My English friend, Laura, emailed me a few weeks back to report that while in London she had seen me on the cover of a magazine. I am so thankful that she alerted me, as I had no idea. As a model, I'm constantly shooting, and my images tend to pop up in the most unexpected places. That's why I am so thankful when my friends recognize me in a picture and hasten to let me know. In some cases, the pictures have been used without clearance, which means my agency has to track them down and make sure I get paid for it. At other times, I have been paid for the usage, but it's still nice to see the finished product, as usually all I see is what is on the computer monitor on the day of the shoot.
The magazine: July 2010 issue of UK magazine Prima.
The shoot: A half-day booking in Yzerfontein, South Africa in March. Fellow cover girl Nicole Lupton (Prima, June 2010) and I carpooled together, leaving Cape Town in the early morning hours. We arrived at the beautiful coastal town and managed to disturb a family enjoying their breakfast when we knocked on the wrong door. We eventually found the correct address, and the shoot took place in and around a lovely beach house. Most of the crew were English, and had flown down for the week. South Africa is a popular destination for photo shoots because it is summer there in January, when Europe is laden in snow. The summer issues of magazines are shot several months in advance, which means shoots flooded with greenery and sunlight need to be shot in a summery location rather than the dreary European countryside during winter.
Inside my head: Longtime friends reading this will roll their eyes, but I felt completely incompetent the day of the shoot. I enjoyed my ride up to Yzerfontein with the other model (she's a sweetheart!), but once there, couldn't help comparing myself to her. She was stunning, knew how to move in front of the camera, and was super skinny to boot. Next to her, I felt oafish (commence eye-rolling), and amateurish. Thankfully, the crew didn't seem to notice my insecurities.
What you probably don't know: Cover shoots are often referred to as a cover try. It is a try because when you are shooting it, you have no idea if that picture will ever see the light of day, let alone the cover of a magazine. Until it comes out in print, there is no guarantee that it will ever run, and it is the powers that be back at the magazine office that determine what photos end up on the cover and inside each issue. When we were shooting this, I did shots in several locations in probably four or five different outfits. Also, contrary to popular belief, cover models do not get paid a lot of money to be on the cover of an issue. We get paid for one day of work, and the rates for magazines are very low. The typical day rate for a magazine shoot (whether appearing on the cover or inside) is between $150 (€123) and $250 (€205). As you can see, that's not exactly breaking the bank!
Some pictures from the day of the shoot: