Faezeh Parkes, 65, Melbourne, Vic
- Teacher, Faezeh, longed to be in front of the camera
- Just two weeks after deciding to pursue her dream, she was being flown across the world to her first shoot
- The mum-of-three has now appeared in hundreds of campaigns
Getting home after a busy day at work, I sighed. At 62, I was living alone and my kids were fully grown. I liked my job as a substitute teacher, but I couldn’t help feeling like there was more to life.
My real dream had always been acting. I longed to be in front of the camera, but I never considered myself pretty enough.
My nose is too big for that, I thought. And at 160cm tall, I was definitely too short for Hollywood.
But I knew if I didn’t try, I’d always regret it. What did I have to lose? So four years ago I joined an online talent agency.
I posted some pictures and a bit of information, not expecting much to happen.
Even if I just get to go to a casting, that’d be fun, I thought. Just two weeks later though, the phone rang.
‘Can you come to Copenhagen for a photo shoot?’ the man asked. It took a moment to sink in. He wanted me to model – on the other side of the world!
‘Of course,’ I said, trying to hide my excitement.
The job was for a medical leaflet. The company paid for my flights and hotel and soon I was in a studio getting my hair and make-up done.
Is this how my life’s going to be from now on? I wondered, feeling giddy. The very next day, I got a booking for a TV ad. It might not have been a speaking part, but I was finally in front of the camera.
After that, the offers flooded in. For one, I had to lounge around a pool reading a book. The whole shoot took only 15 minutes and I got paid $1500!
Another time, I had to pose on a train. A beautiful young model sat in the seat in front of me and my heart sank.
I’ll never make the final cut, I thought, disappointed. But when I saw the poster in bus shelters around Melbourne I couldn’t believe it – they had used me!
‘You’re everywhere,’ my friends laughed when they saw my face in magazines and on brochures.
I’ve even done music videos. In one, I played an old lady who could barely walk. Then they cut to me rocking out on a guitar in the desert. Hilarious!
I’m now 65 and have had hundreds of castings. I even had four in one day! I’m thrilled every time I get the chance to live my dream.
I might have started late, but I’m proof modelling is ageless.
This story was originally published in that's life! Issue 24, 16 June 2016.