Friday, 29 May 2009

Model of the month: An Exclusive interview with uber model -Belinda Baidoo

I have another blog called Ghana Rising -and this is the exciting interview I did with uber Ghanaian model, Belinda Baidoo. She is not just a great beauty -but an incredibly talented model -with a big heart....Enjoy the interview.....xx

“In 2005, I organized a fashion show in New York to raise money for the orphanage in Ghana. This is something that I will like to do every year in Ghana or when I'm out of the country. But I can not do it alone I need help from my people to do this. We need to learn to work together and do something good to help your own" country.” Belinda Baidoo

“The first day I saw my face at Time Square. It was a job I did for Motorola, -and it was up there for almost two years.” Belinda Baidoo

I remember the first time I saw, Belinda Baidoo -her beauty, the colour of her skin and off cause that beautiful Akan mark, -and I couldn't believe it. I screamed with joy and called all my Ghanaian sisters -because (I am sure you'll agree with me) -we really didn't have any representation before Belinda Baidoo. I stumbled across our Belinda on, 'Nevs Model Agency' website -whilst researching (some much needed information) for my own model agency (othermodels). Unfortunately, -even though, I had some success with othermodels, -I didn't have the resources to truly take on the mainstream model agencies -and things fell apart. But that experience, and my time at various magazines -have taught me that the world of modelling (the whole fashion Industry) is not easy, -that's why I respect and admire Belinda and other models of colour. I am very excited about this tête tête with the gorgeous Belinda Baidoo. Enjoy.................xx

GR: Hello Belinda, how are you?
BB: I'm fine missy, how are you?

GR: Wonderful thanks. It's so lovely to finally catch up with you Belinda. What are you up to?
BB: Work, work, work. I have been in Ghana for the past four months to open a model agency called b2models. And to spend some time with my family as well; [that's very important for me] because I don't get to see them very often. I start my day; by having a cup of tea in the morning, watch the news, - do some yoga, -then go to the office.

GR: I visited your website: and was shocked to see -not you, but Kenya from ANT -there. Off cause, on closer inspection -it became clear that the beautiful photograph is part of your portfolio. When did you became a photographer -and does it mean that you have now retried from modelling?
BB: No I have not retried from modelling. I still work as a model from Monday to Friday. Living in New York, -you don't do only one thing. Kenya is a friend of mine. She did me a favour by letting me take some pictures of her. I like taking pictures. I always have my camera on me, - you never know what you may come

GR: are a busy women. What do you do on your days off?
BB: I go to the gym; clean my apartment, go to the farmer's market, -spend some time with friends, come home, -and read.

GR: How did you get started in modelling -and do you still get a buzz from it?
BB: I won a competition here in Ghana called TOP MODEL OF AFRIQUE in 1998. That's how I got into the modelling world, -and it changed my life.

GR: What has been your most memorable modelling experience thus far?
BB: The first day I saw my face at Time Square. It was a job I did for Motorola, -and it was up there for almost two years.

GR: Wow Time Square, that's amazing. Do you hang out with other models -if so, which ones and which of your fellow models do you admire -the most?
BB: Yes I do hang out models. Most of my friends are models from all over the world. I admire Grace jones.

GR: I love your style -how would you describe your look?
BB: You know, I live at east village in New York, - and that area is the coolest place to live in New York City. So I think the area's got a lot to do with the way I dress or look. I try to be very simple, easy, funky and cool at the same time.

GR: Who are your favourite designers and what item can you not live without?
BB: Armani, Miguel Adrover, Jenny Packman, Jeremy Scott, Proenza Schouler, Tracy Reese, Martin Margiela, Miu Miu, Rick Owens, Kofi Ashan, Chanel and Marc Jacobs.

GR: You are beautiful, with flawless skin -what is your secret?
BB: I use all natural things, -from the food I eat, - to the products that I use for my face and body.I use olive oil a lot for my hair, body and face. The one thing I can not live with out -is my Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Swivel Stick, -I always have that in my make-up bag. I also use Bobbi Brown and Chanel make-up

GR: Who does your hair, your nails and do you go to the gym?
BB: Yes I go to the gym three to four time a week. My hair is done by my friends [for me most of the time] when am not working. Because when I'm on a shoot working, - there's always a different hair and make-up person.

GR: On to more serious stuff, -what are your hopes and dreams for Ghana?
BB: My hope for Ghana, - is for us to be on an international level when it come to modelling. Because for a long time, I was the only Ghanaian model working internationally and doing all of the big shows. I use to tell people that I'm Ghanaian when they ask me where I'm from, -and they didn't believe me. They are not use to seeing models from Ghana so that's one of the reasons that I came back to Ghana to open a model agency call

GR: Can you tell us about your Charity?
BB: In 2005, I organized a fashion show in New York to raise money for the orphanage in Ghana. This is something that I will like to do every year in Ghana or when I'm out of the country. But I can not do it alone I need help from my people to do this. We need to learn to work together and do something good to help your own country.

GR: Ghana Rising agrees with Belinda and hopes that we can all work together -to create a better Ghana. Thank you gorgeous. God Bless all your dreams Belinda...............
BB:Thank you.

Belinda's new Model Agency can be viewed at:
The End..........................xx

Some of Belinda Baidoo's favourite things..

Belinda has incredible style -and this black leather waistcoat top and green zip-up skirt combo from Proenza Schouler S/S 09 Collection -will look rock'n'roll on her: And this sexy 80's white dress with a sweetheart neckline from Tracy Reese S/S 09 Collection will look fabulous against Belinda's beautiful skin.

Belinda knows her stuff, -and after years of working with the best make-up artists and hair stylists -you know she is onto a good thing with olive oil -and she's right -because scientists have uncovered -olive oil as, 'a new weapon in the fight against skin cancer' and olive oil is also rumoured to be the secret to Sophia Lauren's ageless skin -and it has also been proven to cure dry skin and eczema.

I love L'Occitane Organic Olive Radiant Cleansing Foam. It's kind and gentle -and it will leave your skin baby soft (£12.75) Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula Swivel Stick, will help keep your lips in check: Bobbi Brown's Sheer Color Gloss Lip Glosses (£13.70) in Popside is perfect for a natural look and Bobbi Brown's Pastel Eye Shadow Palette offer pretty and funky eye popping colours in shimmering metallics -for your eyes: For poptastic toes this summer – any colour from Chanel's LE VERNIS nail colour range will do. I especially love this gold one -and Chanel's Precious Bronzing Loose is a coppery shimmering powder [for the face, shoulders and décolleté] -will make your skin glow.

My kind of people - Tawiah.........

Listening to Tawiah performing the soulful, 'With Every Step' (above), -live via YouTube, -gives me goose bumps. What a voice? An alumna of the infamous, 'Brit School Preforming Academy' -a breeding ground for talent (it counts Kate Nash, Amy Winehouse and Adele as past pupils). Tawiah (of Ghanaian heritage) has been singing for ever, -she sung back up for Corinne Bailey Rae and The Guillemots -but things really exploded when Tawiah caught the attention of producer Mark Ronson (she ended up touring with him as part of his live band act). Tawiah's voice is a dream. Poetics, smooth, nu-rave, soultastic and relevant -Tawiah is about to blow up. What can I say's a London thing.........................xx

My so called life: The ever changing face(s) of Lil Kim....

If you're a 'lover' and not a 'hater' -you'll see these photographs of Lil Kim and not laugh but - feel for her deeply. You don't have to be deep or 'conscious' to know, -there are some serious pressures on all women to look beautiful at all times and even more so -on the black female. And if for some reason (not feeling loved, no fathers love, no mothers love, no self love, no self worth -or you are told your too dark, or your nose is too big or flat, or we want someone lighter etc) -then you feel the pressures more. Lil Kim's metamorphosis show all the signs of a lady trying to find herself (like all of us); -but unlike the rest of us, -bless her, -it's been catalogued on the 'world's stage' for public consumption. And that can not be easy. I pray LOVE into her every being and -pray that the beauty (and incredible journey) of SELF LOVE and CONTENTMENT find Lil Kim before we have another unfortunate case of, 'Michael Jackson-ism'. May she be all -she wants to be.....................xx

Fashion et al Hearts Teyana Taylor

I love, love Teyana Taylor 's energy and style. I first saw Teyana on MTV's Sweet Sixteen and couldn't believe just how focused; and self assured, this beautiful -half Native American and half Trinidadian -was. A protege of Pharrell Williams (very lucky gal -me thinks) this musician is pretty 'Hot Potatoes'. Check out her hit single “Google Me” (no our Teyana is not shy -hehehe) -its fabulous. As for Teyana's style -well, -its all her own (she doesn't have a stylist). Her fly gal, soldier sister, Afro-Queen, 80's verve is, 'Street Sexy'. This Style icon is 'one-to-watch' -but please note, only Teyana can pull off 'her' iconoclastic 'look'. Google her...................xx