MODELLING – A FORM OF ESCAPISM
By: Sandile Zikhali
With the controversy on the absence of dark skinned models in magazines, a call for more dark skinned models has open opportunities for young girls to come into the industry.
Nombuso “Indoni” Mtshali (19), a Durban University of Technology student, said she was introduced into the modelling world in 2012 while she was doing Grade 11.
The dark-skinned beauty said that she sees modelling as a way of escaping all the negative things that surround the youth of today.
“I never really liked modelling until I was forced by high school teachers to enter for Miss Mkuze 2012. They said I had the qualities of being a model, so I took up the challenge, to my surprise I was crowned queen at my very first try,” explained Mtshali.
The full of life second year public management student says because of her skin colour, friends have nicknamed her “Indoni”, which is a Zulu word that means blackberry.
Ever since she started entering competitions, Mtshali has walked away with crowns including; Miss Valentine Elangeni College 2014, 1st Princess Miss Green DUT 2015, 1st Princess Miss Umbilo 2015, Miss Ekasi KZN 2015 and many more.
“I never thought I would survive this long because of the negativity I have seen towards dark-skinned models like Ziphozakhe Zokufa (Miss SA 2014),” Mtshali said.
Talking about the challenges as a dark-skinned model, she said that the most important thing any girl out there should do is to be comfortable in their own skin.
“More designers and photographers are looking for dark-skinned girls out there, there is huge gap that needs to be filled. The stigma on dark-skinned models is slowly but surely being washed away,” explained Mtshali.
For a young woman that was raised under a roof that believed a woman has to cover up and respect her body, it was not an easy task explaining to her family that she wants to be model.
“At first they said it was such a disgrace but I sat down with my grandma and explained the kind of behaviour expected from a model, she agreed with what I told her so she was okay with it,” Mtshali said.
The young and humble beauty dreams of being a supermodel and her dream is to be crowned Miss South Africa in the near future.
“The experience and exposure I have picked along my journey has horned me, I have goals and I want to achieve them,” added Mtshali.