Eden is a model and is popular on Instagram with her handle @Edensheaven.  After high school she traveled the world as a working alt model, both signed and unsigned.  Six years later, she is living in a big old church in upstate New York and is working on her art.  She selects collaborations with photographers whose work she admires.  She gives Filthy Lucre a little bit of insight into her very private world. 

How did your career get started?

I was signed with an agency when I was 17, then [I] started freelancing.

What other projects or passions do you have going on or in the works?

I’m in school and majoring in fine arts.  I do watercolor portraits and children’s book illustrations.

How do you describe your personal style?

Angsty farmer’s daughter

Eden (Photo: Monique [email protected]_rdz)

What is your advice to aspiring models?

Modeling has been a reflection of myself and an important outlet for my creative energy.  Because I’ve maintained that clarity, I’ve progressed fairly quickly, yet I feel increasingly restless to leave this industry behind to pursue something more fulfilling.  Don’t get me wrong – I’ve met many amazing people who have turned into great friends and I’m humbled and grateful for all my experiences, both good and bad.  That said, I’ve also seen how corrosive to one’s humanity this business can be.  Whether they represent mental or physical dangers, there are always wolves at your door when you work in this industry.  If you let your guard down for one moment they can overtake you, with devastating results.

So, if you want to model, or many any kind of art, do it for the right reasons.  Don’t do it just for attention and approval; not only will you lose yourself, you’ll be easily taken advantage of and everyone will see through you.  Build beautiful things and strong relationships with people who prove they can be trusted.  Maintain an open mind as well as a thick skin, and clarify to yourself early on what you’d like to share with the world.  Be proud of your work, and if you are fortunate enough to have that work noticed, keep your feet firmly planted on the ground and use your platform to set a positive example to others.  Be that rarest of rare humans: one with a heart as beautiful as their art.

How do you feel about in-genuine content being posted on social media, as so many people are being paid to promote?

The disingenuous nature of most of Instagram is to be expected.  I think it’s funny when women sell that flat tummy tea stuff – all it is is laxatives.

Eden (Photo: Monique Rodriguez – @moniwue_rdz)

How has the social space changed your career?

Social media is a mind killer.  As soon as I stop making money from getting gigs on it, I’ll be falling off the Instagram grid.

How does it feel to be influential to other people?

Being that my following is predominantly female, it’s given me a chance to give solid advice to younger girls who message me every day.  So many of them have this obscured perception of themselves by constantly comparing their lives to these misleading and intangible insta idols.  Being a young woman in this world can often be terrifying and isolating, so if my “influence” does anything at all – I hope it brings some kind of peace of mind for those who don’t feel like they are normal because of our shit society.  If I can bring comfort to people through my photos or quotes or personal writings or playlists, then it’s a satisfying feeling.

Eden (Photo: Chelsea Sinclair)

You can keep up with Eden by visiting her website edensheaven.com and follow her on Instagram.

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