Back in December I was introduced to a young model named Samara Martins. The lone standout in a fashion show/store opening I attended in Manhattan on a cold, rainy evening. My muse Marly, was hosting the event and made the introduction. As luck would have it, Samara needed new photos for her portfolio as part of a development deal with IMG Models. I got in touch with her manager Maurice of Media Monopoly Group. We compared schedules, found an available date and quickly got the test shoot set up for late January. For the styling, I enlisted the help of my friend and vintage clothing designer, Brittany Lefils of Copperivet. Brit called in a favor from her friend Sarah, to handle Samara's makeup and hair. Here are a few photos from our collaboration and below you'll find a quick Q&A with the gorgeous Ms. Martins.
Hi Samara. I hope you don't mind answering a few questions for my readers. I think your story is pretty amazing. You’re only 17 years old and you already have a firm idea of what you want to do, career-wise. What got you interested in modeling?
As a child my mother put me into beauty pageants and I always loved to pose in front of the camera. I was always a ham from the beginning! Everybody, from my aunts to my cousins told me I should be a model, but I always felt awkward because I had these weird glasses, with chicken legs and a long frame, but every time I saw a camera I still wanted to jump in front of it. When I was 16 I met a kid named Matt Hunter on the train, and he told me he was shooting a music video, so I showed up and that's how I got discovered by my brand management company Media Monopoly Group. They put me into 7 months of development, then I was signed to IMG.
How important is your family with regard to your modeling career and are they supportive?
They are a very important part of my life as a model. My mother is very supportive, but unfortunately my dad is not. Until I get my first big placement as a model... my dad will then finally see that I am serious about my modeling career. My dad would rather have me become a nurse, but my dad's doubt in my career, motivates me to work harder every day.
Word on the street is, you were made in Brazil and raised in New Jersey. Can you explain that a little more for my blog readership and for any of your fans that may not know your backstory?
Yes I was! Haha... my parents "made" me in Brazil but around the time my mom was 3 months prego they made the choice that my life would be better in the US. (She now lives in Newark, N.J.)
As a new model, I still get nervous on shoots, but I'm being coached to shake off my nerves. I once worked with a photographer that did not give me any direction and it was an awkward experience to work through, but the job must be done, so I adjusted. I was very happy to work with you. You made me feel comfortable and safe and you coached me, which I loved! It helps a lot.
I ask everyone this question so here goes…. what kind of music do you listen to but specifically, in the morning, afternoon and late at night?
In the AM I like to listen to artists like Maroon 5 and Gaby Borromeo. I love her music. She inspires me to be strong (she's also one of my good friends!). ASAP Rocky gets me into the gym, and the rest is on my Pandora and Spotify play list. In the afternoon I have no time and at night I play love songs. I'm a sap for those types of songs.
Lastly, what plans or projects do you have on your schedule in the near future? Where can we expect to see more of you?
I'm signed to IMG MODELS. They have about 60% of all the Victoria Secret girls and my dream as a kid was to be one of them. In the Brazilian culture to be a VS Girl is like being Michael Jordan. We love and embrace our Brazilian top models and it just happens to be that they are VS girls. If you go to my Facebook fan page you'll always see me in a Chicago Bulls cap or jacket.Thats how much I want to be a top model and to be a VS Girl. My projects are coming up. IMG is sending me out to castings and my branding company is in talks for me to have my own TV show with Redline Films. Cross your fingers! Right now I want to finish school, get my car, and try to work as much as I can as a model, for VS to take notice and let me be a part of their league.