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Sunday, 15 January 2017

BLURRED LINES


 





Social media influencers, bloggers and vloggers seem to attract a lot of controversy for their chosen career path. I say this as if I've been exempt to the hate and stereotypes out there. Comments have been brutal and not just from anonymous people hiding behind a computer, but some of the most hurtful kinds of abuse are from people that I actually let into my life. From having miscarriages wished upon me, to commenting on my looks, or the infamous "Is that a real job" - I have remained quiet throughout all. I thought I was a tough girl, but these comments were really testing me. Some people would argue "well if you're putting yourself out there, you've got to expect it back".

Being someone's stereotype has got to be the hardest comment for me to accept, whether I will ever actually fully accept it or not is questionable. The fiery, opinionated side to me wanted to stand up for what I felt was right, but it's not my duty to try and change someone's perception. Yes, it is a misconception that this industry is "easy" or a "cop out for a real job" and all we're good for is standing in front of cameras, or that there's no substance to the industry. The first of these comments started when I was studying for my A-levels and sadly they were from a teacher. A 16 year old being told she was a "fur coat with no knickers" was something that has stuck with me ever since, to the point where I genuinely believed I was stupid, that I had nothing about me, and that apparently I only leave the house when there's good lighting, for a photo opportunity. 

Studying marketing, I began to look at this from a slightly different perspective. I made a choice to forget the superficial industry that everyone sees and look at it like this...influencers have tapped into one of the biggest mega trends of this generation. People are becoming self employed from the power of their own phone. Yes, good angles, lighting and pictures have a lot to do with it, but it goes a lot deeper than that. I've created a brand essentially out of myself. No I'm not the first to do it and I won't be the last, but we've recognised potential in a market that is just going to continue to get bigger. Social media is everywhere we look, whether we like it or not. So my days of just standing and looking half decent in pretty locations around London actually have a bit more to them than just that. I am learning the in's and out's of the Instagram algorithm, all about HTML coding to ensure my website keeps looking fresh, improving my photography skills, liaising with brands, setting up meetings and that's not forgetting the full time job I also juggle, as well as a degree. Oh and the only day off I had over Christmas was actually Christmas Day...but who's counting? 

So here's to the people that think this is an easy industry and that waking up and taking pictures is all we're good for, I cannot be expected to change your opinion single handed, but please, do not expect me to tolerate your opinion. 

With love 

From the hard working, thick skinned, business minded, straight A student, that apparently has no substance xx

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