Meet Therés Amee, a renaissance woman who is a role model, healthy body image advocate, model, actor and founder of Prowess Productions Inc, who also has a passion for running.
In a phone interview from her Vancouver home, the multi-talented down to earth and she (Therés) shared her love for running, how she started modeling and her work with the beyoutiful foundation.
While growing up in an athletic household, Therés played most sports including volleyball, basketball to track and field.
She began, “Running I fell in love with…that became my sport even after high school and college.”
She adds, “I love (to get) that runner’s high afterward as running is a stress release for me as my Mother was a marathoner and my Father a bodybuilder so Athletics were ingrained since birth, so I definitely want to do a marathon, but 10k is my peak right now. I was a sprinter, 100 meters, 200 meters.”
Therés runs about five times a week. “What I love doing is bridges: In Vancouver, the Cambie bridge; in New York, I love going over the Manhattan bridge or the Brooklyn bridge. I guess I feel more accomplished when I run a course that connects two parts of a city. I love the low maintenance of running – you put your runners on and the world is yours. It is a nice stress release. It always has been.”
On proper nutrition being essential to good health, she says, “I have always maintained a healthy diet. I am not much of a foodie, but my go-to meal is a quick salad full of fruits and protein, as boring as that sounds!”
She initially shied away from the modeling industry because she was primarily pursuing acting.
During castings, she was constantly asked if she was also a model because of her 5’10” height. Because of Therés’ athletic build she was worried how the industry would accept her, causing her to say no to any (fashion scouting).
She explains, “At that time, early 2009/10 the fashion industry hadn’t really expanded to accept other body types besides the traditional straight size runway models or plus size 14 and up.”
She continues, “I was in the middle (size) and there wasn’t really a category that represented middle models. I definitely have seen the diversity and expansion of the fashion industry over the last decade, (it has) really opened up to all shapes and sizes of all ethnicities.
It has been a very inspiring and challenging journey but it is nice to finally witness the much overdue change.
“Before there was a time I had stopped running because my agency advised me to lessen my cardio as running increased my leg muscle and tone. Heavy leg muscle was something that apparently was not seen as attractive in the high fashion world. The alternative was to become a fit model; clothes are measured to your body. You go to factories or design studios and have different garments measured to your body as the sample size for that specific size. Fit models are typically 5’8” and not as tall as runway models and also have specific measurements to maintain. Because I was taller and more curvy than a fit model, I decided to call myself a fit curve model.”
Therés is also breaking down body barriers by working with the beyoutiful foundation. Taylor Hui, who is also an actor and model, established the beyoutiful foundation when she was only 16 years old. The program is about creating confidence classes for young girls ages 8-14.
‘I came on board because I loved what Taylor was doing. Classes run for 6-8 weeks and we meet with the girls once a week. We talk about everything from body image which is usually my platform, to media literacy, to confidence and nutrition.’
She remarks, “Every volunteer involved always says the same thing, that, ‘We wish there was a program such as this foundation when we were young girls growing up.’ Taylor has become a pioneer in implementing this program in schools.”
They also offer weekend wellness workshops, as well as an annual Inspired by HER conference.
“This was our second year doing the conference and we had over 150 girls from all over Metro Vancouver,” Therés said.
Their goal is to tour with the conference all over Canada, with the first stop being in Toronto.
“It is so incredible to see these girls develop and grow. They are already so unapologetically unique and powerful. When I was that age I was so shy, I didn’t want to talk to anybody,” she says.
In 2018, she started working with Canadian supermodel, Coco Rocha. Coco had just started her modeling camps, and Therés was thrilled to be part of her 6th cycle.
She says, “Working with Coco was a career game changer for me. Her camps are very diverse, having models attend from around the world. I was actually the only Canadian in my camp. And, now I scout other models for her camps. Scouting has been very rewarding, to pass along my experience to other up-and-coming models, or even established models wanting to excel their skill set to the next level.”