Shakeema Cochrane Interview – A Hot Minute

Written by on February 25, 2024

Shakeema Cochrane Interview – A Hot Minute – Liam Sweeny.

RRX: Modeling seems easy to people who’ve never modeled. Just stand in front of a camera, and that’s it. But that’s looking at the end-product with no understanding of what may have to happen a day or a week before the shoot. Can you talk about that?

SC: Absolutely! You have to make sure everything is on point and that you have your model bag packed with the items you know you are required to have. Also Making sure your hygiene, hair, skin, and nails are on point. There’s a lot that goes into making sure you have everything you need for the shoot and if not then that week you are getting all the things that are needed in order.

RRX: Models and photographers are a matched pair. Both have to be on-point. I’ve known from my time in print media that every photographer has their own look. Can you tell me about a photographer you shot with whose look you really vibed with.

SC:  Of course! My Mentor Mark Davis! It’s like we just flow off each other.  He specializes in lightening so when we talk about an ideal shot we literally analyze each part of how we can make it happen and then that’s when the magic begins!

RRX: Like photographers, wardrobes are another matched pair. I can think of two scenarios, one where you’re in wardrobe to shoot for maybe an ad. The other is you’re modeling the wardrobe itself, for the brand. Which of the two do you like best?

SC: As a model your opinion doesn’t matter if your being provided the clothing you just have to shoot what is being presented to you and I think I like that best because your challenged to slay a look you would probably never wear in real life and there is so much beauty in that. I am a creative director so I love to provide the wardrobe for what I’m going for particularly because I’m in creative control. There’s beauty in both! Creativity flows both ways!

RRX: One key of art is that the artist reveals themselves through their work. But a model reveals themselves as their work. You’re using your expressions and body language to bring a work into being that will affect the people who see it. Does it feel like art?

SC: It absolutely is art! I see it like this as a creative I don’t just shoot to shoot. I shoot to create something and that something is art! If it’s a character I want to embody that character. To create is to express, and when you can express yourself through the lense and touch people on the other side that’s when you know you created something beautiful, when you can touch at least one person with your creative expression that means something! You’ve created art!

RRX: Models can go all over the world, and are in high demand whenever a person or business wants to bring attention to something. But as a model, it’s your face on a thing. Have you ever had to turn something down because you didn’t want your face on it?

SC: Yes, because every opportunity doesn’t fit my business! I have a specific look for my brand and I can’t take every opportunity that’s presented because it simply just doesn’t align with my business. What’s meant for me will always be for me. I use my intuition and discernment when it comes to gigs that are presented to me. If I feel funny about it then I’m not going to put myself in a position to force something that’s not meant for me… If it feels right then I’m going for it!

RRX: There are a lot of people doing modeling on social media. And they call themselves models, and the people in the comments treat them like models – are they models? Is it a matter of real models vs fake models, or is it just varying skill levels of models?

So they are models, my mentor once told me “for an example if you pick up a baseball and call yourself a baseball player are you wrong for doing so? No. Are you a professional baseball player? No! but you’re playing baseball so you are a baseball player” Your skill set makes the difference between a professional and an amateur. I personally don’t consider myself a model I consider myself a creative in this community. But I do see the frustration of the season models who have put time, effort and energy into their craft and did the work to be confused with aspiring models. All the practicing and videos, learning and castings they have to do to be considered a professional model, just for someone who has no clue what it take to come in and title themselves that. I can see the frustration. We all come in wanting to be accepted but the model world is a vicious world. Everyone is secretly in competition with each other but really it just starts with perfecting your craft and working on being a better creative overall to be honest.



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