Thank you message from Nicole FoucheShaun Matthee
In 2015 I decided to stop doing pageants and start a career as a runway model. I had entered my fair share of beauty competitions and won a few noteworthy awards here and there, but nothing ever happened after I won something. I would always be back at square one, struggling to get somewhere in the industry. In September 2015 I entered the South African Talent Championships where I took part in the modeling division. This was not like a competition where you would compete against other entrants, it was a medium for scouts and other important people from the entertainment industry to notice and recruit new talent from the different divisions. As the Lord would have it, Suzette Marais, the CEO of Top Model South Africa, happened to be one of the judges for the modeling. She scouted me and placed me in the top 22 of Top Model South Africa which kickstarted a lot of great things for me.
During my time taking part in the competition I learned how to walk like a proper runway model and how to work under the pressure of moments before a runway show, how to behave with grace and how to cope with instructions constantly being yelled at you. What makes Top Model just that much better is that they don’t just leave their entrants until the rehearsal day before the show, they take days beforehand to coach models who need coaching and teach other important life skills like how to get sponsorships and sell themselves as a business, which are important skills to have in this industry. They also arranged get togethers so the entrants could bond and get to know each other as well as a sponsored NBI brain profile .We had sponsored photoshoots from professional photographers such as Vernondo Boshoff and Digipix who taught us important things to know going forward.
I got a callback from Boss Models after the grand finale but was sadly turned down for a contract, however, it did not stop me or God’s plan for me and He once again used Top Model and Suzette to open some doors. In August I attended the first ever Top Model Convention where some of the most important people in the modeling industry of South Africa spoke and gave some insight. I met up with Suzette and she helped me to get into a casting for SA Fashion week, which is not an easy task if you aren’t signed, and in September I walked my very first SA Fashion week. That wasn’t the first time that Suzette has tried to help me. She has also contacted LST models in London and we are currently talking about a possibility that I could sign with them. She is constantly trying to find ways to help me get signed by agencies and i wouldn’t have gotten this far without her help.
Suzette and Top Model has opened doors for me, allowing me to do what I love and grow as a person at the same time and I cannot thank them enough. Suzette is a strong woman who handles everything in life with grace and love and it is an honor to know her and as for Top Model and the team behind it, i wouldn’t recommend any other competition to aspiring models. Thank you, for everything.
Also, a shout out to Mia (head of sponsorships), you and Suzette make a great team and you guys deserve medals for your hard work!