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Hand Model Superstar or Not?

As a child, I was always complimented on my hands. Whenever I visited a nail salon, the technician never failed to praise my hands, mostly because of my long nail beds. Having long nail beds can make even short nails appear longer. However, despite the compliments on my hands, I have never received any compliments on my feet. In fact, I'm pretty sure my toes are just as long as my fingers.

In 1999, I decided to try my hand at hand modeling (pun intended). I went to a professional photographer, had my hands photographed, and spent a lot of time researching modeling and talent agencies nationwide. I received some interest after sending my photos and contact information to about 100 agencies.

However, some out-of-town agencies were requesting me to meet them at their offices and pay for my travel expenses. Being new to the modeling business, I wasn't sure if this was standard practice or a scam. Additionally, I didn't have the extra money to spend on trips that may or may not lead to employment. So, I decided to focus on local Atlanta modeling agencies and declined the offers from out of town.

Hand Model Blog

Hand Modeling Photos – 1999


Hand Model

Autumn Murray Hand Modeling Photos

Hand Modeling Jobs

A few companies in Atlanta hired me for some jobs, but my hand modeling career was short-lived. It ended during a diversity photo shoot for a major airline company. I was one of six models with different racial and ethnic backgrounds hired for the shoot. The focus was to highlight the diversity of the company's employees. During the shoot, the photographer made comments about my hands not being dark enough. He kept asking where the African American model was, and everyone looked at me. The photographer then added a dark shade of liquid foundation to my hands, but he still wasn't happy with the color. Eventually, he asked a Caucasian hand model with a suntan to step in for me. It was a humiliating experience. There was nothing in the contract that said I was being hired as the African American hand model, and I didn't list my race on any of my contact information. I wondered why they couldn't determine my skin color from my photos.


“I am questioning the logic of a photoshoot that aimed to promote diversity but excluded me for not being ‘black enough'. It was surprising to see the Caucasian girl getting selected over me because she was considered ‘more black' than I am. It was ironic. 

After that incident, I stopped hand modeling even though I had a full-time job at that time. I regret that I let that one incident stop me from pursuing my career as a hand model. However, I do not regret my decision because it did not impact my life negatively. 

Although I won't be pursuing hand modeling anymore, there is still a demand for it. For now, I will stick to my own modeling on Simply Amazing Living, but who knows what the future holds?”

We hope you enjoyed Simply Amazing Living's “Hand Model Superstar or No?” post.



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  • Marie Southern
    March 15, 2017 6:15 pm

    I love this article! It is a shame that these kinds of discrimination still goes on in this century and that you backed away from a very promising career. I think in some way or another we have all been subject to this which makes this blog so relatable!
    Great read Autumn. Thank you

  • Wow what a crazy story! I cannot believe they would discriminate against you like that…well i can actually and that’s really sad. Thanks for sharing!

  • Not black enough? It’s sad that society still try to dictate to a race that has more shades than any other. The irony of your replacement. Wow!

  • oh wow, diversity but they talk about colors. it’s just sad that discrimination up to this days is never gone. i just wished those people well.

  • this reminds me of that episode on friends where Joey discovers his “identical hand twin” lol.
    i’m sorry for the discrimination.

  • What an awkward position to be put in. I’m sorry that you had to be put through that kind of humiliation. In any case, you do have beautiful hands. Mine, however, have way too many thick veins, I would never be considered for any kind of hand modeling job.

  • It is interesting to read this article but sorry about your experience. Unfortunately discrimination exists in all formats nowadays.

  • I’m surprised to hear your story. Discrimination is really a sad thing. This was such an interesting post! The future is a mystery indeed. Thank you so much for sharing this experience with me.

  • I think your hands are lovely! I hope you go on to do hand modeling outside of Simply Amazing Living.

  • Your hand with jewelry looks you glamorous don’t mind others who discriminate instead prove them the essence of true beauty love hugs sweety!

  • Kristine Nicole Alessandra
    September 11, 2019 12:22 pm

    It must have been so frustrating for you. But I like how you took everything in stride. Although your hand modeling career did not push through, you found success in something else.

  • I am pursuing hand modeling so thank you for the info

  • Hi Autumn. This is a late comment but can you mention the name of the photographer who photographed your hands?

    • Hi Deana, I honestly don’t remember his name. This was 25 years ago and I think he retired. If I happen to come across his name, I will add it to the article.