Legendary super model Janice Dickinson strikes a pose for Jonathan Justin handbags campaign shot by Los Angeles fashion photographer Katya Tsyganova.
Janice Doreen Dickinson (born February 15, 1955) is an American model, photographer, author and talent agent. Initially notable as a model, she has been disputably described by herself and others as the first supermodel. One of the most successful models throughout the 1970s and 1980s, she expanded her profession to reality television in 2003 by judging for four cycles on America’s Next Top Model. She subsequently opened her own modeling agency in 2005, which was documented in the reality-television series The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency (2006–08).
In the early 1970s, Dickinson moved to New York City to pursue work as a model after winning a national competition called “Miss High Fashion Model.”At a time when blue-eyed blondes dominated the fashion scene, Dickinson was turned down several times by modeling agents, including Eileen Ford, who informed Dickinson she was “much too ethnic. You’ll never work.”
She was discovered by the fashion photographer Jacques Silberstein when his girlfriend, actress Lorraine Bracco, mentioned she liked Dickinson’s look. Wilhelmina Cooper became Dickinson’s first agent. Her modeling pursuits led her to Paris, France, where her “exotic looks” secured her reputation within the European fashion industry.
She returned to New York City in 1978, and spent the next several years working steadily, earning $2,000 per day, nearly four times the standard rate. Dickinson eventually signed with Ford Models to land a major ad campaign for a new JVC camera.vDickinson, who had not forgotten Ford’s initial rejection, was intent on revenge.vShe soon became one of twenty Ford models to defect to John Casablancas’s upstart Elite Model Management.
By the 1980s, Dickinson was considered a supermodel, as she “possessed the kind of name and face recognition” that the majority of women in the modeling industry strive to achieve.v She appeared within and on covers of magazines including Harper’s Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, Photo, Vogue, Marie Claire, and Playboy, and worked with some of fashion’s best-known names, including Bill Blass, Gianni Versace, Valentino Garavani, Azzedine Alaïa, Pino Lancetti, Halston, Oscar de la Renta and Calvin Klein. She has appeared on the cover of Vogue (both American and international editions) 37 times. She appeared on the cover of Elle seven times in a row and has been the face of ad campaigns for products including Revlon, Alberto VO5, Balmain, Obao, Christian Dior, Clairol, Hush Puppies, Orbit gum, Max Factor, Virginia Slims, and Cutex.
Dickinson looked for ways to sustain her relevance within the fashion industry as she aged, becoming a fashion photographer. In 2008, she launched her own jewelry line on HSN.
In 2009, Dickinson recorded a song entitled “Crazy”, which was written and produced by Craig Taylor.
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