Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Balenciaga bullet Myf Shepherd and her runway "zen"

myf shepherd, balenciaga SS09/style.it

Yes, she bagged Balenciaga as well. Is there anything that Australia's latest modelling sensation, 17 year-old BrisVegan Myf Shepherd, can't do? Modelling since February, famously snubbed by Australia's Next Top Model, Shepherd hit the ground running at Australian Fashion Week in April and basically has not stopped. Venturing into uncharted Australian modelling territory in her first international runway season, she has notched up a raft of blue chip brand name shows, from Marc Jacobs to Prada, Gucci, Fendi, Christian Dior and Balenciaga. I managed to grab a quick chat with Shepherd 20 minutes ago as she tore out of Balenciaga en route to a fitting for..........Chanel.

balenciaga SS09/style.it

Click here to see the complete Balenciaga collection on style.it.

What an amazing ride these past few weeks must have been. How the hell are you?
Myf Shepherd: Hahahahahahahahahahahaha [keeps laughing]. Ridiculous!

I don't know, it's just so crazy. And I feel like I'm out of my body at the moment.

Has there been a particular highlight so far, or has it all been a blur?
Well I just did Balenciaga, that was pretty amazing.

How was Balenciaga?
It was so cool. The clothes were really incredible. And we get trade for it. So I'm going to try and get some now.

What was the collection like?
It reminded me of Power Rangers in the 90s. It was really futuristic and very structured. Everything seems to be structured.

What kind of styling?
The hair was just a plain ponytail. They bleached our eyebrows. Natural makeup. It was very 'alien'.

Were you the only Australian girl?
No Stephie Carta was in it too.

How about Nick Cave's son Jethro? Reportedly he auditioned.
Jethro - yes I talked to him. He was cool.

There was a huge amount of hype about you in New York going into the season. Sometimes that can backfire. Did you feel there was a lot of pressure on you beforehand?

Well I didn't even realise. Then my booker said one day, 'Hey there are these websites which wrote articles about you'. And it was kind of weird. I feel like it was a different person, not me.

When did you suddenly twig - 'Oh, hang on, it's actually happening'?
I don't think it's really hit yet. Probably once I get home and go back to my normal life, and do my exams. I'll be like, 'Oh wow, I was just in fashion week'.

shepherd backstage @ fendi SS09/style.it

Fashion month you mean! But there are always a lot of shows every season. You have not only done a lot of shows, but a lot of very big names.
After the Marc Jacobs show I said to my mum, 'I don't care if I never walk another show again. I walked Marc Jacobs'.

Did you receive any advice from other models going in such as Catherine McNeil or Abbey Lee Kershaw?
No, not really. It's just kind of been thrown in there. I've got someone coming around with me who's been amazing, a big help.

So how does the reality of the international modelling scene compare to how you imagined it? What surprised you the most?
That everyone is actually quite nice most of the time.

You didn't expect that?
I just know about the fashion industry from the movies and stuff, where everyone is just a bitch.

And you haven't encountered any of that?
No, not at all. Certainly not the girls. The girls are so nice.

Were you disappointed at the time by the ANTM thing?
By the time I found out it was about a month after the auditions so I had kind of forgotten about it.

When did you audition?
I think it was in November last year.

shepherd backstage @ nina ricci SS09/style.it

I mean it's really kind of ludicrous to think that a/you were overlooked in the first place. And b/that had you not been overlooked, you might have been distracted by all that and missed out on this.
Yeah I know. I think it's funny that Alice, who won last season, was in the Marc Jacobs show with me.

How about the fatigue? Many people think modelling is an easy, glamorous job which just entails walking up and down a runway. They don't realise you guys are there until often the early hours doing castings and fittings, only to have to get up at 6am for hair & makeup calls.
I was at Balenciaga until 1am this morning and then had to be back there at 5am.

So how much sleep are you getting?
When I can, I get like 10 hours, but that's not very often.

How has your family reacted?
They're looking on the internet. They find out stuff before I do sometimes. They're like 'Oh did you know that you're doing Ferré?' And I'm like, 'Oh, OK - cool!' I talk to my parents every single day for like an hour.

Any funny anecdotes - particularly surreal scenes?
This was the second time today that I'd had my eyebrows bleached. They bleached them at Marc Jacobs, for an hour and they were still orange, so they had to cover them up with makeup. And then I was wearing a hat and sunglasses [on the runway]. And then one time on the street in New York, I was at some Pride Week festival. I was standing there and this guy comes over to me and says, 'Oh my gosh, Myf!'. And I was like, 'Hi!'. And he goes, 'I'm a really big fan!'. And this was at the stage when I'd really done nothing and I was like, 'Wow - what of? My two test shoots? Thank you!'.

Tell me about the shoes. They have emerged as quite a big story this season. Karlie Kloss was quoted somewhere saying she said a little prayer before Prada.
Well I think the Prada shoes were the worst. I think there were like four stacks in that show.

How scary are they to actually walk in?
They are... I don't know. My mind kind of goes very blank and zen when I'm on the runway. I don't even really think about them. I think if you do think about them then it starts to show on your face and you start pulling some weird ones.

What is the biggest thing that you have learned over the past month?
That everyone wants something different. So, just trying to fit into what they want as much as you can.

What did Balenciaga want?
They wanted very 'androgynous'.

How do you act androgynous?
Don't be too sexy.

You're coming back to Australia to finish your HSC aren't you? You're probably going to wake up one morning and think, 'Was that all just some mad dream?'
Yeah I think that's probably what's going to happen. But when I get back I've only got about three more weeks of school and it's just all exams, exams, exams. And I've been studying while I've been over here and have done some assignments. I'm still getting good marks.

Which other shows will you be doing this week beyond Chanel?
I don't find out until the second I get to the hair and makeup chair.

What's next? Presumably you'll be leaving Australia.
Once I finish my exams, I think so. But that's another thing. You can't really plan more than two weeks in advance. Or more than two hours in advance sometimes.

What's the first thing that you're going to do once the shows are over and you are back in Australia?
See my best friend. I'm going to go and have dinner with my booker and everything. But when I get back to Brisbane I'm going to go and see my friends, because I haven't seen them in way too long.

And how long will it be before you put on another pair of stilettos do you think?
Oh at least a month.


ryder said...

ok if you did this interview than bravo if you havent than great find.
myf is an mazing looking girl. and she seems so friendly, and that is great.

On Track said...

I never watched that show as I don't have Foxtel, but she does seem to be popping up in endless shows around the world and looking damn fantastic while doing so, aussie aussie aussie!

sonny said...

isn't that Olga third down ?

Mike said...

She has done so tremendously well. Without any formulas on how to be a model, she's just stormed through like someone who has be shot down and now is winning all the glories. I stand by that good models are found not searched for... Balenciaga on your c.v.... how's that????!

I spoke to Nicola Finetti previously, he also mentioned to me that she was going to be big. No doubt in any one minds, except for some (laughs).

Patty, I didn't realise your in paris!

Patty Huntington said...

pony ryder - yes i did the iv. i say in the intro "i spoke to her as she tore out of balenciaga". and as far as i am aware - and believe me, i did scour the photo agencies and the net - it was the first piece of reportage on the balenciaga show anywhere for at least three hours.

sunster - yep that's olga. and stephanie carta as well. i thought it was pretty clear that those shots were not myf but perhaps not. when runway images finally started trickling through - almost four hours after the show had finished - i simply updated the post with a shot of myf from the show. and then one or two others for those desperate to see the collection (as everyone was at that stage). in terms of using images for 'news and review' that was already pushing it. i did however provide a link to style.it so they could see everything.

perhaps i should have done a completely separate balenciaga item but you know, if i was really doing collections coverage seriously, i'd be providing reviews of every major collection. i've done a couple. the rest has just been incidental coverage here and there. unfortunately i also have other work to attend to and sadly i have to attend to it, in order to make a living.

what fascinates me is the coverage that is being generated by some outlets whose fashion reporters have absolutely zip else to do but report on the news.

mike - i'm not in paris. wish i was mate. it was a phoner.

Anna said...

Congratulations to Myf. She's taking the opportunity, and being professional. Kudos!

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