Meet MaryAnn Elizabeth
MaryAnn was first scouted at the age of 14 in the 80’s by Elite Model Management. At that time, her parents would not allow her to become a model - but the oft-said phrase, “If it’s meant to be, it will be” couldn’t be more relevant than in MaryAnn’s case.
Fast-forward 33 years, and MaryAnn finally began her modelling journey at age 47. She now can claim jobs for clients including AVEDA and Numero Russia Magazine, as well as modelling for numerous designers including Deveaux New York.
“I am not sure I would have had the confidence at 14, or even 20 for that matter, to be a successful model. As a young person, I struggled with a lot of self-doubt regarding body image.”
MaryAnn discusses what it’s like to be a model at her age, and the life mottos she likes to live by.
UB: How did you get discovered?/How long have you been modeling?
MaryAnn: It was the 80’s when Eileen Ford of the renowned Ford Modeling Agency first offered me an amazing opportunity to begin a modeling career, however I was only 14 years old and my parents were not in favor of the idea. After High School I went on to pursue my passion in the visual arts, earning a BFA in Graphic Design (magna cum Laude) and an MFA, Masters of Fine Arts from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (shared alumni such as David Lynch and Elizabeth Osborne).
My experiences as a professional artist include: graphic designer, studio artist with gallery representation, and last but not least college professor within the arts & humanities, teaching courses in both fine art & design. But thirty-three years after being scouted by Ford, at age 47, I decided it was time to give modeling a try! I have since celebrated my 50th birthday!
UB: What are the last three jobs you did?
MaryAnn: Recently I had the great fortune to be included in an international campaign for AVEDA “Know What You’re (we’re) Made of” the campaign was very meaningful to me not only because I personally identify with the brand philosophically (cruelty-free, no animal testing policy, and following an environmental mission), but it was a huge honor to be chosen as the campaign images showcased unique, authentic and diverse range of women with strong ideals as their stars. The personal theme/description chosen for me were, Mentor, Defiant, and Balanced. It was the first time a brand took interest in me as an artist not just a model.
2018 brought many opportunities to work with amazing creatives who I have long admired, such as photographer Nagi Sakai for the story “Return” published in Numero Russia Magazine, a true gift to be in front of his lens!
It is always an honor when a ready to wear designer like Deveaux New York selects you to represent, for me it felt very personal because they speak to modern sensibilities, paying homage to the strengths and confidence of a modern woman. It’s a very high compliment to be viewed this way!
UB:Favorite memory on a shoot?
MaryAnn: It was a dream come true to work in Paris this summer shooting a new campaign for Clarins skin care! My husband and two sons joined me for part of my two week stay making memories I will forever treasure!
UB: Can you tell us a bit about your experience modeling at your age?
MaryAnn: as they say everything in its right time! I love coming to modeling at this stage of my life because I have so much more to bring to the table, I have been through things, have lived many lives so to speak. I am not sure I would have had the confidence at 14 or even 20 for that matter to be a successful model, as a young person I struggled with a lot of self doubt regarding body image. I certainly think there is so much more awareness today regarding inclusivity, positive body image and equality. I have met many young women in the industry today who possess a level of self confidence that is so impressive to see in younger generations, especially recently as I’ve become involved with the Model Activist Group a.k.a., Model Mafia, these women are talented and powerful change makers who inspire me greatly!
UB: What advice would you give younger models?
MaryAnn: There is a saying and it couldn’t be more true: “Success is where preparation and opportunity meet.”
...I would say, keep your dreams alive, and to bring them into fruition you must have faith and belief in yourself, this ingredient can not be underestimated! I remind my own sons (now 16 & 19) to achieve your life vision you must live in 3D, that is desire, determination, and dedication!