Horizon Starwood on Women's Relationships with Food in the Media

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Dear wandering eyes,

My name is Horizon Starwood, and I am not a model in any way, shape or form. I’m just a 21-year-old woman attending university. You may be wondering how the heck I fit in to the world of “Models that Eat”?

For starters, I love food. For years, I was ashamed of how much I enjoyed cooking and eating food. Whenever I would eat, especially in social settings, with my close friends, or if a guy I liked was in my peripheral vision, I constantly feared being judged for what was on my plate, how much was on my plate and how I ate my food due in part to my size and weight. I would think that people who saw me with a plate of food were thinking, “does she really need that?”, or, “wow that’s a lot of food!”, or, “does she really need seconds?”

However, that mindset is slowly being suppressed. Whatever people may think about my food and my body, it truly and honestly doesn’t matter.

This new state of mind has stemmed majorly from “Models That Eat”. From watching the “Dine n’ Dash” video series to reading about the pressures that a professional dancer faces, I became aware that I am not alone in feeling some type of shame towards my relationship with food and how I see myself. Models and even dancers are no different than people outside of their professions. To watch, read and hear about people from an industry that makes people outside of the industry think every aspect of their mind and body is perfect, was really rewarding and inspiring. Seeing people my age or close to my age talk that are in a profession that praises and objectifies people’s bodies, is highly rewarding. The way in which they criticize themselves or criticize their diet, are thoughts that I and my other friends have had.  Models are not free from feeling bad about themselves, being constantly compared to other people and feeling some type of shame in regards to the food that they eat.

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 After reading and watching each blog and vlog on “Models That Eat”, I’ve grown to realize that what people think about my food and my body doesn't matter. The founder of Models That Eat, Phoebe, does a wonderful job in creating a brave space for people to see the “real side” of a profession that is overly glorified and praised. Phoebe, through her videos, interviews and photo series, educates those outside of the industry in letting them understand that models have their imperfections and most importantly, they eat! “Models That Eat” does a beautiful job of breaking down the idyllic tropes of the modeling industry through having models, mainly young women, talking about their struggle with their body image, diet, weight and also showing them eating their food.

My job here is to help be a part of the change in normalizing humans’ relationship with food and bridging the gap between the standards and expectations between women outside of the modeling profession and those in it. 

It’s honestly nobody’s business how much and how we eat. It is time to eradicate society’s expectations of women and their relationships with food. In the coming weeks and months, you’ll find more photos and of young women eating, biting and gnawing into food, me writing more about my relationship with food and how the media portrays a woman’s relationship with food and her body-image.

I want to give a HUGE THANKS to Phoebe for letting me be a part of the “Models That Eat” universe and giving me the courage to be vulnerable and talk about sensitive subjects. More to come!

 

-Horizon P. Starwood

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