How did you become a model?
I was 14 years old with my grandmother at some casting for a TV show because I wanted to become an actress and there was a scout who would divert kids either to modeling or acting. So this guy told my grandmother that I was very tall and beautiful and I should try a modeling career – it would be very easy for me. So we scheduled an appointment with the agency and I signed a contract immediately and three months after I was already on my first trip to Japan.
So you left for Japan on your own?
My mum was really scared but she understood that it was a great opportunity for me and agreed so I found myself in Tokyo for three months and it was great. I was not afraid at all. The bookers were nice, we had our own a driver so it was very safe for a young girl. I never felt threatened!
Do you remember the first job you got there?
Yes it was some kind of lookbook and it seemed so easy to deliver. I got my first job as a child when I was 7 – it was a small part in a TV show, so at 14 I was already experienced in terms of exposing myself in front of the camera.
What’s the best thing about it for you?
For sure, traveling and meeting people from other cultures and mentalities. And I have to admit that I enjoy shooting editorials and seeing myself in all those magazines in different places in the world. My mum is so proud and it makes me happy!
What’s your best project so far?
I mostly enjoy the runway and I had the chance to do some good shows, like Valentino, Balmain etc (their teams are so great). I have done some editorials for Vogue, L’Officiel and Harper’s Bazaar but my favorite one wasn’t something that big. It was for a Spanish brand called Lefties. It was the campaign and we shot it in Lanzarote island. The weather was great, the sea was amazing and then I saw myself in posters worldwide. I loved it!
What is the best city for modeling for you?
For me I prefer Spain and America! I have spent 3 months in New York and it was so cool, crazy and exhausting but cool. And I hope to go to LA some day!
Do you have a favorite fashion designer?
Yes of course. I like the powerful style so for me it’s Alexander Wang and Saint Laurent or this kind of staff.
Beauty or Style for you?
Style because it means you have created something. Many people think that beauty alone is enough but I see it in this job -it’s not. You can get a job by the way you present yourself in a casting. The client will feel your energy and they can be convinced by it that you have what it takes. They won’t choose you only because of a pretty face!
What do you think is the biggest myth about models?
The one that to get a really cool job you need to sleep with somebody! And one more. That you stay skinny by taking drugs!
So… are models normal, ordinary people?
Of course. We are normal people like everyone else! And it’s so bad that some girls look at how models look in the magazines and think that we are perfect and that they can’t be like us! Because we are not perfect. We have skin issues often, we sometimes say yes to junk food, we have bad days… look it’s just a job! And it’s a hard one. You always miss your family and you can’t maintain a normal relationship, with you being most of the year in another part of the world.
What is the thing you are most complimented for in this job?
They tell me often that I have a strong face and the same like you said before. That I remind them of the supermodels of the past!
What is your best quality as a person?
Intuition! I believe in the energy of the world around us and I sense people’s energy the moment I see them. The moment I look somebody in the eyes I know a lot about them.
How do you spend your free time? Any hobbies?
When I travel I do sightseeing! In my country I coach young girls who want to become models! I do gymnastics, mostly stretching and I like playing video games – I am a fanatic!
How do you coach other girls?
Well they write to me on instagram and I start coaching them about posing, walking on the runway and give them the right inside in fashion and advise then on how they can make their first steps safely and professionally!
Are you enjoying that?
Yes, it’s very rewarding for me because I feel like I am doing something useful with all the good experiences I have had so far.
How did the lockdown affect your life? What was the best and worst thing about it?
When it started I had to stay in Russia with my family and this made me realize how important they are to me. Before the lockdown when I was travelling I would often forget to call my mum, now I speak with her almost every day. And now I try to enjoy all the little things in life that I used to take for granted. I think we all do!
What are your dreams about the future?
I want to be a really strong woman. I don’t like this stereotype we have back home of finding a rich husband to settle in. I want me to be the rich husband in my life. I want to rely on me!
Make a wish for mankind
Believe and never give up! The universe will provide for you as long as you believe!