activism, interviews
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Artist, Vegan, Activist & Model. Meet Emma

After following Emma on Instagram for a while and always being inspired by her captions I decided to send her a DM asking if I could interview her. After some small conversations she gave me her email and I set out to create some questions, a few days later I sent them. Reading through her answers I gained an understanding of how gorgeous her soul is, how passionate she is, how hardworking she is, and how important it is to make a stand for something you believe in. I hope you can gain a similar understanding and find a new muse.

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How would you describe yourself and what you do to a stranger?

I’m an 18-year-old who just finished school at a specialist Art school where I specialised in visual arts. I draw, make videos and sculptures. I’m a model, a vegan activist and sometimes (someday more soon) rescuer and fosterer.

What influenced you to go vegan and when did you?

I was first a pescatarian, from the beginning of 2015, because I was staying in Sweden with my relatives, and Swedes eat quite a lot of moose and deer. I thought it was bazaar and sad that these animals were eaten and it made me realise it was just as sad to eat pigs, cows or any other animals. A year later I met a friend who told me that if I did love animals I had to go vegan because only then can I stop contributing to their suffering. For a little I tried to ignore the truth, but when I finally saw it I never turned back.

Did you face any difficulties going vegan? If so, how did you overcome them?

At first I was concerned about how I would get certain nutrients, but after doing some simple research on the internet about iron, vitamin c (which helps with iron absorption), as well as protein and B12 I was fine. I was also very lucky that my Mum was willing to cook for me still.

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I’m personally interested in becoming vegan. What advice would you give me and those also interested? Is there anything you wish you knew before and while going vegan?

That’s amazing!! My advice is to remember that no matter how hard or inconvenient veganism can seem at first, it is nothing in comparison to the pain of the animals who suffer without veganism. It can be hard to accept that your choices are hurting animals but it is the thing that pushed me most to go vegan.

I wish I knew sooner what the animal agricultural industry hides from us. Not just about what happens to animals whose flesh we eat, but about those in the dairy and egg industries. For example, dairy cows are forcibly impregnated, their child taken away from and killed if it is a boy, and stolen away to become a dairy cow if she is a girl. In Australia alone 12 million male baby chicks are killed almost as soon as they are born, because we breed so many chickens to lay eggs, and of course males cannot.

Are there any recourses you would recommend for those interested in veganism and in animal rights?

Yes! Head over to the Animal Liberation website, Vegan Easy, NutritionFacts.org, watch Cowspiracy, What The Health (Netflix), Eggs Exposed, Dairy is Scary, 1000 Eyes, Lucent, so so many things…

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What does veganism mean to you? How has it changed your life?

Veganism means knowing that I am living a kind life in relation to animals. I don’t feel guilty when I eat, I don’t feel guilty when I meet animals, my conscience is clear and I love them and know my actions reflect that. That in itself is life changing.

In graduating high school and receiving an incredible ATAR score, what advice would you give someone entering their final year?

Thank you! If getting a good ATAR is your priority, push yourself, make a study schedule, stick to it. You can have fun when you finish and have a mark you’re proud of. But not everyone has a goal that needs an ATAR so just stick with what is important to you and your goal and life.

How has finishing school impacted your life? What have you been getting up to?

Well I haven’t been out long! But I am excited for my future because it’s going somewhere that I want. I got the ATAR I needed to get into Global Studies at Monash, which may help me to later get a job in foreign aid or something which would be incredible. Before then though I’m deferring to spend some time modelling, including in Sydney where I just got signed with Kult models. Now that my time is completely my own I’m going to do more animal activism, have more time for things I love like nature, my friends, and also are making (and selling). Lots of  little plans bubbling away.

Did you ever imagine yourself being a model?

When I was pretty young I wanted to be a model but never as a full-time thing, I wanted to be a fashion designer at the time I first thought of modelling. When I was signed at 14 I wanted to be a psychiatrist. I need more than just modelling to use my mind, I love the feeling of it working haha.

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Was there a process you went through to become a model?

A lot of people have kind of fancy stories where they get scouted on the street by someone who thinks they’re perfect for modelling but I just went online, found out who the top agencies were and applied to them by sending them some photos and info about me! I got street cast once I was already signed though haha.

How has your opinion of yourself changed through modelling?

It’s an incredibly weird industry in that half of it fuels your ego and the other half can crush it. Whenever you get work you’re being told you’re attractive, but every job you don’t get can feel like the opposite. I think the most important thing to learn as a model is that getting and not getting jobs has little do little to do with how you look, and more to do with what the girl the casting director picture in their head looks like. I really like this quote about all the different flowers looking completely different, but no one thinks of the difference as less and more beautiful, just different. I think that’s a good way to think of yourself and others. Comparison can be very harmful. I’m very aware that societally people compare themselves to models and that’s why I think it’s important the industry is transparent, admits if there has been photo shopping make up etc. I also have never tried to lose weight if/when I’ve been told to because if I, a very thin and yes, conventionally attractive person feels they are not enough it doesn’t send a positive message to those who are less celebrated by beauty standards and norms.

Have you encountered and/or overcome any insecurities through modelling?

Just as I was saying before, comparison can be hard, not just in appearance but in the success of someone else compared to you. It’s important to remember that someone else’s success does not necessarily the absence of your own.

Are you happy with where your life has led you so far?

Yes, I have hopes and ambitions but putting aside some unrealistic expectation I have for myself, I think I’m doing well for where I am in life. And I’m very happy now.

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Where do you want your future to take you? What are your short-term and long-term hopes and dreams? What do you want to accomplish?

Just a couple of dreams – not sure when but at some point I hope to have these happen (some are more realistic than others, but I’m optimistic).

I would love to work with Stella McCartney as she is a full vegan Fashion label. I want to have enough of a name as a model that I can begin to shift the fashion industry away from the enormous amount of animal cruelty (and human – in regards to sweat shop labour etc) which is involved in the production of clothing.

I would like to design some of my own clothes and have them sustainably and ethically made.

I would like to work in foreign aid.

If I could do literally anything I would somehow be involved in the UN as an ambassador or something.

One day when I’m more settled down I want to have an animal sanctuary for rescues.

That’s just a few!

How do you hope to change the world?

Though there are many small elements I could give to this answer, overall, I hope that my time on earth helps to create a kinder future.


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