Mariesther Venegas loves motorcycles, fashion, scary movies, modelling adventures and erasing entries from her bucket list—her recent mini honey moon to Chicago was one of those entries.
It so happens that Mariesther Venegas also loves herself.
Why is the latter worth of mentioning, you may be pondering?
The World Health Organization (WHO), in a worldwide research reports that more deaths are caused by suicide every year than homicide or war. Luck of self-esteem is among the main reasons that push people into taking their own lives, with young girls and women being the most vulnerable category.
Scientific research clearly draws attention onto why self-love should be a top priority and cherished as an achievement.
Because it is an achievement.
‘In a society that profits from your self-doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act’.
I 'knocked' on this loud and proud girl's 'door' to get a glimpse of her world.
How do you feel these days and which thoughts prevail in your mind, Mariesther?
Right now I'm at a point in my journey where I feel grateful and blessed for everything that has happened in my life so far. As I have gotten older I've started to really value all my accomplishments much more. I am constantly thinking of what my next big move is going to be and how I can push myself harder on getting closer to my goals.
Where were you born and raised, and what made you start this journey in plus size modelling?
I'm a born and raised San Jose, California native. I've always been naturally drawn to fashion and beauty; always felt that modelling was a great combination of the two. I would say that seeing more and more beautiful curvy women stepping out of their comfort zone is what made me start my modelling journey; seeing that you can be sexy and beautiful at any size really made me happy. I've always been accepting and proud of my curves; they have made me into the sassy woman I am now.
A few years ago you had the whole world talking, when you walked the streets of Berlin nearly nude, during Berlin Fashion Week. That was part of navabi's 'Finally' advertising campaign. How did you feel about doing it?
It made me feel hot! I had never travelled out of the country so I had so many electrifying emotions running through my mind. I felt so lucky to be in Germany shooting such a powerful campaign. Walking the streets of Berlin nearly naked made me feel pretty badass! It all seemed so surreal and like a dream. Later, looking at the pictures and actually seeing people’s positive reactions, I felt even more accomplished and happy with my decision. I felt like I was making a positive statement.
What kind of reactions did you get from people?
It was a great experience for me. I felt amazing and was getting a lot of positive feedback from people in the streets, especially from the men.
Has anything changed in the fashion industry since then, regarding how the designers cater to curvy/plus size women and men?
I feel like the ‘Finally’ campaign definitely made a huge impact in the fashion industry. More and more designers are catering to curvy plus size men and women. Plus fashion has definitely gotten edgier and more wearable.
It seems that a lot of industries, including the Media industry, are doing a 'good' job in making women and men hate their bodies. Is there anything you would like to shout out loud, to wake people up?
Yes! Expectation on what is considered to be ‘perfect’ or ‘pretty’ should be taken with a grain of salt. What many people don't realize is that everyone has a different opinion on to what is perfect to them. We need to stop being so narrow-minded and stuck to one mold. Someone might prefer lean and some might prefer curves--neither preference is wrong or right. We need to learn to accept that what we hear or see in the media isn't always everyone's point of view.
Which is the key to feeling comfortable in your own skin?
Believing in yourself, confidence and being your number one fan.
They have brainwashed people into believing that we are not healthy, lovable or beautiful, unless we are a size 10, it seems.
I agree, I think it’s just silly. There are many factors that make someone beautiful and healthy. Being thin or lean doesn't necessarily mean you're healthy. I believe that happiness and life fulfilment are healthy. Having a good sense of humour is beautiful. Being a good friend is beautiful. Intelligence is beautiful. Learning to love yourself and others is beautiful. These are some of the things that make a person beautiful, not looks.
Have you planned your next big step? Do you have any idea where you might or want to be next year or a few years from now?
Hopefully I will have my own business and (or) working full time as a model. We’ll see what happens...
If you had the chance to convey one 'message in a bottle' to the world, what would that be?
Love yourself; if you don’t, how can you expect anybody else to?
*You can follow Mariesther’s whereabouts at: http://www.mariesthervenegas.com/