Glamour modeling and photography. Many have heard of it, but few actually know what it is.
As with all things in today’s social-media driven world of image, branding, and marketing, it is hard to escape it and even harder to not be both in awe and intrigued. What’s so funny is that it has been in our face, in the supermarket magazine racks right under our noses the whole time.
Again, we’ve seen these magazines in and around us our whole lives. However, we never knew the term attached to the style of images and photography used in them.
To confess, I have been a long-time reader of both MAXIM, GQ, Esquire and FHM, yet I never even heard of the term “glamour modeling” until it was introduced to me by former INSCMagazine contributor in London-based transgendered model Chloe Lapper, when we ran a “Glamour Girl Of The Day” column which featured UK-based models such as Ann Denise and Fiona Siciliano.
Which brings me to the present and why glamour modeling and photography is on the rise.
There are those who see it as glorified “soft porn” or amateurish. As a matter of fact, such prudish and uniformed shaming and judgmental comments, based on one’s own insecurities, is hypocritical. Moreover, the United States is the world’s largest purveyor of media, sex, and online content.
Glamour modeling and photography at its core is daring, edgy, and outside-the-box. Consequently, thanks to its rise, we are seeing new mediums such as boudoir (French for the bedroom) modeling along with other new niches of modeling such as pin-up, petite, inked and alternative truly takes off.
As with all things in modeling and life, the industry has grown and evolved. In particular, one reason for it’s rising is Miami-based glamour model networking agency, The International Bikini Model Search.
Launched in 2011 by co-founders in husband and wife duo, Elina and Patrick McKinney, IBMS is a networking agency. In fact, it connects and works with a wide range of models, photographers, and industry professionals.
In what has become one of the biggest annual events within the modeling industry, IBMS conducts the IBMS Finals, one of the largest network conventions in the glamour industry.
Considered by many in the industry as the ultimate gathering place to rub elbows with some of the most prominent publishers, models, and professionals. Seeing that it is a seven-day event that consists of a place to gather, network, create opportunities and build portfolios. It also allows one to sign with agencies, shoot with magazines, walk in fashion shows, enhance, expand and launch careers, per the company’s website.
Publishers such as Sports Illustrated, Maxim, Playboy, FHM, and Esquire have been known to be on hand to sign prospective models to contracts, make contacts, scout new talent and meet up and coming designer in what has been described by many industry professionals travel from around the globe as the “The #1 Career Launching and Networking Event” in the industry.
This year’s IBMS International Finals, which will be in the Bahamas Nov. 13-19. Furthermore, it will feature more than 200 models, 75 photographers, and 42 magazines. In addition to 10 hair and makeup artists, designers, talent scouts, and numerous industry professionals.
One of those models who will be in the Bahamas is glamour model and IBMS Regional Coordinator, Liz Ware.
Ware, a 26-year-old native of Caguas, Puerto Rico, the Clearwater, Florida-based Ware has modeled for the likes of Brazilian swimwear line such as Copacabana Swimwear and designers such as Tampa Bay-based Raul Del Castillo and women’s fashion line LulaRoe.
Ware has curves and a dark exotic look to die for. Hence, she is dark, sexy and the kind of model that turns heads wherever she goes. Overall, thanks to her alluring combination of beauty.
Below is my Q and A with Mrs. Ware is we discuss, IBMS, the rise of glamour, pin-up and boudoir modeling, how to deal with shamers and why modeling is so empowering for all women.
Name: Liz Ware
Birthplace: Caguas, Puerto Rico
Modeling Agency: Freelance
Robert D. Cobb: What kind of model do you consider yourself? (Instagram, pin-up/glamour, fashion)
Liz Ware: “Glamour, Fashion”
Robert D. Cobb: What brands have you modeled for? Which one do you enjoy modeling for the most?
Liz Ware: “Copacabana Swimwear, Raul Castillo, LulaRoe. the designer I enjoy the most is definitely Copacabana swimwear”
Robert D. Cobb: Where has been your favorite place to shoot?
Liz Ware: “The beach.”
Robert D. Cobb: What is the most exciting aspect of modeling?
Liz Ware: “Modeling to me is like acting, I get to be someone else for a couple hours and get amazing shots from it whether it be fun and sexy look or very tropical look at the beach.”
Robert D. Cobb: With spring now here and summer right around the corner, what fashion and style tips do you have for your fellow sisters?
Liz Ware: “Lace-up crop tops or even bodysuits with a high-waisted skirt or pants are always very classy and chic look with heels or sandals.”
Robert D. Cobb: Do you have any plans for spring break?
Liz Ware: “For spring break, I plan to go to the beach and relax living 5 minutes from the beach, so it always feels like spring break here.”
Robert D. Cobb: Any new swimsuit/swimwear trends to watch for this coming summer?
Liz Ware: “Swimwear styles that are in are Brazilian bikinis, lace up tops/or bandeau tops, wearing colorful pieces that complement each other. My favorite is the Brazilian bikini, which gives a great shape to the body”
Robert D. Cobb: What exudes sexiness and confidence in rocking a bikini on the beach?
Liz Ware: “For me, what exudes more sexiness and confidence in wearing a bikini is being yourself and feeling comfortable in your own skin showing you don’t care what people think.”
Robert D. Cobb: Within the industry, who is your inspiration?
Liz Ware: “I have several that inspire me but I do work with the International Bikini Model Search, also known as the IBMS, and the owners in Elina and Patrick McKinney inspire me because throughout their success, they’ve still managed to stay grounded and they are all about helping the models and photographers.”
Robert D. Cobb: In your role at IBMS as Regional Event Coordinator, what is the greatest thrill of working with other glamour models such as yourself.
Liz Ware: “For me, its learning from them. Most of the glamour models have breakfast. IBMS had so much more experience and posing in four trained different looks and all of them were very nice enough to take me under their wing and give me pointers in the areas that I needed to work on.”
Robert D. Cobb: Thanks to social media, you seem to see an explosion of more glamour/boudoir and pin up models. What are your thoughts on that?
Liz Ware: “I think it’s awesome and it’s about time because these models go out and show their body not caring what anyone thinks and they’re all beautiful. I do it myself and it’s such an empowering feeling to know that now we are getting recognized for the work that we do.”
Robert D. Cobb: What are your thoughts on the current “shaming” culture that seems to exist online towards models for being too risqué, sexy, etc?
Liz Ware: “I’ve went through a first-hand and I know some of my other girlfriends that are models as well go through the same thing. I think it’s very ridiculous how people treat some models for doing photo shoots there are a little risqué. When there are so many other people that see it as a form of art and that’s exactly how I think of it, modeling to me is art.”
Robert D. Cobb: Do you feel that glamour modeling is here to stay and will continue to grow?
Liz Ware: “Definitely, I feel that we are going to keep growing. The last couple years this industry has blown up, so I definitely think there will be a lot more glamour modeling in the future.”
Robert D. Cobb: What is your secret to staying in shape?
Liz Ware: “To stay in shape, I do different variations of squats, crunches, and sit-ups.”
Robert D. Cobb: Outside of modeling, what are your hobbies?
Liz Ware: “Arts and crafts are one of my favorite hobbies from painting to crocheting.”
Sports question: Who are your favorite teams and clubs
Liz Ware: “Golden State Warriors, because I follow Stephen Curry. He’s a great NBA player and I think his family is adorable.”
Robert D. Cobb: What are your favorite cities to travel to?
Liz Ware: “One of my favorite cities to travel to is Miami, is just so tropical it reminds me of Puerto Rico, I also love to travel to Pennsylvania to visit family.”
Robert D. Cobb: What advice would you give to women aspiring to get into modeling?
Liz Ware: “What I would tell women that want to get into modeling is to do it. Find photographers that want to shoot and see if it’s something that you like as well.
Don’t just do it because you want to be famous or you’re trying to get money, because modeling it takes time for you to get to the place where you will get, requested and you will get paid it’s all about being patient and loving yourself that’s the number one thing to keep in mind.
There will always be someone in this industry that will try to put you down whether or not is because of the color of your skin or your weight or height for your overall look.
And also know that no matter what they say you are beautiful and you are capable of being the best model have confidence in yourself.”
Special thanks to Mrs. Liz Ware for her help and assistance during the Q and A interview process. Images used are the respective property of their owners and used with permission.