Shanique, Fashion, Career And Her Quest To Move Forward
What I have learned is in order to make a difference in the fashion industry you have to believe that beauty comes from within. When I first came to Houston, Texas from Lovelady ,Texas I was teased badly… about my wardrobe, my hair being in a ponytail all the time, as well as derogatory statments being made about my big lips. I remember going home crying to my mom everyday. One day she said these words to me “you are beautiful enough to be a model and don’t let other people’s words sweat your mentality”.I decided then, at a young age, that I wanted to make an impact. I went back to school after Christmas break and I made a decision that I will not be bullied anymore. With determination and perseverance I strives to be the best.
I became one of the best athletes in my district and went on to play WR/Wide Receiver(85) league WNFA (Women National Football Association) for the Houston Texas Cyclones. Although I was a great athlete I still wanted to accomplish so much in the fashion industry. I never had the luxury of knowing anyone is this industry. Heck; I never had the luxury of knowing anyone who knew anyone within the industry. I had to do all the ground work and hustle by myself. I’ve gotten denied for not being the typical 0-2 dress size. I’ve gotten scammed by many different people. I’ve even walked into many agencies who have absolutely loved me, loved my experience, training, and humility, but because I didn’t have a certificate for their agency they wanted me to pay THOUSANDS of dollars for it. One particular agency heard about me being a great promotional model in Houston. They also told me that I would need an agency certificate to be officially signed with them.The only difference with this agency is that they said I could pay off my almost $4,000 balance by working at local stores and boutiques as a promotional model.
Every weekend I worked hard and every weekend they took my entire check. Until one day I realized that I didn’t want to finish paying off the balance and decided that I can make the money on my own. Since then I’ve accomplished so much. I’ve done print, runway, promotional modeling and videos; as well as accomplished being Top 50 African American Model in Houston Texas.
I’ve never talked down on anyone in this industry and promote all of who has worked hard to become who they are. Jealousy is a big part of why Houston isn’t at the level they should be and I possess NONE. I want everyone to know that you can have a “crab in a bucket” mentality, but instead of pulling your fellow crabs down to reach the top. How about pushing them out the bucket, and them using their claws to help pull you out as well. Now I am the Scouting and Booking Director for A La Carte Modeling Agency who doesn’t just talk the talk but also walks the walk…..three by the way. I have changed many lives. Some of which never thought that they would even be apart of this world.
I empower kids to be better and inspire models to believe. Passion and talent have taken me very far in this industry. God is a wonderful God, and he also has a sense of humor. Reason being, the same agencies that denied me, due to lack of funds, are the same agencies contacting me to place their models in shows that I am the coordinating director for. Life has come full circle.