Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Become the next top model


Mark Fraser

Have you fantasised about seeing your photograph in Vogue and Elle magazines; or walking the catwalk at New York Fashion Week for top fashion brands? Well Coco Velvet International Fashion Management can turn your dreams into reality. Coco Velvet will conduct interviews on Friday at the National Library Port of Spain to find 50 new models — male/female and plus-size to train for Caribbean Resort Styleweek Port of Spain. Candidates should be between 13 - 21 years old, confident, personable and willing to work diligently to reach the top of the modelling industry. Models attending Friday’s screening need not have previous modelling experience as those who are selected will receive free training at the Coco Velvet International Fashion Workshop 2014 which will run from June 15 to August 24 at Nalis Port of Spain. At the graduation presentation show Makin’ Style which will be held at NAPA on September 11 the top models will be awarded CVI management contracts and join the cast of Caribbean Resort Styleweek Port of Spain.

This year Coco Velvet is partnering with the Ministry of the Arts and Multiculturalism for its 2014 Technical Camp Initiative. The ministry hopes to facilitate the transference of cultural inheritance while equipping participants with the skill set to manage either their own or other artistic businesses. As such Coco Velvet’s fashion camp facilitators will teach participants how to transform their natural gifts/talents into lucrative careers in the creative sector. Young models are attracted to the fashion industry because of the glamour and excitement they see on the red carpets, magazines and the Internet; the possibility of meeting other gorgeous models is another enticement, however what they do not see are the years of dedication, sacrifices and hard work that successful models put in to get to the top.

Here are four successful New York-based T&T models who received their initial professional training at the CVI Fashion Workshop.

Dominique Armorer joined Coco Velvet International on October 1, 1997 when she was just 12 years old. She was approached by Coco Velvet’s head at Naparima Bowl while attending an event with her mother. She completed the Coco Velvet Model Workshop in 1998 and the following year jointly won the first Elite Model Look Trinidad and Tobago contest at Queen’s Hall with Marsha Alexander. While Alexander represented T&T at the Elite Model Look 2000 World Finals in Geneva, Armorer won a return trip to New York courtesy BWIA International and an interview with Karen Lee, Director of New Faces at Elite Model Management New York. In 2000, with the help of Sean Drakes, US based fashion and lifestyle photojournalist she was signed to Elite New York. She has worked in London, New York, South Africa, Argentina, Mauritius and Vienna for top fashion brands including L’Oreal Paris, Aveda, Garnier Fructis, Levis, Kenneth Cole, Mizani and Project Runway. She has done editorial layouts in Teen Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Vanity Fair, Marie Claire, Glamour and Essence.

Michelene Auguste received her initial training at the Coco Velvet International Professional Fashion Model Workshop 2005 in Matura, Trinidad; her training continued at the Trinidad & Tobago Top Model Workshop in 2008. While attending Caribbean Fashion Week 2009 she was scouted by a representative of IMG Models and offered a contract with IMG New York which is regarded as the #1 model agency in the world. She later relocated to the UK and is now represented by Models 1 London.

Paul-Robert Pryce joined Coco Velvet at its launch in 1997; in February1999 he was selected to represent Trinidad & Tobago at Oprah Winfrey’s Sexy Island Man Contest at the Atlantis Resort, Paradise Island, Bahamas. He won the title from a field of 12 Caribbean representatives from Puerto Rico, St Croix, Aruba, Jamaica and the Bahamas. His prizes included an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show, an editorial layout in Vibe Magazine and a US$5,000 Ralph Lauren Polo wardrobe. Later that year he was signed by Karin Models, Paris and after a successful modelling stint in France which included a print campaign for La Roche Posay cosmetics he moved to Boss Models New York. While in New York he enrolled at the prestigious Yale School of Drama to pursue a Master’s in Fine Arts Degree in Acting.

Crystal Noreiga participated in the CVI Fashion Workshop 2010 and won the Top Model Trinidad & Tobago 2010 contest; she represented T&T at the Elite Model Look 27th World Finals in Shanghai, China in October 2010 where she was awarded a Management Contract with Elite Latin & South America. She moved to New York in time for New York Fashion Week’s Spring/Summer 2012 castings and in her first season booked four shows including A-list designer Marc Jacobs and Tracy Reese. In 2012 she signed with Elite Model Management New York. At the 2014 Fall/Winter New York Fashion Week collections she modelled for 13 major fashion designer collections including Badgley Mischka. Her commercial campaigns include Cover Girl, Target and MAC Cosmetics. Last month she visited London to arrange for an agency to represent her in Europe. Select Model Management, one of the top three model managements in the UK signed her on May 20. Crystal now has model agencies representing her in the USA, Latin America, Europe and the Caribbean.

New models will be screened this Friday at Nalis, Abercromby St, Port of Spain from 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. Call Backs are between 4 p.m. - 6 p.m.

a Male models should dress in fitted jeans and T-shirt

a Female models should wear light or no make-up, short, fitted garments and high heels. (Except girls under 16 yrs)

A registration fee will be required

The CVI Fashion Workshop 2014 is supported by the Ministry of the Arts & Multiculturalism, the Ministry of Gender, Youth & Child Development, NLCB, BG Trinidad and Tobago and Nalis.

For more on the Styleweek Casting visit Coco Velvet International on Facebook, e-mail cocovelvetinternational@gmail.com or call the Caribbean Resort Styleweek Hotline at 620-2316.