Model Sara Longoria of America’s Next Top Model made a big splash in Amsterdam. She has become a favorite of top Dutch Fashion Photographer, Giusy de Ceglia, got an exclusive contract to walk in the Gomes&Esser runway show, and has booked multiple editorial shoots.
Here Sara talks to Runway Passport about her experiences as a model, her first fashion week, and the experience of being catapulted into recognition.
Click Here for Photoshoot 1
Click Here for Photoshoot 2
Sara Longoria – Gomes&Esser Show @ Amsterdam Fashion Week
Photographer: Giusy de Ceglia – http://www.giusydeceglia.com/
I KNOW YOU ARE FROM TEXAS, BUT WHERE ARE YOU LIVING NOW?
I was living in Texas before my stay in Amsterdam. I was supposed to move to LA, but had to postpone it for my trip to Europe.
HOW HAS YOUR LIFE CHANGED SINCE AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL AND HOW HAVE YOU CHANGED?
People I’ve never met or seen in my life know my name. Random people come up to me at the grocery store and ask to take pictures with me. I receive messages daily from strangers saying that I “inspire them” to pursue their own dreams, no matter how crazy they seem to others. That makes me really happy. I’ve also been put in contact with very talented industry people because of the show. I’ve had a lot more agency and job offers too. All of the attention and publicity has made me a lot more cautious now. I can’t make some silly mistake at a college party and end up tagged in a facebook picture. I’m also not as naive as I was before the show- I realize people aren’t offering me party invites and free gifts because I’m a nice person, but because they want something in return. It’s all made me closer to my family and boyfriend, because they supported me way back when I wanted to be a cartoonist and I know they’re not trying to take advantage of me now.
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO AMSTERDAM?
I was walking exclusively for the designers Gomes&Esser for Fashion Week and I was shooting their lookbook as well. I had several editorial shoots with Giusy de Ceglia as well multiple interviews with dutch magazines and newspapers.
WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF AMSTERDAM FASHION WEEK?
My favorite part was probably just after I finished walking for Gomes&Esser. I had done my job well and I could stop stressing over it. I was really able to enjoy the rest of Fashion Week after that.
ANY TRENDS OR STYLES YOU LOVE FROM FASHION WEEK? OR FROM AMSTERDAM IN GENERAL?
Harem pants in America never really took off but I see them all over the place in Amsterdam! Men and women wear them! I see them styled in ways I wouldn’t have thought of and it’s making me really want to buy a pair.
AM I RIGHT THAT THIS WAS YOUR FIRST OFFICIAL FASHION SHOW? HOW WAS IT? AND WAS IT WHAT YOU EXPECTED?
This was my first international show. I really enjoyed it! Dutch models definitely have a different catwalk style and presence on the runway from American models. They walk very delicately with very dreamy expressions, no matter what type of clothing they’re wearing or music they walk to.
HOW DO YOU STAY GROUNDED WITH LIFE CHANGING SO QUICKLY?
My family definitely keeps me grounded. They treat me like they always have and anytime I start to get a big head, I just need my mother to tell me I have spinach in my teeth for it to deflate really fast.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE FASHION WORLD AND LEAST FAVORITE PART?
My favorite part is shooting! I love photoshoots and being in front of the camera. My least favorite part would probably be the horribly shallow and fake people you have to deal with on a daily basis. The fashion industry is a very paranoid place and there’s a lot of high school drama taking place between adults.
IF YOU COULD GIVE ANY ADVICE TO A GIRL WANTING TO BECOME A MODEL WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Build up your confidence! Base your self-esteem on something other than poeple’s opinions of you. And make sure it’s something you really want to do. Being away from your family for months at a time, being told you’re hideous or stunning at every turn, and dealing with the intense competition from other models are not something you take on if you “kinda, maybe, might think” you’d like to try modeling.
WHAT IS IT LIKE BEING NOW IN THE PUBLIC EYE?
It can get really heavy sometimes. It’s made me a lot less social. I’ll never tell someone no if they want a picture or an autograph, but I will be slightly resentful that they asked me while I was stocking up on toilet paper and toothpaste at K-mart. I always get stopped at K-mart or stores like that and it makes me crazy because I always seem to be in sweatpants and flip-flops at those moments.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST SURPRISE FOR YOU SINCE ENTERING AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL TO TODAY ABOUT THE INDUSTRY AND FASHION WORLD?
This really shouldn’t have been a surprise to me, but I was really shocked when I’d say something about current events [like the reproductive health care funding being slashed in Texas or women led protests against the driving bans in Saudi Arabia or Weinergate] and the people around me would act like a poodle just spoke. You could almost see it in their eyes “Awww, she thinks she’s people!” I knew in theory that people think models are dumb, but I never expected to be patronized. But then, there are the makeup artists and hair stylists who speak up and engage in friendly debate and I really like that.
I KNOW YOU ARE STILL PRETTY YOUNG – DO YOU KNOW WHAT CAREER YOU WANT TO PURSUE?
I’d love to model as long as there’s a place for me in this industry. I don’t plan on having any sort of plastic surgery [I’m a big fan of “aging gracefully”] so I expect to be forcibly put out to pasture by the time I’m 30 or so. After that, I’d like to write a healthy sexuality column like Dan Savage or maybe have a show like Talk Sex with Sue. I’m not sex-obsessed, I’m just really in to helping others achieve a state of healthy sexuality and that includes sexual health, sexual responsibility and an open access to non-biased information.
WHERE DO YOU PLAN TO GO AFTER AMSTERDAM?
After Amsterdam, I’m going to take a nice little break with my family and then it’s off to LA, NY or back to Europe.