the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

A runway walk into academia and fashion

Junior Wendy Wu shares her experience as a young model in school.
Photo courtesy of Wendy Wu
Junior Wendy Wu models in a magazine editorial for the brand rubyornotruby.

In the midst of the show, junior Wendy Wu models under the dazzling stage lights as her heart pounds with excitement and nervousness.

Wu practices modeling techniques on a weekly basis to help prepare for future occasions. She has participated in over 30 events over the course of her experiences. Her most recent event involved modeling at the Rigs & Exotic Car Show, which aimed to fundraise money to bring awareness for people with special needs. 

“It was a volunteer event where we showcased different clothing and worked with a design school to help spread autism awareness,” Wu said. “It was a good experience because I met a lot of new people and it was good to see the designer’s creative side, so it was inspiring to see them.”

Balancing schoolwork and modeling is difficult for Wu. Not only does she strive to do well academically, but she also dedicates a significant portion of her time to modeling. Managing her schedule and making sure school and events don’t conflict can prove challenging.

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“Sometimes, events will interfere with my school schedule. I remember the first show I had when I was a freshman. The show would be at the same time as school,” Wu said. “So I had to leave school early and it made it very difficult on my parents because they would have to skip work just to pick me up.”

Wu also finds preparing for events to be a complicated process that requires significant amounts of energy. She focuses on calming her nerves and eating right, which can play a crucial factor to her performance. 

“Right before casting, I try not to eat because I don’t want to look bloated. I would try to eat a little bit less and maintain a good, nutritious diet,” Wu said. “I’ll get a lot of sleep the day before and then I will spend a lot of time on skincare and hair preparations.”

On the stage, fulfilling the director’s vision and feeling a profound sense of accomplishment is a unique feeling that makes modeling memorable for her. She finds it as a source of special satisfaction.

“One of the most memorable moments about modeling is getting compliments from all the photographers and designers saying, ‘Oh you did really well. You showcased exactly what was wanted.’ So if you’re able to pursue what was wanted of you, it is obviously really rewarding,” Wu said. “I also feel like I accomplished something when I see people that are taking videos and actually recording me.” 

Wu has been interested in pursuing a career in modeling ever since she was little. At the age of 4, she began participating in photoshoots. 

“I thought it was really fun and a different way of showing myself. It was like where my confidence was, and then I started to really get into fashion. It’s really important to have confidence and modeling helps me with that,” Wu said. “I hope to sign with an agency in the future and use modeling to help me get more involved in the fashion industry as well.”

An industry focused heavily on physical appearances and perfection has not always been easy for Wu. A field where image is the most important thing requires her to reassure herself that not everyone has to adhere to a flawless standard.

“You feel a little bit more insecure when you see someone that’s skinnier or taller than you, but you have to be confident,” Wu said. “It’s not always glamorous and perfect. That’s what it shows on stage and the atmosphere is really different than what is actually showcased. It’s important to break that stereotype and boundary.”

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Timmothy Chen
Timmothy Chen, Staff writer
Hi, my name is Timmothy Chen, and I'm in the ninth grade as a staff writer for The Hoofprint. Outside of The Hoofprint, I play tennis and enjoy going outside in general. In my spare time, I enjoy hanging out or talking with friends.
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