Myf Shepherd has been booking some fantastic work of late - an edgy new editorial for Numéro (below) and this February cover for Dazed + Confused Japan, above (adjacent to Tallulah Morton's cover of French magazine Velvet). But frockwriter can reveal that, as she indeed hinted she may do back in September, Shepherd is taking a definite break from the modelling business. Although she may do some direct bookings, we will not be seeing her on any runways this year according to her mother agency Chic Management, while Shepherd remains Australia-based to focus on tertiary studies. University? Ah,
numéro via the fashion spot
Chic director Kathy Ward told frockwriter:
"She wants to take time out, she wants to have some time back in Australia. A lot of girls take time out. Some might start later, some might start earlier and then take a break. I don't think it's unusual. I think it's great for her".
As chronicled by this blog, it's been a rollercoaster ride for Shepherd since she hit the catwalk running at Rosemount Australian Fashion Week in May 2008. After famously being snubbed by the producers of Australia's Next Top Model, she went on to walk for the world's biggest fashion brands at the Resort 2009 and Spring/Summer 2009 seasons several months later.
After the Spring/Summer 2009 haute couture shows, she then clocked up another 62 shows in the Fall/Winter 0910 season, more than any other Australian model. Her advertising work has included Gucci, Sonia Rykiel, Levi's and DKNY Jeans, with several covers, including Vogue Australia. Here is her CV from models.com. It's not bad for a year and a half's work.
But Shepherd did not have a great Spring/Summer 2010 season, surprising many by walking in just a handful of shows at New York Fashion Week last September.
According to Kathy Ward, Shepherd will be returning to modelling in early 2011.
And she's not the only Australian model to be taking some time out.
Tallulah Morton's Australian agent Vikki Graham recently told The Sunday Telegraph's Ros Reines that Morton is taking a break to pursue Fine Arts studies.
According to frockwriter's sources however, Morton has been bandying about the term "quit".
First emerging at Australian Fashion Week in May 2005 at the age of just 13, Morton had a confident debut at New York Fashion Week in September the following year. She was however unable to gain any immediate international momentum, due, it seems, largely to the stringent child work regulations in France (the latter certainly appeared to prevent even rising Polish star Monika Jagaciak from working in Paris until her 16th birthday on January 15th this year).
Morton reemerged at the Paris shows at the age of 16 in March 2008, with a strong debut season, subsequently becoming a favourite of Jean Paul Gaultier and Hermès. Here is her MDC CV.
For the past 18 months however, Morton's off-field antics - as catalogued by Mark 'The Cobrasnake' Hunter - have overshadowed her professional work.
Yes this news will be disappointing to fans of both models. Modelling is, however, a high pressure industry - particularly at the elite level. And at the end of the day, there's more to life than work. Particularly when you've punched more time clocks than your average teenager.
Perhaps if Daul Kim had taken a break from the business, she might still be with us.