We first wrote about Modeling Camp back in early July after a brief piece about the summer camp where teen girls are taught to model ran in The New Yorker. The camp franchise has actually been in existence since the mid '90s and has locations in several states, but seems to have only recently been picking up press attention. As is often the case, the morning news is the slowest on the uptake and only covered the story this morning. The good news is that we now get to take a look inside the camp itself. The bad news is that Good Morning America is reporting stories 2 months to 17 years too late.
While it's easy to snark the idea of modeling camp, the real thing seems fairly akin to theater or music camp and (provided you have money) it appears to be generally inclusive — camp attendees come from a variety of backgrounds (again, a variety of backgrounds with money) and possess different body shapes. The camp's director, former model Heather Cole, claims that the point is to have fun and tries to avoid discussions regarding the uglier side of the modeling industry (though, if this is an industry that the girls have their hearts set on, it might be a reasonable discussion to have).
On the downside, Modeling Camp does set the attendees up with unreasonable expectations. Included in the camp's fee is a modeling portfolio and a sit down with a representative from a legitimate agency such as Elite and Wilhelmena. However, these agencies have little real interest in them. Says one rep, "I met, like, probably at least 35 girls and I probably have my eye on probably around, like, three."