Major Models New York


Ever wondered how it all started for TALENTMAN's resident Social 'It Girl'? Discover a snapshot of Youth Culture with MADI ROSS & her Modelling journey in her latest exclusive interview for C-Heads Magazine.

Describe your childhood and how did it shape the person you are now?
I had an amazing humble childhood! I grew up with all boys. My older brother, our childhood best friends who lived next door- Nathan and Geoffrey, and then two German boys that lived down the street. I was a huge tomboy. We spent most of our time outside exploring, playing man hunt and rugby ( with full on body checking and tackling). I was the girl they all picked on! So I had to be tough and learn to throw punches when necessary. Even though i’m girlier now that inner tomboy always comes out. I’ll never forget where I came from.

Were your parents always supportive of your decision to model? What are their careers?
My dad was always super supportive, my mum not so much in the beginning, she was really skeptical, she thought I was going to get kidnapped and sold into human trafficking. Now they are both super supportive. My dad’s a contractor and my mum is a scientist.

How did you get into modeling and was it always something you were always passionate about?
I applied to a local agency when I was 15 and they signed me. It’s always something I’ve wanted to do, I don’t even know why. Maybe I watched too much America’s Next Top Model! My agency told me I’d be perfect for Asia because I was half asian. So when I was 16 I did my first modelling contract in Hong Kong for the summer before I started grade 12. It was really fun! Everything was so new and exciting. I did really well that trip. Next year, once I finished high school they sent me to Bangkok and Tokyo. I was only suppose to stay in Asia for 6 months but I ended up staying for almost 5 years! I was doing really well and making good money so it made sense to stay I guess. Everything just kind of happened. I made so many amazing friends, most of my best friends now are people I met when I first moved to Asia. That was a big reason I stayed as well. I had a family there. It was just so fun and different than everything I’d ever known growing up. Asia changed my life, it taught me so much. I learned from travelling and having to take care of myself. But mostly I learned from the people I met. To meet so many people of different ages and backgrounds and different first languages. I learned about the world. It opened my mind and changed me. I’m a more open minded and accepting person now. I would never be who I am today if I had never left home.

Describe what happens when filming a TVC from beginning to the end
Well usually the call time is super early around 4-5am. I arrive sleepy. Everyone is arriving and hair and makeup is setting up. In this time I usually grab a snack from set. Then hair and makeup will start which usually will take around 1.5-2 hours depending on the look. During hair and makeup, the director or director’s assistant usually comes over and brief you about the day and what you’ll be shooting. After hair and makeup, we get changed and then start shooting. Shooting can last anywhere from a few hours to 20 hours. It really depends. A lot of time is spent waiting in between shots as they adjust lighting and the set. If you’re shooting outside sometimes it takes even longer, as they wait for the right sun or for the rain to stop. It’s a lot less controlled than studio shoots. So the day is spent shooting, eating, waiting, eating, makeup/ hair touch ups and more eating.

How does it feel like growing up out of suitcases and traveling the world?
It’s definitely something you get used to! At first it feels very strange, but you get used to it. What is real life? You forget after a while. It definitely has its pros and cons. It’s made me realize I don’t need much though. We live in such a consumerist society, it’s easy to collect and think we need all this “stuff”. I’ve become a lot less materialistic, i’m okay with letting go of things I don’t need anymore, I love donating and giving away old clothes etc.

Do you think the states is ready for more Eurasians, if so, why?
I do! Growing up I never knew anyone eurasian except for my brother. Now I see so many eurasian kids and families. It’s definitely becoming a normality. Eurasian models or ethnically ambiguous models appeal to larger demographics. At the end of the day modelling is about making money. Clients get a two for one with us.

What does being a Eurasian mean to you?
It took me a while to figure out who I was. I had a lot of identity confusion growing up, especially growing up in a predominantly white area. Now I LOVE it. Being eurasian is a mix of two cultures, the East and West. It’s an honour. I feel special and unique to be a minority of my time. In from now everyone will be mixed, that will be the “normal”.

Have you ever had insecurities with modeling from bookers/clients constantly critiquing your looks. If so, how did you overcome it and become thick skinned especially at such a young age?
Definitely. I think everyone has insecurities but especially models. I started when i was 16 which i think was too young. My previous manager was super harsh, way too harsh honestly, it really affected me psychologically for a long time. She would really get me down about my self and body. She gave me really unhealthy advice which lead to an eating disorder when i was 17/18. At that age I was so innocent and impressionable. It took me a few years to recover which was hard. It was a mental shift I had to make in my head more than anything. You gotta love yourself! Modelling makes you yourself so much. Today I am happy and healthy! I think being a model, you are always abnormally aware of your body and appearance. The important thing is to focus on being healthy and strong, not just skinny.

What do you love most about each of the countries you come from?
Canada is such an amazing country to be from, i’m so proud of it. Free healthcare yay! I love that my dad is from Australia, i’m such an island/ beach girl at heart. I want to spend more time there eventually and get to know the country better, i’ve only been twice. My mum being Chinese is awesome. I’m more grateful than ever for that. Because if it, I’ve grown up a lot more open minded, tried crazy foods and have an understanding of the culture. Things that freak out white people don’t freak me out as much haha

What is your perception about real love?
Real Love is something you feel. And you just know when you do. It’s programmed in us. It’s the most amazing feeling to love something or someone. I think that’s what keeps the world going. We would be nothing without love.

The moments you are lying in your bed.. which thoughts come up to you?
Hmmm so much goes on in my head when I’m lying in bed.I have so many thoughts that go from past to present to future. I think a lot about things I want to accomplish in the future. I also think a lot about the past. Sometimes i’m feeling stressed and I have bad or paranoid thoughts, but I try and not let those in. I’m a very introspective person, i think a lot, I get caught dazing off and day dreaming all the time.

Who is your model icon and why?
I’ve always loved Devon Aoki. Ever since I was 14 and wanted to be a model. She was the only other Eurasian model I knew. She also has freckles like me! She really made an impact in the industry and paved the way for eurasian girls. I love that she’s “short” as well, at 5’5. She really defied a lot of odds. There’s just something so cool and mysterious about her.

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KATIA M. SHERMAN is a business woman who displays the admirable traits of passion, hard work & commitment. No matter what you do, this remarkable entrepreneur teaches us to do all things in life with integrity. TALENTMAN is truly honoured to share one of the biggest Milestones to date: An Exclusive One-on-One session with KATIA M. SHERMAN, the President of MAJOR MODELS New York. With 3 Decades of Industry Experience, discover how a successful woman at one of today’s leading agencies in the world, manages her day-to-day life on & off-duty in #TheTALENTMANExclusive No.5 ‘The President Speaks.'

TM: Who is KATIA M. SHERMAN On & Off Duty?
KS: I have to confess this but as far as MAJOR is concerned, I am never off duty. MAJOR is my 3rd Child & it needs constant attention. I juggle mom/wife/president/charity/volunteer duties 24/7, except that on the weekend I pretend I am speaking to friends on the phone…

TM: What made you decide to Work in the Fashion Industry?
KS: My mother spent a lot of her money on clothes & jewellery. She was always quite glamorous, fabulous & gorgeous. She used to wear red lipstick even when shopping for groceries. They say, “the Apple does not fall from the tree…” -one man who used to be an industry icon took me under his wing & the rest... is history!

TM: Share 3-5 Things many people don't know about KATIA M. SHERMAN…
KS: I am an accomplished windsurfer, I have green thumbs and a fabulous garden. I am a worry body & I hate to cook. Oh, and did I mention I worship my husband who is also my mentor? 

TM: How do you juggle being on Top of things at work & spending quality Family Time? In your Opinion, what is the Formula for a Balanced Life?
KS: Take each day, one day at a time…. 1 hour at a time…. one drama at a time. It’s important to enjoy the moments of happiness and make a big deal of every happy moment. My motto? Tomorrow is another day! Family comes first of course, but I push myself every day to be there for them, for everyone no matter who and when. It is a huge commitment to be that way, trust me & it can get exhausting - but I chose my life & I am grateful for everything I have so I work hard to keep it all together.

TM: Running one of todays' Top Modelling Agencies Worldwide, how do you keep up with Pressures & Responsibilities of being the President at MAJOR MODELS New York?
KS: I wear my heart on my sleeves, but I hide a lot of emotions, especially the pain people can cause me. Nevertheless, I am very lucky because I have amazing people surrounding me that serve as buffers for all the pressures that I tend to let out. I do have a temper at times - Elizabeth, Gian Maria / Jeanette / Lisa / Evelina / Nadia / Kristian / Christian / Sofiane / Stephanie / Lina / Jeremy / Delwin / Amanda / Islande / James and so many more… Everyone that’s a part of my team, handle a different angle of the day to day life at the agency - I rely on them. At the end of the day I am ‘the Captain of a Ship’ & the support of my staff gives me the strength to handle each and every minute of my work day. My team truly is extraordinary: The Senior & the Junior staff continuously play their part in perfect harmony.

TM: What are Key Traits that MAJOR MODELS New York looks for in Scouting New Faces, Male & Female?
KS: We look at potential models this way: Personality comes first, followed by the desire to succeed & the ability to take direction well. We also expect a commitment to modelling & we discuss branding, in addition to the social media following. Finally, we look at the height & the face. I don’t look at the measurements so strictly as I used to 10 years ago. The demographic has changed & people are changing; I take my chances… sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

TM: How important is Loyalty in the Business?
KS: Loyalty is the one matter that shapes a business… A loyal human being is a good soul. Loyalty is always rewarded in the end.

TM: What is the Biggest Struggle you had to overcome in your Years in the Business?
KS: I learned about the stock market after the collapse in 2009… this was definitely my biggest challenge, but it turns out to be the most informative step in my life. Knowledge is everything.

TM: For an Aspiring Entrepreneur looking to get into the Business, what Lessons can you share from your Life Experience to help them prepare for the Big Challenges that lie ahead?
KS: Surround yourself with people you can trust, but most importantly around people that can do what you cannot or have no time for.

TM: How has the Business changed in the past 10 years & what is your Prediction in the next 10 years to come?
KS: I cannot predict the future, I will just say - watch YouTube. It’s the barometer of our society. 

TM: Why did you link up with TALENTMAN for this Exclusive Interview & what are your thoughts on the Advocacy of the Agency?
KS: Michael is one of the most dedicated agents I have ever met in the last 2 years at MAJOR. He is wise, but most importantly he knows his craft and he manages models worldwide better than I have ever encountered anyone do.

TM: What Legacy would you like to leave behind when the day comes that you decide to step down from the Business?
KS: Integrity wins at the end. I want to be known as the woman that succeeded without stepping on other peoples' toes to achieve her goals. And the second legacy: To all the kids out there… If you go after your dreams with all your heart, it will come true. But be prepared to work hard.

TM: Do you have any advice for upcoming Entrepreneurs, a Message for Aspiring Models looking to getting into the Fashion Industry & potentially interested in applying to MAJOR MODELS New York?
KS: Always be yourself. Speak out and never compare yourselves to others. We all have a road to walk on - never follow someone else’s road.

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This Fall Season, follow your bliss & indulge in your latest cravings as TALENTMAN brings you a rowdy fashion story inspired by Cowboys in Style... "Why Eat A HAMBURGER, When You Can Have MILAN?" Take a ride on the wild side with our Modern Man MILAN TRUSKA as we flip through the pages of this months' HAMBURGER Magazine, Thailand.


Editorial: HAMBURGER Magazine, September 2015
Agency: WM

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