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#Mymidlife | CrunchyTales

Celebrating The Gray One Shoot At A Time

2 min read

I began my new journey at 48 when my kids were entering both middle school and high school. I knew that I was passionate about raising two kind children but that was it. Then I started to work as a fashion stylist for mature clients helping them discover their fashion sense and I realised there was much more than changing the way they looked. There was the need to change the stories we are all given to us as we age. I now represent over 40 grey-haired models who are not only beautiful but have powerful positive ageing stories to share.

What I like most about my job as an agent is to empower them one shoot at a time. I usually recruit mature models via friends, speaking engagements or looking at their Instagram profiles. Some of them are booked more than others and some may not get booked at all and simply enjoy being part of our movement. During a photo-shoot, it’s great to see the younger crew starting to approach ageing in a different way. It’s a give and take experience: the model feels valued and seen and the crew feels inspired.

When I make connections by reaching out to casting agents, companies, influencers and small businesses I don’t only work to secure a contract for my models but I also keep speaking about ageism and building a bigger community of like-minded women who together are changing the landscape of what ageing looks like.

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What I’ve learned through my journey is that we’ve often been told what we can’t do as we age –“you can’t wear this or that, you can’t start a business, your opinion is not important”- instead all of us can think and be different. Women may start to feel invisible after a certain age because they don’t see visuals and stories talking about possibilities. On a personal level, my 89-year-old mother is ageing differently and being inspired by women that I interview and my 20-year-old daughter and 24-year-old son also look at growing older differently. They are continuously sending me stories and pictures of inspiring women for me to share with my community. The work that I get is beyond what I ever imagined, I have found my purpose and feel inspired everyday!

About The Author

Stephanie O'Dell

Stephanie is the founder of ‘Celebrate The Gray’, a full-service agency that offers 50+ models, modern styling and consulting to brands and companies. Her mission is to erase ageism and change the perspective about ageing with the help of real faces and authentic stories.

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