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Old 27th June 2009   #1
HSG
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Default Shannon Marie: Seventeen


As plus-size-model images go, there is no treasure more priceless than discovering new pictures of Shannon Marie. It is the equivalent of finding a lost canvas of Titian or Rubens, although the splendour of Shannon's photographs surpasses even whatever beauty can be found in Renaissance or Baroque masterpieces.

Last year, we posted an enchanting Seventeen magazine editorial featuring Shannon Marie from the very beginning of her curvier phase, in January 1998, when she was just beginning her transition from straight-size into full-figured modelling.

But now, we are honoured to share another Seventeen editorial image, this one--thrillingly--from October 1998, when her legendary plus-size career was in full bloom.

At this time, Shannon had already shot several unforgettable editorials for Mode magazine, including her captivating Beauty Notebook images, and her exciting "Spy Girls" story. This Seventeen image corresponds exactly with her memorable Bloomingdales ad in the October 1998 Mode, but it matches any of her storied Mode tears for pure, unadulterated beauty.

The concept of the image could not be more perfect. Shannon is shown in the embrace of a GQ model, while a straight-size waif looks on, green with envy. And her jealousy is completely understandable, as is the GQ model's preference for the goddess in blue--for in this image, Shannon vividly demonstrates, yet again, that she is the most gorgeous model ever photographed.

Think about that for a moment: You are looking at, quite literally, the most attractive model whose likeness has ever been captured on film. If Titian's Venus were to step out of her Renaissance frame, she could not be lovelier than this.

Look--just look--at the exquisite allure of her babylike facial features--the apple cheeks; the high cheekbones that are gently rounded by soft fullness; the perfect mouth. No other model has ever matched the beauty of Shannon's visage. Truly, none have even come close. This is the feminine ideal that dwells in the human heart--not just a dream, but brought to life and incarnated in physical form.

And because this image was created several months after her previous Seventeen editorial, one sees that Shannon's beauty, already superlative in that earlier shoot, has become even more breathtaking, rounder and softer and more feminine, thanks to her fuller form. She has a richer glow about her, an opulence that raises her seductiveness even further. Shannon's Alight.com profile described how unnatural the straight-size category had been for her, and her newfound happiness at being comfortably curvy is evident. She positively beams with joy, radiating sheer pleasure in her own physical being.

And oh, how mesmerizing are her luminescent tresses, gilded by the sun, tied back to better show off that miraculous face, and spreading into a mass of tumbling curls and waves, like something out of a fairy-tale.

So profoundly blessed in her appearance, Shannon could have been the greatest of models without even trying. But she also possesses more pure talent than any other model whom we have ever seen. Notice how fascinating an expression she exhibits, her eyes communicating intelligence and personality. Any other model would have simply flashed a smile, but Shannon constructs a whole narrative with her glance. It is a knowing look, a gaze of profound satisfaction--not only in her conquest of the GQ, but in her awareness that her underweight rival is no match for her allure. She clearly relishes her triumph, her conquest.

Just as a great actress can deliver a fully rounded character in a single scene, so Shannon creates a fascinating persona in a single image--someone who is sweet, to be sure, but also mischievous; someone who enjoys fun and play; who is positively brilliant, and has a rich inner life.

Click to enlarge

For his part, the male model cannot get close enough to the goddess. One can easily imagine him fully absorbed in the moment, utterly intoxicated, dizzy with desire, unable to take his eyes off Shannon even to cast a passing glance at the other model, to look at the camera, or to see anything else but her. He holder her tenderly, protectively, and yet one knows that she is actually in complete control of the situation; that even in his embrace, she is the one with the power; that he is her errant knight, enslaved by her beauty, his heart belonging to her and her alone, and that he would do whatever her bidding might be--anything at all--if it would only bring her joy. All of this Shannon manages to communicate with her demeaour.

* * *

The image appeared as an illustration to accompany a "letters" page in Seventeen. It is truly extraordinary that the magazine kept featuring Shannon even after she became authentically full-figured--and as the preferred girl in a competition with a typically emaciated model. The magazine clearly was overawed by her sheer loveliness. This suggests that, were there more plus-size models with Shannon Marie's degree of beauty, the fashion world would have no choice but to acknowledge them.

Another masterpiece for the ages from the most extraordinary beauty ever to grace the plus-size modelling world.

- "Fairest of Them All"


Last edited by HSG : 29th June 2009 at 00:40.
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Old 28th June 2009   #2
Emily
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Absolutely the most gorgeous of all plus-size models. And this is my favourite "new" picture of Shannon Marie (newly discovered, that is) of the several that have been introduced on this forum over the past few seasons, because it's from when her actual full-figured career began. She was always extraordinarily pretty, but when she reached her more natural, fuller size she became truly breathtaking.

And this is a very interesting image thematically, as well. One could even interpret the competition between the two models in the picture as a metaphor for the conflict between the timeless ideal of femininity, and the modern, anorexic fashion standard. And in that contest -- when Classical beauty is represented by Shannon Marie, its greatest living exemplar -- the androgynous look doesn't stand a chance.
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Old 28th June 2009   #3
Kaitlynn
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Quote:
Originally Posted by HSG
It is truly extraordinary that the magazine kept featuring Shannon even after she became authentically full-figured--and as the preferred girl in a competition with a typically emaciated model. The magazine clearly was overawed by her sheer loveliness. This suggests that, were there more plus-size models with Shannon Marie's degree of beauty, the fashion world would have no choice but to acknowledge them.

This is so true! That's why it's just tragic that Shannon Marie put her career on hiatus. What a missed opportunity for the industry! If she had continued, she could have been the breakthrough model everyone has always hoped for- the one who would have proved to everyone, to the whole world, that plus-size is more beautiful than minus-size.

I still remember a line from the posted transcript of her appearance on Good Morning America, somewhere around the year 2000, when the presenter said, as Shannon came out, "No one is going to say that she's not a beautiful girl." And she was right.

In this Seventeen picture, Shannon is every bit as gorgeous as in her Mode pages. I just adore her round, doll-like face. It's such a welcome relief from the harsh, angular faces that you seen in fashion these days. She really embodies the timeless look.

And she looks so vivacious, so full of life. She energizes that entire picture. When you're looking at the photo, your eyes go right to her, and you can't look away, just like the GQ can't. You totally get why he would choose her over the other girl in a heartbeat.

She's mesmerizing.
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Old 29th June 2009   #4
Graham
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Quote:
Originally Posted by HSG
Think about that for a moment: You are looking at, quite literally, the most attractive model whose likeness has ever been captured on film.

It's easy to fall into superlatives when describing the beauty of the models featured on this site, but in this case, the praise is no exaggeration. If there is a more beautiful model ever photographed, then I certainly haven't seen her. Shannon Marie sets a standard of beauty that no one else can match.

And the interesting thing is, that picture doesn't represent an "alternative" reality in which curvier girls are preferred over emaciated ones. Rather, that picture represents TRUE reality, the reality of the actual world in which we all live. Only in the artificial, unreal world of fashion/media would there even be a question of "curvy vs. skinny." In the real world, a curvy girl as gorgeous as Shannon would win the heart of any man she desires, and the underweight girl wouldn't even get a passing glance. She'd be invisible - just as she is in that picture.

The media world is the fictional reality, while that image (singularly, for a fashion picture) depicts truth. It represents actual human preference for timeless beauty over modern androgyny.

In fact, if the media depicted beauty authentically, then the rare and seldom-seen element in that picture would be the undernourished model, not the radiantly voluptuous Shannon. Skeletal models would be unheard of, while plus-size beauty would be the norm (as it is in actuality).
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Old 30th June 2009   #5
Hannah
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emily
One could even interpret the competition between the two models in the picture as a metaphor for the conflict between the timeless ideal of femininity, and the modern, anorexic fashion standard. And in that contest -- when Classical beauty is represented by Shannon Marie, its greatest living exemplar -- the androgynous look doesn't stand a chance.

This is SO true. I actually gasped when I saw this picture for the first time - and the people beside me craned their necks to see what had amazed me so much. I took the opportunity to do an impromptu poll, and everyone agreed that Shannon is the loveliest model they had ever seen.

I really like the comparison idea that Emily presents. It reminds me of the quotes on this site's survey page, from the novels of Bronte and other Victorian writers, which describe gorgeous, curvy, blonde vixens who are in competition with less attractive, shrewd, "morally superior" heroines (usually brunette, usually thin), who are oh-so-practical, and in "proper control" of their appetites and passions.

http://www.judgmentofparis.com/survey.htm

In those Victorian novels, the resentful, mousy heroines usually triumph; but the fuller-figured, buxom, spoiled, feminine blondes that are described in the quotes always seem like the livelier and more interesting characters, even though they're supposed to be the antagonists.

When I see this picture of Shannon Marie, I like to think of it showing the triumph of the voluptuous blonde over those boring, self-depriving, morally/politically correct characters.
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Old 10th July 2009   #6
M. Lopez
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

You know, there have been many pictures of stunningly beautiful and authentically curvy models posted on the site recently, from Charlotte Coyle to Kelsey Olson to Kailee O'Sullivan to Katherine Roll, but really, Shannon surpasses them all, and my heart still aches that she went on hiatus.

It's incomprehensible to think of how many photographic masterpieces we were all deprived of because the industry didn't understand what a priceless treasure it had in her.

If the powers-that-be had capitalized on her talent and potential, I seriously believe that plus-size fashion would be much further along today, because it would have had a representative in Shannon so indisputably gorgeous that she would have made plus-size-beauty believers of anyone who saw her work.

She's heartbreakingly lovely in this photo; and yes, her beauty, remarkable from the very beginning, grew even more radiant as she became curvier. I'll bet she's even more gorgeous today. A part of me will never stop hoping that she might return.
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Old 21st September 2009   #7
MelanieW
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hannah
It reminds me of the quotes on this site's survey page, from the novels of Bronte and other Victorian writers, which describe gorgeous, curvy, blonde vixens who are in competition with less attractive, shrewd, "morally superior" heroines (usually brunette, usually thin), who are oh-so-practical, and in "proper control" of their appetites and passions.

http://www.judgmentofparis.com/survey.htm

In those Victorian novels, the resentful, mousy heroines usually triumph; but the fuller-figured, buxom, spoiled, feminine blondes that are described in the quotes always seem like the livelier and more interesting characters, even though they're supposed to be the antagonists.

I agree! I was just browsing though the forum today and discovered this thread. I dont know how I originally missed it! Shannon looks GORGEOUS in the picture, and any guy would choose her soft beauty over the stick-like brunette. Its not just Shannons figure - her face looks rounder and fuller and more feminine than that of her sallow, harsh-faced rival in her green-with-envy dress.

As for the archetypal blonde/brunette rivalry, you still see this in Hollywood all the time, with movies like Sydney White, Starter for 10, Mean Girls, etc., which pit vain, princess-like blondes against more tomboyish, "outsider" brunettes. The popular blondes are always depicted as the villains, and the "edgy" brunettes as the "better choice", but I never buy it. First of all, the blondes are always much more exciting characters, with more spark, more glamour. Second, you just know, instinctively, that in real life, people with the disposition of the brunettes in these films would also be resentful, bitterly jealous, and would be bullies - not physically, but intellectually. I think this picture captures that perfectly. It really is a masterpiece, and tells a compelling story - one with a happy ending, as the GQ saw past the schemes of the malicious brunette, and chose the fair angel instead.

And no other model could have more perfectly embodied the ideal beauty of the blonde goddess than Shannon Marie.

She really is the most beautiful model ever, and became more gorgeous every year she was modelling. I have no doubt that she is even lovelier today. I still wish she would return...
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Old 28th September 2009   #8
Noelia
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

I think Shannon Marie is beautiful.
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Old 31st December 2009   #9
Chad
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Default Re: Shannon Marie: Seventeen

Of all of the images that were posted this year, this may have been the most memorable of all (even though it's from several years ago). It's so thematically perfect - the plus-size model exhibiting timeless beauty, with her soft facial features and golden hair, being preferred by a GQ to the bitter, envious, resentful, androgynous, minus-size model, who is thinking, "I've been starving and gym-torturing myself the way I'm supposed to, while she relaxes and eats whatever she wants, so how come she's so much more beautiful than me; how come she's still the favourite?"

It's the entire theme of this site, of size celebration, encapsulated in a single picture.

Shannon Marie is still the most beautiful model of all time, and I can't stop hoping that she might come back. She'd still be younger than most plus-size models working today, since she began modelling in her early teens. If there can be an aesthetic restoration, there can be a return of Shannon Marie.
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