Model reaches out to Youtube for fashion


It’s one thing to see classmates walk down the hallways of school, but few know that sophomore Joanae Lawrence has walked down the runway of Miami Swim Week. Modeling has always been apart of her life, and since she was 12 years old she has been taking pictures professionally. However the model has reached out to a new platform: Youtube.

“I know I want to be a model,” Lawrence said. “But no matter what, I know I need to be working in fashion. With Youtube I can connect with people who love fashion like I do, and help get myself out there. When I was younger I made videos, but now that I’m older and more self-secure I can make quality ones.” 

For the past year, Lawrence has worked at Downtown Divas, a boutique in Downtown Melbourne. Through her job, she creates looks for costumers, models clothing and is featured on the social media accounts for the boutique.

“Downtown Divas allows you to be creative in your fashion abilities and be in an environment full of opportunities,” coworker Eva Banton said. “I think any time you are on social media modeling something or forced to interact with people, it brings opportunities for you to get a job offer. It only takes one person to notice you or like you and then you could have a job.”

In the summer, Lawrence plans to attend the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising, a college focused on the business of fashion in New York.

“I’m interested in photography and styling as well as buying and management as a backup plan for modeling,” Lawrence said. “I’ve been with four different agencies, and I don’t have the best of luck with agents. It’s been a struggle to find one that works well for me. I honestly still haven’t found one that will truly work hard for me yet.”

However there’s one thing that hasn’t changed for Lawrence, and that’s her family.

“Jojo has a background of what a successful image is, and she understands what looks good in front of a camera,” her mother Cathy said.” She can be insecure when it comes to modeling against other girls, but doing it solo boosts her confidence so much. I love being able to support her and watch her grow as a beautiful young woman.”

In the end, modeling is more than just pictures. Lawrence may be the girl featured in catalogs for companies and boutiques down in Miami, scholastic book fair ads and bridal promotions, but it’s what happens behind the scenes that matters.

“I’m just trying to make it happen for myself while juggling a school, boyfriend, work and my friends,” Lawrence said. “A lot of people think that I’m constantly modeling and making a bunch of money, but that really isn’t true. The majority of posts on social media are trade shoots I do with photographers. I love modeling and the art of pictures so much that I constantly want to be doing it, plus every time it becomes more and more comfortable.” 

By Rachel Montgomery