New Face: Nik B.
by Serena Kay Mason
Photography - Benjamin Kwan - www.bkwanphotography.com/
Makeup/Hair - Ghassan Shanti
Model - Nik B - John Casablancas Model Management - www.jcvancouver.com/
Nik B.'s charisma is practically palpable. As we take our seats in a downtown café for our interview, the man at the next table can not help but ask Nik for her opinion on the relative merits of train versus car travel. She answers gamely and I get the sense that her poise and confidence often inspire those around her to pick her brain and find out what is going on behind her stunning features.
The Ladner, B.C. native got her start in modeling not through a talent search or the mythical "discovery" by an agent, but through her own ingenuity, curiosity and ambition. "I saw a friend's profile on the website modelmayhem.com and thought, 'What's this?'" she reminisces. She explains that the site allows aspiring and professional models to connect with each other as well as photographers, stylists and others in the fashion industry. She created her profile three years ago, began building her portfolio, and has been working steadily ever since. She is now with the modeling agency John Casablancas.
With those years of experience behind her, Nik is practically a veteran, yet she has a surprisingly balanced outlook on her chosen career. While it is undoubtedly her passion, and a passion she actively pursues (even participating in a photo-shoot in Miami before a family cruise vacation) modeling is not the be-all end-all for Nik. She has recently gotten a taste of styling photo-shoots and loves it. "I love styling! I've styled my last two shoots and I'll be styling the next one as well."
Her ethnic background, comprised of a Filipino father and Ukranian English mother, has served her well in her career. Her features exude a sort of approachable exoticism and models of similar backgrounds are very popular in Asia, where she has done some of her best work. In the past year, she visited family in the Philippines and appeared in various magazines while there. She also worked in Bangkok, Thailand - a city she would love to work in again. Her goal for the next while is to return to Asia as soon as possible and every few months thereafter for steady work. In the meantime, she will continue styling shoots and building her portfolio.
My last question turns out to be the best. Her eyes light up and a smile illuminates her features. "The best thing about modeling? All the primping, all the fuss. I love getting my hair done - it's the best feeling in the world. And just for that moment in the shoot - everything's on you and you work it. You're just there, in your element, doing the thing you love. I really like that." Everything about Nik B., from her passion and creativity, to her beauty and ambition, prove that she is, without a doubt, in her element.