If Only I’d Known: Felicity Hayward

What is your name/age/job title? 

Felicity Hayward, 25, international model and artist. 

What one thing do you wish you had known at the start of your career that you know now?  

To be patient. Everything is temporary and ideas can change direction at any point, whether in your own work or someone else's project. 

If you could go back and give your younger self any practical advice, what would it be?  

Take your makeup off at night and moisturise!  

If someone had told your 16-year-old self that you would be a successful model in your twenties, would have believed them? Or did you have other ambitions? 

Not at all. Modelling was never something that crossed my mind. I wasn't the prettiest girl in school, I didn't have the "normal" figure and those were the sort of things you assumed would have to be right to do modelling. As a teenager I was interested in going to gigs, kissing boys and taking pictures. I wanted to be a photographer and get out of my hometown.



Is there an embarrassing episode from your past that you wish you could edit out?

I've always had embarrassing episodes. Do you remember nu-rave? But I don't wish to edit them out, I need something to look back and laugh at. 

Is there a single thing that you wish you’d had/known about when you started out? Something that has shaped the way you work today? 

Not really. I got into modelling by complete luck. I guess I would just say, be nice to nice people and go out dancing. 

Is there a project of which you are particularly proud?

Hamburger Queen, in which I am the head judge this year. It's a wonderful talent show run by my friend Scottee. It's a place for anyone pushing over the waistband of what's deemed overweight and unhealthy. It’s a beauty contest for boys and girls with bingo wings and big booties. 

The problem with our society today is being larger is deemed "unfashionable" and "unhealthy", whereas being a size zero is a positive thing. Call someone skinny and it's a compliment, but call someone fat and it’s negative. We should be proud no matter what our size. It should be equal. 

What would you consider your ‘big break’? And how did you get it? 

Dancing to Diana Ross in an east London pub, I was scouted by Richard Mortimer of Ponystep magazine to shoot as Anna Nicole Smith for Miles Aldridge. As soon as that editorial came out I was scouted by Storm models and became a curve model. I then went on to model with Cara Delevigne, gained my first cover with I-D magazine and flew over to NYC to do a shoot with photographer Patrick Demarchelier for American Glamour.



Hamburger Queen heats run between 3 and 17 April, with the grand finale on 24 April. For more information, visit the Hamburger Queen website.

{link removed} for advice, funding, opportunities and our weekly newsletter – with all the latest arts jobs. 


No discussion posts yet.

Article author






Elsewhere in IdeasMag Archive

My childhood achievements


Word Play


Chrissy Iley, freelance journalist


Job of the Week: Visual Effects Generalist ...