Khiara Brown allows her background in the modeling industry to help others reach their full potential.
Brown, 22, from Inglewood, Calif., Is the founder and CEO of Poise Search Fashion and Modeling Company, whose mission is to help women and men not only gain modeling experience and fashion, but also on self-confidence and awareness.
Brown said that as a model she often had negative experiences in the industry, frequently losing her sense of self, and that she wanted to create an inspiring and educational environment for others.
She founded Poise in December 2019, after being encouraged to start a fashion and modeling department at Building Community Bridges – a non-profit organization working to inspire, uplift and aid the development of youth in Jefferson City – by the Director executive Alicia Edwards.
Edwards, herself a model for four years, said modeling, especially plus sizes, had helped her build her confidence – guiding her to co-found BCB – and she wanted a similar experience for young people in her. community.
Edwards said running BCB and her own barbershop made the task of starting the department on her own unmanageable, but after meeting Brown the two quickly began discussing their business plans.
“She went above and beyond and saw how passionate she was about it, and I kept encouraging and motivating her,” Edwards said.
Currently, Brown is preparing for Poise’s first program, a seven-week summer course for women and men ages 8-50, teaching artistic skills such as modeling and acting as well as skills practices like financial literacy.
In addition to acquiring technical skills, participants will also learn the principles of Ma’at – truth, justice, harmony, balance, order, reciprocity and decorum, related to African morals and cultural beliefs.
“The program will force you to think,” Brown said. “It actually forces you to question what you believe in. “
Brown said she hopes the program will allow participants to think more deeply about themselves, their own history, and how they can grow and adapt from it.
“You can get rid of all of your history and everything you’ve learned that shaped you to who you are now, but what was the importance of leaving that? Brown asked hypothetically. “What are you going to now?” If you don’t believe in anything, you don’t believe in yourself now.
Brown said she understands that not all participants agree with the principles she will be discussing, but she hopes they can get what they need out of the program.
The program, which kicks off June 28, offers three classes a day, three days a week to ensure good social distancing.
The first week, the lessons will take place Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday. The second week, classes will be held on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday – alternating the schedule each week.
Each week, participants will hone a specific skill and corresponding principle, while focusing on mental health and learning to raise awareness in the community.
At the end of the program, a public fashion show will take place for all participants, who will also receive a digital portfolio and personalized face mask from Edwards’ salon.
Brown said those 17 and under can participate in the program for free. People 18 and over can purchase the Premium plan for $ 200 or the Diamond plan for $ 220.
The Premium Package includes 10 digital images and Ambassador opportunities through Brown’s makeup artistry program and business, Pulchritude Poise.
The Diamond Package includes 10 digital images, Ambassador opportunities, and the participant’s photos and story shared on the Building Community Bridges website – currently under construction – which can be used to send to agencies or managers.
Brown said adult packages are charged because adults “choose their path” and “recognize what they’re missing,” while kids can participate for free because all of BCB’s programs for people 17 and under are free, and they may not be able to choose a new path in their life while living at home.
Casting calls for the program are currently open from 9 a.m. to noon today and Sunday at Building Community Bridges, 213 Ashley St.
During casting calls, attendees will complete an application and discuss their strengths and goals with Brown.
Brown encourages interested parties to wear black – women wearing high heels and men wearing dress shoes or casual boots.
Today, Building Community Bridges will host a fundraiser for fry fish for the building, where the Poise Search Fashion and Modeling Company summer program will be held.
This story was updated at 5:00 p.m. on June 13, 2020 to correct the name of Khiara Brown’s makeup artistry business.