University for the Creative Arts (UCA) Rochester student Matthew Johnstone was spotted on the catwalk at Paris Fashion Week last month. Matthew modelled a number of different British designers’ winter 2015 ranges, including Alexander McQueen, Lanvin and Ken & Curwen.
This is the second time that Matthew, who was scouted by an agent when travelling on the London Underground last year, has modelled at Paris Fashion Week,. He is currently studying for a Foundation Diploma in Art & Design at UCA Rochester, on the Fashion & Textiles pathway. Matthew has had the chance to learn a lot about the Fashion industry whilst being a model at Paris Fashion Week.
“I’ve been working with lots of other models which has been a really good experience – you make new friends and I’ve learnt a lot about modelling as a career,” said Matthew. “Everyone is really friendly and actually very down to earth and normal. I like the career path and would love to do it for a long time, but I hope to go down the path of fashion design later on, so this is related to my current interests. UCA has been a great kick start to my fashion studies. UCA Rochester staff have encouraged me to develop, and I now feel as if I could pursue my studies further within the industry confidently. Thanks to the facilities at UCA, I feel as if I have a head start and knowledge that would make me a valuable candidate for any BA in Fashion Design. I feel confident taking part and talking to professionals at Fashion Weeks too, due to the research and study around the industry that is part of my course. Everything we're taught is so relevant to contemporary fashion, it is ready to take into the 'real world'.”
Though pursuing modelling during his studies is a challenge, UCA has given him the time and support needed to pursue the experience.
“UCA has been very accommodating of my modelling alongside my studies, providing me with the time and support that I’ve needed. They have also offered me smaller modelling opportunities within the university in order to practice under less pressure, like undergraduate and graduate shows. I’ve done a few modelling shoots for various projects within the University too, which is great practice. I don't tend to agree to any external modelling opportunities too far in advance due to being a student at the same time, so I’m looking forward to doing more over the summer."
Matthew has modelled for Alexander McQueen in London, and has also featured in articles in fashion magazines like Varon and Exit.
“We’re always pleased to hear that students are pursuing their career interests in their spare time,” said Chris Wraith, Course Leader for Further Education at UCA Rochester. “Matthew’s experience at Paris Fashion Week is not only a lot of fun for him, but a great networking opportunity and an insight into the industry. Our Further Education courses give students an opportunity to experiment with a range of different techniques and ideas prior to specialising, so the more exposure our students can get to different industries at this stage, the better.”