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Photographer
Rick OBanion Photo
Posts: 1,339
Saint Catharines-Niagara, Ontario, Canada


Frann Lazzari wrote:

You're one of the few!

For me...

Mar 28 13 03:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
4 R D
Posts: 1,003
Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico


P I X I E wrote:
Clinically depressed doesn't mean unproductive and non-functional. I have a pretty good job in a reputable financial institution.

Which is why I closed with "Certainly, it would also depend on the specifics" . I never spoke about any disease in particular.

Mar 28 13 03:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
J O H N A L L A N
Posts: 9,745
Santa Ana, California, US


Reading it in your bio, I would think that the condition (whatever it was), was uncontrolled (by medication) and potentially a risk to me, my project, my team. Because I would assume that if it was controlled, you wouldn't be warning people about it. I'd pass.
Mar 28 13 03:31 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,025
Columbus, Ohio, US


Most everyone has "stuff" to some extent.

There is also this word called boundaries that come to mind.
Those that announce certain shit to the world, particularly on the net, well....it's gonna give me great pause for thought.

Doing such is also a neon light that will attract certain people you'd probably be better off not dealing with.
Mar 28 13 03:37 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
P I X I E
Posts: 35,267
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Cherrystone wrote:
Most everyone has "stuff" to some extent.

There is also this word called boundaries that come to mind.
Those that announce certain shit to the world, particularly on the net, well....it's gonna give me great pause for thought.

Doing such is also a neon light that will attract certain people you'd probably be better off not dealing with.

This!!!

Mar 28 13 03:38 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Good Egg Productions
Posts: 15,113
Orlando, Florida, US


no
Mar 28 13 03:39 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Studio Chiaroscuro
Posts: 81
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


Laura UnBound wrote:
You'd be better off not putting it in your profile, but rather explaining it upon your first interaction with someone when they are setting up the shoot with you. It might not actually pertain to the shoots people would like to set up with you but since you put it in your profile they're just passing you without wanting further explanation.

This is very good and sensible advice. There is no need to put manageable conditions, mental or physical, in one's profile where reactions based on ignorance or prejudice and a lack of space for comprehensive information about complex matters will inevitably lead to one being passed by.

Once initial contact is made and mutual interest in working together is established then the time for full disclosure and the opportunity for a meaningful dialogue is at hand. Communication is key obviously and a profile need not be a full confession, manifesto or artist's statement. Few actually take the time to properly read anything longer than a tweet anyway.

When people have been upfront with me about various situations I have always found a way to make it work and to make it all good. When people have shown up with undisclosed baggage, surprise escorts/friends, outsized-but-fragile egos and serious inabilities to communicate on even a basic level, the shoots have been uniformly miserable for everyone involved even if they did lead to some fine images.

Mar 28 13 03:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Wynd Mulysa
Posts: 8,587
Pensacola, Florida, US


Frann Lazzari wrote:
I have found, after posting a recent thread, that many photographers on Model Mayhem will not shoot a model if she has 'i have mental health problems' stated on her bio.

I was wondering. Would you consider to shoot someone with a mental health problem if she posted it clearly on her bio?

I know that a lot of models, photographers and retouchers will have mental health problems BUT when it gets stated on her bio it suddenly changes?

Whats your thoughts?

PS. Please refrain from taking this issue out on ME. Its a question to YOU. It has nothing to do with my profile or anything else.

Thankyou, all. x

No, I don't think it's important to put in a profile.
But I would work with someone if their profile said that.

I think most people have "mental health problems," especially the people who claim not to.  I think the fear some people have of interacting with someone who states that they have a disability is unreasonable, but there's no changing it.  We can only change ourselves.  Something I have been challenging myself with lately has been judging when and when not to share something.

Mar 28 13 03:49 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Wynd Mulysa
Posts: 8,587
Pensacola, Florida, US


Also...

I find that there is a stigma surrounding mental health that is not present in other realms of health.  I read something recently that talked about "mental injuries" that totally resonated with me.  I think that if I feel it is important to disclose something that may limit me or that I want to ask for understanding around, it's okay to be broad.  For a while I had "I am now on disability" in my profile.  Sometimes people would write me and ask me what I was on disability for, which maybe is a little rude.  I'm also learning when to answer and when not to answer.

But anyway, I found that it wasn't really necessary for me to state that I'm on disability on my profile.  If someone sends me a shoot request, I can tell them what's going on with me, which often changes anyway...
Mar 28 13 03:56 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
R Byron Johnson
Posts: 767
Norman, Oklahoma, US


None of my business as far as I'm concerned.  Plus I have problems with depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder, so for me to judge would really be the pot calling the kettle black.

I would like to know any physical conditions a model may have, not because it would prevent me from shooting with them, but just in case something happened I would know what the problem is and what to do about it.  Like one model I photographed later told me that she had epilepsy, which I really would have liked to have known before the shoot in case she did end up having a seizure, then I would have known what it was.
Mar 28 13 03:59 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
R Byron Johnson
Posts: 767
Norman, Oklahoma, US


Wynd Mulysa wrote:
Also...

I find that there is a stigma surrounding mental health that is not present in other realms of health.  I read something recently that talked about "mental injuries" that totally resonated with me.  I think that if I feel it is important to disclose something that may limit me or that I want to ask for understanding around, it's okay to be broad.  For a while I had "I am now on disability" in my profile.  Sometimes people would write me and ask me what I was on disability for, which maybe is a little rude.  I'm also learning when to answer and when not to answer.

But anyway, I found that it wasn't really necessary for me to state that I'm on disability on my profile.  If someone sends me a shoot request, I can tell them what's going on with me, which often changes anyway...

Agree.  I would honestly discourage someone from putting their mental health problems on their profile because of the stigma that most associate with mental illness.  Plus, as someone else in this thread said, creative people often do have some degree of mental or emotional problems.  So even mentioning it is a bit redundant.  I guess if it's something that may show itself during a shoot, like tourettes, then you should probably mention it.  But if not, then it's really none of their business.

Mar 28 13 04:09 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
JadeDRed
Posts: 5,317
London, England, United Kingdom


Its a interesting point as i agree, it does not need to be mentioned, so mentioning it brings up questions. But also people who suffer from mental health are being encouraged to be more open about it to fight the stigma attached to it by being more visible.
Mar 28 13 04:12 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Gabrielle Heather
Posts: 10,064
Middle Island, New York, US


While you are working, it is up to you to as best as you can, try and control symptoms and to put your professional "mask" on. You can use whatever parts of your mental stuff to aid in picture making. Lots of creative people suffer in one way or another and have used their pain to help create beautiful things. I dont think you have to stand on top of the mountain and tell everyone "I have this", because you arent that as a whole. It doesnt define you. YOU define you. Every person is different regardless of diagnosis.

If you had a physical mark somewhere on your body that makes you stand apart, I would say to mention this in your port briefly, but everyone's personalities are all different, mentally "healthy" or not. While you are working, put your whole self into it, and that's all you can do. No one should have anything to complain about. Just know that certain people work different ways and be willing to follow the leader if necessary. Be proud of who you are. Hang in there.
Mar 28 13 04:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Revenge Photography
Posts: 1,782
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


Disclosing a mental health problem wouldn't necessarily stop me working with a model. It's no different to any other health or allergy problem.

I would certainly ask for more information with regard to how it might effect a shoot and discuss a strategy to manage or mitigate any potential problem that may arise.

No different to any other shoot where I adapt to accommodate variations in light, location weather or a million other things that crop up.
Mar 28 13 04:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
JadeDRed
Posts: 5,317
London, England, United Kingdom


Gabrielle Heather wrote:
I dont think you have to stand on top of the mountain and tell everyone "I have this", because you arent that as a whole. It doesnt define you. YOU define you. Every person is different regardless of diagnosis.

That's the point of the visibility thing though isn't it, it's not saying 'I have this illness and i am defined by it', it's saying 'look at me, a normal, productive human being, and i have this illness'.

I suppose if you are a respected, known model and you are 'out' about it you are showing a good example, if you are an unknown newb there isn't really much point in it.

Mar 28 13 04:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Gabrielle Heather
Posts: 10,064
Middle Island, New York, US


JadeDRed wrote:
That's the point of the visibility thing though isn't it, it's not saying 'I have this illness and i am defined by it', it's saying 'look at me, a normal, productive human being, and i have this illness'.

I suppose if you are a respected, known model and you are 'out' about it you are showing a good example, if you are an unknown newb there isn't really much point in it.

Sometimes you I feel like you can just go about your day without having to share all your business. Not everyone will go down a checklist with  you, or even care if you DO have a mental health issue, or a physical issue that doesnt limit your work ability, some are going to appreciate your honesty upfront about something that will effect the work immediately right then, or have the potential to. New or not, I think it's only important to disclose something that could effect your physical health during a shoot, or marks on your body, or something that may effect you emotionally DURING a shoot. Otherwise, any person on any given day could act out of wack or "different" according to anyone. Who defines "normal" and who defines "abnormal" anyways.

I say to the op, go do some shoots, see how YOU feel, dont worry so much about how others feel. Do what makes you comfy and happy.

Mar 28 13 05:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Francesca Lazzari
Posts: 237
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom


Gabrielle Heather wrote:

Sometimes you I feel like you can just go about your day without having to share all your business. Not everyone will go down a checklist with  you, or even care if you DO have a mental health issue, or a physical issue that doesnt limit your work ability, some are going to appreciate your honesty upfront about something that will effect the work immediately right then, or have the potential to. New or not, I think it's only important to disclose something that could effect your physical health during a shoot, or marks on your body, or something that may effect you emotionally DURING a shoot. Otherwise, any person on any given day could act out of wack or "different" according to anyone. Who defines "normal" and who defines "abnormal" anyways.

I say to the op, go do some shoots, see how YOU feel, dont worry so much about how others feel. Do what makes you comfy and happy.

Despite that i didn't want anything aimed at me, and rather just wanted an answer. This is the best advice I have gotten. I've had people be so rude, so thankyou. I appreciate it, honestly.

Mar 29 13 02:45 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
WIP
Posts: 15,192
Cheltenham, England, United Kingdom


The danger being that someone (model) with mental health can come up with all sorts of wild claims, from ' the photographer indecently touched me' to much worse.
Mar 29 13 03:15 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


I skimmed through replies and noticed a lot of people saying "it's none of my business" and "I don't care"... then there was the "no I wouldn't because of danger or drama"

Well there are a variety of mental health disorders out there, some more severe than others. Let's take schizophrenia since someone mentioned it...why do people automatically assume that a schizophrenic becomes violent during an episode? There are different types of schizophrenia (paranoid, disorganized, caratonic, undifferentiated) and the only one that might make a person violent, MIGHT, is paranoid schizophrenia.

Perhaps it's not even something as serious...maybe it's something like Tourette Syndrome, which is a nervous system disorder but some characterize it as a mental health disorder.

Perhaps the OP feels the need to share that because she wants to be up front about her disorder, so there are no surprises. Granted it will scare a ton of people off but only because people fear what they don't understand, and sadly no one takes the time to ask questions. Even though they can send a message saying "hey I'd like to work with you but would like to know more about the mental health disorder you mention on your profile".

Sitting here discussing psychology on the MM forums isn't going to change the way people think, it's not going to make people take the time to ask or even care. So to the OP, I know you're trying to be open and honest about your illness but perhaps your profile isn't the best place to let people know, it can be a bomb to drop on someone. That's just advice.

You want to keep modeling? Take that off your profile and discuss it with photographers after they contact you. It could be something as common as clinical depression but people will not ask what it is and will assume you're going to freak out and slam their cameras on the floor. You're closing doors on yourself by putting that out there, even if you are trying to create awareness (this isn't really the place to do it).
Apr 04 13 08:04 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Jojo West
Posts: 972
Silver Spring, Maryland, US


oops.
Apr 04 13 08:06 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
RKD Photographic
Posts: 3,263
Iserlohn, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany


Anyone mad enough to admit to 'mental health problems' on an MM profile is enough of a nutcase to make me steer clear.
It screams: "there may be drama ahead, but I'm warning you in advance, so it's not my fault when I don't turn up!"

If you have 'problems' but they don't affect your work, you're under no obligation to disclose them. Your personal business is no concern of mine unless it impacts on my work.
Apr 04 13 08:13 am  Link  Quote 
guide forum
Model
Anna Adrielle
Posts: 18,762
Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium


if the mental health problem affects her modeling, then for me it would depend on the problem and on how it affects her modeling, but if it's bad enough to be mentioned on your profile then chances are the effect on the shoot is going to be big (and not in a good way)

if the mental health problem doesn't affect her modeling, then I don't see why it has to be on her profile in the first place.
Apr 04 13 08:15 am  Link  Quote 
Model
M A U I
Posts: 1,587
Harare, Harare, Zimbabwe


Usually the ones they avoid is the demanding ones (blah, I want all the images unedited, blah i have a big security detail and you cant stop me, blah I want $5000 dollars), that's what's usually categorized as someone with issues and it's a total repellant.

As for me, some manatee branded me an idiot for my bio, lol despite the fact that it's just tongue-in-cheek lighthearted humor and others have said good things about it.
Apr 04 13 08:18 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rik Williams
Posts: 3,283
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


Lol if I were that picky in my dealings with people I'd never get anything done around here!
Name me one person who doesn't have mental health issues and I'll show you ignorant bliss, but seriously, unless you break down into tears whenever someone casually mentions cats, or you're constantly trying to chomp at your own ear lobes, I'd leave it out.
The mention of mental health issues on ones "resume" sort of promotes more questions than answers.
I hope this helps smile

Peace
Apr 04 13 08:23 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
New Art Photo
Posts: 701
Los Angeles, California, US


..... and will assume you're going to freak out and slam their cameras on the floor...

________________________________________________
LOL  He's not worried about his own safety--it's His Cameras. -- That's dedication. (I immediately thought of my personal safety.)

Apr 04 13 08:30 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
M Pandolfo Photography
Posts: 12,113
Tampa, Florida, US


I've worked at an ad agency with a few hundred employees. I'm going to bet more than a few had some form of mental health issues of varying severity. I have no problem with any of them.

However, if an employee stood up during a client pitch and announced that they had mental health issues, I have a feeling the majority of those clients would have no interest in pursuing a business relationship.

Not because they have mental health issues. But because someone who feels the need to announce it is obviously consumed by it and THAT is the red flag.

"Hi, my name is Cynthia and I have really awful menstrual cramps!!! OK...let's get to work!"

Silly, right? Not any more silly than announcing any other personal information.
Apr 04 13 08:30 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Leighthenubian
Posts: 2,749
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


My first thought would be NO.

I dated someone many years ago who acted erratically from one month to the  next. Could never figure out which girl was gonna show up to my door. Broke off with her and found out a few years later that she had a bi-polar disorder, diagnosed in her teens. She neglected to tell me that and I should have paid attention to all the meds in her bathroom.

I wouldn't put that information in your MM profile or other bio for the simple reason that TMI is rarely a good thing. If the health issue is significant enough that there could be interference with your job or other activity, it's up to you to be mature enough to limit your participation to times when you can guarantee stable performance.

And ya...there is a stigma. Mental illness costs the American taxpayers even more than Cancer and addictions..treatment, counselling, and other less elegant solutions that take place when people fall through the cracks.

Tell ya the truth...I think lot's of models have mental issues..photographers too. We just generally chalk it up to being "artists" and eccentric.
Apr 04 13 08:37 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Mike Adams Photos
Posts: 1,217
Cleveland, Ohio, US


RKD Photographic wrote:
Anyone mad enough to admit to 'mental health problems' on an MM profile is enough of a nutcase to make me steer clear.
It screams: "there may be drama ahead, but I'm warning you in advance, so it's not my fault when I don't turn up!"

If you have 'problems' but they don't affect your work, you're under no obligation to disclose them. Your personal business is no concern of mine unless it impacts on my work.

This.

Apr 04 13 08:47 am  Link  Quote 
Clothing Designer
Chain Reaction
Posts: 529
Grand Rapids, Michigan, US


Depends. Is it pyromania or nymphomania? Really, as long as it doesn't have any bearing on the shoot I wouldn't put it in there. If there was just a general statement about it then yes, I would probably steer clear of them. I'd have no idea what to expect and wouldn't want to have to deal with possible problems if I could avoid it.
Apr 04 13 09:15 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Light and Lens Studio
Posts: 1,204
Sisters, Oregon, US


JaneyGarnet wrote:
I think it's important to note that the majority of mentally ill people are only a danger to themselves, not to others.

Tell that to the families of the victims in the Boulder Colorado movie house shooting, or Gabby Giffords and the families of those killed in the Tucson shooting.

Shooting with a model who is manic psychotic or paranoid schizophrenic is a whole different breed of cats than shooting with a model who has had bouts of depression or other affective disorder.

Apr 04 13 09:29 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Shilo Von Porcelaine
Posts: 214
Chicago, Illinois, US


It shouldn't be about if someone "has mental health issues" to me...it should be about if they are DEALING with them. In a workplace, would you not hire someone because of mental health issues? Well, some places wouldn't and that is discrimination. However, if someone isn't looking after themselves and isn't coming into work because of these issues, ect, and it's effecting job performance, then that IS on their shoulders and it's their responsibility. Same with modeling...which, in the freelance world, if you are having a hard time getting out of bed in the morning due to depression, for instance, you should state on your profile that you are on hiatus.

However, I don't really see why someone would state they had mental health problems in their bio. I don't see why it's necessary and to be honest it seems to me like that could attract a LOT of creeps looking for a vulnerable girl.
Apr 04 13 11:48 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Professor X
Posts: 327
Calhoun, Georgia, US


C s p i n e wrote:
I thought all women were clinically insane.....

wink

what he said lol

Apr 04 13 11:51 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Decay of Memory
Posts: 572
Asheville, North Carolina, US


Posting that information in a bio raises several issues for me:

1. Reliability - is the information mentioned because it could affect the model's ability to perform.

2. Drama -  Starting off kind of personal and high tension with that statement, I'd wonder where it could go from there.

3. Competency - I need model releases and you've just told me something that could have an effect on the validity of signed documents or even call into question consent.


I've worked with many people with mental health issues over the years with excellent results. I've also worked closely with a smaller number of people who, as part of their initial greeting, say something to the effect that they have mental health issues. Everyone from the later group that I've known has sooner or later, and usually sooner, exhibited behaviors other than those I'd like to see from someone I'm relying on to produce work on time and on instruction.
Apr 04 13 12:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Sarah Robinson-Bird
Posts: 539
Sheffield, England, United Kingdom


Here's my take...

I tell people on my profile I'm allergic to latex. I do this so I'm not constantly turning people down for latex shoots and wasting their time and also, so photographers and make up artists know not to touch me with the stuff. (It's not an allergy to the extent of anaphylaxis but it gets nasty and I'd prefer not becoming all swollen and losing my skin)

I don't tell people I'm phobic of putting my head under water and cant swim until they suggest an underwater thing or just water in general. It doesn't apply to every shoot so not everyone needs to know
Apr 04 13 12:48 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kyle T Edwards
Posts: 416
St Catharines, Ontario, Canada


Frann, it all depends on what the illness is and not only how it will affect the shoot, but how I will interact with someone who has that particular disorder.  I know how I tend to react, and I know how certain PD's are most likely to react, and yes, I have a short list of ones that, if I can, I would rather not work with for extended periods of time.  For 95-98% though, I'd be fine with it.  Some of them, when you catch them on the right day or you trigger them in a good way, make the best and most responsive models you'll ever come across!

JaneyGarnet wrote:
I think it's important to note that the majority of mentally ill people are only a danger to themselves, not to others.
Light and Lens Studio wrote:
Tell that to the families of the victims in the Boulder Colorado movie house shooting, or Gabby Giffords and the families of those killed in the Tucson shooting.

L&S, I highlighted a key point, since you appear to have missed it.  The NIMH and NAMI estimates that 26% of adults in the United States in any given year fit the criteria for a diagnosed mental illness.  Using your own implication, you can do the math and know that it's completely off-base.  Here's some more math for you.  Twice as many people die in the US from self-inflicted gunshots than from gunshots inflicted by others, and of all of the suicides in the US, approximately 90% of the people had mental illnesses.  That means that a mentally ill person with a gun in their hand is almost infinitely more of a threat to themselves than they ever will be to you.

So please, can the over-generalizing; it's Armageddon-like remarks like yours that make people with mental illnesses afraid to come out of hiding and keep the hysteria bandwagon rolling merrily along.

Apr 05 13 12:37 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
MelissaAnn
Posts: 3,838
Seattle, Washington, US


M Pandolfo Photography wrote:
I've worked at an ad agency with a few hundred employees. I'm going to bet more than a few had some form of mental health issues of varying severity. I have no problem with any of them.

However, if an employee stood up during a client pitch and announced that they had mental health issues, I have a feeling the majority of those clients would have no interest in pursuing a business relationship.

Not because they have mental health issues. But because someone who feels the need to announce it is obviously consumed by it and THAT is the red flag.

"Hi, my name is Cynthia and I have really awful menstrual cramps!!! OK...let's get to work!"

Silly, right? Not any more silly than announcing any other personal information.

+1

Apr 05 13 01:07 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
John Jebbia
Posts: 27,612
Phoenix, Arizona, US


If I had a choice between two equally qualified models and one states on her bio she's got mental issues and the other one doesn't, guess which one I'm gonna hire?

Though I do appreciate the heads up.

(Hint: We don't need to know your life story)
Apr 05 13 01:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Isis22
Posts: 2,316
Muncie, Indiana, US


It doesn't matter if you are wanting to be a professional model or if it's just a hobby. Modeling is a JOB and should be treated as such. Unless you are going to put a mental health issue on a resume for a job at a bank, McDonald's, whatever, don't do it here. People will find reasons not to hire you. Don't give them one right off the bat.
Apr 05 13 01:21 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Edge of the Moon
Posts: 429
New York, New York, US


I just want to see positive things.  Anyone doing business trying to attract a client for whatever reason should put out a positive, can do attitude as much as possible.    It's just business.

As far as a model goes, I'd be looking for someone ready, willing and able to work.
Apr 05 13 01:24 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Brianne L
Posts: 277
OTTSVILLE, Pennsylvania, US


I have depression and social anxiety, but I don't mention it in my profile. I believe I did for a little while when I first started using MM seriously.
I don't think it really effected anything though. One photographer I worked with actually said he understood about the social anxiety thing I had mentioned in my profile, and that he had worked with a model with similar issues.
It's no longer in my profile;I just don't feel the need to mention it I guess.

I think it would be important to mention if you had a condition that would cause you to have seizures, or you have something like MS.
I'm not sure if mentioning you have depression is really necessary. Though if you do want to mention it, you could say how modeling HELPS your depression or something like that. But still. I don't think photographers want to know too much personal info.
Apr 05 13 01:49 pm  Link  Quote 
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