Filmmakers Sara Ziff and Ole Schell's bound-to-be-chilling documentary, Picture Me: A Model's Diary, opens September 17 at Angelika Film Center. To build upon their work in the film (the trailer for which you can watch here), the duo has been backstage and behind-the-scenes since the start of New York Fashion Week, reporting exclusively for The Cut. Click ahead to watch the first installment of their three-part web mini-series, which tackles the subject of youth in modeling. To summarize, Ziff and Schell talk with several young models, including Siri Tollerød, who was "18 until she was 20-and-a-half" and tells it like it (sadly) is: Age 25 is "like, whoa, really, really old."
Added Ziff via e-mail, "Despite all the hype last season about casting more developed, adult models, most of the models I spoke with backstage were beanpole-like kids who had been encouraged to drop out of school by their agencies. All agreed that the shows were a great opportunity to launch their careers, and they seemed excited and grateful to be there, but almost no one knew what they were being paid, if anything. When I did the shows a few years ago, most paid in the range of $1,000-$5,000 per show, but today it seems that the vast majority of shows, including those of big-name designers, don't pay money — only 'trade,' meaning clothes."