Though most projects begin as a labor of love, PlusModels began out of anger. I was frustrated by the lack of information available for plus-size models on the internet. Certainly, there are plenty of modeling forums, mailing lists, and how-to web sites, but nothing that was geared specifically toward the plus model. I was tired of seeing pleas for help on existing forums. I was frustrated at not seeing questions answered or, in some cases, outright hostility toward plus models by list members. Starting to feel like the plus market was being shoved aside yet again, I decided to do something about it and formed PlusModels.
What started as a small mailing list in late 1998 has evolved into a full-fledged community and one of the most well respected sources of information about plus-size modeling today. I could have never anticipated the incredible interest PlusModels has generated as we continue to inspire and educate plus-size women throughout the world. Realizing the impact we have made completely overwhelms me and what I jokingly refer to as my “hobby out of control” has enriched my life in far too many ways to mention. My husband now knows more about the industry than he ever cared know.
In 2002, my “hobby out of control” evolved into a full-fledged career when I was offered the opportunity to join Heffner Management, a Seattle-based modeling agency, as Director of New Faces. I had worked with Heffner as a fit model for Nordstrom and staff at the agency was very much aware of the PlusModels website. Bill Heffner, the founder and one of the owners of the agency, happened to be a strong advocate of the plus-size modeling industry and was the man responsible for discovering and launching Barbara Brickner. He was excited to have someone join the team who shared his passion. As an agent, I scouted and groomed new models, placed models with agencies in other markets both nationally and internationally, and developed relationships with models and agencies in other markets in order to grow our boards. I learned a ton about the industry as a whole and realized that many of the perceptions about the industry from the outside were incorrect. All in all, it was an extremely exciting, challenging, rewarding, frustrating, crazy-making, and exhilarating role. Unfortunately, because of the hours required, my ability to focus on PlusModels waned.
For years, I repeatedly promised myself that I would revitalize and renew PlusModels and add to the site by sharing the knowledge I had gained as an industry professional. After making the decision to leave Heffner in 2006, I sat down and finally started the process of updating. It’s been a long process, but finally the content and new design have fallen into place.
I welcome comments, questions and suggestions! Think you have an awesome idea for an interview or feature? Let me know about it by using the Contact page.
Lastly, thank you SO much to everyone who has either directly or indirectly contributed to this site. From the models and agents who have agreed to be interviewed to my family for their patience and support, I will never be able to fully express my true gratitude. A special thank you needs to go out to Brick Baldwin who offered technical support and programming prowess for many years. I also need to thank Nicolette (member #1) and Maddy Jones for their continued support.
Anne’s husband, Don, joins PlusModels.com officially, after deciding that working for other people is kinda a drag, really. Having launched and produced a score of websites, he wants to revitalize the once-thriving PlusModels community. As The Nerd behind the operation, Don leaves the business of being pretty to Anne, and instead toils happily at the keyboard.