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One unique fact about myself is that I do not care what other people think of me. As a teenager, so many kids my age get wrapped up in the opinions of other people, but I keep my head up and walk to the beat of my drum.
Vanessa, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Model?
I started modelling when I was 14 years old, shortly after my cousin took me into her agency and I immediately fell in love with the people and the working environment. I aspire to inspire. I want to be living proof that if you want to achieve something badly enough, and are willing to put in the work for it, you can make it happen. My drive is something that I admire about myself. I am not exactly sure where it came from or how I developed it, but it's visible in everything I do, especially modelling, and it's what keeps me going. I have this burning passion for succeeding and for showing people what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it.
Who is your inspiration in life Vanessa? How do you keep inspired?
One of my hugest inspirations is Adriana Lima. I hope I look that good when I'm 36. On those days when I'm not feeling the gym, all it takes is a look at her Instagram, and I'm off my butt and out the door.
We all make mistakes Vanessa; 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.
Luckily, no event at a runway show or photo shoot where I could have bettered my behaviour or reaction to a colleague is sticking out in my mind. I'm very aware that I'm not perfect, trust me. I'm optimistic by nature, and I seem always to find a way to turn negatives into positives. Also, I worked in a restaurant part-time on the side, so I have a ton of experience with how to deal with people who aren't in the best of moods.
Vanessa, 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?
No job is ever too small; I give every gig I can get my hands on 100% of my effort. I would model clothes for a thrift shop the same as I would for Nordstrom's.
Please tell us, Vanessa, about a time you had to be very strategic to meet all your top priorities as a Model?
There was only one girl walking between my first and second outfits in a runway show I did in the spring. I can not stress the "quick" in the phrase "quick change" enough. I made sure my clothes were already laid out, and my shoes were untied and ready to hop into BEFORE I left in my first outfit. Sure enough, I was ready with a few seconds to spare.
Vanessa, please give us an example of a time when you were able to persuade someone to see things your way at work successfully.
I recently did a shoot in which the photographer thought sneakers would be the best option to wear with a certain outfit. I had bought these shoes that were far from sneakers- red heels, that I wanted to wear instead. I didn't end up having to persuade him... I walked out of the dressing room with my shoe choice on, and he LOVED them!! Sometimes, people need a visual.
Vanessa, 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?
I had the opportunity over the summer to model lingerie for a small boutique. This is by far my proudest accomplishment because it is my dream to model lingerie. It may not have been Victoria's Secret, but it was a step in the right direction.
Vanessa, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
I believe that every time you step outside your door, you are making a public appearance. That being said, I put a lot of time and effort into getting ready in the morning- putting my outfits together is a large part of that. As I said, I like to be different, so my creative side shines through in everything I wear in one way or another.
What advice would you give to the people who want to be successful as a Model?
Don't take no for an answer... and if you have to, don't let it discourage you. Keep going if you want what it is your going after. A person's determination shows, and it separates them from others.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state what type of collaboration you are looking for?
I'm open to anything.
Photographer: Stewart Smith@stewartsmithphotography