I never miss the opportunity to ask a person what personal image means to them, so when year 12, Ashley Gen came to my studio on work experience, I had to ask: is personal image important at the age of 12?
What do you think personal image is?
Is it the way a person looks?
Yes. Is image important to girls your age?
Yes. I know what I like to wear. I like to dance. It’s my favourite thing to do. I like dance fashion. I like to choose the things Mum buys forme to wear.
Do you think there is pressure on young girls your age to have a certain image?
For some girls, not everyone. I don’t think I have too.
What does dancing do for your image?
Dancing helps with my fitness, posture and strength. It teaches me how to do my hair and makeup for productions.
Do you play sport?
Yes. I play netball. I like to be fit and healthy. That’s important to feel good.
What would you most like to do in life?
Become a professional dancer. Or an Optometrist. I wear glasses.
Maybe you could design ear wear one day?
*giggles* I liked learning about make up today that was fun. I don’t know about designing.
What would you recommend a young dancers, like yourself, wear to classes?It depends on the type of dance you are doing. Ballet has a set uniform, but Jazz, contemporary dancing and hip hop are a bit different.
I’m not doing ballet at the moment. For contemporary dance or Jazz we need to wear black leggings and leotard. I like to wear 3/4 leggings. Black leggings and leotard are plain, but you can express your personality in the singlet or T-shirt you wear over the leotard and in your sweat shirt or hoodie.
What would we find in your dance bag?
Water, a good antiperspirant deodorant, different shoes I need for dance and cellphone.
What’s the best way for a female dancer to wear her hair?
It is important to always wear your hair up when you are dancing. It’s tidy and out of the way. It is also more professional looking. I like french plaits or a tidy pony tail.