It’s never too late to become a model!

Model-turned-agent Monique Jeremiah is taking bold strides to showcase diverse talent on the Gold Coast. We speak with Monique about Diversity Models, her success stories and how she’s driving change one photo shoot at a time.

Can you share with us the mission of Diversity Models?

We represent confidence, curves & culture – we want to challenge the existing modelling industry and encourage businesses to recognise the value of diversity in marketing and branding. We specialise in casting unique multicultural, curve and mature aged models aged 30 plus for print, social media and TVC campaigns. Our aim is to promote self-confidence and cast models who are naturally beautiful, relatable and have an everyday appeal so that they resonate with customers of our clients.

How did you get started setting up an agency, and how did you bring initial talent to your books?

In July 2022 I started Diversity Models completely spontaneously after many people were asking me whether I owned a modelling agency – in my spare time I was modelling on the side for fun. However, during Covid, I realised I truly enjoyed the networking, marketing and public relations side of modelling.

So, I created an industry-breaking agency where I managed models just like myself and gave businesses what they needed and lacked – faces of diversity. I recruited our talent through initially advertising on my own Facebook profile and then naturally I created a FOMO culture. Now we have such an amazing team of models which is growing!

How much of the fashion industry do you think is truly committed to using diverse models?

Personally, I believe that the industry is still lacking diverse models and this is very evident on reality TV – I just came back from Farmer Wants a Wife and saw it first-hand. Whilst filming, I was only 1 of 2 diverse faces on screen – the evidence is there, diversity needs to be included and not just tokenised.

What is your advice to a woman at any age who is keen to start modelling?

I would say it’s never too late to become a model – I entered the industry at 30 as a mature-aged model. It is vital that you are already self-confident, have strong self-esteem and can take rejection. Being an excellent team player and entering the industry with an open mind and no ego is essential, as it takes time, experience and relationship building to become excellent and known in this creative profession.

I look for natural beauty, unique cultural combinations and models who have taken the time to look after themselves mentally and physically as women. I love models who are highly team players, supportive of other women and have a positive personality.

What do you love about living and working on the Gold Coast, and do you feel consumers here are wanting even more diverse models?

I love living here as it is very relaxed, it is an entrepreneurs’ paradise and it is a great home base. I’ve been here 27 years. Consumers here want more diverse and natural models as they are tired of the typical Barbie doll plastic image of the past on the Gold Coast.

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