14 May 2012
Victoria Eriksson: Alt Model Interview
The show in its various forms and formats is probably not watched by a large number of EGL Magazine readers, but no doubt you've all heard of Britain's Next Top Model. Such a show is probably not where any of us would think to discover an alternative beauty, but in that we'd be wrong!
Victoria Eriksson made it into the top ten finals of Sweden's Next Top Model picked ahead of countless other girls. Favouring Gothic Lolita and Victorian style, she certainly stood out from the other contestants and made it into the semi-finals of the show. Blackavar talks to Victoria to see whats next for this unconventional model.
Were you a model before entering Sweden’s Next Top Model? How did you become interested in modeling?
I had done some modeling before Top Model Sweden but mostly within the alternative genre. My interest in modeling started quite early as I got scouted by a modeling agency at the age of 15. Nothing came out of it however and then I decided that I wanted to start designing clothes instead.
The modeling interest started once again when I was presenting my collections of clothes during different fashion shows, as I started to want to model in my own clothes. I also discovered the adrenaline rush of standing in front of a camera. I have also been told that I have the right appearance, weight and height to become a model but I have never applied to any agencies before.
What prompted you to sign up for Sweden’s Next Top Model?
It was by pure chance that I applied to Top Model, I never had any dream of being in any modeling contest. I had just become a member for a website searching for movie extras and saw that they applied for models for Top Model Sweden, so I decided to send an application with photos of me in my own designed clothes. At the same time I was selected to be a zombie extra for the Swedish horror show 'Den Sista Dokusåpan'. During that set I was bloodied and they put on heavy makeup to resemble a zombie and it was then they called from Top Model and said that I had gone through to the final casting. After the final casting I was selected to be one of the 10 finalists and the only gothic contestant of the show.
What sort of reactions did you receive to your Gothic Lolita style while you were on the show?
I had my gothic Lolita outfit with a dress made by Moi meme Moitie (which is my favourite brand) when I first met the jury. I received mixed reactions; Gunilla Pontén, a famous Swedish designer loved my clothes, while Jonas Hallberg, a celebrity stylist, thought that my clothes belonged to Halloween. A lot of people believe that I have taken on the name Victoria because I love Victorian clothes but the truth is I was baptized under the name.
What are the biggest differences you’ve experienced between the alternative/gothic modeling and mainstream modelling industries?
The biggest difference between mainstream modeling and alternative modeling are the height requirements and demands that you have a certain body. Within alternative modeling those restrictions do not apply, the only thing you need is to have a passion for what you do and a special style. Within alternative modeling there is also no age limit so you can keep on doing it for as long as you want to.
What would be your perfect shoot?
I can almost say that I had the perfect photoshoot during the Top Model Sweden contest. We had a zombie photoshoot at the Linda Vista Hospital in LA which featured Janice Dickinson as a photographer. I have always been fascinated by old abandoned buildings, so it cannot get better then a haunted mental hospital! In addition the photoshoot took place in a morgue so I was thrilled, while some of the other artists fled frightened like scaredy cats! First I was nervous that Janice would be highly critical to my photos, but she loved my modeling and I won best picture of the shoot.
You have your own clothing brand, Pomp-A-Dour. Please tell us more about Pomp-A-Dour and what influences your designs?
I’m not just working as a model. My biggest dream since childhood has always been to design clothes and own my own brand. During 2010 I started my own brand called 'Pomp-A-dour'. The name Pomp-A-dour means 'magnificent' to me and that is just what my design is about. I have always been drawn to the Victorian era and influences can easily be seen in my clothes. I am inspired by everything which gives me great emotions and which is beautiful.
What are your plans for the future?
My future plans are to really work hard with my designing and modeling; I am not getting younger so modeling is right now my main priority especially now that things are going so well. I will keep doing it as long as someone wants to photograph me. My dream is to go on a catwalk for my favourite designer Vivienne Westwood, I want to travel and model in Tokyo, London, Paris, New York and return to Los Angeles again. I am currently working on a new collection which will hopefully be done by autumn.