Her beauty is astounding yet she walked on set with a humbleness noticed by everyone. None of us knew much about her other than what we have seen in her portfolio and the warm feeling we felt around her – like we had known her for years. What her interview revealed to us is why Anivia is so different. We hope you enjoy getting to know her as much as we did.
[Maddy] How long have you been modeling professionally? Tell me how you got started and what steps you took to enter the industry?
[Anivia] I started out modeling when I was a teenager, but never got picked up by an agent. I did a few magazines like Teen People and some hair magazines. As I got older I started to put on some weight and I “kind of” gave up. I met a woman by the name of Theresa Randolph and she introduced me to Plus Modeling. I had no clue what it was!! I always dreamed of being signed with Wilhelmina… so I called them and found out their open call day. I went and they gave me a little constructive criticism and then they signed me.
[Maddy] How many “tests” did you do before visiting the agencies or did you walk in with a Polaroid?
[Anivia] I actually had not done any tests as a plus model. I went in with the worst pictures I could have had… they were what Wilhelmina called “Halloween like” — lol. I did my first test shoot through Willie with Michael Creigh.
[Maddy] Did you have to pound the pavement and visit several agencies or were you picked up right away?
[Anivia] I have strong faith in God. I only wanted to get signed with Wilhelmina and I knew if it were Gods will, “He” would make it happen. I just put all my faith in “His” hands and “He” answered my prayers. Well, I should say he showed me what HIS plan was for me.
[Maddy] You are signed with one of the most well known agencies in the US… what advice do you have for unsigned models about preparing themselves to meet with agents?
[Anivia] PRAY! FAITH! …. And professionalism. You need to eat, sleep, breath and live this. It’s a time to give up on anything in your life that does not prepare you to pursue your dream.
[Maddy] During our shoot, you told me that you took Ballet classes… tell me about how you feel it’s benefitted you.
[Anivia] THANK YOU SUSAN! I was not as experienced as many of the beautiful and talented women we have at Willie. Susan (My agent) felt that a ballet class would make me more comfortable with my body. It would help me find my center, and make me a lot more flexible. I must say that I really learned discipline with the ballet. Which is for sure something you need in this industry.
[Maddy] Tell me about how you have been able to cultivate a good working relationship with your bookers.
[Anivia] Just being myself. I always walk into a job knowing that the job is not about me it’s about the product. I’m there to do a job and make the clients day go smooth. I have not put in enough years, blood sweat or tears to be a diva and make my clients not have an enjoyable experience. With that being said even at the end of the day when it’s all said and done I will never have enough years in the business to ever be a DIVA.
[Maddy] Tell me about some of your favorite modeling jobs so far.
[Anivia] I’m so blessed and gracious to have any and every experience. I enjoy every job because I always remember it’s not about me it’s about the product and I’m so ecstatic that they chose ME to do it. I have to say though, with all honesty, this job with PLUS Model Magazine was my biggest break through. It was amazing! I have never felt so comfortable on a shoot to just ‘let go’ and go for it. This shoot was really me. Although I kept in mind I was here to do a job, it felt like the shoot was an introduction of who Anivia is. The clothes were so fly. I would for sure wear all of them. I must say Madeline I have never look so hot in animal print!
[Maddy] You are one of the more “curvier” models Wilhelmina has on their board, how do you keep in such great shape?
[Anivia] OHHHH NOOOO!! You’re going to make me say it. Honestly I really don’t do anything. I eat what I want, I live my life and I just keep being healthy in mind. I go to the gym just to stay healthy, but I NEVER put too much emphasis on food. There are so many more important issues in life, and as long as I stay healthy I’m good. On my doctor’s scale and according to society I’m overweight. Blah, Blah, Blah. I’m happy!
[Maddy] How do you feel about being called a “plus” size model and representing 65% of women in America?
[Anivia] (SMILING) I can’t put it into words. I just wish the world could see the expression on my face. Models are always looked at as not relatable. It feels so good to know that women come up to me everyday and just tell me that I’m their inspiration. Not to mention I never have to worry about compromising my Christianity by doing a half naked or vulgar shoot. I know “Willie” has my back and my best interest at heart and I will always be able to represent my BIG BOLD BEAUTIFUL women.
[Maddy] We have been watching the industry change for the past 10 years… how has it changed in your eyes?
[Anivia] It hasn’t changed much. The one thing I will say is the idea of a more healthy woman is becoming acceptable by society, but I could care less if it’s acceptable as long as you are happy you wont notice the change in the industry whether it be good or bad.
[Maddy] What are you ultimate goals in the modeling industry?
[Anivia] My goals have already been met. I’m signed with Wilhelmina, booked major clients, have made an impact on young girls, but most of all I want to keep doing what I’m already doing… just more of it!!!