However, Kate’s life has not always been in the spotlight. In fact her early years were somewhat humble as she was born to working class parents. Her mother worked in a bar and her father was a travel agent. When Kate was thirteen years old her parents got divorced, which caused the young girl to have some problems while at school. It also affected her personal life as she has admitted in interviews that she began both smoking marijuana and drinking at twelve. However, all of this changed when the fourteen year old Kate Moss was discovered at an airport in New York City as her family was returning from holiday by Sarah Doukas.
Moss’s first professional photo shoot took place when she was fifteen, and it was done in black and white for the cover of The Face magazine. Her appearance caused something of an upheaval in modern design and modelling as she was unbelievably thin and waifish when compared to other models of the era. In fact, Moss is accredited with launching the movement that has become known as “heroin sheik.” Although this was not something that happened immediately, but rather it occurred after she appeared in a modelling campaign for Calvin Klein’s perfume Obsession that featured some models of similarly small body types.
Riding the wave of stardom
It was after this infamous Obsession campaign began in 1993 that Kate Moss’s career launched itself into the realm of supermodel. Kate Moss was approached by agencies and designers alike who wanted to capture her thin boyish look and use it to their advantage. Her appearance (often partially nude) caused a lot of uproar among those who thought that she was too skinny and was a bad role model for girls who were young and insecure with their bodies. Many often referred to her figure when they were discussing the growing problem of eating disorders.
Despite all of this Kate Moss’s career continued to thrive during this time as she was voted as the Model of the Year in 1996 by Vogue magazine and appeared in numerous print advertising campaigns, magazine covers, and television commercials throughout the nineties. Kate Moss was at the top of her game and was being used by top designers around the world to help sell their products. In fact, Moss modelled for designers from Chanel and Prada, to even doing a commercial for L’Oreal shampoo. During this time she was also involved in an engagement with Johnny Depp from 1996 – 1998. Shortly after breaking up with Johnny Depp she checked herself into a special psychiatric centre in order to recuperate from “exhaustion,” although it is unclear if this problem was caused by her constant work or by her breakup.
Problems in her personal life
After she checked into the clinic in 1998, Moss was able to get back out and start working again almost immediately on her career. In 2000 Kate Moss was again at the height of her career as she continued to model for Gucci and L’Oreal while at the same time becoming the spokesperson for the London cosmetics company, Rimmel. She took a brief break from modelling in late 2001 and 2002 while she was pregnant with her daughter, Lila Grace. After Lila’s birth Kate erupted back onto the scene by dancing in a music video for the White Stripes in 2003.
Once again Kate Moss was not at a loss for work as she modelled for companies like Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, Missoni, Christian Dior, and Burberry. Kate was once again riding the high of supermodel stardom during 2004-2005, but this was about to come to an abrupt end in September of 2005 when photographs of Kate Moss and her then boyfriend musician Pete Doherty doing cocaine surfaced and were published by the Daily Mirror. These pictures were followed by a claim that Moss used so much cocaine that she actually snorted five lines in less than an hour. This devastated Moss’s public image and caused a lot of havoc in her relationship with Doherty, and they consequently broke up in November of that year. Moss’s contracts with H&R and Chanel were also subsequently dropped.
Immediately Kate Moss began to put her career back together as she worked on clearing up her tarnished image and threw herself back into her modelling. However, less than a year later she resumed her stormy relationship with Doherty. When Doherty was performing at a concert in 2007 he announced that he was engaged to Moss, and they declared that they were going to be married that summer. That July was a different story when the pair split. It was such a traumatic separation that Moss backed out of her obligation to appear on a catwalk with other models, once again marking her as a problematic model. It is rumoured that his is one of the reasons why Kate Moss was replaced as the face of Agent Provocateur.
Despite Moss’s personal life and her problems it appears that she is not likely to disappear from public life any time soon. In fact, she has worked tirelessly throughout 2008 and 2009, appearing in multiple magazines and advertising campaigns. In May of 2009 she was even labelled as one of the world’s highest paid models by Forbes magazine, earning approximately nine million dollars a year. With so many people captivated by the beauty and litheness that is Kate Moss, and so many designers seeking her out to model their clothes, it is unlikely that she will stop modelling any time soon.