I am a black ballerina.
Atira, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Model?
My passion is dance. Over the past year, I discovered my newest passion which has become modelling. I began modelling unintentionally. After convincing myself to attend the model call for the largest modelling team at my university, I found myself making the team. Shortly after, I began progressing so much at runway walking that a photographer asked to shoot me. After my first photo shoot in October of 2016, the photos were uploaded onto social media. The amount of attention the pictures received shocked me. From then on I was consistently contacted by local photographers and began shooting whenever I could.
Who is your inspiration in life Atira? How do you keep inspired?
I have many inspirational people in my life, but one of the primary people would have to be my older sister. I keep inspired by watching others. I pick up on all I can from people I look up to and use them as motivation to push myself further.
We all make mistakes Atira; we wish we could take back. Please tell us about time being a Model; you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
My third photo shoot was one of my longest shoots ever. I was photographed in three outfits/looks. Due to some complications that the photographer had with another client, my shoot ended up lasting about 6 hours. By the time we shot my energy and attitude were poor. As a model, it was my responsibility not to let my frustration show on the set. I know that now.
Atira, when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Model, how do you go about prioritising your clients’ needs?
I set reminders on the calendar on my phone to remind myself to bring everything I need, including extra makeup and hair tools whether a makeup/hair stylist is provided or not. Itâ€™s better to be safe than sorry. I also try to bring heels and a top, bottoms, and a dress to the shoot just in case something goes wrong with the stylist. Being extra prepared puts less stress on everyone.
Please tell us Atira, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Model?
One day a photographer wanted to do an impromptu shoot where I'd need to be ready with hair, makeup, and wardrobe in 2 hours. Mind you; this was on a weekday where I had a class in 4 hours. I immediately went back to my dorm and got everything done that I needed to including packing my books for the class Iâ€™d need to rush to after the shoot. That turned out to be one of my favourite photo shoots.
Atira, please give us an example of a time when you were able to persuade someone to see things your way at work successfully.
A photographer wanted me to wear something I wasn't comfortable in. I convinced him that I had an alternative idea with the outfit that compromised both of our wishes. In the end, he loved the outfit.
Atira, please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Model. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you want to share with everyone. What is it and why?
My proudest moment has to be the end of my first full runway show. I felt so accomplished and satisfied with my performance. It's rare for me to feel this way because I can be hard on myself.
Atira, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
During one shoot I randomly decided to take on the cherry blossoms off of the tree I was posing on and put it between my teeth. I was sceptical as to whether the photographer would like it or if it would look flattering, but he ended up loving the idea. Sometimes it can be hard to remain confident in your decisions on set with a huge camera and lights in your face, but if you do it right it can come out beautifully!
What advice would you give to the people who want to be successful as a Model?
Donâ€™t be afraid to reach out to photographers. Practice posing and facial expressions in the mirror whenever you can. Learn YOUR body.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state what type of collaboration you are looking for?
Photographer: Jacob Webster @jpwphotoPhotographer: Allen Stewart @stewdiophotographyPhotographer: Gosnell McDermott @gosnelm