Zoë is a 24-year-old nonbinary Malaysian model. They have been modeling part-time for around three years now. The law student started off as a professional dancer and violinist when they were 13 or 14. Eventually, photographers reached out to Zoë and asked them to collaborate with them. Zoë realized that they enjoy modeling, so they continued collaborating with photographers as well as booking jobs.
Outside of Modeling and their studies they enjoy being outdoors. They love walking and jogging in parks, as well as hiking along the many hill trails in Malaysia. Besides that, they enjoy reading. They try to to read at least 10 pages every day.
Study-wise the professional goal I have for myself is that I want to get my Ph.D. in criminal psychology. That is something I have a fascination for. As a model, I would love to get a feature on the cover of a magazine someday. The ultimate goal for me to get a feature in big magazines.
Zoë’s biggest weakness is being a perfectionist. They have a habit of not starting tasks if they are not in the “perfect mindset” to do it. They feel like they are wasting time if they do it at the wrong time. Because it would not be their best work, as it will just be like something which they are forcing themselves into. So they try to overcome it by reminding that a task is better done imperfectly than not at all.
Their strengths include being very driven and loyal. They are very headstrong when it comes to the things they believe in. But they are also willing to listen to other points of view. As long as those points do not devalue anyone else’s existence or rights.
I’m very passionate about human rights and prison reform. I want to make a change and speak up for those who do not have a voice. And talking about the feedback, I have good days and bad days. Sometimes, I feel a little demotivated after receiving criticism. But eventually, I think about what a person has said to me, and evaluate whether it is beneficial or not. If I decide that, it is, I then try to work on myself.
Zoë has done a couple of boudoir shoots and modeling for creative photographs, but they have more experience in street and dance shoots. The biggest challenge Zoë faces when they do modeling is posture. They have to remind themselves to not slouch and keep their eyes natural. If that is in their head throughout the photoshoot, the shots turn out incredible.
I want to venture into fashion and high fashion modeling, but I do also want to be more into creative projects. The modeling type that I wish to avoid is boudoir for now. I love it and think it is beautiful, but after one shoot I have did, I was met with quite a lot of criticism and threats. So I would rather avoid it until I have established a better name for myself.
That is simply artistic. For them, the hardest photoshoot was definitely walking around Kuala Lumpur in the pointe shoes. They were a ballerina at one point, so this team of photographers wanted to do a street dance shoot. But with their pointe shoes on their feet were in agony, but it was all worth it.
I constantly feel irritated by how the LGBTQIA+ community is continuously facing discrimination. Especially when companies hire cis-hetero people to mimick LGBTQIA+ looks. Something about people’s mindset that I would like to change is making them understand that Modeling is real work. Also, nudity is not always sexual–it can be art. Models and just people, in general, should not be shamed for showing their bodies.
When it comes to handling pressure and stress during a shoot Zoë just relaxes and has fun. Fortunately, most of the photographers they worked with are incredible people who make shoots a great time. They make Zoë feel at ease, and they feel no pressure at all around them.
Talking about their favorite models they cannot choose between Coco Rocha and Cara Delevinge. They love how they have such a unique look and their own way of modeling. They aspire to be completely themself, just like they are. Their favorite quote is “Evil triumphs when good men do nothing”. This quote reminds them to always stand up for what is right. Because staying silent is just as bad as siding with bad people.
Modeling has had a really nice impact in my life. It has shown me how to find the beauty in the little things, including myself and my own imperfections. It’s all in the eye of the beholder.
The article was taken and written by Saishree Mohanty.