This week’s Of Note post on KCD casting director Michelle Lee is the second post in the new series. The first post was of make-up maven Pat McGrath. I hope you are enjoying this new series. If you have suggestions/feedback, let me know in the comments section or email me.
Casting director Michelle Lee was born in New Jersey and thought that one day she would become a lawyer, but fate had other plans. She moved to New York City and became a fashion show producer with top fashion firm KCD. Through producing fashion shows and a brief stint with renowned casting director Jennifer Venditti, Lee found that she could make a living finding models for editorials, ads, and fashion shows. She never knew that the role of casting director even existed before that time.
Since then, Lee has worked with KCD for over 10 years on jobs for many established and newer designers. You may recognize her casting work from the recent Marc Jacobs, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Richard Chai, Isaac Mizrahi,Victoria Beckham, Tommy Hilfiger, and Louis Vuitton fashion shows. Lee also cast the Numero Tokyo January/February 2011 Cover with Marc Jacobs on it, and several editorials in the two most recent issues of Interview magazine and the latest Love magazine. I can’t wait to see what she does with the Louis Vuitton show. I will be reporting on that show later in the week.
As you can see, she has a busy schedule. Michelle Lee gets in the office at 9am and leaves the office around 6pm during the regular season, but if it is show season….her life gets hectic. Lee has to work on production for all her shows and do castings with all the models in town to see if any have changed their look. Then she has to take their pictures print them out, divide them up by show, and place them in binders. For this kind of job, she says that aspiring casting directors must know which photographer has shot who or what with this hairdresser and that make-up artist for this magazine, campaign, or show. Hard work, but someone has to do it.
Take a look at the pictures in this post and you will see the talent and creativity required to decide which models will work best for each client’s needs. Her casting work has become somewhat prolific and with the clout that she now has in the industry, I am happy to hear that she isn’t afraid to let a model know that it might not be the right career if their health can’t be maintained properly.