Pat Marks - Model Mom

Feb 10, 2021

Heather and Pat Marks
Heather and Pat Marks

Heather Marks

Heather Marks

Heather Marks

When Heather Marks was 12, her mother watched in horror as a panel of judges leaned over their table to gawk at the timid youngster's abnormally large feet.

Mother and daughter had been at the Calgary Women's show when they were cajoled into entering Heather, dressed in jeans and running shoes, into the Mode Models' model search. "If I had known about it I probably would have put her hair in ringlets and put some makeup on her," laughs Pat Marks.

Far from dainty heels, it was Heather's size ten running shoes that carried her down the runway. "And as she walked by, all the judges looked over the table at her feet and were laughing. She was so conscious of her big feet, and I'm like 'Oh my God she's going to just freak.'"

Despite her casual appearance and crimson complexion the super-shy Heather won the model search, and thus a superstar was born.

Voted the current favourite by modelresource readers in our 2004 year-end poll, Heather has lit up the modelling world in the past year, posing for the likes of Marc by Marc Jacobs, Moschino and Just Cavalli. She's also become a fixture on the world's runways, doing 77 shows last season alone!

"Heather's an amazing girl," says Pat. "When she's home, she's 16 and has an amazing group of friends. They go to LazerQuest, bowling, all that stuff. It's good to see her being 16. I think most of her friends don't know the half of what she really does."

"When you first get into it, it's scary. You don't know if you're being scammed. When she's 12-years-old and you have someone saying she's going to be a model, it's like - she's 12 - she's a baby."

"The biggest thing is to make sure you have a good mother agent. I can't say anything bad about Kelly [Streit] - he's steered us down the right path every time and I completely trust him with all the decisions he's made. Obviously he's made the right decisions because she's doing so well. I think that's the biggest thing - you have to feel comfortable with the mother agent."

Now that Heather's a world traveller more than capable of trekking out on her own, she still takes Mom along for the ride. "It's more or less fun. I have fun just people watching. I find a little corner and read a book, especially in Milan or Paris, where there's a lot of waiting... waiting... waiting... "

"If you had talked to me about this two years ago I would have laughed at you," says Pat. "Sometimes I look and it's like 'That's my daughter out there!' Sometimes it doesn't hit home until you're actually sitting in the show."