May 13, 2008
B&M's 's Kelly Foss in St-Maarten
Hong Kong Is My New Home Away From Home!
I am speechless. The past 12 days have been a whirlwind! Upon jet setting to Hong Kong I thought I would be overwhelmed by culture shock and I feared the language barrier, however I did not need to worry. As soon as I got off the surprisingly relaxing 14.5 hour plane ride I was happy to be welcomed by a Starbucks and English signs.
From here I was kindly picked up by one of my bookers from my agency, Model One, and taken to the model apartment. To my surprise I arrived to a gigantic studio space and two female model roommates greeted me: Dani Thompson and Sasha Dolbenev (International Model Management). Both from Barrie, Ontario, they immediately made me feel welcome and at home. Plus, I am proud and amazed to say that I did not get jet lag and I did not even sleep on the plane. Yes, I was pretty much awake for two days straight without an ounce of tiredness. The 12-hour time difference was a breeze to say the least.
Over the past few days the girls and I have grown really close and I have already fallen in love with the city. It is absolutely spectacular! HK is urban, artistic, and sophisticated. The people are also very nice! Sometimes they are even a little too nice. That is, to all models out there, you should be prepared for people staring at you and taking pictures with or of you. They are the paparazzi and you are Angelina and Brad Pitt – especially on the subway.
Speaking of the subway, HK is sooo easy to get around. There is no need for a car! The subway takes you anywhere across the city in a matter of minutes. There are only 6 or 7 subway lines and each of the stations are filled with English signs and a satisfying 7-11 at every corner. Surprisingly, I already find it easier to get around Hong Kong than Toronto.
While the majority of models live in Central (downtown HK), the girls and I are situated in Chai Wan, which is one of the farthest towns from the city. The majority of jobs are situated here however, sometimes even just floors below us in our apartment building. Nevertheless, we still feel a little distant from everything. We are a 25 minute commute from the city and the majority of our castings are in Central. Plus, all of the restaurants and shopping are downtown.
Kelly Foss in Hong Kong
Speaking of dining, models get dinners here for free! I could not believe it the first time I arrived! There are about five restaurants/nightclubs downtown that serve models up to 6-course meals and unlimited drinks every night. It blows my mind. I always want to tip the waiters but they will not take any money from me. I keep reminding myself not to get used to all this free stuff because I won't be getting this service in Toronto without a credit card in my pocket.
So what was my first week working in HK like?!? To my surprise I have been doing very well! Last week I had 1-3 castings every day and I am happy to say that I have already booked four jobs. On my second day here I booked a fitting for LEVI'S JEANS and it was one of the most fun and highest paying opportunities here. I displayed around 80 pairs of jeans and tanks for buyers from across the world.
The second job I booked was on Thursday and it involved posing in poster advertisements for the Beijing Olympics. Specifically, I had to wear a few gymnast outfits and pose beside Olympic stars in front of an Olympic banner. This job was pretty fun because I got to dig out my dance moves from when I did Acrobatics (flips and stuff) 'back in the day.'
What's really cool is that the client for this shoot ended up booking me again for a runway show this past Saturday that was for designer dresses and hats. Being friendly and respectful is not only rewarding to your clients but it makes them realize that you are a professional model and it makes them want to book you again. I find that the clients here really like models that show some warmth. So remember always be professional! (e.g. shake their hand upon introducing yourself, and a second time to thank them for their time). Kind manners go a long way!
So what is in store for this week? Well, Monday was a holiday and today (Tuesday) I am getting prepared for a string of castings, one of which is for Jessica Magazine; a very popular young female fashion magazine (I would compare it to Elle Canada). Plus, I just got booked to be the only model for a showing for a popular jewelry company here called Alder. Plus, I just got word from my booker today that there is a really good chance that I will be a new face for Amway; a health and beauty company (like Revlon).
There is sooo much more to tell you but I will leave it for my next blog! I especially want to go into more detail about the city! I think I will title it "Only in HK." For example, did you know that you cannot drink the water here and that there are palm trees everywhere?! Sometimes I feel like I am still in the Caribbean (I just got back from doing a swimsuit shoot in St-Maarten before flying to HK). I would like to thank everyone who is following my blog and I cannot wait to tell you sooo much more!
Ciao for now! xoxo
Kelly Foss is a B&M model, currently in Hong Kong, currently with Model One in Hong Kong.
Kelly Foss in St-Maarten