Book Management (Canada)
Dorothy Combs Models (U.S.)
Social Media Channels:
FB @The Romy Léa Fanpage
How did you get started in the modeling industry?
I was first discovered when my massage therapist at the time connected me with her client; a marketing manager, who needed models for a coat campaign. Despite the success of the campaign, I didn’t pursue modeling seriously until three years later when Addition-Elle did a model search. During the competition, their sister company, Pennington’s, picked me out of the contestant’s list to cast for them. I got hired, which led to me getting signed with a major Montréal agency. I’ve been modeling regularly ever since then.
What are some of your favorite modeling experiences so far?
One of the most unique modeling experiences I had was doing a standing lingerie fashion show for Addition-Elle during the F1 races in Montréal. We stood in the window of Addition-Elle while tourists walked by. It was funny to see their reactions when they realized we were alive and not plastic mannequins. Aside from that my favorite things about modeling are the people I work with and the variety it offers. It’s amazing to work on different sets and different crews with different people all the time.
Who have been your biggest life influencers and why?
I wish I had an interesting celebrity or public figure to refer to but the people who influence me the most are people closest to me, often strong women friends or relatives. Their perspectives shape my decisions the most but my instincts make the final call every time.
Making big changes to follow your career goals is a big step. Can you tell us about your decision to move to the US?
Technically I didn’t officially move yet, I followed a gut feeling that brought me to Miami for both personal and professional reasons. Due to the difficulty of crossing borders with travel restrictions, I got happily stuck here while I worked on furthering my goals. The way things are unfolding it’s likely that I will be spending more time here going forward.
As for how the decision was made, it was pretty impulsive. Before lockdown, I was planning to venture to L.A. to launch my career in the U.S. but the pandemic shut that down. When I heard that Florida was reopening I had a strong impulse to go to Miami even though I had never been before, nor did I have connections here. When I arrived I knew I was in the right place and decided to put energy into getting signed with an agency here. I’m excited to see how things unfold!
How would you describe your style?
Activewear. A lot of activewear. Jokes aside I like dressing a little younger in my daily life. Leggings, crop tops, bright colors. In Miami, almost every top has become a crop top because of the heat. Dressing up is my chance to show my more elegant side. I love trying different prints and cuts that accentuate my curves in the right way. Everything about me is round so I prefer clothing that molds to my shape rather than straight cuts and stiff fabric.
What are your thoughts about how the industry is moving towards even more size diversity?
I’m always a bit torn on this topic. One of the biggest gifts of this industry is representation. I see young girls and women walking around dressed with confidence that I didn’t have and sometimes still don’t have because body-shaming was so intense when I was growing up. Shopping for clothes as a kid was wrought with angst and shame as I struggled to find beauty in the very features that are now some of my most celebrated physical attributes.
With that being said I think it’s important not to abandon basic tenets of health and well-being. Despite never-ending weight fluctuations I have always been very active, with lots of exercises, fresh air, and movement. My motivation above all has always been my mental health and stress management. In times where I haven’t been physically active, it’s usually tied to where I’m at in my life psychologically. If my mind is heavy it’s hard for me to feel light in my body too. I have family members with disabilities that affect their weight and even they find ways to keep moving within their limits and I admire that.
What impact do you hope to make in this industry?
I ended up in this industry like everything else in my life, on a gut instinct and a lot of luck. Many models and influencers have a specific message to their brand which is amazing but that’s never been my jam. I just want to be the best version of myself and hope that my vibe resonates with the people who need to feel it most. I’m grateful that I’ve come this far and look forward to seeing what the future holds.