Photographer: Oscar Anti
Makeup Artist: Vanessa Bezzant
Hair Stylist: Vanessa Bezzant
1. What inspired you to get into this industry?
I grew up with my brother and father in a home without maternal guidance. I learned and adapted to many "masculine" activities. I was known as a tomboy for much of my childhood. On occasion, I was able to participate in more feminine activities which enlightened me to focus more on my girly side. I was constantly teaching myself how to become more fashionable by reading magazines and watching T.V. shows that inspired beauty. The moment I watched America's Next Top Model is the moment I knew I wanted to be a model and ever sense then it has been a life long dream of mine.
2. How long have you been modeling?
3. Who is your favorite model?
Marilyn Monroe. I am tremendously inspired by her and her captivating beauty. She has proved to the world that the "standard" model height is not necessary to be a successful model. Everyone is beautiful in their own ways and can become successful if they are truly passionate. Height has always been a insecurity of mine and at times will cause me to question myself. Marilyn was and always will be well known for her beauty despite the fact that she was not the typical measurement standards. She continuously reminds me to never let my height prevent me from pursuing my dreams.
4. Were you always comfortable in your own skin and in front of the camera?
No. I have always struggled to be comfortable in my own skin.This is an on going battle within myself. Modeling can either build you up or break you down. I have moments in which I feel confident and modeling comes natural to me. I also experience moments when everything feels insufficient. I will always have insecurities, but I just have to remind myself that power comes from oneself. I believe everyone has insecurities. Those who succeed are the individuals who push pass their doubts to become the person they want to be.
5. Did you have any mentors who really helped mold and guide you?
I have not had a specific mentor. The support of my fans is a huge portion to my growth. I strive to learn something new from every photographer. Every photo shoot I am part of I focus on ways to improve and grow.
6. Do you have any tips for aspiring models in the industry?
Be strong. Not everyone will like your style. Do not take it personally. Everyone will have their own opinions, good and bad. Use constructive criticism as a way to improve but always stay true to yourself. Push yourself FOR yourself.
7. Do you have a WTF moment at a shoot?
Recently I was shooting at a hot spring. I need to stress, this is a public place where people go to swim. Also, this location suggest swimsuits, but they are optional. It required a bit of a hike to get to the hot springs. So I hiked in athletic clothing with my bikini underneath. Once we arrived, and started getting ready to take photos. I took off my tank that unveiled my bikini top. It was at that point (shorts still on!) I was covered by a mysterious towel. Let me explain, this towel was not placed on me by my own hands or my company. The estranged piece of cloth was forced on me by a complete stranger (female). Apparently, this stranger could "Dictate" what swimsuits did or did not meet the standards of the public hot spring. To make a long story short: This escalated into a huge altercation. Because this stranger continued to harass me (by touching me without my permission). She explained that her reason was to "protect" her family (I wonder what she does at the public pool??) Pretty intense WTF moment right?!
8. What are some of the biggest revelations you've discovered through modelling?
Modeling is more challenging than it appears to be. There is a lot of work behind all the glitter and glam. There are so many different poses, expressions, themes and much more that play an enormous role in the outcome of a photo. It is amazing how the smallest tweak to any pose can change a photo. Modeling has opened my eyes to human nature. Revealing genuine people who really care, and others who only care when it benefits them. It is outrageous the amount of people that have attempt to be my friendly now. Versus, avoiding me or being ashamed to even associate with me in the past. I have and will always do, ALL I can to help others grow. However, I will always be mindful of my own happiness. I believe modeling has taught me not to create a facade, but to be my real self.
9. Tell us something random about yourself.
I cannot eat food without hot sauce. I carry a small bottle of Valentina Chile in my purse everywhere I go.
10. What are you most proud of?
I am proud of my father. It is because of his efforts and sacrifices that I am where I am today.
11. When it's all said and done, what do you want to be remembered as?
I want to be remembered as a humble, genuine soul with a good heart. A women who was always empowering others. A friend and family member who was always considerate, empathetic and present in times of need. Someone who possessed all the good qualities people thrive off when they were around me.