Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 26 July 2014

Northern Ireland finalist's new-found respect for modelling world

Model Lauren Wee

One of Northern Ireland’s contenders in a top UK model search show has told how she has new-found respect for the business.

Lauren Wee (21), who comes from Coleraine, is among the 20 finalists who will be strutting their stuff on our television screens in an attempt to be crowned ‘Britain’s Next Top Model’.

A second local lass is also vying for success on the show – Emma Ward from Belfast.

After beating thousands of hopefuls in auditions across the UK Lauren will take part in various challenges over the coming weeks, hoping to survive eviction from the model house.

The popular reality TV show hosted by Lisa Snowdon will be returning for a fifth series on Living TV this Monday.

Describing the experience as “fast-paced, exciting, emotional and |unpredictable”, Lauren will demonstrate her modelling potential in a range of ways including photo shoots, catwalks and commercials.

As a model is sent packing each week, the eventual winner will receive a lucrative contract with top UK modelling agency Models One, and a coveted front cover of Company Magazine.

Lauren said: “Over the next 12 weeks viewers should expect to see amazing photo shoots, big surprises, a lot of screaming, comedy, some bitchiness... and lots of style! Pretty much a bit of everything.”

The qualified physiotherapist, who had no previous modelling experience, described her best moments as meeting “incredible people” throughout the show — the girls, judges, photographers and designers.

But despite the perks of “amazing freebies” Lauren also discovered that fashion is a tougher industry than it appears.

She said: “I have a new-found respect for how |difficult modelling actually is. Being a ‘still actress’ is much harder than it looks.”

With round-the-clock filming and 20-hour days, Lauren claimed the experience was more enduring and emotional than she had been prepared for. But she added she had no regrets about entering.

“I loved every minute and particularly enjoyed sharing my time with the girls. I hope that I was myself throughout, but we will wait and see once the show airs,” she said.

Lauren is currently living in London working as a physiotherapist but is planning to continue her quest to become a model once the show airs.

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