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Models and their Mothers
February 27, 2013 11:10 AM   Subscribe

Models and their Mothers by Howard Schatz. Interview.

The "Howard" link above goes to his online portfolio. Last year, his book "With Child" looked at pregnancy and motherhood. More photos at his site. (both links nsfw)

Schatz, previously on mefi.
posted by zarq (35 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
Mothers are beautiful, in every sense of that word.
posted by jbickers at 11:14 AM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love Howard Schatz! His Underwater series was my favorite thing ever in high school. I didn't know about this project though... thanks!
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:19 AM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


They say that pretty women have pretty mothers, but handsome women have handsome fathers. I'm not sure how true either is. I am struck more by the mother-daughters who don't look alike than by those who do.
posted by Jehan at 11:23 AM on February 27, 2013


TLC presents: Models and their Mothers
posted by Fizz at 11:25 AM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jehan: "They say that pretty women have pretty mothers, but handsome women have handsome fathers. I'm not sure how true either is. I am struck more by the mother-daughters who don't look alike than by those who do."

Me too. And I know that the point was to contrast women in subsequent generations but I have to admit, I really would have liked to have seen full family portraits, too, with both mother and father and their daughter.
posted by zarq at 11:27 AM on February 27, 2013


Interesting. I've always been fascinated with models and the whole modeling process, despite all the criticism about unhealthy body pressure and overworking and overexposing young women. Probably part of just my overall fashion interest. Also it just physically looks like a much harder job than I think people give it credit for. I do think the industry could do much better on diversity, however.
posted by sweetkid at 11:28 AM on February 27, 2013


How on earth are some of those girls a solid foot taller than their mother? Woah.
posted by GuyZero at 11:30 AM on February 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is an interesting subject, and the photos are excellent.

Generally speaking, I dislike posing models against a blank wall or backdrop. The world is full of interesting settings and sure, choosing one can be difficult, but it can also add a lot of dimension (pun not intended) to your photograph. Sometimes the blank wall makes sense, though. Schatz makes it work here.

Good post!
posted by cribcage at 11:36 AM on February 27, 2013


How on earth are some of those girls a solid foot taller than their mother? Woah.

Genetics is a funny sonofabitch. My dad is 5'11" and my mom is 5'9". I am 5'7" and my brother is 6'4". How I ended up shorter than both of them and my brother ended up a gigantic freak of nature is beyond me.

I'll tell you one thing, though...when I plug our just-born measurements into this calculator (age=0), it's accurate for both of us.
posted by phunniemee at 11:38 AM on February 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


>How on earth are some of those girls a solid foot taller than their mother? Woah.

I'm sure their fathers had something to do with it.
posted by mooselini at 11:40 AM on February 27, 2013


GuyZero: "How on earth are some of those girls a solid foot taller than their mother? Woah."

I'm nearly a foot taller than both my mom and dad. :) Genetics is funny.
posted by zarq at 11:50 AM on February 27, 2013


I'm sure their fathers had something to do with it.

Or some genes unexpressed in but carried by their mothers.
posted by ChuckRamone at 11:52 AM on February 27, 2013


My wife is quite a beauty, but then again the women on her mother's side were real beauties, her aunt in particular. Her father's side? Not so much.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:52 AM on February 27, 2013


Very cool. Thanks for posting it.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 11:55 AM on February 27, 2013


TLC presents: Models and their Mothers

Also known that the Toddlers and Tiaras 10 year anniversary special.
posted by asnider at 11:58 AM on February 27, 2013


no male models??
posted by robbyrobs at 12:03 PM on February 27, 2013


robbyrobs: "no male models??"

Nope. Nor dads. The project is a contrast between the features of two successive generations of women in a family.
posted by zarq at 12:05 PM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's a little weird and sad how some of the models can't seem to turn the sexy off.
posted by DU at 12:06 PM on February 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


Models have mothers? Shocking. I always assumed they were built in a secret laboratory.
posted by jonmc at 12:12 PM on February 27, 2013


can't seem to turn the sexy off

Well, they're being asked to pose in their capacity as models (in this case, models that have moms)... are they really being asked to turn the sexy off?

I was interested to see when the moms do and don't imitate the daughters' sexy-model poses, too.

Really neat photo set, thanks for sharing.
posted by saturday_morning at 12:13 PM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


FYI, we tall people don't particularly like being referred to as "gigantic freak[s] of nature."
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:13 PM on February 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


FYI, we tall people don't particularly like being referred to as "gigantic freak[s] of nature."

Ah, I see you have not met my little brother. :)
posted by phunniemee at 12:37 PM on February 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


saturday_morning: "are they really being asked to turn the sexy off?"

Yep!
What did you notice during the photo sessions?

If the models had been working for a year or more, you put a camera in front of them, and their eyes squint, and their head turns, and they become a little alluring. Some models would even direct their mothers — “Tilt your chin down.” I’d then ask them not to pose like a sexy fashion model but to pose as their mother’s daughter. I’d ask both mother and daughter to look at the camera as if they were listening to each other, as if they were having a long distance conversation and the other one is speaking. I’d try to get a face that wasn’t designed to affect the photograph, that wasn’t telling the camera what it’s supposed to see.

posted by zarq at 12:39 PM on February 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


There are of course different tiers of models. When people hear "model" most think fashion supermodels, while the reality is there are tons of quite "plain" models who wouldn't stand out in a stack of portfolios - not all require extraordinary looks at all. There are agencies that specialize in certain kinds of models, or models for certain kinds of jobs, but in general, the bulk of the money is made by models you wouldn't think as special in any way (look-wise). The models in this series are an example of how not all models are "supermodels". The more extreme the models (along the beauty spectrum) the more interesting the pairing with the mother; the more the models approach "average" looks, the less unexpected the juxtapositions become. Of course, it is much harder to get ahold of supermodels to cooperate in such a scheme.
posted by VikingSword at 12:40 PM on February 27, 2013


I'm tall, my wife is short and both our daughters are tall (though not WNBA tall). I think it's because my wife is the only short person in her family and somehow missed the tall genes everyone else got.
posted by tommasz at 12:42 PM on February 27, 2013


FYI, we tall people don't particularly like being referred to as "gigantic freak[s] of nature."

Speak for yourself, big fella.
posted by Floydd at 12:52 PM on February 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


FYI, we tall people don't particularly like being referred to as "gigantic freak[s] of nature."

6'5", and I dispute your claim.

I am "grind his bones to make my bread" big, and it is the best fucking thing. Every week I get together with BIG CLUB to talk about how great it is to be giant. The other members are a blue whale, a grizzly bear and the moon. Pre-schools pay me to show up and stand around just to give all the little shorties something to aspire to. When I walk through low door frames I always bend at the knees rather than the waist, because there is no way I'm going to let those suckers see a tall man bow.

They want to call me a freak? A FREAK I AM!

BIG! BIG! BIG! BIG!
posted by Parasite Unseen at 1:45 PM on February 27, 2013 [25 favorites]


I really enjoyed this! I love looking at the way features change over generations.
posted by chatongriffes at 1:50 PM on February 27, 2013


Yeah, I'm 6'6", and one of my favorite things in the world is visiting my kids' elementary school. I walk into a room with new kids and they all just come up and gather around me and LOOK UP and go "wow! You're tall!" And I invariably reply, "Yes, I am, and very handsome too."
posted by jbickers at 1:50 PM on February 27, 2013 [13 favorites]


"Yes, I am, and very handsome too."

My brother *loves* being tall. He became laughably taller than me when he was 16 and I was off at college, and just to rub it in, on my first trip back home he walked up behind me in the bathroom mirror as I was brushing my teeth and just casually rested his chin on the top of my head. (He now does this every time we see each other because he's a jerk and likes to rub in his altitudinal superiority.)

My mom teaches elementary school, and he's like a god to them. Whenever he stops by her classroom to help her out with something, they flock around him in awe. One time one kid even asked for his autograph.
posted by phunniemee at 2:07 PM on February 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


jbickers: "Yeah, I'm 6'6", and one of my favorite things in the world is visiting my kids' elementary school. I walk into a room with new kids and they all just come up and gather around me and LOOK UP and go "wow! You're tall!" "

I get that at my kids' preschool every single time I pick them up or drop them off. "You're tall! You're humungous! How did you get so big?"

I'll have to use the handsome line next time. :D
posted by zarq at 2:21 PM on February 27, 2013


zarq, I stand corrected!
posted by saturday_morning at 3:37 PM on February 27, 2013


I'm around 6'1", and as I'm usually the tallest in the room I rarely think about it, or even hunch down somewhat to de-emphasize my height, especially in a crowded room full of people...until I see someone who's my height or taller, then I think "oh wow, that guy's impressive, with that height" or "oh wow, that girl's really attractive, with that height" and I end up walking straight and tall for a while. It's all about perspective, I guess.
posted by davejay at 4:24 PM on February 27, 2013


It's a little weird and sad how some of the models can't seem to turn the sexy off.

I’m the same way. It’s a curse and a blessing.
posted by bongo_x at 7:55 PM on February 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


Bongo_x, I thought I was the only one.
posted by tel3path at 7:08 AM on February 28, 2013


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