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EMMA MACLAREN: the interview

Posted on: 2009/06/29

Bottega Veneta SS09 / Ph. Larry Sultan

Classic Chic, Expensive Elegance: Emma MacLaren!

Emma MacLaren is with Models1 (London), DNA (NY), Ford (Europe), Why Not (Milan).

Courtesy of DNA

The Interview

PONY RYDER: Tell us how you were discovered and who scouted you?

EMMA MACLAREN: I was scouted at the Clothes Show live at the NEC in Birmingham, by Models 1.

PONY RYDER: The story has it that you are the only one who came to an open call casting with no make up. Did you know beforehand how to behave?
EMMA MACLAREN: I remember this, it was also quoted that I had a ‘little pink bow in my hair’ - it’s true I did, I was only 14 at the time. Fortunately I’ve been blessed with a nice complexion and didn’t need to wear make-up; however, if this had been on advice from my bookers at Models 1 then of course I would have followed it.

DNA site

PONY RYDER: Tell us about your family. Are there any other models in your family?
EMMA MACLAREN: I live with my Mum and my sister, both of whom I adore. My Mum is a nurse but has been asked if she was once a model. My sister is trained in performing arts and is currently training as a beauty therapist – she is really pretty but unfortunately not quite tall enough to be a model.

PONY RYDER: People often compare you to old school supermodels. Who do you like being compared to and who is your role model?
EMMA MACLAREN: I like being compared to Lily Donaldson; she is so versatile in her looks and also on the catwalk. I don’t have a single role model; there are so many supermodels whom I admire. However, I really respect Yasmin le Bon, I have just had the privilege to work with her, she is so accomplished and such a lovely person.

@ TFS by Bianca

PONY RYDER: Do you think that there are photographers, casting directors and magazines that can promote a model more than others, and if so, who was most important in helping you become a star?
EMMA MACLAREN: Like most models I would aspire to work with people and for magazines that are renowned and well recognised. I have already been fortunate enough to work with several famous photographers and had editorials and beauty shots in many prominent magazines. If I were to appreciate one person in particular for promoting me then it would have to be the casting director Mr John Pfeiffer.
EXIT MAG 08 / ph: Roger Rich & Sam Ranger / by ediewarhol @ TFS

PONY RYDER: You once mentioned that your bookers advise you on what to wear for each casting. Is that a common practice?
EMMA MACLAREN: It is always important to take any advice from my bookers when attending castings or go sees. Designers and directors are unique and often looking for that ‘special something’ in the models that they choose. Of course, from experience and having cast for many important people in the fashion industry I have now developed my own style but this can always be ‘tweaked’ as required.
source: OhJane @ TFS

PONY RYDER: Is it important to be among the first models at a casting?
EMMA MACLAREN: It isn’t always possible if you are attending many castings at similar times but extremely important castings should take precedence, you should arrive extra early as there will probably be a queue of models waiting. I think it shows the casting director that the job means a lot to you and that you are punctual.

DNA site

PONY RYDER: What’s the biggest mistake a model can do? Have you ever made a mistake that you shouldn’t have made?
EMMA MACLAREN: To be arrogant and proud. I have met and worked with some of the loveliest people in the industry and they deserve to be treated with respect and not taken for granted.

I can’t recall ever making a mistake, at least I hope not anyway. The worst thing that has happened to me was during a catwalk, the heel of my shoe fell off near the beginning, I tiptoed the rest of the way round and I don’t think anyone noticed!

L'officiel Paris 08 / ph: Harri Peccinotti

PONY RYDER: What’s your favourite picture of yourself?
EMMA MACLAREN: One taken during the Bottega Venetta campaign where I was standing in the garden by a lovely tree, looking heartbroken.

I also like a profile picture taken during a magazine shoot for L’Officiel magazine.

Krizia SS09 / source: Asmanis @ TFS

PONY RYDER: How has your catwalk style developed and improved? Do you have a special approach for every designer, or do you have a signature walk that works every time?

EMMA MACLAREN: Thanks to catwalking lessons arranged by my agency and time spent practising after watching Fashion TV for hours on end; I have gradually developed my own signature walk. Designers often tell you if they want you to incorporate a special mood or movement in your walk, this becomes easier with experience.

Marie Claire UK 2008 / ph: Bruno Ripoche

PONY RYDER: Have the dance lessons that you had been taking helped you with your walk and posing?
EMMA MACLAREN: Ballet and jazz dance has definitely given me strength and stamina so that I can hold a difficult pose and also poise myself gracefully. On the catwalk, it has helped with my posture and in maintaining my balance in those extremely high heels!

Runway S. Rykiel / Asmanis @ TFS

PONY RYDER: During fashion weeks models got booked to do several shows each day! How do you rush from one show to another?
EMMA MACLAREN: You have to really look after yourself, eating well and getting as much sleep as possible. I try to remain calm and professional despite the pressure. It also helps to have a driver pre-booked.

Ashley Isham FW 08/ 77 visions/ edie warhol

PONY RYDER: How do hair stylists manage to make great hairdos to a model who’s had a different hairstyle just a few hours earlier?
EMMA MACLAREN: Apart from the fact that they appear to have magic tools and sprays to deal with every new challenge, I believe that they are geniuses with amazing talents for transformation and a great deal of patience.

Marie Claire UK 2008 / Ph: Bruno Ripoche
PONY RYDER: Do fashion shows often start late because models can’t make it on time during fashion week?
EMMA MACLAREN: This does happen sometimes but there are lots of other reasons too. If the first show of the day starts late and shows are at the same venue then all are delayed. Generally, models do the best they can to make it as close to time as possible.

Dior show / source: ohJane @ TFS

PONY RYDER: What runway and photo shoot are you most proud of?
EMMA MACLAREN: I have two favourite runways, initially in my first season when I did Christian Dior in Paris and then when I walked for Bottega Venetta and closed their show.

There are 3 photo shoots I am proud of, firstly the Bottega Venetta campaign and now two new campaigns I have just done which will come out later this year.

DNA site

PONY RYDER: Tell us about the working conditions at the moment, with the economic crisis affecting the fashion industry. Has this affected you personally?

EMMA MACLAREN: I was reading in the press recently that at the moment, during the economic crisis, ‘blonde haired and blue eyed ‘ models are more likely to get work, I think this must be true as I have been booked for several amazing campaigns and editorials this past year.

Bottega Veneta SS09 ph: Larry Sultan

Bottega Veneta
PONY RYDER: You are the face of Bottega Veneta SS 09 campaign. How was the actual shooting experience?
EMMA MACLAREN: It was absolutely amazing, a night shoot in a house made of glass on Mulholland Drive in Los Angeles. There was a fabulous view over Hollywood and the team of professionals I worked with were all terrific.

PONY RYDER: How long after the casting did you find out you got the job?
EMMA MACLAREN: I didn’t have to attend a casting.

Moschino Cheap & Chic SS09

PONY RYDER: What about the Moschino Cheap&Chic campaign? How was this different from the Bottega Venetta job, as these two brands are very different?
EMMA MACLAREN: This was a lovely day shoot that took place in Paris woodland, we had great fun. I really enjoyed both shoots even though they were so different. The Moschino Cheap & chic campaign portrayed me as young and chic whereas in the Bottega Venetta campaign I looked more elegant and mature. This versatility is very good for my image.

UK Marie Claire 08 / ph: Jonty Davies

the Body
PONY RYDER: how do you stay in shape? Do you have a special food regime?
EMMA MACLAREN: I attend a gym at least three times a week, using both weights and cardiovascular equipment. I walk everywhere that I can and I eat a well balanced, healthy diet. I drink lots of water.

PONY RYDER: which products do you use for taking care of your body?
EMMA MACLAREN: I love ESPA body oils but also coconut body butter.

Ashley Isham FW 08 /77visions/ ediewarhol

PONY RYDER: which products do you use for maintaining your skin?
EMMA MACLAREN: A re-hydrating regime of ESPA products:- Cleanser, toner, face oil, moisturiser and eye cream. Occasionally I use a facemask, either ESPA or one from LUSH.

PONY RYDER: your choice of lip balm...
EMMA MACLAREN: Chanel Hydrating lip treatment

PONY RYDER: your choice of foundation…
EMMA MACLAREN: Chanel sheer Brilliance – Golden apricot

PONY RYDER: your choice of lip gloss…
EMMA MACLAREN: Clarins colour quench lip balm 00

PONY RYDER: your choice of blush…
EMMA MACLAREN: Chanel silky cheek colour Pink Cloud 24

PONY RYDER: what is the most important make up item you cannot do without?
EMMA MACLAREN: My Chanel lip balm

PONY RYDER: what is your favourite beauty indulgence?
@ Christian Dior / source: ediewarhol @ TFS /

Exclusive interview with fashion model Emma Maclaren is original work by Pony Ryder.

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