Patty Owen, born June 18, 1959 to a blue-collar worker and homemaker in a poor suburb outside of Boston, moved at age 9 with her family to Amherst, MA for a better life. When Patty started modeling in 1979 to pay college fees, some of her high school class mates of 1977 were far from supportive at such a superficial and “mindless” career. So Patty spent much of her early modeling years telling new friends and acquaintances that she was a student or artist.
Indeed Patty was quite the artist, in and out of the modeling spheres, herself a painter she hob knobbed with such renowned artists and fashion illustrators as Antonio Lopez, Keith Haring, Andy Warhol and his protégé, Jean-Michel Basquiat. Patty was best known as the muse with an androgynous yet voluptuous look so beautifully captured first in Europe by such photographic geniuses’ as Helmet Newton, Guy Bourdin, Peter Lindbergh, Toscani, Paolo Roversi, Sasha, Avi Meroz, Andre Carrara and Gilles Bensimon. Iconic fashion designers like Karl Lagerfeld and Jean Paul Gaultier with their whimsical and outrageous looks were some of the designers that helped catapult Patty’s career both on the runway and through the pages of magazine spreads. However, first and foremost, the break that launched Patty’s career was when hair design legend Jean Louis David cut off her teenage locks to reveal this boyish, spunky look.
A few years later, when Patty moved back to the U.S., she was photographed by such giants as Albert Watson, Francesco Scavullo, Patrick Demarchelier, Arthur Elgort, Steven Meisel, Marco Glaviano, Sante D’Orazio, Alex Chatelain, Rebecca Blake and Matthew Rolston. Her short spiky auburn hair and baggy punk clothes could not hide the treasures underneath though. Patty was often referred to as “The Body” working with the likes of other Supermodel “Bodies” as Elle Macpherson, Iman and Julie Wolfe. Racy images of her face and body graced the editorial pages on all continents from her first cover of Elle, to covers and editorial spreads in Vogue, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar and Cosmopolitan. She represented such prestigious companies as Chanel, L’Oreal, Wella, Prescriptives and Hanes.
Through out Patty’s modeling career she also studied acting, dance, voice, spirituality and all forms of transformational work. She was often caught meditating back stage at the fashion shows, entangled within the clothing racks! So in the late 80’s when she began her formal acting career she changed her name to Shanti, a spiritual name given to her by her meditation teacher. Since there was already a Patty Owen in the Screen Actors Guild, initially dismayed, she changed her name to Shanti Owen to join the union and bring her spiritual energy with her for support.
Featured in such TV shows as NBC’s Miami Vice, ABC’s Our Family Honor w/Ray Liotta and CBS’s Neon Jungle starring Suzanne Pleshette, Patty finally starred in her own CBS pilot, Microcops, in 1989 where she played a cop from outer space. When the pilot shooting ended so did the relationship with her best friend, Chuck, as he died of complications due to AIDS. Patty was devastated and felt she needed to heal her heart and soul so she went to live with her meditation teacher and did not return for 7 years! Who knew it would take so long? Chuck’s death was the straw that broke the camel’s back as Patty attended at least 20 funerals of close friends from 1983-1989. She wanted to know the REAL meaning of life, not only the life of Glitz and Glamour that she had grown accustom to for the past decade.
Supermodel turns Super Hero!
When Patty, now Shanti, returned to NYC in 1996 and divorced her husband of 7 years, she dove head first into the study of intimate relationships, wanting desperately to figure out “what went wrong?!” After 10 years of nearly constant focus she began teaching others the gems she learned and found she was a gifted relationship coach. With her new found skills she found herself a fabulous new husband and together they teach and empower others to get what they want in their intimate relationships. Shanti & Arjuna combined their love of the Super Hero with their coaching work as they co-created The Transformational Warriors. Their tag line, “Saving the Planet from Boring Relationships!” is true to form, not a boring moment with these two! They recently appeared in the season finale of ABC’s Wife Swap in all their spandex glory.