MP Fresh Face: Sarah

Why did you decide to pursue a career in the modeling industry?

After being chosen for Top Model, I was surprised at how challenging and rewarding modeling was. From the outside it can seem like a cruel, superficial world that uses beautiful women only as props but the reality is much more complex and, I think, better. That’s what got me started in this industry.

And maybe it’s because I’m in the plus-size division, but I’ve found this world to be filled with kind and generous people that are interested in a creative collaboration, like Charles Silverman and Kristina Vartulli, two of my favorite photographers. I’m so lucky: I’ve always felt like I played a role beyond just a pretty face in my shoots. That’s what’s kept me in this industry.

How did Cycle 9 of ANTM prepare you for the fashion industry? any tips you learned from the show that you want to share?

I went into that show a frumpy English major and came out a model. ANTM was my introduction to the fashion industry, really. I went into the show knowing much less than the average girl, I think. I’d never watched the show and I didn’t know much about fashion other than loving the pretty pictures (I mean, I had no idea who Karl Lagerfeld was).

I learned so much it’s hard to know where to start. Most importantly, get in front of a camera as much as possible. No matter how gorgeous you are, there are more angles to your face and body than you know. A mirror can only show you so much: test with local photographers, look on Model Mayhem, do whatever you can to be in front of the camera.

Be brave. You never know what will be that perfect shot: jump, laugh, stick out your tongue. The worst thing that will happen is that the photographer will say, “that doesn’t work for me” and that’s a sentence a model should never be afraid of hearing.
Also, hemorrhoid cream works on puffy eyes better than any cucumber in the world. The makeup crew taught me that.

When you’re not modeling what do you keep busy with?

I read like a fiend, all the time. My Kindle is my best friend. I also just discovered kickboxing, and I’m obsessed. I’m one of those people that goes on jags and I’m on a big time kickboxing jag.

For the Summer, what are your wardrobe must haves?

Light, easy dresses and statement accessories. It’s so easy: throw on a jersey dress, a big necklace or a gorgeous scarf and boom! Fashionable. Just as comfortable as sweatpants, which I hate. And I love dressing up cutoff shorts. So chic.

What does Madison Plus mean to you?

Madison Plus means losing the arbitrarily defined limits on how a woman should look without losing the glamour.

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Visit Sarah’s blog See Sarah Banks Erratic In Heels.

If you would like to work with Sarah please visit her agency’s website IPM Models.

Do you think you could be our next Fresh Face? if so email us your professional photos to