Standing 5 feet 7 and wearing a size 16, Venessa De La Rosa says she more closely represents the average woman than the stick figures tottering down so many couture runways.
“The media tries to portray women in a certain way,” she said. “To me, the average woman is a 14 or 16 and above.”
Her dimensions haven’t held her back. In addition to modeling, she has landed parts in movies including “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” and television shows including “Teen Wolf.” She was recently named winner of the 2012 “Face of Full Figured Fashion Week” cover model search.
“We’ve progressed a long way,” said De La Rosa. “There’s so many more barriers to break down.”
The mom of three will appear at 2 p.m. today at the grand opening of Ashley Stewart at Arbor Place Mall in Douglasville and hopes the visit will offer a message of empowerment.
“I really want to be an advocate,” she said. “I have a daughter who is 16. She knows girls in her high school who are taking diet pills, not eating. You can be beautiful at any size.”
But people of all sizes should strive for fitness, she added.
“Just because you’re bigger doesn’t mean you can eat five Big Macs a day,” she said. “It’s all portions and control.”