America's Next Top Model, Friend, Author AND Artist. Naima Mora is more than just a pretty face. See what her book is about and her catwalk fashion tips in this month's Feature Friday!
LFLL Getting Up-Close & Personal With Naima Mora
LFLL: Hi Naima! Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. I loved you on ANTM! What was life like during America’s Next Top Model? How was it living with that many girls during such an intense competition?
Naima: ANTM was a very surreal experience. It was strange to have cameras recording everything you do... kind of like the movie The Truman Show but you know the cameras are there. I grew up in a house full of girls, I have five sisters. So I was used to dealing with the day to day small dramas that incur with so much estrogen. I made some life long friends though and I kind of feel like the other girls are my ANTM sisters!
LFLL: I know it’s been awhile since you were named America’s Next Top Model but what was life like after the show?
Naima: ANTM helped me to launch a career in fashion. It has been a lot of hard work though. I think there is a common misconception that when you win the competition a career is just handed to you. The other contestants now get a lot of big prizes including Magazine cover shoots. I had to work really hard to book my covers and truly live up to the name of CoverGirl. All in all though, life has been amazing and I am so grateful to such an incredible (almost overwhelming at times) positive response from my fans and fans of the show. I really wanted to start creating my own art not just being a part of someone else's vision as a model. So in response I perform with my rock band Galaxy Of Tar and I also wrote and published my first book this year called Model Behavior.
LFLL: Oh wow! You’re an established author! I can’t wait to read your book! What inspired you to write Model Behavior?
Naima: I wanted to give something tangible back to all the people who supported me and my career endeavors. I wanted to go the extra step and use my experiences in life and the fashion industry towards inspiring people to live healthy and fabulous lives. I wanted to give people the knowledge I wish I had when I was younger.
LFLL: I totally did not know you were a part of a band too! My next question is going to have to be…. What are 3 things most people don’t know about you? (Lol sorry it’s like a 3-in-1 question!)
1. I am a workaholic. I haven't taken a vacation in three years! I love travel and get to travel a lot for work... but its not the same as being on a fabulous vacation.
2. I am fluent in Spanish. I don't think a lot of people know my background. I'm black, Irish and Mexican.
3. I know how to ride motorcycles. I love doing adventurous things, and it feels so free being on a bike. I don't own one now though, because i think its really dangerous driving in LA with one.
LFLL: Ok, last question I promise! I ask this to all the people I interview. Because of the nature of the fashion industry, how do you define beauty?
Naima: Beauty is really determined on how you feel about yourself. I am a Buddhist, and I guess I actually could have stated that in the last question. But part of Buddhism is seeing the potential and enlightened version of everything! Every person, object or circumstance. So I find beauty in everyday life. It is a thing that inspires. Beauty is a feeling of love, acceptance, courage, identity, luxury and wisdom i think.
See some catwalk tips from Naima Mora on my Instagram. Lol after a couple walk sessions and posing tips, I'm almost certain I'm not cut out to be a TOP MODEL! But thanks Naima for taking the time to show me!
Ok. So, as always, you know I have to have my outfit deets! TeeHee...
What I Wore:
I didn't think someone who won a top model contract and landed a CoverGirl gig could ever be as nice and humble as Naima is. I was pleasantly surprised and I'm really glad I got the chance to know her better. She's an amazing person inside and out.
Stay tuned for next week's Feature Friday everyone - Thanks for reading!
HINT: it'll B exciting! Kekeke...