I was born and raised in Chattanooga, Tennesse. A “Southern Girl” as some people would like to say. Where I come from you do not see a lot of people make it out for their community and become successful, but I have always had dreams of becoming one of the world greatest supermodels. My parents were great parents and I do honestly feel that they did the very best that they could with what they were given. I grew up in the projects. Harriet Tubman Projects to be exact but most people called it, “Boone Height Projects.” My neighborhood was a place that most people was afraid to come too or even ride by. It was a very gang related neighborhood and was considered as the lower class. Although it may have not been the very best place to live, I loved that place. Simply because it felt like home. All of the people in the community were people that I grew up with and have been going to school with so we considered each other as family. And that’s exactly what we were… Family.
My Parents always installed in me and my older 3 siblings 2 sister and 1 brother that education is important. Also that we could be anything in the world that we wanted to be as long as we put our minds to it. I never felt that I had limits growing up as to what it was that I could be because my parents believed in me so much that I always felt free. Everyday after school I always attended the Girls Club, better known as “Girls Incorporated.” Boy did I love that place. I can honestly say that girls incorporated helped shaped me into this bright shinning star that I am today! There I participated in numerous talent shows, plays, and was able to see historic people speak such as “Maya Angelou,” which was a wonderful and powerful experience. Every since I was 3 years old I was always bouncing around dancing with my little play microphone in my hand and I could always picture an audience in front of me yelling screaming my name excited to see me, but I must say that I didn’t actually grow a real true passion for modeling until the age 13. Since a little child people would always tell me that I’m so tall and pretty or I’m so skinny that I should consider modeling.
And although there were great African American Models in the industry such as Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell, I still felt that we didn’t have the advantage as other models. I felt as if there were still this barrier in the way that separates African American Models from getting started or getting as much work from other models because what we define Beauty and how we look at Beauty was similar to some of the exact same things that made us as African Americans feel like we were less than. Because of our hair not being naturally straighten or because of our sking tone, the features on our face. I felt like in order to overcome stereotype you have to really have thick sling and you have to just embrace what God has give you and just know that you are Beautiful because you said so. And the ultimate turn around for me that made me say, “You know what I am going to go for this, because I have a god given feeling that if I put my all into my craft that I will succeed”, was when Tyra Banks came out with the hit television series American Next Top Model. Seeing how she has been giving women of All races of all different cultures a chance to live out their dream and hearing her stories of how she got started and how she graced the covers of “Vogue Magazine, Sports Illustrated, became the spokesperson for cover girl and many other great things gave me a vision that I can do the exact same thing and many more. now a days you see so many beautiful African American Models and also singers rappers and actors gracing the covers of so many awesome magazines and being a part of do many commercial that I do feel that my time is Now!!! Since than I have been working hard towards my modeling career.
Living in a town where your city is overlooked and there’s not much opportunity available is kind of hard to break into the business but I am constantly going on auditions and I have built up a wonderful portfolio of beautiful pictures. I have fashion shows coming up in Atlanta, Ga I was on the hit television series “Single Ladies” as a glam fan and a model. I did a scene being at fashion show and actually bring of the models to walk down the runway and that was a great experience. I know that I have a long road ahead of me, but I’m not going to give up I am going to push forward and I just pray to God that the right person finds me that the right opportunity comes along. And I know that it will because I have faith.
Do you think it is harder for African American Models to reach Super Model Status in the industry? Why or why not?
I do think it’s still hard for African American models to reach Super Model Status simply because, the way we define and what we look at as beauty to me is so much different than other races. But I also feel that our beauty and our different complexions of Brown, Dark Brown, Light Skin, the texture of our hair is what makes us different and unique. I feel that if we embrace our Beauty and have confidence that’s what’s going to get us to the top. Like for an example Naomi Campbell and Tyra Banks just to name a few have excelled in the Modeling Industry and it’s simply because not only are they beautiful but they are so confident and every time they walk down a runway they walk as if they know that they belong and that’s what us Aspiring African American Models have to do. Work this modeling industry as if we know that we belong here we cannot let no doubt or no fear that we may have show.
Do you feel most African-American Models are look over for projects they qualify for because they are African-American? If yes, give an example of a time when you felt overlooked because of that reason.
I do not thingk that African Americans are over looked for projects anymore. I do feel that we are nto taken as serious as models from other races but I do feel that we are starting to be accepted in the Modeling energy but we will ALWAYS have to work TWICE has hard as the next model that are a difference race.