By Nicklas Kingo
Modelling is a strange and fickle profession. You need a good attitude and some level of acquired skill (aesthetic labour), but a very large portion of success depends on something that didn't require much effort: your looks.
I never really felt like I did actual work for my paycheques. Sure it was hard work, in that I was bored out of my mind every now and then. But I never fully appreciated the paycheques from modelling as much as the ones I got from lugging around cement bags in a lumberyard as a teenager.
You put in an effort in order to pay the bills. That’s what makes you sleep well at night. It gives you a feeling of accomplishment – or at least it's supposed to. If you find modelling challenging and exciting, that’s awesome. I did too for the first four months. But chances are that in time, you’ll need more of a challenge.
In my case, I quickly found I was feeling empty in spite of enjoying everything modelling allowed me to do, such as travel. There was no challenge from modelling for me. If the gap between what you’re capable of doing and what you’re actually doing is too large, you’ll be miserable. I know I was.
Does being creative mean you have to start painting or playing trombone? Not at all. Being creative is just about making stuff or making things happen. One of the most rewarding feelings is looking at an object such as a blog post or a wooden gnome, and thinking: “This thing exists because of me. I did this. If it weren’t for me, this thing wouldn't be.”
The sense of pride and joy from having put something into existence is evident throughout your entire life. For example, when you were a toddler calling your parents to check out the generous offering you left them in the toilet bowl, or to handing in your school thesis. The feeling you have when you create something and contribute to the world is one that's incomparable.
Branch out and tap into your creativity. Start to take up knitting or foraging. I tried out Indonesian stick fighting when I was working in Sydney (Australia), and barn dancing in Brooklyn (New York). I might not get to do those things again, but they're experiences I'll never forget.
Get up, get moving, and get involved.
“Man, I wish I’d stayed at home Skyping my girlfriend instead of finger painting with the orphans yesterday.” – Said no one ever.
Nicklas Kingo has been modelling for close to two years and is represented by 2pm Copenhagen. He has worked in all the major European fashion capitals as well as other markets in the United States, Korea, Japan and Australia. He spends most of his spare time reading, playing music, and studying languages. He is known for not taking anything too seriously and being able to eat more than most food lovers in his weight class. He also found it really awkward writing this biography in the third person.
You can check out his blog as well, which we previously featured.