Catwalking straight to the WWW cyberspace, YANNA COWPER breaks the two-dimensional digital screen for a definite humane connection.
With the internet instantly connecting and delivering opportunities to make dreams into a likeable and snapshot reality, the adults of this generation are paving their own paths with their own set of unmatched skills to reach for self-fulfilling success, not quite taught in books. Part of the diverse league is a definite It-girl born with a sense of catwalk direction for the apparel industry. Arianna Cowper, better known as Yanna Cowper, is more than just your average cup of local online influencer. She has blended both being a model and influencer to her own advantage, in spite of the negative connotation that the latter brings nowadays. Having had started her career way back before the internet came rushing in, the 22-year-old has been on countless local fashion brand catalogues, such as COPPER and LCP, and walked for well-known shows like the Manila Fashion Festival.
Despite having numerous experiences and more than 30,000 social media followers under her tropical bedazzled belt, Yanna keeps it real and humble in front and behind the camera. She easily transitions into her fierce model character, delivering an onslaught of looks shot after shot, and snaps right back to her youthful and carefree self at the end of any shoot. An evident local reminder of how strong and versatile a woman can be, she brazenly advances in the career path she was fated to be in, all the while becoming an inspiration for the plentiful female freelance hopefuls who aspire to enter the gruelling model industry.
Righteously chosen to be featured in STATUS #Girlpower December issue, we got the chance to sit down and chat with the sun-kissed stunner as she shares her sworn by beauty tips, modelling advice on how to join and survive a cutthroat industry, and challenges she has faced to get to where she is today.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background and how you wanted to start modelling? What influences shaped you and your motivation to pursue it?
Yanna: Well, I’ve wanted to be a model since I was a little girl. I used to do fashion shows at village fiestas or mall shows when I was like 10 years old and I guess I enjoyed it so much that it just stuck. Modelling is the one thing I was sure of ever since.
There are many influences in Social Media alone, seeing other models make it big and do so well is really what motivates me. Another thing that pushes me to pursue it is when I get rejected, it can be a downer but it makes me wanna try even harder.
What are some challenges about being a model & online influencer here in Manila?
Y: Well, for one, competition is tough. You gotta stand out from the rest because there are so many. It’s hard because some people only think I’m a model because I’m an “online influencer” but most people don’t know that I’ve been trying to model waaay before I got into the whole social media scene. So I have to prove myself twice as much. I also know that some models complain about the influencers who book jobs more than they do, I get the frustration there. In short, it’s complicated. Haha but I’ve learned to embrace being both and let it work to an advantage.
How do you handle the pressure of being a model? Can you walk us through what you think about the creative scene here in Manila?
Y: I guess I handle the pressure by surrounding myself with good people. If I stay true to myself and have a strong support system, I don’t mind the weight of some situations.
The creative scene in Manila is great, I’m happy that it’s been growing and more people have been getting in touch with their creative side. Back then, being a photographer, model, make-up artist etc., wasn’t acknowledged as a “real job”. It’s all different now, like I’ve said, it’s even become competitive. You have all these individuals expressing their form of art and honestly being able to make money out of it.
What’s the most fun thing about your job? Anything modelling has taught you that are definitely for keeps?
Y: The most fun thing about my job is being given different characters to play. I’ll always love getting made up, layout and pegs have gotten so creative nowadays that it makes everything more exciting.
One thing I’ll always bring with me is to be tough because rejection happens often but it’ll work out for you as long as you work for it enough and in His time.
What are your top go-to comfort movies to watch on your lazy days?
Y: Well, definitely chick flicks! Top 5 are She’s The Man, Mean Girls, Love Rosie, How To Be Single, and 17 again. Honestly, the list could go on
What beauty tips do you swear by?
Y: I’ve been trying to do “less is more”. When it comes to skincare, I’ve noticed that my skin is better when I use less things on my face. I’ve switched to Glossier and the Supers seem to work well with my combination/acne-prone skin. On a daily basis, I only use their Haloscope, Cloud paint, and Boy Brow. The clean, no make-up make up look is my fave.
What advice would you give a young girl/boy who wants to start modelling?
Y: The best advice I can give is that if you really want it, you have to just go for it. You ca start by looking for people to help make your portfolio and keep shooting, keep practicing. Also, expect rejection. Expect that there are people who will make it faster than you but just trust the process.
What’s coming next for you, Yanna? Anything you’d like to share?
Y: Well I’m still tryna make it big, but I know I’d be content once I land my own billboard campaign and once I get to model in other countries for a better experience. Hopefully that’s in the books for me soon!