Sarah-angel SCHELATWA

CITY of residence: MZUZU

Profile by Joyce Tacy Gondwe

Brief bio

  • Date of birth  : 30th July

She is just a stone throw shy from clocking 20. She is young. However, her passion for modelling is as big as her ego to pursuing her dreams.

Her journey into active modelling is not that unique as she has followed into the footsteps of most of the other models who have ever been featured on this column; following their childhood dreams. The love for photographs, the love for selfies et al and self confidence among others were the fuels that pushed Little Sarah into this industry.

Born in Blantyre, Sarah has always been a fan of photographs. As she recalls, her next best thing in life is being photographed ever since she was a kid.

“I’m the type of person who takes pictures (photographs) a lot. I love to take photographs when I’m happy or stressed out. So it’s just like a hobby.” She recalls.

So, it was that insatiable appetite for being photographed that later metamorphosed into full-throttle modelling in this little Princess’ world. She realized she could tap in from her childhood passion.

“I realized I could just tap in from my passion and do something out of it. I just felt it wouldn’t be a hassle for me to venture into this industry. Now I’m recognized as a model and I love the feeling.” She elucidates.

Her childhood

Sarah describes her childhood as “fun”. She has been growing up with her close relatives. According to her, her mum is a strict disciplinarian hence ensured all her children had a morally sound childhood. Growing up in a family of girls, to Sarah was so inspiring and interesting.

“My childhood time was very fun, growing around almost all my relatives. My family was very close. My parents and my sisters raised me well, and being in a house full of girls was inspiring to become a model woman.” She praised.

Brief academic journey

Sarah registered her name in the echelons of academics at Savor academy before heading to Kirk Range.

She did her full primary school education at Glory Private School. Her secondary school education saw her changing institutions but she finally completed the journey at Lidoma Private Secondary school at Ekwendeni in Mzimba.

Being a model

She might be in her teens but Sarah is not your everyday model you see in town. To her, a fully-fledged model is supposed to not only be confident but also should have her or his goals set with regards to their being in the modelling world.

“A model must be able to know why they’re into this industry and also their goals in modelling. Modelling is not for every Jim and Jack in town; only a handful makes it big as models,” she lectures.

The communication in modelling

Modelling, in Sarah’s world is all about self-expression.

“Being a model is very special ‘cause you express who you are through photographs and it’s the best way to portray information to people and people get to know you through pictures.

From her observation, it is very easy to communicate via photography as photographs are attention-grabbers.

“Photographs are very catchy and interesting hence easily catch a lot of people’s attention. In this way, people would easily relate them to the message you’re portraying. Simply put, modelling is special ‘as it portrays the kind of person you are.” She elucidates.  

Demystifying modelling

Let’s face it! Malawians are yet to come to grips with the fact that female modelling has nothing to do with promiscuity. The latter is one’s character and is not in any way closer to modelling.  Sarah has ever comes across sentiments from beleaguered souls who aim at pulling her down. But being a strong character, she easily sheds such people off.

“There are a lot because people feel like it’s a bad act in the society but then it’s not. You have to believe in what you are doing; people are there to criticize but then you tend to accept the person that you are. Modelling is not a bad act at all and I strictly say it’s not.” She says.

Agonies of being a female model

Sarah has faced it all. The high and lows of being a model. Worst cases have been when she has been regarded (by some quarters) as a sex tool ready to be used.

“Often times, people take you as a sex object by the mere fact that at times, you portray most of your body and people judge that. In addition, just because you take a lot of photos with your body and all showing it, people will think that you are a cheap type of a girl but it’s not. Those photographs and modelling are but just a career, so I feel like people should start to respect that.” She advises.

Memento brillianto

Despite the challenges that come with her being a female model, Sarah has ever had some glorious moments she cherish.  Back in the days, she worked with Spotlight Models; a modelling agency. Through that firm, she interacted with a cross-section of people and she used to be lecturing them on the tidbits of modeling.

“It was just fun because I used to meet a lot of people who would relate to my stories and I would lecture them, so I used to interact with a lot of people and that pumped up my confidence.” She reminisces.

The future of modelling

  • The potential of modelling in Malawi

From Sarah’s observation, modelling is one untapped potential Malawi has. To her, it all needs a holistic approach from all and sundry to make this industry worthy venturing into.

But first, according to Sarah, there is a need for mindset change.

“Modelling has a very big potential here it’s just that in Malawi people look down on us, models. Malawians need to accept that modelling can also be a career worth venturing into and that it has nothing to do with promiscuity,” she observes.

That is not all. Sarah advises that the “Buy Malawi” campaign should also not spare the modelling industry.

“I always see most companies using photographs of models from outside Malawi as if we don’t have our own here! This is so painful!” cries she.

Tapping the gold from Malawian modelling

For models to really harvest from their sweats, it requires a joint effort by all stakeholders. From Sarah’s line of view, this is no one man show.

“I feel the modelling squad should work together and help each other to get deals and get exposed. That aside, Malawians should also start embracing the fact that we models from Malawi are the best. It’s time now we have to wake up!” she suggests.

The future

Sarahangel sees a blissful future ahead of her.It is her wish that she becomes one of the most sought-after models in the country.

“Five years from now, I wanna be one of the biggest models, a person who is multi-talented, people should be like “I wanna be like her, she can rap, sing and model”, I wanna be that type of person. I wanna be one of the top models in Africa and the world at large.” She dreams.

For starters, minus modelling, Sarah is also one of the budding rappers around.



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