Category Archives: Model

One to watch: Russia’s Yana GoodDay

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Yana GoodDay

Entertainment comes in many different shapes, sizes, and forms. For instance, actors entertain by temporarily transforming themselves to fit the mold of a specific character description and adopting all of the various mannerisms, personality traits, and quirks that go along with it. In contrast, models entertain by serving as a visual aid for individuals creating works of art, taking photographs, or advertising commercial products. Regardless of how an artist chooses to appeal to their audience and entertain their supporters, it requires an unprecedented amount of hard work, dedication, and perseverance. For Russian model, actress, and television host, Yana GoodDay, it is a commitment to fulfilling a childhood dream and beyond that, entertaining is a career that she wouldn’t trade for the world.

Despite the grueling nature of the modeling industry, GoodDay has managed to rise above her competition and has earned herself work representing a number of prestigious, world-renowned companies such as Huggies, Citroen, KRKA, and more. In 2007, GoodDay began working with one of Europe’s largest lingerie and swimwear manufacturers, Naturana. In fact, she has often been credited with helping enhance Naturana’s signature brand and has been instrumental to their growing customer base over the years.

“After representing Naturana in both print and runway formats, Yana was enlisted to become a spokesperson after each show, where she once again impressed everyone with her sensational gift to push the boundaries of the Naturana line. She has been absolutely critical to a massive increase in sales for Naturana, as well as stirring up even more appeal for the brand across the world. It has truly been one of the main highlights of my career to be in her presence. She is an extraordinary model and I have enjoyed seeing her career skyrocket over the years,” Renata Kowolik, Sales Manager, Naturana.

In addition to her modeling career, GoodDay has worked as a television and radio anchor, reporter, and journalist for media network gurus such as MTV, Channel One Russia, NTV Channel, Russian Radio, and several others. When she sets her heart on a job, she will stop at nothing to secure it and her unparalleled talents, coupled with her feverish passion for entertainment, have helped her build an unbeatable reputation in her industry.

One area of her career that GoodDay takes particular pride in, however, is in her ability to act. Over the years, she has acted in films, television series, as well as commercials. In fact, three years ago, GoodDay began working for a production company called Kino Atelye and in her work with this company, she has earned herself roles acting in several of their productions, such as The Detectives and The Track. Prior to working with Kino Atelye, the largest focus of GoodDay’s career had been on her opportunities to model and host television programs. For this reason, she was thrilled by the prospect of refining her acting skill set and expanding her reach in the acting world. Unlike modeling and television hosting, GoodDay is particularly motivated by the idea that, as an actress, she can assume the lives of unfamiliar individuals and experience new worlds through the characters that she plays.

“I make an effort not just to act, but to really live my character. I want to understand how I might react in their shoes or how I might interact with them if I were to meet them in real life. In addition, I think that extracting elements of your real-life experiences helps enhance your characters but I also appreciate the guidance of a director on set,” said GoodDay.

In 2015, GoodDay landed herself a prominent role in Kino Atelye’s production, The Sled, which tells the story of a new governmental body, FES, created to solve X files and high crime cases. Launched as an experiment, FES trains young professionals to solve crimes, and assists other special organizations to do so. For her role in the series, GoodDay had the opportunity to engage in uniquely intricate scenes involving lots of action and exercise. In one particular scene, her character enters into a physical altercation, for which GoodDay had to act a very rough scene. In reality, she enjoyed all of the action inherent within the scene and considered it to be a very good workout. She embraced every chance she had to let her natural acting instincts guide her through the scene and considers recalls working on The Sled as being one of the many highlights of her career.

In the case of The Sled, GoodDay’s character was pivotal to the storyline but incidentally, GoodDay became instrumental to the cast. The show’s casting director was looking for an actress who could convincingly portray herself as an almost angelic, innocent looking character whilst disguising a twisted, cold-blooded killer within. When it came time to cast this part, he was adamant that GoodDay play the part. In fact, he was so certain that she was the ideal candidate for the job that he did not look elsewhere for comparison. He knew that GoodDay had the skills and the expertise to master the dynamic elements of this character and he was ecstatic to see that his instincts served him well. For GoodDay, on the other hand, the joy of working on this series came with the onset relationships she built and the opportunity to explore every great length of both the script and the visual effects department.

Working with Kino Atelye served as an invaluable opportunity for GoodDay to develop herself both personally and professionally. For the talented entertainer, getting to work with like-minded individuals and receiving praise from others in the entertainment industry is extremely humbling. Stay tuned to see what this versatile, talented entertainer has in store for you next!

Model Francois Angoston’s athletic past is greatest asset

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Francois Angoston modelling for Belk

Growing up in Guadeloupe, Francois Angoston spent his time playing sports. He was always an athlete, always making sure to be in the best shape possible. Later in his life, when he had made the transition to modelling, his athletic build and instinctively hard work ethic from years of sports training became his greatest assets, and today he is known internationally as one of the best models to come from the Caribbean.

While modelling for the popular American department store Belk, Angoston’s history as an athlete proved to be vital. Modeling for the catalogue in the sportswear collection for the last four years due to his incredibly defined physique and the captivating intensity he expresses in his posing, Angoston is an asset to the catalogue and brand. He has modeled Belk’s premier collections that have featured brands like Nike and Under Armour, displaying every article of clothing from compression shorts, to sneakers, to tracksuits, and sweatpants. Not only do these images have appear on posters in the 293 stores across the country, they also appear in magazine ads, and on the company’s website.

“What I liked most about working for Belk, was that they gave me so many experiences. I did things I never did before and it was always a pleasure working with such a great team. Most of the time we were shooting sportive topics, I really enjoy being energetic and dynamic on shootings. It makes a lot of fun. One day I was shooting with a kid and had to give him a training on the field. It gave me a journey back in the days when I trained kids in sports. I love kids and it’s so great how much energy they have,” Angoston described.

Angoston immediately impressed the casting director with his confident movements and versatile look, and his talents for the brand initially made them keep asking for him to return each year. Not only did he get to display sporting wear, he modeled a variety of lines for the store.

“I wanted to work with this client I loved the diversity of their clothing collection. Working for Belk is always a great experience. We’re doing so many different things and I can play different roles. One day I’m wearing a classy suit, the other day I’m riding the surfboard, go fishing or flying in a helicopter. They always have great ideas, beautiful locations and a lot of adventures to offer. I’m always excited for the next shoot,” he said.

Megan Hurly, the Senior Art Director for Belk knows firsthand that a model’s work is a critical staple and necessity of the U.S. fashion advertising and marketing industries, and she says her company relies on the skill of professionals like Angoston.

“The work of a model frames our apparel lines, making it imperative to find ‘the one’ who can match our creative intentions and complement them. Because of Francois’ extraordinary talent and incredible look, I have cast him as a leading model for Belk for multiple collection campaigns and catalogues since 2013, initially casting him knowing he would be the perfect model to represent the company long-term. We only rehire models if they prove to be valuable to the Belk name and its commercial success and reach, and Francois has done exactly that, it is for this reason that he has become our go-to model for our catalogues,” said Hurley. “Francois is a unique and gifted model. He always creates success.”

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Francois Angoston in IZOD campaign

Being at the top of his field, Angoston is extremely sought-after in the industry. Many brands look to him to represent them, and his look has resonated with many shoppers. His work with the clothing brand IZOD did just that.

“Only one month before the job I just arrived in Los Angeles. The first job with IZOD was one of my first, biggest jobs, so I really wanted to work on this. You think about the immediate exposure, but I also loved the fact that they are a modern sportswear brand. I always enjoy having jobs with some action,” said Angoston. “It was a great experience shooting with IZOD. I actually get to play golf, hockey and mobile ski – that was very fun. We were going on the beach and had a great time as I had the chance to meet very nice people. But more importantly, I learned a lot from the people I worked with, as I’m always very interested and observing in how they work and behave. This attribute always gives me a better understanding and with that, I pay a lot of attention to details.”

IZOD is a mid-range clothing company that produces dressy-casual clothing, sportswear for men, as well as footwear and accessories. They are known for their Harrington jackets, v-necks, and cardigan sweaters. Consumers seek out the brand in many stores across the country, and recognize Angoston as a face of it.

“I loved the energy working with IZOD, and the vibes within the team. Everybody was extremely friendly but very professional at the same time. I really enjoyed being surrounded by happy people, as I love to create those days as a joy too,” Angoston concluded. “I remember dancing in the snow, shirtless, and one time playing football wearing underpants. It was super fun and I loved the results. How can you not love these days? That’s why I love my job.”

Model Alice Phillips Dishes on her Go-To Beauty Secrets

UK-based model Alice Phillips has made a huge mark in the fashion and beauty industries on an international level in recent years, due in no small part to her flawless features, such as her perfect lips and gorgeous blonde locks, not to mention her killer body. Alice has been featured in Hello! Magazine, a highly popular publication in the UK, Style Magazine (UK), she also had a six-page spread in 7Hues Magazine, where she looks absolutely stunning. Over the last few years Alice’s versatility as a model has been a major draw for clothing, swimwear and make-up brands such as Goals Boutique, New Yorker’s Apparel, Elizabeth Jane Swimwear, Shopshift, Jessica White Cosmetics, and more.

Model Alice Phillips
Model Alice Phillips for Elizabeth Jane Swimwear

While Alice is only 22-years-old she has a long career ahead of her as a model, which means she needs to keep her hair shining and her skin glowing at all times. And just because her beauty routine is necessary for her to continue booking high profile jobs like she does, that doesn’t mean her beauty secrets can’t be useful for the rest of us as well, because after all, who doesn’t want to look like a model? Prior to becoming the sought after model she is today, Alice spent time as a makeup artist, so if you’re ready to find out about some of her insider tips and personal favorites, make sure to check out our interview below.

Model Alice Phillips
Model Alice Phillips in an editorial for 7Hues Magazine

 

Describe your look in three words:

AP: Elegant. Sexy. Clean.

What’s your 5-minute routine, your go-to regimen when you’re in a crunch for time?

AP: When I’m in a rush for work, I’ll wake up wash and tone my face, I’ll mix my moisturizer with my foundation, I like to do this a lot as it also makes my foundation lighter for daily use. Then I will use a bold lip stick, so I only have to do a bit of mascara and eyeliner!

Never leave the house without:

AP: My lip liner and lipstick, never ever!

Exercise Routine:

AP: I live next to a hiking path, so i do that 3 to 4 times a week and then I go to the gym in the evening every other day to get my weights in!

What are a few of your beauty essentials?

AP: Sublimage Chanel cleanser is one of my favourites, I have been using that for 3 years now. If I am going for the completely flawless skin look I will use Stila stay all day foundation, this is great but on a day to day it is pretty thick, if you were to use it everyday mix it with moisturizer to lighten it, lastly my Laura Mercier powder is very important as this sets my face and holds everything in place even my eye shadow!

What are some of your skincare secrets?

AP: I think skin care is always hard to have top secrets for as everyone’s skin is so different and we have to be careful as to what we use on our skin! I would definitely go to a dermatologist and get them to review you skin, to show you what will work best with it. Me personally, I like to use a oil free moisturizer with a really hydrating serum underneath, then once a week I use the Sublimage Mask by Chanel to really boost everything!

Do you have any go-to DIY concoctions you use for skin hydration?  

AP: When I use my mask it says to use it for 10 minutes, I leave mine on overnight and then wash my face the following morning, this really intensifies the moisture.

How do you keep your hair shiny and healthy?

AP: Once or twice a week I will use a hair mask overnight with a shower cap on to intensify the treatment. Also I never blow dry my hair, that’s a massive thing that keeps my hair from breaking. Always try to wash it with enough time for your hair to naturally dry! Lastly hair oil, coconut oil is my fav!

As a makeup artist, what are some of the most important things that you learned that everyone should know?

AP: One of the most important things to me is that there is no rule with makeup just because it’s a bronzer or blusher does not mean it can’t be an eye shadow, just because it’s an eyeliner does not mean you can’t use it on your lips! Makeup is so fun, to experiment with all different products and different ways of using them is the best thing you can do! Who knows what different looks you could do!

What’s your favorite go-to makeup look for a night on the town, and how do you achieve it?

AP: My go to would be a smokey eye! Smokey eyes are the easiest to achieve once you know how to do it. I would say always start with a brown or black kohl eyeliner drawing a thicker liner then blend that out with a clean brush, go over with a shadow and keep blending out, until you get a soft smokey look. If you need to make it darker just keep going back over with a shadow.

What’s your usual makeup routine for everyday?

AP: Some days I don’t like to wear anything on my eyes so I will do a nice base, contour, highlight and brows! Thats me done for the most part!

Who are some of your beauty icons?

AP: I don’t have a beauty icon per say but I love people who start something new and make it their own! I will always thank Amy Winehouse for the winged eye liner! I love winged eyeliner!!

Favorite fragrance:

AP: I only wear Chance-Chanel EPD

“From Sydney With Love” Star Karan Sagoo in the Upcoming Film “Followed”

Karan Sagoo
Karan Sagoo shot by Toranj Kayvon

Indian-born actor Karan Sagoo recently wrapped production on the upcoming horror film “Followed,” which also stars Satellite Award Winner John Savage from the seven-time Oscar nominated film “The Godfather: Part III” and the five-time Oscar Award winning film “The Deer Hunter,” Blanca Blanco (“Bullet,” “American Romance”) and Kelsey Griswold from the two-time Golden Globe Award winning series “American Crime Story.”

Expected for release later this year, the film is depicted through a series of video blog posts made by an unseen vlogger whose interest in the macabre leads him to take his show, and a crew of three friends, to a famous Los Angeles hotel with a reportedly haunted past. As the group traverses the hotel in search of answers, they soon find themselves getting more than what they bargained for when they encounter an evil entity with malicious intentions. And that is where Karan first comes into play.

A key character and driving force in the plot, Karan seamlessly embodies the masked demonic character using his body movements to elicit fear within the amateur film crew in “Followed.” His spot-on performance is definitely a key element behind the film’s suspense.

Oddly enough, Karan was initially cast in the role of an aggressive and mentally unstable drug dealer who goes after the crew as they document the hauntings (a critical role which he plays in the film as well) however, after the film’s director, Antoine Le (“Bar Union”), saw Karan’s extraordinary command over his movements and body language, he immediately cast him to play the lead role as the film’s main antagonist.

“Karan is an incredibly talented actor. After watching the way he used his body as the deranged drug dealer in my film, I asked him to try to embody the evil demon for the film and he nailed it. I cast him for the second role right away. He was able to bring both characters to life, from their mannerisms to their body language, perfectly. Having him in the film has definitely been a huge asset,” says Le.

It will come as no surprise to those that have followed Karan’s career to date that his mastery over his body caught the attention of “Followed” director Antoine Le. Prior to embarking on his acting career, Karan Sagoo carved out a prominent position for himself in the fashion and advertising industries as a model, a field of work he continues to be sought after for today.

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Karan Sagoo shot by Casey Moore

Over the course of his career Karan has been featured in some of the world’s most popular magazines, including Elle magazine, DNA, Yuva Youth magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Man’s World, Society magazine and more. His charisma, good looks and ability to transform himself and embody different looks and personalities (which has been a huge asset in his acting career as well) has led him to be featured in ads for a diverse list of global companies such as Virgin Atlantic, Toyota, UK Trade and Investment, Videocon, Liril Soap, Max Lifestyle, Union bank, Focus T-shirts, E-Zone, Ernst and Young and others.

Having been on billboards and inside the pages of countless magazines, Karan Sagoo is probably one of the most recognizable male models in the eyes of viewers across India; but what he’s achieved as an actor has made his name known on a global scale. Karan first hit the big time when he played one of the lead bachelor’s in the hit series “The Bachelorette India,” which aired on India’s major TV network Life OK. While his role on the series several years ago made him a major heartthrob in the eyes of women across India, his dynamic talent as an actor is what has kept him on everyone’s mind.

In 2012 Karan starred in the hit romantic comedy film “From Sydney With Love,” which follows Meghaa, a small town girl from West Bengal, India, who is in for a major culture shock when she travels to Sydney, Australia for college.

Starring alongside some of India’s most sought after actors, including Bidita Bag (“X: Past is Present,” “Icche”) who plays Meghaa, as well as Ronjini Chakraborty (“Man’s World,” “At The End of it All”) and Evelyn Sharma (“Gadaar: The Traitor,” “Kuch Kuch Locha Hai”), Karan takes on the lead role of Suhail Syed in the film. A narcissist from an extremely wealthy family, Karan’s character Suhail becomes the film’s major antagonist through his relationship with Meghaa, who he sees as a challenge, which leads him to pursue her romantically.

Karan’s performance as Suhail is definitely one of the highlights in “From Sydney With Love,” as he easily embodies the attractive, but overly egotistical character in a way that makes him easy to hate.

Directed by Prateek Chakravorty, who produced the hit series “Born Stylish” and the films “Jomer Raja Dilo Bor”and “Tujhya Vin Mar Javaan,” “From Sydney with Love” premiered in Sydney, Australia and was screened across the globe in the U.S., Australia, Canada, England and India. The film was produced by Pramod Films, one of the most recognizable names in Bollywood cinema as the production company behind major hits such as “Deedar,” “Barood,” “Jagir,” “Azad” and others.  

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From Sydney With Love film poster

In addition to “From Sydney With Love,” Karan is known for his lead roles as Professor Drew in the docu-drama series “Cry Wolfe,” Mukul Sinha in the crime series “Khotey Sikkey,” as well as the series “Rishta.com” and the multi-award winning film “Band Baaja Baaraat.”

Karan took on the lead role of Vikram in the romantic comedy “Band Baaja Baaraat,” which won the coveted Aspara Award, Filmfare Award and many more. Directed by Maneesh Sharma (“Fan,” “Ladies vs. Ricky Bahl”),  “Band Baaja Baaraat” follows two wedding planners, Shruti played by Zee Cine Award winner Anushka Sharma (“Sultan,” “PK,” “Nh10”) and Bittoo played by BIG Star Entertainment Award winner Ranveer Singh (“Finding Fanny”), tasked with planning the weddings of three very different and demanding couples.

One of the couples is Vikram, played by Karan, and his fiance Preity, played by Kanksha (“Paranoia”). Due to Vikram’s family wealth and status, he has the means to give Preity the wedding she always dreamed of, even if it means bringing in India’s biggest star to perform at the wedding. A key character in the film, Karan’s memorable and magnetic performance as Vikram in the critically acclaimed film “Band Baaja Baaraat” definitely earned the actor quite a bit of attention both in India and abroad.

Aside from playing two lead roles in the upcoming horror film “Followed,” Karan is currently featured in a commercial for TagFi, a popular new social networking app that allows users to connect and find groups of people with common interests and passions, and easily make plans. In the commercial Karan plays Neil, an on-the-go business professional who is unable to meet and make connections with people due to his busy lifestyle, but thanks to TagFi, Neil’s social life is buzzing.

“The ad has been featured on app download services worldwide such as iTunes and the Apple App Store, and has been viewed millions of time. Karan is super professional and dedicated to his craft. He has a very natural charisma and gravitas as an actor that really comes across on screen. He has played a lead role in endearing Tagfi to millions around the globe,” says award-winning director Cole Mueller, who directed the Tagfi commercial.

In the commercial world, Karan is also known for being the face of major ads for Mother Dairy ice cream, Samsung, Raymonds suits, Ariel detergent, Lipton iced tea, Sompo insurance, Lux soap, Fiama Di Wills body wash, Volkswagen and more.

From his lead roles in several highly acclaimed films to his illustrious career as an international model, it’s easy to call Karan Sagoo one of India’s hottest exports– and he’s definitely one you should keep your eyes out for!

 

Dancer Anton Engel talks the BBC Music Awards, Magic Mike Live, and doing what he loves

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Anton Engel at the BBC Music Awards.

Last month, dancer Anton Engel performed for millions dancing at the BBC Music Awards. The experience was not necessarily new for the young dancer, who has been featured on many broadcasts in his established career, but it was thrilling none-the-less.

The show, which premiered December 16th, 2016, featured Britain’s best musical talent. Engel knew what being picked as a dancer for the show meant, and would not let the pressure of performing on live television interfere with his job.

“It is always a great feeling to have such a big audience in the auditorium and at the same time watching you on the television live. The crowd was absolutely amazing,” said Engel. “We made sure we knew our material inside out so that we could would only focus on delivering a great performance and presence on stage.”

Engel, who is also a model, was given the opportunity with the show to really focus on his appearance on stage.  He was playing the role as both a dancer and model, with the responsibility of accompanying the presenters on stage with the right timing and elegance. They needed a model who would be able to take direction from a director very quickly regarding counts, placement, timing and movement. Coming from a dancing background, this was not an issue for him.

“It can be very stressful, but at the same time it is what I love. It was all about having a good quality of movement with an elegant and jazzy walk,” said Engel.

The ceremony, being one of the largest music shows in the world, had an average audience of 3.9 million people watching live on BBC One. Engel worked closely with the world-renowned team at Black Skull Creative productions, including Ross Nicholson, Dan Shipton, and choreographer Jay Revell.

“Anton will always present a great final product while keeping a professional approach to it during the process. It is always a pleasure to work with Anton, since I know that my work is in good hands. He has always delivered a great performance with a personal touch that only Anton can create. His performance quality is very original and pleasant to watch while his energetic and positive personality stays very enjoyable to work with,” said Revell.

Originally from the countryside in Switzerland, in a small town called Ballen, Engel has come a long way. He has performed for the British royal family, danced with worldwide top-charting group Fifth Harmony, toured with the sensational glamor group The Dreamboys, and been featured on Alan Carr’s New Year Specstacular. No matter how big or small his job is, he is always doing what he is truly passionate about.

“Dancing is something that I have always enjoyed. I feel like I can express myself in a way that words would not be enough. It’s that moment where you and the music become one and everything around you stops. The dance world is such a nice atmosphere, when you meet a dancer you have a lot you can relate to since you are sharing the same passion and have the honor to experience the feelings that dancing can give you. Being lucky enough to have an audience to share my passion with is the best feeling ever,” said Engel.

Engel grew up speaking three languages: German with his mother, Swedish with his father and French at school and with friends. At 13, he and his friends formed a competitive breakdancing group. He moved to Sweden by himself at the age of 16 to study dancing. At 19, he moved to London to live his dream of being a professional dancer. He is now 23 years old and have a critical place in the dance and fashion industries all over the United Kingdom, and will soon be making his way to Vegas to dance in Channing Tatum’s Magic Mike Live.

“The feeling of knowing that I will be moving to Las Vegas working for Magic Mike is unreal, I still can’t believe it. I am constantly thinking about it and it puts a smile on my face. Knowing that I will be performing for thousands of people in the iconic Hard Rock Café in Vegas is a dream coming true,” he said. “It is a huge change of lifestyle for me and I’m looking forward to it. I feel like It is time for a new chapter in my life and I have never felt so ready.”

Engel will be working alongside the director, Channing Tatum, as well as choreographer and co-director Alison Faulk, who choreographed the Magic Mike films with Tatum. He will also work with choreographer Luke Broadlick, associate choreographer and director Teresa Espinosa, and all the other professional dancers in the show. But for Engel, it is just another opportunity to do what he loves.

“When I dance I feel like everything around me stops. All my thoughts and worries are put to the side and I can enjoy life and the moment. The feeling of you being overtaken by dance, whether it is you just improvising, performing on live TV or for a big audience, the feelings and the way it makes your body feel there is nothing else like it,” he concluded.

You can buy tickets to Magic Mike Live here.

Copenhagen Model and Actor Andreas Holm-Hansen Shines Bright!

Andreas Holm-Hansen shot by Freddy Billqvist
Andreas Holm-Hansen shot by Freddy Billqvist

With the poise of a veteran thespian and an appreciation for the beauty of the human form, Andreas Holm-Hansen is a remarkable figure with talent that shines through in his work as both an actor and model.

In his first big role, Holm-Hansen played ‘Mad’ Mads Steen in the Swedish series “Dreaming in Mono.” The show’s characters were each from a different Scandinavian country, with ‘Mad’ Mads Steen hailing from Holm-Hansen’s native Denmark.

“This was the first time I was given a full script, and I had a lot to learn and memorize,” he said, recounting the initial shock of jumping into such an extensive role so early in his career. “My character goes through a big transformation, and trying to play this was an eye-opening experience for me.”

When Holm-Hansen began acting in Los Angeles shortly after, opportunity found him almost overnight when he was cast in a lead role in the music video for “Blow Me (One Last Kiss),” the latest hit single at the time by three-time Grammy Award-winning musician P!NK.

For Holm-Hansen, there is far more to “being in front of the camera” than simply “being” there. To him, every time he steps into the frame is a chance to step into someone else’s mind.

“I love that your body is your main tool, that you need to learn new things for every role you play,” he said. “With acting no two days are alike — new people, new locations and constantly new impressions and experiences.”

Holm-Hansen has talent in spades, but he also has the added advantage of looking every bit the part of the handsome Hollywood leading man. He is quite literally the picturesque embodiment of a cover model. With his toned physique, air of confidence and striking red hair, it’s no surprise he’s caught the attention of some of the most influential figures in the field today — including famed fine art photographer Thomas Knights. When Knights set out to make a book featuring the 100 hottest redheaded men in the world, he approached Holm-Hansen to be one of the “Red Hot 100.”

“In ‘Red Hot 100,’ I was featured along with 99 other redheaded guys, and we were branded the ‘unofficial 100 hottest redheads in the world,’” Holm-Hansen said.

The photos, which celebrated “ginger” men’s sexuality, were used in Knights’ high-end coffee table read “Red Hot 100.” Holm-Hansen described it as an amazing experience, but there was no way he could have known how immense an impact the shoot would have on his career.

The first book had featured 100 models. But in 2016, Knights began a follow-up, “Red Hot II” with creative director Elliott James Frieze, and chose Holm-Hansen to be one of just a handful models. The book once again focused on redheaded men, but this time it was a more intimate approach. With fewer models, the new series of photos of Holm-Hansen received a much greater focus.

Andreas Holm-Hansen on the cover of Thomas Knights' "Red Hot II"
Andreas Holm-Hansen on the cover of Thomas Knights’ “Red Hot II”

“The book is built around stories of many redheads, who are known for being bullied and for often having a rough time with name calling and teasing,” Holm-Hansen said. “Thomas Knights gathered many of us together and allowed us to share our stories and show that even though we had it tough, we fought through it and became the strong individuals we are today.”

Being featured in “Red Hot II” was an honor in itself, but when Knights was finalizing the book for print Holm-Hansen was in for a big surprise — he was chosen to be the cover model, the very first thing people would see when they picked up the book.

“I had worked really hard to be in great shape for the shoot, and then I was told after the project…  that I would be getting the cover,” he said proudly. “It feels amazing.”

Both books are available now, and with Holm-Hansen appearing prominently on the cover, “Red Hot II” is impossible to miss — or resist.

Andreas Holm-Hansen is a shining star, a fact which continues to capture the attention of those in Hollywood and beyond. With talent, charm and good-looks that could heat a cold-room, he is truly unparalleled by any other figure in the industry today.

Gabriella Spacciari shows versatility in both acting and modelling

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Gabriella Spacciari modelling for Quem Disse Berenice

Although Gabriella Spacciari started out knowing she wanted to be an actress, she always remained open to new opportunities. This how she came into modelling, and now millions of people have seen her face.

Spacciari was studying acting when she first started getting modeling jobs. Since that time, she has done a wide variety of television commercials and prints.

“Modelling is a private acting to the camera, who has the power to capture the beauty of the shapes, colors and shadows. It’s the idea of this ‘magic eye’ that is your audience of one,” said Spacciari. “I love to photograph and be photographed.”

One of Spacciari’s largest campaigns was for Pepsi, when she was in a commercial with the soccer player David Luiz. In the film, two girlfriends are ready to go out when it starts to rain. One of them almost gives up afraid of ruining her hair style. She tried to escape the rain, but it leaks on her hair. When she enters the party, the player David Luiz identifies with her.

The commercial was shot in London and directed by Pedro Pereira. The campaign was shown on TV Globo during the FIFA World Cup in 2014.

“We had a bunch of restrictions to be followed and Gabriella had the quality we were expecting for the acting to be natural, funny, with a naive seduction,” said Pereira. “Gabriella was very professional during the long hours shooting. Also, she photographs amazingly, which contributes to the success of the campaign. I’ve been seeing her on many campaigns here in Brazil and I think she´s getting her space, showing more on each project the great actress and model she is.”

One of the campaigns he is referring to is for GVT Communications. This included Veja Magazine, one of the biggest magazines in Brazil. During this time, she worked with Mabel Feres, who has worked for many brands such as Vogue and Marie Claire, and has done portraits of Andy Garcia, Anne Hathaway and Cindy Crawford, to name a few.

“Modelling is something that requires a lot of discipline and understanding, knowing what your style sells,” said Spacciari.

Spacciari has done many national campaigns in Brazil for SuperBonder, GoodEyer, Pósitron, Dupont, Óticas Carol. She has represented big brands such Dupont, Motorola and Trident. She also shot for Cultura Inglesa, which was for metro, outdoors, and schools all over Brazil, working with Patricia Mesquita and William Mello.

“It had a great range. People used to send me pictures with them and the outdoors,” she said.

She also did a make-up tutorial campaign for Quem Disse Berenice. It was at the stores nationally, and also online.

“Its huge, everybody sees it and comments on it,” said Spacciari. “It’s fun to go to a magazine stand and see yourself on it, or to be crossing the street with your actual boyfriend and seeing a bus stop with you smiling at another guy.” 

Spacciari is recognized internationally. She moved from a small city to São Paulo, and graduated in drama. She has done stage plays, and modelling jobs. She did a supporting role in the feature The Red Thread with the Mexican director Alfred Widman, as well as the leading role in the film Before Sunset I Think of You with the Chinese director Yuk Law. She was in the webseries BlackSpiderMan that went to San Francisco Comic-Con, the LA Comic Con, the Kamikaze Comic Con just last month.

“I think I discovered the capacity of overcoming barriers by working in different places and communicating with different cultures,” she concluded. “I’ve been discovering my art and been in projects that have been recognized around the world.”

 

From Humble Beginnings to International Fame– Actress and Model Ashiko Westguard

Ashiko Westguard
Canadian model & actress Ashiko Westguard shot by Erwin Loewen

 

Ashiko Westguard has a lot to be proud of; her hard work as a model has led to international success and recognition, she has made a successful transition into the film industry and she has an inspiring family who encourage and support her.

Westguard’s family remain at the pinnacle of her life and even of her achievements, with the highly sought after model and actress crediting them for her passion, confidence and imaginativeness, arguably the defining traits, aside from her enticingly exotic and raw beauty, of her success in two of today’s most competitive industries. Westguard however, only speaks of the ease with which she wins over the many world-renowned photographers and clientele she has a repertoire with. She has a unique way of cultivating emotional connection and positivity through images, no doubt her enchanting character is a lasting effect of her lakeside upbringing back home in Innisfil, a quaint town in Ontario, Canada.

But don’t let her rural upbringing in mislead you, with a maternal role model like hers, it’s not surprising that Westguard has an awe-inspiring career which has continued to take her across continents modeling in Japan, Hong Kong, Spain, France, South Korea, Denmark and Slovenia. She attributes her strength, determination and courage, which have all helped her earn coveted jobs, like her most recent ad campaign for Dita von Teese Lingerie shot by Albert Sanchez, to her mother, a political refugee who arrived in Canada alone as a teenager from Czechoslovakia.

It takes a certain wild energy and emotional embodiment to command the world’s attention on the cover of a magazine. Westguard is no stranger to these high-paced shoots as she has graced numerous covers including Women Magazine, Femina Magazine, Women’s Fitness, Essentials Magazine, Sweat Equity and Verve Magazine.

Growing up with a father who is a champion hydroplane racer, this wild energy is in no short supply. Westguard called upon her wild women qualities for her recent shoot in Slovenia, where she took on the role of the ultimate wild woman, a Bond Girl, alongside Robbie Williams as James Bond, for the internationally recognizable brand, Café Royal.

While she may share some of the credit for her break into the modeling industry at age 18, with her younger sister who also signed with acclaimed agency Next Models, only her own hard work can account for Westguard’s introduction to the acting scene. Westguard’s modeling career has put her unique capacity for emotional intelligence and confidence on display in a long list of international ad campaigns, and it’s those same traits that have helped Westguard make a name for herself as an actress.

Acting became one of Westguard’s earliest childhood dreams since she first took the stage in the Stephen Lee Cock Theatre’s production of “On The Tip of My Tongue” back home in Canada; and her perseverance and dedication to turning it into a reality has definitely paid off. Training with professionals like David Rotenberg helped Westguard make the challenging transition from modeling into acting, and over the last few years she has successfully evolved from the portrayal of emotions externally to the embodiment of a character’s essence on screen.

Some of the roles she has become best known for over the years are from her portrayal of the riveting and exceedingly complex Eve in the sci-fi feature “A Dark Matter” and Beverly in the Leo Award winning series “Painkiller Jane” where she acted alongside multi-award winning actress Kristanna Loken from the films “Beyond the Game” and “Fighting for Freedom.” She has also guest starred on the series “Kaya,” as well as “The Red Booth.”

 

Ashiko Westguard
Ashiko at home in Innisfil with her dogs Zandaya (left) and Miley (right)

 

In the midst of a bustling schedule and international success,Westguard still finds time to return home to Innisfil, where she enjoys a simpler life, breathing in nature and being with family. With a family full of inspiring role models and a community that knows her more as their neighbour than the glamorous girl from the covers of magazine, it is no wonder that her childhood home is where she choose to return to for grounding and inspiration. Having this base has allowed Westguard to transcend the typical barriers of the fashion and film industry with grace, landing her on the side of blissful success, facilitated by the confidence, passion and self-worth instilled in her by her supportive family.

 

Catherinelle Campaign Combines High-End Apparel and Accessories with model Axel Swan Maldini

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Axel Swan Maldini modeling Catherinelle handbags

 

Axel Swan Maldini, a 23-year old model from the U.K., brought his world-class modeling talents to a campaign for the highly prestigious Italian handbag company, Catherinelle.

The campaigned was photographed by esteemed photographer Settimio Benedusi, a fashion photographer most known for his work with various companies including Versace, Persol, Ferrari Spumante, Yamamay, Seventy, and Fisco, among others. Benedusi’s work as been featured in publications and magazines such as Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition, Maxim Magazine, Sportsweek, Image Magazine and Digital Photographer, among others.

“The goal of the shoot was to capture multiple generations of a family using rustic, sepia tones influenced by an Eastern European aesthetic,” Benedusi said of the project. “Mr. Maldini’s look is a distinctly striking one.”

Benedusi described Maldini’s gaze in the photographs as vacant, and, “Paired with illustrated arms and [an] ominous stature,” ultimately making him the, “ideal model for this shoot.”

The campaign was shot in Milano. Regarding the location and feel of the project, Maldini explained, “The background had to resemble vintage family portraits of a gypsy family. The idea was sort of family portraits, so the poses were as traditional as possible.”

While the poses of every shoot differ from one another, Maldini said, “When it comes to shooting, I’ve always really tried for the mood of the shoot: the message it has to deliver, as well as the creative process that happens on the other side of the lens.”

For the Catherinelle campaign, Maldini said, “The poses were really natural, and they had to resemble the typical family portraits of the past. There was no particular facial expression, if not the one of a formal family portrait. The shooting was still very spontaneous, even though the team had to go through the mood-board to ensure the outcome was as desired by the designer. The main challenge was to pose without making the picture look too posey.”

Clothes featured in the shoot were from high-end designers such as Vivienne Westwood and Versace. Incorporated into each distinct look were Catherinelle bags.

“The reverence of the shoot is reinforced through the contrast of the models,” Benedusi commented. “Without Mr. Maldini in the campaign, I’m not sure that we would have celebrated the success we have had.”

Maldini has contributed his modeling talents through leading roles for Kon Streetwear, Papercut Magazine, Lui Magazine, Fucking Young! Online’s editorial “Lucha Libre,” the Zeynep Guntas Look Book, Urban Tribe, and Cult Shoes.

“My approach to each job has been very spontaneous, and I’ve always been glad to collaborate with creative people, which is definitely one of the main motivations,” he said. Maldini, a well-rounded model who has reached the peak of the industry, mastered the art of runway modeling and has made appearances through Barcelona Fashion Week and shows by Krizia Robustella.

“In the last twenty-five years,” Benedusi said, “I have worked with every type of creative in the industry. It is with this time as a photographer that I have noted what it takes to succeed in this highly competitive field. Mr. Maldini is an asset to the American and International fashion industry. He is a considerable force within the modeling world, and his continued presence on the runway and in front of the camera will only bolster his standing as a highly demanded model.”

An Interview with International Model Axel Swan!

Model Axel Swan shot by Anton Bjorkmann
Model Axel Swan shot by Anton Bjorkmann

Born in the UK and raised in Milan, Italy, 23-year-old Axel Swan is one fashion model whose pouty lips and bad boy style exudes the kind of sex appeal that transcends cultural boundaries. Being brought up in what is arguably the high fashion capital of the world, it’s not surprising that Axel was scouted by a plethora of agents who hoped to represent him in his teens; but at that time he had other things on his mind– like art, music and roaming the streets of Italy on his moped. The now sought after model admits that he just needed to grow up a little before he was ready to give the fashion world a try; but once he did, there was no turning back.

Currently signed to Two Management in the states and Uniko Models in Barcelona, Axel’s edgy rocker look has led major fashion companies around the world to consistently book him to be the face of their campaigns. Besides his outward appearance, which is undeniably a challenge to peel your eyes away from, what makes Axel so special in front of the camera is the fact that there is a sweet air of innocence to his personality that radiates from his photos and creates a beautiful dichotomy. To put it simply, Axel Swan is one mesmerizing model.

Some of his most recognizable campaigns and editorials to date include shooting for Junya Watanabe & Loewe’s collaborative collection, Barbara Sanchez-Kane’s “Catch as a Catch Can” collection, Urban Tribe’s “Sub Urban” collection, Hells Bells, Cult Shoes, Cotton Club and others. Axel also recently shot a campaign for Coca-Cola, which will be released later this year.

Axel was not only featured in leading men’s magazine GQ (Italy) as one of the main models in the campaign for the Junya & Loewe collection, but he was also featured in the collection’s fashion video, which was shot by Andrea Olivo and went viral in 2013. The video garnered Axel, the other models and the company a lot of attention when it was included on The Fashionisto, GQ Italia’s website and many other high profile outlets.

In addition to helping put many brands on the map in the eyes of fashion consumers, Axel has also taken his place in front of the camera shooting editorials for purely artistic purposes, like the 10-shot solo editorial he did for Papercut Magazine’s “Shiele Reloaded” spread. The photo collection, which was inspired by the work of iconic Austrian expressionist Egon Schiele, reflects Axel’s astonishing versatility and capacity for bringing intense emotions and characters to life.

To find out more about Axel Swan make sure to check out our interview below!

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

AS: My name is Axel Swan Maldini, I’m 23. I was born in a small town close to Manchester in the UK in July 1992. My mother was modelling in Milan at the time and my dad started working in a bank while he was promoting at one of Milan’s biggest nightclubs, and so they moved back to Italy when I was just 2 years old. I attended Italian schools, and I recently got my bachelors degree in fine arts at the Academy of Fine Arts of Brera.

I’ve always been really into music and skateboarding. I picked up the bass guitar at the age of 15 back when I was a punk, probably one of the few ones in Milano, Italy. All I was doing was putting soap in my hair and sewing patches of the bands I liked on my jeans and putting together some great distorted tunes with my friends. When I realised music wasn’t just about screaming and distortion I decided to attend a music school where I studied bass guitar for more than five years. In 2011 I started a band called ØJNE. We toured Europe a few times and released three vinyls.

About modeling.. I remember I was scouted by a tall young ginger haired man, on a warm day of the Italian Autumn, during my punk times. I was sitting in a corner next to a shopping mall having a beer and listening to my favourite noise, and the young lad come close to me and he smiles asking me if I could please open for a fashion show that I would have been perfect for, and that he would bring me to Elite afterwards so they could represent me.

The only thing I could do at the time was tell him to get lost… I refused his offer and wouldn’t take his business card. I just probably needed some time to figure things out and maybe grow up. Yeah I was a punk, but I was only 15. I got into modelling few years later at the age of 21.

How did you get into the industry?

AS: I remember meeting my ex-booker at a bar and we exchanged numbers. And then I received her call a couple of months later while I was driving my moped. She said a client really wanted to meet me so I accepted, and became a part of the agency.

What do you enjoy about working in the industry?

AS: Growing up I was always really shy and introverted, and I thought the industry was the right place to force myself to show my personality to others, as well as meet many talented individuals. I managed to improve my personality and kicked away most of
my shyness!

Also I’m very fascinated by what happens behind the camera, and it’s really interesting to try and understand how another person sees you and what role they give you to interpret. Being the “object” of a creative process can only improve my skill as a graphic designer,
as well as train my eyes and develop further awareness in my artistic choices.

On top of that clothes are always really, really nice. Also it’s a great opportunity to understand something more about fashion design, fabrics textures and all that comes with it!

What agencies are you with?

AS: TWO management – Los Angeles
Uniko – Barcelona

What are some of your favorite brands and why do you love them?

AS: I don’t have any favourite brands and I don’t love any one in particular. I used to be really into Rick Owens (I still am, except for the fact that billions of people started to dress with copies of the real clothes without really seeming to understand why) and all the high end brands related to it… I still think the atmosphere they recreated, it’s something unique and has taken a lot from a few different cultures and background and they put them together with a dark “goth” attitude.

On top of that there’s alway a meticulous attention to the details of the fabrics and textures. Recently I re-discovered the Scandinavian touch to fashion, which is always extremely clean and minimalistic.

How has working as a model affected your style?

AS: I don’t think working as a model has affected the way I dress. Obviously at times you need to dress accordingly to fit the client you’re going to meet, but I always do it with my own touch and taste.

I’ve always been extremely sure that in a way what you wear expresses yourself and in some ways some of your personality. I’d say music has affected my style more, as well as my mood and my growth.

I rarely wear clothes that I bought a year before or more, because being still quite young, I feel they don’t represent me anymore or they represent non-updated version of myself; and they could also remind me of periods of my life that can be either good or bad, but
still in the past.

Who are some of your go-to style inspirations?

AS: Love to mix and match. It could be a punk, a skater, another model, anyone could make me think of something new and different to put on.

Do you ever feel like you are two separate people, one when you’re in front of the camera, and a different one when you’re not working?

AS: Not really. Though I have to say that I mostly get picked to be the badass boy with tattoos and in “real life” I’m definitely not the one to be tough and cocky. I think one of the most interesting parts of being a model is learning to interpret the role they give you during a shoot or a movie and try your best to feel that way in front of the camera.

Can you list some of your clients, as well as the campaigns you have shot for them?

AS: I shot a multi-platform campaign for GQ Italy x Junya Watanabe x Loewe where the editorial shots were featured in the magazine, as well as GQ’s online platform and I also shot a video for them, which was featured on Highsnobiety and The Fashionisto.

I’ve shot campaigns for Rebel Root that were featured on billboards and in the papers in Barcelona, Spain, Cult Shoes and Evin Beachwear in Italy, as well as Catherinelle Bags and the campaign for Urban Tribe’s Sub Urban Collection.

I’ve also been featured in editorials for The fashionisto exclusive, Fucking Young! x Barbara Sanchez, Liu Magazine and Rendez Vous de La Mode. The editorial for Rendez Vous de La Mode was also part of the cover story.

What kind of jobs do you usually get hired for?

AS: I’ve done a bit of everything from walking the runway and shooting high fashion editorials to commercial work and bathing suit ads, but so far I’ve done editorials more than anything else. 

What is your favorite job you’ve done as a model?

AS: I’ve really enjoyed doing them all to be honest. The one I liked most was probably shooting for Fucking Young, it was fun messing around with a painted face and some Lucha Libre pieces.

Szilveszter Makó 2
Axel Swan shot by Szilveszter Mako

What would you say your standout characteristics/physical features are in the modeling world?

AS: I’m really skinny and long, got a bunch of tattoos but mostly concentrated on my left arm and my legs. Got some quite high cheekbones but not so edgy of a face. I can look a bit more commercial when I have a bit of a beard.

Who have been some of your favorite photographers to work with and why?

AS: Szilveszter Mako. I shot with him for Fucking Young! and Lui Magazine. I’m really into his surreal approach to photography– the atmosphere he manages to reproduce in his pictures definitely recalls his background and where he comes from. He has a really cold touch and the geometries in his pictures as well as the framing is something unusual. He definitely has a great eye.

Andrea Olivo . I shot with him for GQ. His style reminded me a bit of Terry Richardson, the shots were really simple and the atmosphere was more than laid back. The focus was just on the attitude of the models.

What would you say your strongest qualities as a model are?

AS: I think being myself has always worked pretty well. Apart from the way I look, which is very contradicting compared to who I am (people always expect me to be the badass junkie but I’m very sweet and easy going), I think having loads of passions and interests helps me get along with pretty much everyone in the industry and there’s always a lot to share about something. I’m very professional, I always do the best I can do, and I’m easy to work with.

Can you list some of the people you’ve worked with that our readers might know?

AS: Andrea Olivo, Catrinel Marlon, Francesco Chiappetta, Krizia Robustella, Szileszter Mako, Juny Watanabe x Loewe, Federico Garibaldi, Evin Beachwer, and Settimio Benedusi to name a few.

As a model, what are your plans for the future?

AS: Work as much as I can and discover as many markets as possible.

What do you hope to achieve in your career as a model?

AS: A couple of those big billboards wouldn’t hurt, must be a weird feeling seeing yourself printed that big! I would probably crash my moped If I saw myself that big while i was riding around town. Apart from that, I’d love to work with designers I’ve always admired and get to know who’s behind the “big name.”

What is it about modeling that you love?

AS: Modeling is a great way to get to know great and talented creative people and gives you the possibility to see places and travel more.