You'd think being a judge on America's Next Top Model would be nothing but smize-worthy, but when the show first came out in 2003 it basically put a stop to Nigel Barker’s career.
"When I was approached about Top Model, my career was on a real upward spiral — I had just done a bunch of great editorials and was getting calls from the likes of Jil Sander and Versace," the photographer and former ANTM judge told DuJour. "It crossed my mind that if I joined the show, it could be considered selling out. ... And for a while there, it was tough. A lot of people wouldn’t go near me."
He confirmed that, yes, after joining ANTM, designers and magazines stopped hiring him.
"The Vogues and various people — they wouldn’t touch me," he said. "They wouldn’t even look at my book. But what happened in the process of me being on the show for a decade is that obviously the fashion world changed."
Now the world is more digital, mass market mixes with high fashion, and big, respected names in the fashion industry are signing up for reality TV shows — like Vogue’s Andre Leon Talley as a fellow ex-judge on ANTM and Naomi Campbell now with The Face, the new show Nigel is hosting for Oxygen.
But the fact that Nigel stuck with ANTM through the tough years would have been reason alone to keep him and not fire him after 17 seasons. Yeah, everyone is in a good place now, but it still feels disloyal!