By Michele Lent Hirsch, Andrea Bartz, published on November 1, 2010 - last reviewed on January 2, 2011
At six feet eight inches tall, model Amazon Eve sees life from an unusual perspective. She shares the highs and lows of her exceptional dimensions.
When did your height start to affect you?
When I was growing up, the boys were cruel and the girls kicked me out of their cliques at about 8 or 9. At 14 I was 5 feet 11 inches, and I hit my current height right after high school. It was stupefying. I started working out to make myself tinier, and at 170 pounds I looked like a concentration camp victim. Now I'm about 200 pounds and I'm a certified personal trainer. I try to get female clients to stop looking at the scale and to instead become comfortable with their shape. The concept of small needs to be taken out of women's thinking process.
How did you get into modeling?
One of my clients suggested I do photo sessions with short men who fetishize "Amazon women." It was bizarre. I'd show up in my plastic stripper heels and just stand there, flex a little bit, and get $800. I felt like an oddity, putting on this freak show. Then an Australian client hooked me up with Zoo Weekly, which is like Maxim down under. They put me on the cover, and I thought, "Whoa, maybe I'm not that hideous." They made me feel beautiful. Now I'm a specialty model—I'm there to create cognitive dissonance, to make people question the idea that women have to look a certain way.
What has dating been like for you?
It's difficult because frankly, I'm attracted to men who are taller than me. I don't know if it's social pressure or a biological imperative, but they make me feel petite and feminine. Interestingly, guys of all sizes don't seem to mind my height.
Do people comment on your size?
I get a lot of cruel comments about gender, about being a freak, or being too tall to date. But I've learned to answer questions creatively. "How tall are you?" "Something like 4 foot, 32 inches." "Do you play basketball?" "No, but I've always wanted to be a jockey!" Being tall doesn't make you a freak. Being short doesn't make you a freak, either. It just means you're something other than average.
Be beautiful in two dimensions
If you're seeking a mate online, looking hot in a profile pic should be a top priority. Online matchmaker OKCupid asked millions of users to rate others' attractiveness in photos. Then they analyzed the ratings vis-á-vis the images' EXIF data—embedded info about the camera, the time stamp, etc.—and drew eye-opening conclusions. Sure, the survey was no peer-reviewed study, but it can't hurt to keep the following in mind when you say cheese.
Data-crunchers noticed a spike in attractiveness in late-afternoon photos. Thank geometry: "Overhead light creates shadows under the eyes and chin," says Thayer Gowdy, a San Francisco-based photographer. As the sun sets, beams hit you at an angle. That golden glow may stir up romantic associations as well.
Create Warm Fuzzies
A shallow depth of field (crisp subject, blurry background) makes an appealing photo, the survey shows. These shots feel soft, Gowdy says—which may make the viewer feel at ease.
Late-night photos got stellar ratings. It may be that they show subjects dressed to the nines, or that "the image is a few glasses of wine into the night, so the person looks relaxed," Gowdy says.