Ashley Graham gets real about modeling and her critics
Model Ashley Graham brought her larger than life personality to BUILD Series NYC. While promoting her new show, she spilled to BUILD what she really thought about modeling. She also talked about what she thought about her critics and how she handles their negative criticisms.
When Graham first started modeling people told her she would never make it as a plus size model. They told her she would never be on the cover of magazines or walk on the runways of high-class fashion designers, but Graham has been able to accomplish all that plus more.
"I have been told this is just the way the fashion industry is and you have to get over it.Then in the last few years, it's like 'oh, actually, there's been little cracks and doors open.' Now they're like wide open, and here we are, we're not leaving."
When Graham finally made it in the industry, she had a lot of people critiquing every move she made, but nothing was worse than when she was named one of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit rookies.
"Something I did when I was announced as one of the rookies for Sports Illustrated was, I started reading the comments after they had announced me. I literally, started to hysterically cry because there were men who were like 'who is this fat cow who is now in Sports Illustrated.'"
She thought she would at least get some support from women, but their comments weren't any different than the men's. This made her doubt herself and questioned if she even deserved the cover. Graham made Sports Illustrated history by being the first model to grace the cover, who was a size 16.
"Oh, I work out every single day of my life, and then this heifer can come in and be in a magazine. Reading that at first made me feel like I've ruined the magazine. They took a chance on a big girl and now I have ruined it for them. I don't know why, but I kept reading because you get into a black hole."
The comments section may be filled with trolls, but wherever there are trolls, there are always some good people and positive comments. It was those positive comments that motived Graham to not listen to the haters.
"People started to stand up for me, and say this is what we need! This is where the industry should be going. I really think that from that moment I'm like 'Nah I can't just be about the haters, I can't feed into what they are saying about me.' I have to know that there are so many other men and women out there who need representation like this."
Graham has been a model on demand for many years now, and it doesn't look like it is going to change anytime soon. You can get a taste of what Graham goes though in her day to day life as a model on her new show 'The Ashley Graham Project' streaming now on go90.