The shy, anxious girl who would dread the camera lens pointed at her direction, is long gone. The scared, self-conscious teenager who covered her mirrors of a night so she wouldn’t dare take a peak, is nowhere to be seen. What’s left of Romany Bourn is a confident, courageous woman and competitor in this year’s Australian Supermodel of the Year Pageant.
A sixteen-year-old Romany began her life-changing experience with En Vogue Modelling Academy in the hopes of building her confidence. Self-esteem was something Romany had always lacked within herself, and the day she started modelling was the day she would leave her old self behind, allowing her new persona to blossom.
“Modelling gave me the push I needed. I wanted to take advantage of my opportunities and be the person I am, which is exactly what I’m doing”.
The heaviness of anxiety sat on Romany’s shoulders her entire adolescent life, struggling to comprehend the idea of what feeling comfortable with yourself felt like.
“I always struggled with my body image. I hated looking at myself so much that I would cover the mirrors in my room of a night, so I wouldn’t see myself. Nausea came over me any time people glanced my way in public or someone wanted to take my photo – my anxiety was that severe”.
Joining the En Vogue Modelling Academy family was a stepping stone in Romany’s journey to feeling confident and comfortable in her own skin. Day one, it was a fighting struggle to get her out of hiding and onto the catwalk with the other girls. Three years later and Romany is running her own classes, teaching students that are experiencing the same trauma she once felt.
“By teaching at En Vogue, I can make a positive impact on my students’ lives, just as my teachers did with mine. I don’t want anyone growing up and feeling like I did, it’s just not fair. If I can influence these girls to feel confident within themselves like I do, then I would have done my job”.
“Obviously, my anxiety still exists. But I’ve been able to control it and live my life to its full potential. Who I am now versus the person I was three years ago are parallel opposites. Now, I’m able to test my own capabilities. I love who I am, inside and out”.
This year, Romany is daring and eager to step out into the unknown and explore the realms outside of her comfort zone. As an entrant in the 2017 Australian Supermodel of the Year Pageant, she is doing just that.
“I had doubts about even entering ASOTY. I compared myself to the other entrants, thinking I looked nothing like them. I was right – I don’t look like them. I look like me, and I am beautiful.
Entering this competition, my aim is to bring awareness to those suffering from anxiety like I did, and show them how modelling can be such an influential guide and improve confidence”.
Once too frightened of her own reflection, to competing in a nation-wide modelling contest, Romany is the living and breathing proof that you can conquer your fears – even if that fear is yourself.
To support Romany in Australian Supermodel of the Year 2017, visit her profile here.
Thank you to Romany for choosing and allowing me to share your story. You are extremely brave to do so – thank you.