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London Fashion Week: Model Erin O'Connor

February 18th, 2011
08:27 PM ET

(CNN) Strikingly symmetrical and impossibly elegant, British supermodel Erin O'Connor is one of the most recognizable and acclaimed figures in the fashion world today.

She's been the face of Versace, Dior, Armani, and Gaultier - and after 16 years commanding catwalks around the globe, the porcelain-skinned belle is still at the very top of her profession.

But beyond the extraordinary physique and angular, painterly features that define her appearance, O'Connor has emerged as a vocal proponent of change within the pressurized, often exploitative industry she inhabits.

Driving to increase diversity among models and improve industry-wide working conditions, the down-to earth Brit is co-founder of "All Walks Beyond the Catwalk," an organization that encourages designers to embrace women whatever their age or size.

During London Fashion Week, O'Connor runs the "Model Sanctuary" - a non-profit retreat that aims to address everything from eating disorders to self-esteem issues, employing a combination of therapy, pampering treatments, and lots of food.

Here's your chance to have your questions answered by this model turned advocate.

Please leave your questions below and be sure to include where you're writing from.

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Jurgen R. Brul

    Hello Erin O'Connor and CNN friends,

    I would like an answer from Erin O'Connor on the following questions:

    – How is the Model Sanctuary going to Improve our world?

    – What can we expect from you in 2011?

    I am awaiting Erin O'Connor’s replies.
    Jurgen R. Brul
    Hometown: Paramaribo
    Nativity country: Suriname

    February 20, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Reply
  2. Jose Vera

    What do you think will be the "thing" that will change the whole view of women to accept their body?

    From Guanajuato, Mexico

    February 21, 2011 at 8:28 pm | Reply
  3. Sandip Bhattacharya

    I mean no offence when I ask this question.

    How can you justify millions of dollars spend on models in the industry ? How is it improving the world, lets rephrase the question in the following way. Education is something that transforms masses, what in your opinion has the modelling industry done to/for the general public.

    February 21, 2011 at 9:39 pm | Reply
  4. Ooh LaLa


    Quick, what is 2 x 2?

    February 21, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Reply
  5. nollage

    Hello Erin:

    I am from Ireland and find the modeling industry there to be very fake! The original Irish girl has succummed to the "Hollwood" Ideal! Fake blond hair, fake boobs and most of all UNnatural, brown skin! What are your thoughts?

    Also, I live in Korea where beauty is part of the culture and "skiiny" is earned by the severe lack of nutrition and competition! What are you thoughts? Also, they veiw western women as "ugly" even they turn their nose up at Angelina Joli?

    What a superficial society we have tuned into!

    February 22, 2011 at 12:30 am | Reply
  6. Steve

    If there is one misconception that the public has for supermodels that you could change, what would it be?

    February 22, 2011 at 4:08 am | Reply
  7. Vlad Dracul

    Don't you feel like a two-faced hypocrite when you're working in an exploitative industry that causes body image disorders and eating disorders and yet at the same time you're speaking out against eating disorders, thus biting the very hand that feeds you? Is it because of the guilt you feel about being part of a shallow and exploitative industry that is undoubtedly harming our society and causing millions of workers to slave away in sweat shops in Asia working for starvation wages of $1 a day to satisfy the distorted consumer cravings of Western countries?

    February 22, 2011 at 6:02 am | Reply
  8. Sumant Joshi

    Dear Erin,

    What you believe the models should do in real life to be the role model for the youths?

    Sumant Joshi

    February 22, 2011 at 8:29 am | Reply
  9. Peter Warren

    Dear Ooh LaLa.

    You having trouble with that 2 x 2 math question of yours? Need a supermodel to help you with it, eh?

    February 22, 2011 at 10:46 am | Reply
  10. sandro

    @ Warren , Ooh LaLa is very correct in asking O'connor 2X2. She still hasn't answered the question though. You never know. Come on O'Connor !

    February 24, 2011 at 7:32 pm | Reply
  11. Amy

    Why are actresses and actors given tutors while models are just expected to miss school? Also, why is there barely any regulation in the modeling industry while the majority of models are so young?

    February 24, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Reply

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