A note from Christine Dion
This book RISING STAR Skills To Empower & Achieve is the result of many years spent following my dreams, many challenges unseen and many wonderful experiences that never would have come my way had I not learned the secrets found in these pages. It is the skills to achieve goals.
As a young teen I had dreams of being somebody! Someone special, unique and of course successful. One day while skateboarding down our town’s Main St. a photographer saw me and took a few photos. Later those photos ended up on the cover as an illustration for Skateboard Magazine. With great pride it was then I decided modeling was for me. At home growing up my parents were busy, they had their own life challenges and certainly didn’t want to discuss my silly idea of a modeling career. Not taken seriously and even teased about these silly notions, I learned to hold my tongue and dreams close to my heart. It was truly up to me to reach out, learn and create every opportunity. It turns out that perhaps this was a blessing for through many little successes came early confidence and through reaching out on my own grew a valuable network of new people I could rely on to move forward on my journey.
My first modeling interview I went to alone and had no idea what to expect. The agent looked me up and down with a critical eye and said “Loose the skateboard, learn to walk like a model, dress and do your makeup like a professional in fashion and I might have work for you”. From baby sitting and other after school work I had a small savings. With this money I enrolled in classes the agency provided for new models. I studied walking, poise, fashion styling, makeup and auditioning skills. This training changed my life and helped get me working. More vital training came from the network of experienced friends and professionals I met on jobs and at auditions. These were my unexpected mentors who helped guide me through those early first uncomfortable experiences.
As my friends from school went off to college I began traveling for work internationally from Asia to Europe as a fashion and commercial model. As I built my network of photographers I discovered even more enjoyment working behind the camera being a part of creating the beauty. With an easy transition and lots of practice doing makeup work often without pay, I became a professional makeup artist. I learned that if you love what you do and put yourself out there for the joy of the experience that money soon follows. Alone and working in foreign countries, I had to adapt to the way other cultures live, their manners, lifestyle and language. At times this was challenging but the experience provided valuable lessons. Becoming sensitive to the ways of others so different from my own and being respectful of that, built many life long friendships I value today.
My work and position as a foreigner put me next to celebrities, the rich and the powerful. It was then a wonderful young man entered my life. His parents were royalty and as our relationship grew closer he helped me to understand the responsibility that came with that title and the standards expected when in the public eye. I was expected to look my best, converse with charm and interest, be gracious, confident, elegant and well mannered. A woman that others could look up to. Did all this come naturally to me? Of course not! But with effort and practice I gained confidence and shined. I also found new understanding and empathy through this experience for those who seem to have it all! The pressures put upon individuals in the public eye and the personal private challenges they face can be extremely difficult.
Through my network I was offered the opportunity to work with the top modeling agency in the world developing new models which turned into a position as Director of John Casablanca’s Modeling School. It was there I began to realize how many individuals dream about a future in the public eye. Dreams can change but personal improvement will open doors no matter where with time your journey takes you. Soon my dream and journey changed with a new focus. A goal to bring the secret skills that professional models, media talent, beauty queens and other public personalities to everyone. This inspired Mode Dion Image Center devoted to self improvement for teens and regular speaking engagements at school assemblies. From Mode Dion presents TV show focused on poise and social skills, to national speaking tours, videos, books, articles and a training website my dream continues to grow. You never know where your journey will take you but developing the skills to empower and achieve are vital not only to those in the public eye but for anyone who wants success in their life. Success is beyond abundance, it’s a lifestyle of personal, public and professional fulfillment. It is my greatest joy and wish that the secrets and skills you discover in this book not only help you build a bright happy future but greatly enrich your everyday life.
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