“It’s my belief that if we try to compensate for internal feelings of insufficiency with an overemphasis on our looks, we’re doing ourselves a disservice.” – Joanna Hathcock
Welcome to Face Time. DFW Style Daily’s exclusive series goes beyond the runways and picture-perfect shoots to get to know top Dallas models on a personal level. Why?
Boasting top tier agencies, producers, retailers, and shows, the Dallas market is emerging as a fashion force to be reckoned with on the national scene. And, as our interviews with Carlotta Lennox, Myles Crosby, Donny Boaz, Lexi Russell, Sirisha Reddy, and many more prove, Dallas-based models are among the most fascinating and accomplished in the country.
Today’s multi-faceted beauty is no exception to the rule. Joanna Hathcock maintains a full slate of national clients on the modeling side, and steps behind the camera as an in-demand make-up artist. Closest to her heart, however, is the empowerment of women through an innovative performance group combining original music, spirit, and dance.
DFW Style Daily: At what age did you begin modeling? Did you seek out modeling as a career, or were you discovered?
Joanna Hathcock: “I was 16 when I first signed with an agency, and I had wanted to be a model since I was about 12. As a very insecure adolescent who desperately wanted to fit in, I wished more than anything to be beautiful and admired. Go figure that I happened to grow into a body that would allow me to experience this path first-hand. The vast majority of girls who have this same desire are never given the chance. Crazy as it may sound, I traveled alone to Japan for two months before I had even graduated high school.”
What do you think is the biggest misconception about models?
“People seem to think that life as a model is incredibly glamorous. That’s how it’s meant to appear from the outside, by design – and, at moments, it is. But, what’s not often seen is that modeling means dealing with fierce competition. The younger and prettier are always on your heels, there is no job security, and you can fall out of favor at any moment and find yourself unemployed. Talk about needing a thick skin!”
In addition to modeling, you are a sought-after beauty expert. What draws you to this area of the industry?
“When I realized that makeup artistry calls on so many of my past experiences and skills, such as my visual art background, training in skin care, and all these years of modeling, it was kind of a no-brainer. Plus, the joy I get from creating and enhancing beauty, and connecting with so many different kinds of people in the process, confirms to me that this is at least part of what I was born to do.”
Tell us about Bliss Goddess and your role as Co-Creator and Co-Director.
“Bliss Goddess is a collaborative performance group – music, visuals, and dance – that my boyfriend and I set in motion almost two years ago. He curates our exotic tribal-dub sound, and I co-coordinate our troupe of ‘temple dancers.’ We draw our inspiration from spiritual traditions that have worshipped the Divine in its feminine form.
“In modern society, women tend to be objectified and disempowered, rather than revered. We want to help women recognize that they are embodiments of the Goddess themselves, and empower them to be in their full ‘goddess’ radiance in the world. Anyone who is interested in checking us out can experience us live every month at Ecstatic Saturdays in Deep Ellum, or listen to our sets on Soundcloud.”
How do you view the connection between outward appearance and inner beauty?
“It’s my belief that if we try to compensate for internal feelings of insufficiency with an overemphasis on our looks, we’re doing ourselves a disservice. This is, sadly, all too common, and can be a hard orientation to let go of. It’s been a huge challenge for me, personally! But, when we attend to beautifying ourselves as an expression of self-love, out of a desire to broadcast an awareness that we are, in fact, unique and beautiful at our core, it can be uplifting to ourselves and to others.”
Describe one of your most memorable experiences in the fashion industry, either in front of the camera or behind-the-scenes.
“Well, it was pretty exciting at the time to share the cover of Seventeen Magazine with soon-to-be supermodel Niki Taylor. I was also in an editorial in the same issue with then-model Cameron Diaz. Being from Los Angeles, and doing this for so long, makes for a fun handful of I-knew-them-when stories!”
Do you have a personal role model?
“I can’t point to a single person as my role model. I prefer to take the perspective that anyone can, in some way or another, be my teacher, if I’m open to the lesson. I really admire any woman who has found the strength and creativity it takes to live authentically and from the heart, from Anaïs Nin to Angelina Jolie.”
Do you have any hidden talents?
“I’m pretty good at mimicking a variety of accents, I can create a meal from whatever is on hand, and I’m told I give a great neck rub. I’m also quite a decent proofreader. Apparently, my penchant for detail extends to words as well as visuals!”
Finally, if you had a free afternoon or evening in Dallas, where would you go and what would you do?
“If I were willing to pull myself away from my endless piddling at home, I might go to a yoga class at Sync, treat myself to massage, catch a movie, or connect with friends at whatever groovy chill spot they happen to be visiting that day.”
All images courtesy of Joanna Hathcock.