility, I like to be very organised. If I am working solely with a photographer, I coordinate a mood board, different outfits and locations, unless in a studio. If working also with an MUA I find it beneficial to keep in contact, discuss various looks and try to shoot from bare makeup and build up to save time and energy, which also flows much easier.
I haven't yet worked with a full crew but that is my idea of heaven. I find taking direction easy and would love to be able to just do as I'm told!
Please tell us, Kate, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Model?
In my early days of modelling the only way, I could do it would be to coordinate every aspect of the shoot, which involved a lot of prep time and communication.
Now it's much easier for me to slip into a role but I still find communication a great help.
Kate, please give us an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
I once worked with a photographer who wanted to do a stereotypical "tattoo" shoot, a lot of suggestive poses, finger in the mouth type of thing, but that's exactly the type of look I decided I wanted to stay away from.
I persuaded him that you could look feminine, elegant and sexy without provocative posing, we came away with some amazing images.
Kate, please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Model. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you just want to share with everyone. What is it and why?
One of the 3rd shots I did in Spain was probably my proudest. I've not yet been published, so seeing myself going forward where my images were far better than previous ones, this has carried on and I now feel that I'm accomplished enough to be published, which with my disability is an overwhelming achievement for me.
Kate, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
When filmed my part of the short film I was in "Dark Thoughts Through A Sunny Window" by Darren Washington at Gallery OneOneSix in Stoke on Trent, I was able to be as creative as I wanted,there was no dialogue,so the mood of the film depended solely on my actions and the appearance on my face. It was a very tragic scene so that had to transcend to the camera. I found it truly liberating and was really happy with the result.
What advice would you give to the people who want to be successful as a Model?
As I haven't been published, few would see me as a successful model but I do. I've worked extremely hard to build up my portfolio and to launch my website, the best is yet to come.....!! I would say to anyone aspiring to be a model, to go for it. If it's a realistic dream, don't give up. Follow your heart, if it makes you happy, stick with it. Your success is measured by you, not anyone else. Be yourself.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state what type of collaboration you are looking for?
I am looking to collaborate with fashion labels, big and small. I'd like to work with anyone who wants to bring awareness to disability inclusion, disabled fashion. High street brands and large fashion houses.
I'm also interested in doing more filming from small budget to, the skies the limit.
I'd love to do some presenting work if possible. I've done some filming for a well-known tv channel and feel very comfortable in front of the camera and speaking.
Photographer Amy Tatum