Runway and Posing

March 10, 2013  •  3 Comments

For a few years now, I have been working with several models on runway skills and posing.  I often use the old reference that the model is a hanger and they are wearing the clothes of the designer.   I'm not sure if this ever sets in, but I often coach models on using props in a scene and that clothes are even a prop.  When it comes to showing off a designers outfits, it takes a lot of thinking and really concentrating on how you would normally act with the clothes and what type of poses you should do to highlight the designers work.  

It really takes a TON of practice to walk runway, and many models get into this thinking they can just walk down and either SMILE big or just look FIERCE and its all good.  You also get a few that walk down the runway with an attitude thinking that the runway is all about them. With any of these attitudes it never really shows off the amazing work of the designers, especially if the models walk the runway and are only walking with the intent to show their runway walk off...Truth is, the runway is about the CLOTHES. Its about amazing design elements designers have put together over long hours and tons of sewing and contemplating the details of the pieces.

So this past Fashion Week in Kansas City, I was able to see some incredible design work, some amazing pieces on the runway.  A few designs really stood out because the models really knew how to highlight the clothing.   At Kansas City Fashion Week, I am one of the Creative Directors and all of us on the committee for KCFW work very hard to try and help coach the walk on the runway with the models.  This year, some of the designs really stood out because the models were not out to show themselves off as much as they were showing off the designs.  Here is a great example:

If you notice, the model Walked with a great walk in the first image, crossing feet appropriately. The 2nd image she poses with the whole piece, then elegantly takes jacket down, and turns to reveal the detail of the back.  This is exactly how the designer, Andrea Howell of Tidal Cool Creations, intended the her work to be shown.  It was a perfect example of really showing off the clothing and the detail/work the designer had put into the designs.

The point here being that just walking down the runway is not what a model should be thinking about.  The model should be really asking the designer what details are important to be shown off and how did the designer intend the design to be shown.  Then the model can easily practice how the clothing should be highlighted down the runway. 

Kansas City Fashion Week was amazing last week-end.  Everyone who participated was just outstanding, but when I saw some of the models step it up with the designs, it was fantastic to see on the runway.

Here are a few other tips for the runway :

  • Watch the neck,  Try to elongate your neck for maximum extension.
  • Stay away from the BOUNCE......the less you strut your stuff and learn to walk "fashion walk" on the runway, the better it is.  Some try and shake the hips when their hips already shake.  Probably not the best idea, if you already walk that way, to accent them even more.
  • Do not be a limp noodle. Always pose with tension in your body completely from H2T (head to toe).
  • Try and practice your poses in the mirror before you do them anywhere else.
  • Communicate with the Designers.  Ask them what you are wearing and what details they think are best to highlight.
  • Practice your walk or even video tape your walk so you can see what you are doing
  • Do not let hating how your hair or makeup is done affect your performance. Model through it.  You are the model, they choose the clothes and makeup to be on the look.  If you don't like it, maybe you should rethink modeling and go back to the deer in headlights look.
  • Deer in Headlights looks- Yea, not a good idea.
  • Do not slouch on the runway; pretend you have a wire through your spine that is pulling you up to the ceiling.
  • Do not be forgettable. Make an impression by showing your distinctive personality while keeping in mind you are showing off clothes.

Comments

3.suzzy irem(non-registered)
Tnks,I like the tips
2.Wm Russell(non-registered)
This article should be manditory reading for every model thinking of a runway, I returned from NYFW the same thoughts, walking correctly with a "flow" instead of a VS "bounce", showing the creations, not the model you nailed it Chris.
1.Erin B.(non-registered)
Kris - as tough as criticism can be, thank you thank you thank you for this post! There is nothing more distracting than a model who tries to steal the show, lol! While I enjoyed this past KCFW, there were too many times when I wondered if the model walking down the runway was a friend who really, really just wanted to walk down a runway........

And then, oh dear Lord, there were the Victoria Secret/borderline Playboy poses at the end of the runway....

And all I could think was, please please keep KCFW classy!
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