The Instigator
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The Contender
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3 Points

Is Modeling Really an Art?

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/12/2013 Category: Arts
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,232 times Debate No: 33619
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (10)
Votes (1)




1) Modeling is not an art because it does not involve any skill. Let me explain. Models are chosen based on looks which they are born with but they do not necessarily have to practice having those looks. Models have won a "genetic lottery" that fits the Modeling Industry's ideal of beauty.

2) Merriam Webster defines art as:
a. The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in b. a visual form such as painting or sculpture,...: "the art of the Renaissance"
Works produced by such skill and imagination.

Models wear high fashion and pose for photographs, however, the models themselves have not created the clothes or taken the photographs. It is the photographers and fashion designers who are creating the art.

3) The Merriam Webster dictionary term for art uses the inclusive word of humans in order to indicate who can create art. The requirements that are needed to be met in order to model exclude many people. Basically, art is something that every human can produce and do and the exclusiveness of the Modeling Industry goes against the very definition of art.

Conclusion: Modeling should not be considered an art form



I demand my opponent explain why the movement involved in posing is less a form of creative expression than it is for an artist to draw a person posed in a certain way on there painting. Models dont just pick there nose when they are modeling, so you cannot say it is all about looks.

Skill of the Diet:

strictly speaking you also cant say a Model was just born with good looks, that they won the 'beauty lottory'. Genitics give you red or blond hair, it does not make you come it, they make you 5 feet tall or 6 feet tall, they do not make you eat brocoli. If a Model ate and excersised the way the normal average american does, they would end up with bodies that looked like the average american.

Fat Ugly people should be allowed to model for it to be an Art:

you didnt outright say this but it was implied as you spoke of the exclusiveness of the modeling industry. My argument here is that this is irrelivant to the question of if it is an art or not. the fact that the predominate industry is only selling one type of expression of that art form does not mean that whole kind of art is not an art. That's like saying because there are no Mueseums for Painting that will display my 3rd grade drawing of a monster truck combined with a Y-wing fighter ship, coloring is not an art. personally I think my form of self-expression on paper should be valued as much as anything you see at Walmart for sale was painted by Thomas Kincade, but the sad fact is people are not 'enlightened' enough to value my forms of self expression with the box of crayons I bought as much as they will value Alan Beans painting that have moon dust in them. But I'm still doing the same art when I get the crayon box out and do my amature stuff as Alan Bean is with moon dust and oil paints, but people will only pay over $20,000 dollars for his art.

Let me ask you how often do you ever see un-'statuesque' statues? the Venus de Milo, how nice is her breast? 'the thinker' is he an obease figure? is making statues not 'an art'? No, but artiest tend to only want to express themselves with statuesque figures. when changing the posing art from clay figures to live figures, that didnt change, and the modeling company, being artiest, can be expected to be as biased as Leonardo De Vinchi for the primest examples of physical fitness for there art.

Conclusion: Modeling, even if a silly kind of art, is none the less a self-expressive form of art.

I await my opponents response
Debate Round No. 1


Posing being a version of self expression

It seems that this is form of self expression (posing) for only a group of selected people. What earned these people the privelage of being able to pose? Only their looks which was won by a genetic lottery. Let's use your coloring example. Whereas your works of coloring may not be shown in a museum at least you are able to color and do not have to be scouted for the length of your fingers and posture. One may also get better at coloring it is a skill. Whereas Cameron Russell herself states that modeling is more about luck and not necessarily about hard work.

In terms of an artist promoting modeling and the industry's idea of beauty it our duty as a society to educate others and show that this is not a really an art. People cash out on their looks. Real art can and should be done for and by everyone.

Yes, it is hardwork to maintain a diet however, is that an art form? Modeling seems to be built upon others ideas of beauty instead of the actual model's idea of beauty.

I am waiting for my opponents argument.


I am going to start with my point about Diet because its just a side point, its not really that central to the debate

Diet: It is not my job to say Dieting is an artform, its my job to say modeling is. My point about Dieting was to negate your case that its pure 'beauty lottory' that takes no skill. your only rebuttal to this is to quote some idiot that works for the modeling industry. This is fallacy is called 'argument from authority' and it does not actually negate my case. So your case that 'its pure luck' stands refuted. Luck in Genetics will not make you look good without you maintaing a certain amount of discipline in the food you eat. You accapted its true if you do not diet well you will not be accapted into the modeling industry, no accapt the logical consequences of how that fact is not compatible with the assertion 'it's pure luck'

Posing: I note my oppoent did not meet my demands in explaining why posing is not a form of self expression. He had a title heading in his argument to give the appearence of rebutting it, however all of what was below it was an argument against my third argument that delt with why not just anybody is hired by the modeling industry. So my seperate point about posing remains unrefuted. it remains that models are not photographed picking there nose, but rather with more communicative artistic forms of posture. Have you ever gone to Target in the clothing section and looked at the pitchers of models wearing the cloths that are for sale? isn't it strange how no matter what outfit is being worn the model poses to look confidant, fun, or happy wearing it. Kind of subliminal advertisement going on to make you think you will be confident and happy if you buy those clothes.

Tell me if modeling was not an art, then shouldn't it be impossible for those kinds of advertisements to communicate anything like that because the posing is not a 'form of exression' according to you? If that question is not answered you lose this debate.

Not art if everyone doesnt do it in the industry: If you follow my crayon compairision in terms of its relevance to this debate resolution, it does not matter that I'm allowed to buy a box of crayons and draw on paper. According to your own arguments the whole act of drawing on paper with any matieral thats got pigments in it is not an art if the 'industry' will not accapt my 'works' as something they will try to sell.

My case is what the 'industry does' is irrelevant to 'what art is or is not'. The industry did not make art, it sells art. Would you say 'Acting' was not an art until the theater finally started to allow women to participate in the 'art'? The fact that it was wrong of theaters to prohibit women from being apart of there play's is a seperate issue from the debate resolution 'Is Acting really an Art?'.

I await my opponents response that will hopefully provide his answer to the question why if acting was still an 'art' when the industry was exclusive to one paticular gender, then how could modeling not also still be an 'art' when the industry today is in a like manner exclusive?
Debate Round No. 2


Ok, I would like to apologize for how long it took me to post this argument.
I will try to be more on top of the other ones.

Diet: Why does dieting suddenly act as a skill when applied to models when in reality everyone can do it? Just as everyone can pose but can not be a "model."

Self- Expression Part 2:

Self - expression is defined by the Free Dictionary as:
Expression of one's own personality, feelings, or ideas, as through speech or art: "Self-expression must pass into communication for its fulfillment"(Pearl S. Buck).

Models do not express any ideas of their own. Everything from what they wear, where the photo is taken, to how they pose is directed by one person. There is no individuality in modeling. Models are not expressing their own thoughts but they are pawns of the Modeling industry. Models fit a construct and they are all beautiful in the same way due to what society has defined as beauty which as Cameron Russell states is white, young, and thin. Also, before you go so far as to call her an idiot who works for the modeling industry she is a graduate of Columbia University. From the above definition acting is an art because it involves communication and leaves room for interpretation. The actor is allowed to interpret their character differently from the director. There is also actual skill involved with acting memorizing lines takes more practice then learning how to walk down a runway.

Acting and Exclusiveness:
Unlike modeling, there are "fat" people in movies. The fact that you associate "fat" with being "ugly" is the Modeling industry's fault. They have defined beauty. Art is supposed to make everyone feel beautiful not just thin people. Movies can include a diverse group of actor and allow many kinds of people to self-express themselves.


You do not have to apologies for taking your time to post your arguments, we all understand, especially when the bottom line is you didn’t wait so long that you forfeited, that’s what matters.

What you should apologies for is in your round completely ignoring major parts of my arguments as though I did not make them. Espically this first one I’m going to recover with a source.

Women not allowed to act: This was the most compelling and strongest case I gave that put the lie to your insane arguments that rely solely on complaining about ‘the industry’. In the art of ‘Acting’ the ‘industry’ did not allow women to perform the art in the past. I specifically asked you my opponent to give me an answer as to weather or not ‘acting’ was not an ‘art’ until they changed it so that women could perform. My opponent did not even acknowledge the question. Instead my opponent side stepped the question by talking about the acting ‘industry’ today and how they let fat people perform.

My core argument has been this entire debate that what the ‘industry does’ and what ‘art is or is not’ are two separate issues and do not affect each other. The theater industry can ban African Americans from performing it on stage, it doesn’t mean acting is an art.

Because I wish to give you no room to side responding to that strait forward question anylonger, I’m not going to further debate over any of the other side points this round, I’m not dropping the points they will be picked up in the final round, plus none of my opponents rebuttals were relevant anyway so long as he ignored my challenge about the industries relevance to the debate and all his other rebuttals rest on talking about the irrelevant industry.

However I do have one more new argument I want to be given before the debate is over and I know it cant wait tell the last round or bringing it up would be poor conduct on my part.

Who is the Artist?:

The question of the resolution is ‘is modeling an Art?’ not ‘is a model an artist?’ if it was ‘is a model an artist’ then my opponent would have a point in arguing a model expresses the ‘industries thoughts’ or whoever it is that tells them how to stand and pose and what to were. But that’s not the resolutions question. Its ‘is modeling an art’ and that homosexual man that likes to dress ‘fabulous’ who tells all his models how to stand and pose and what they were can for all purposes be considered ‘the artist’ if modeling is indeed an art. He is being quite expressive and the models are being his instruments of expression. His paint brushes in way. If my opponent gives in his final round a rebuttal to this new argument but still ignores my argument against his position that was posted first in this round, you should not give any consideration to his rebuttal to this point.

So in summary what my opponent must do next round if he is to win this debate is…

1) Tell us why what the ‘industry’ does matters in ‘what art is or is not’.

2) Tell us why what the ‘industry’ does matters in ‘what art is or is not’.

3) Finally give his late answer as to the question ‘what acting not an art when women were not allowed on stage?’

4) Convince us the ‘industry’ not only ‘sells art’ but ‘makes it art’ based on how they sell it.

5) Tell us why what the ‘industry’ does matters in ‘what art is or is not’.

6) Tell us why what the ‘industry’ does matters in ‘what art is or is not’.

7) Tell us why what the ‘industry’…….are you getting what I want a response to yet next round?

I am forgiving of my opponent taking is time to post an argument, I am not forgiving of having my main contention selectively ignored. I dislike conversations and debates where we both talk past each other and do not engage in each others points. I have tried to engage in every point my opponent has given but he has not returned the courtesy.

Why does what the ‘industry’ do matter in determining what art is or is not? I request my opponent not waist any of our times with another detail about what the modeling industry does or does not do until he answers that question first. Because any details and facts about the modeling industry are irrelevant until its established that what the industry does matters in answering the resolutions question, and its not established, that the industry is relevant has been rebutted and my opponent has offered not counter rebuttal after having 2 chances to give a counter rebuttal.

Why is what the industry does matter in determining what Art is or is not?

Debate Round No. 3


So,to fully answer your burning question this is why the industry matters in what art is or is not. The industry is not in it for the art. It's in it for the money. That's why only an exclusive group of people who have won the genetic lottery are allowed to be a model. They fit the construct of beauty and thus will make the most money. When the industry publishes these images in high fashion magazines they are supporting society's ideal of beauty.

The models are not allowed to express his/her own interpretation because the industry is a corporation. If the industry was in it for art then anyone would be allowed to model.

And your argument for why acting was not an art when women were allowed on stage is irrelevant because we are allowed to act now. If I was alive then, I would have also said it was not an art because of its exclusiveness and the construct of a patriarchal/ sexist society.

My final argument for why the industry makes modeling art because because of how they sell it is quite simple: art does not need to be sold. While it is nice to make money and artists do sell their work to make a living in the past art was done for pure enjoyment, Art is the purest form of self-expression and the real roots of art should not be associated with money.

I realize that this is the last round and I would like to thank you for participating in this debate. I find this to be a very interesting topic. Best of luck during the voting period.


I must say after 4 rounds I would have thought my opponent would have understood my argument enough to give an actual response to it. I don’t think there is anything unclear about my last rounds questions distinction between questions about what the industry does and question about art itself when I asked “Tell us why what the ‘industry’ does matter in ‘what art is or is not’.”

ESPICALLY WHEN my opponent made that very distinction in his own round without making the connection to the question I asked.

“if the industry was in it for the Art….”

Here he just recognized the industry is a separate entity from matters of what we identify as art. The debate resolution is about identifying if something is an art or if it is not. Not how an industry handles or treats or markets the craft.

My opponent further makes statements that require you recognize the industries irrelevance in this debate resolutions question in order to understand the statement as all

“…finally as for why the industry makes modeling art because because of how they sell it is quite simple: art does not need to be sold,….”

Besides being a non-sequencer argument when the point being made has absolutely nothing to do with the question, the answer concedes my implied point for even asking. That art is not made art because of an industry that sells it thus making the industry irrelevant. Because all my opponents arguments have taken the form of complaining about the injustice and unfairness of the industry that markets modeling, for his arguments to have bearing on the resolution demands that we not only consider the industry something that simply sells a painting as art, but literally a force of nature that MAKES IT art. That if Randy Jackson was not there to call music an art, then music would not be one. And because that is such an absurd notion I asked my opponent to show how it could be that way. But instead my opponent conceded the point I make by agreeing art is not made art because someone sells it.

SO the natural extension of that is if Art does not need to be sold in order to be art, then art does not need to be sold in a certain way to be art. Because it cannot follow that it needs to be sold a certain way to be Art without the premise that it needs to be sold at all to be Art. As my opponent said art is a form of self expression that has nothing to do with money. By having nothing to do with money, it has nothing to do with the industry and an industries actions or ‘exclusiveness’.

My opponent cannot be able to see that though because he on thinks in non-sequencer thoughts. He has so lost his mind to his tunnel vision focus on making a case against the unfairness of how the modeling industry is selective that he temporarly abandons his belief that art does not have anything to do with money in order to make it. This insanity has gone so far that we have him on record saying that Acting was not art long ago until the industry made changes, and now it is an art today, while simultaneously saying art is not dependant on its being sold thus not dependant on how its sold.

If something is or is not art, its status as art is eternal, it transcends time. Acting would have been no less of form of self expression for me had I been an actor in Shakespeare’s day or an Actor today. All that would have changed was who could be my coworkers if I took this form of expression as a profession. Art is a concept and that is why it transcends time, My opponents complaints can only stand ground against the resolution if art exist only as a profession.

The forms of self-expression that can be expressed by a Model are not accessible to only those in the profession alone hired by an industry. You can have your own private ‘modeling runway’ in your backyard and have Men with bear bellies walk down it posing in these self-expressive ways if you want to. Nothing stops you. You could even get the grill out and make a BBQ party out of it with your friends and family.

I cant fathom one doing that though because as far as a means of self-expression goes, its not a very cool or fun one (in my opinion) compared to coloring or sculpture art. But this does not mean the same forms of self expression in posing that professional super models do in the industry cant be done by you outside the industry.

In my last ditch effort to break through my opponent’s insanity with the light of rational thought, I ask him to relook at the example of women not being able to act long ago in a different context. Even trying to think with Con’s own warped way of looking at all of this, in a way that would have said it wasn’t art back then but is now. If you can say that then you can agree with me that while back then the statement was not true that acting was an art, the statement that ‘acting has the potential to be an art’ as obviously he says today it is an art. So if that could be said of acting then of course it can for modeling as well. as soon as the industry trying to make money makes one ‘enlightened’ change to suit Con, he will sing a different tune about them and they will be artist in his eyes. So he must concede that it can potentially be art.

And once you accept that concession, you are waiting on just one rational thought to make you cross over into recognizing Modeling is in fact an art now, an art that an industry makes money off of, though the industry maybe needs to make few changes.

I think my opponent if he were sane should have made this debate with a different resolution, one to the debate he may have wanted to hold. A resolution like ‘the modeling industry is unfair’ or ‘the modeling industry should allow more people in it if they are to be ‘true to art’” or “the modeling industry’s exclusiveness is an insult to the name Art”.

But he did not make a resolution that said ‘the modeling industry’ anything. It said ‘modeling’ itself ‘is an art?’. This brings to question the act of modeling itself as an art and removes the industry from consideration.

I thank my opponent for this debate, I apologies for calling my opponent insane once or twice, I have a very aggressive manner of dealing with insane non-sequencer arguments. I did not mean any particular or personal offense against my opponent.

Voting audience if you feel the need to give Con Conduct because of that I guess that’s fine, but please do not give him sources or arguments. He gave more sources than me but not once did he give a source or an argument that has remotely been relevant to the debate. I did. Thus my sources were good, my opponents were not. My arguments were good or decent, my opponents barely pass as arguments.

Debate Round No. 4
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Marauder 3 years ago
I didn't intend to start a mini-debate here either. I just didn't want you to leave this debate thinking any aspect of the way you performed this one should ever be repeated. I accepted the challenge based on the opening round, I did not know before accepting how your debate skills would go from there.
Posted by bina861 3 years ago
Sorry, you did make the comparison only after I stated that all a model does is sit in a chair while they are directed on how to move and the "real" art is done by the industry with photographers and fashion designers even though it doesn't have very "real" motives behind the production of it all and acts more as a business. You said that "He is being quite expressive and the models are being his instruments of expression" in terms of my argument so apparently I did have a valid point. I felt as tough you were being rather harsh on my arguments and twisted them a little bit by using intimidation (and slightly poor conduct) however I am new to debating and could have made the overall debate more clear. However, it was not my intent to start a mini- debate in the commenting section. I thanked my opponent for his advice and if I did not have good arguments why did you accept the debate? Let's leave it at this and I hope we'll have the chance to debate again soon.
Posted by Marauder 3 years ago
Not once did you describe Models as being a paint brush. I made such a comparison of my own, reread this debate and tell me what round and under what paragraph you 'made a point of describing them as a paintbrush'?
Posted by bina861 3 years ago
Umm... thanks for the advice I guess? I still think my arguments were good and you did state that I made a valid point of describing a model as being a paintbrush. And I used sources...
My suggestion to you would be to improve on your conduct in debates but I understand how that can be difficult when you get really into a topic.
Posted by Marauder 3 years ago
not to be mean or anything, but don't delude yourself, your arguments were not good. I can name not a single redeemable quality about them except perhaps you sourced a few of your non-relevant stances.

And I don't say this because I was your opponent, I have had opponents who at the end of the debate I had to admit though my position did not change there arguments were very difficult to answer and were based on good coherent questions and logic.

You should take Wallfly's advice and start a debate with the resolution "Models are not artist" and go from there because that's what all your arguments related to this debate, whiles none of your arguments dealt with the extremely radical resolution you made "modelING is not art". It's a lesson I had to learn when I was new to this site too, you have to stick to your resolution, and you have to strictly define every term in it to make sure you can have the debate you want to argue. you did not do this and thus I did not debate the argument you wanted to have, I debated the resolution.

For giving you the benifit of the doubt, I've been assuming you stuck with ignoring the resolution because you saw you would lose if did so you just decided it was best to plow on through pretending you typed the resolution the way you wanted too.
Posted by wallfly 3 years ago
You should create another debate titled 'model's are not artist'. then see how you go with that.
Posted by bina861 3 years ago
However, Justin Bieber and Britney Spear display some skills with singing (Spears is debatable) where as posing for a picture and being photogenic in terms of society's standard does not require almost any skill. this is where I was going with the "genetic lottery" thing. I think I should have made my argument a bit more specific and geared towards the industry itself which controls every single move of a model. However, what models do we see that aren't controlled by the industry or someone? Even models used for artists in art school have a student directing them. I am saying that since there is no free will or true self- expression in modeling then there is no degree of art in it.
Posted by wallfly 3 years ago
I can't vote because i havn't confirmed my identity. I was just stating that Modelling would require some degree of artistic skill, albeit a very small amount. Majority of model's get away with being less talented artistically and more talented physically. but that also exist in the dramatic arts industry. Like Channing Tatum, as an actor. However there are many different aspects of modelling. If a model were to choose their own wardrobe, shoot location, style their own hair and pose how they wanted, Then they would be considered artist to the highest degree. So it's not modelling itself that isnt art, it's the industry that deprives the models of having any artistic input.

Would you say britney spears and Justin beiber are not artist because they don't write their own lyrics or utilise auto tune. Their are just different degree's of art, and modelling, justin beiber and britney spears are are they lowest rung of it.
Posted by bina861 3 years ago
I'm not sure if you still want my response since you voted for Pro (haha its ok) but its not like only one person fits the Ideal of Beauty. There's still a handful that fit in this category and the show also tries to choose contestants based on their personality. if you want my honest opinion, I don't mind America's Next Top Model that much because there's some diversity on that show. Hope that helps! Also, I'm a newbie at debating so I didn't expect to win at first haha but I felt that my arguments were good but hey I'm biased.
Posted by wallfly 3 years ago
I have a question for con. If being a successful model were as simple as having appealing physical features, How do shows like 'america's next top model' manage to establish a competition that goes over several weeks. If you're assertions were correct, the winning contestant would be decided on the pilot episode based on her appearance. As opposed to how well they pose, perform on the runway or build chemistry with the co-models during photo shoots
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by vmpire321 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: damn, he strikes again. art is a rather vague term, but pro managed to make modelling seem as if it were an art. con didn't seem to be able to hit pro's case hard enough for me to vote con.