Devyn Abdullah talks about her experience on “The Face”!The series follows three supermodel coaches: Coco Rocha, Karolina Kurkova and Naomi Campbell (who is also one of the executive producers of the show) as they compete to find a model to represent ULTA beauty cosmetics. In the first season Devyn Abdullah won coached by Karolina Kurkova!
Devyn and I met at an event in NYC and she was sweet enough to answer some of my questions about her and the show.
Did you want to be a model when you grow up?
It's funny because I actually never thought of being a model when I was younger. My dream which I didn't find until middle school was to be a photographer for National Geographic. Everyone knows that 'You may have a plan for yourself but life has a plan for you as well', I guess I am a prime example of that. Starting off modeling it wasn't my passion but it always seemed as if the camera loved me. Modeling became second nature to me and was so easy for me to do. I can remember my family and friends always telling me 'you are an idiot if you don't take advantage of such a pure true talent'.
Did you feel intimidated surrounded by world's most successful models Naomi Campbell, Karolina Kurkova and Coco Rocha?
Of course! We're talking about true supermodels but, more then anything I felt honored. Meeting the coaches for many girls on the show was overwhelming but, for me it was a wake up call. It was their presence that inspired me to know that these are women living their dreams through their talent. All I wanted to do is stand in their shoes.
You were on Karolina Kurkova team, did you get along with her? What did you learn from her?
Being on Karolina's team really kept me grounded on the show between all the drama. The girls on team KK are so genuine and we all worked together with the help of Karolina. I loved being on her team because of all the similarities that we have in our personal life and business life. We are both mothers and very passionate about our careers. I feel like Karolina was the perfect mentor for me, she inspires me not as a supermodel but as a woman. We still keep in contact to this day.
There was a big commotion about your statement that you do not consider yourself a black girl model... Can you explain what did you mean by that and what is your descent?
I can understand how someone may misinterpret what was said during the Wendy Williams interview. And to clear things up I want people to understand that I do not look at myself for the color of my skin or where I come from (Barbados/Jamaica). I look at myself for what I bring to the table as a model. Being a model, it doesn't matter what race you are, the focus is the talent that comes behind it. Naomi Campbell ( a coach) and Pat Cleveland ( a judge) are prime examples of that. My intention was not to offend anyone. I had to understand what I came on the competition for-to represent ULTA which is a cosmetic company that reaches out to all types of women around the world. Modeling is a talent of transformation and the key to being successful as a model is transforming into what the client needs. Something that has always motivated me in life that I will never let go of is knowing that no matter what comes my way in life I will never limit myself. It's something that inspired me to go on the show 'The Face'. I was not denying my heritage or history at all but I will not limit myself to any category. That statement was telling the coaches, judges, ULTA and the world that my goal is to be known as an international figure with no limitations.
What was the biggest challenge for you during the competition? You are a single mother, had to work three jobs...did winning The Face change your life positively?
I would say the biggest challenge in the competition for me being a young mother would be being away from my daughter and trying my best to always be on my “A” game. My biggest fear on the show was not to win. Not because of my career but because I would have spent all this time away from my daughter and have nothing to bring back to her. My biggest fear was to have the experience be a complete waste of time. So, you can imagine that winning for me has been the ultimate life changing experience. I no longer work three jobs THANK GOD.
Were you always considered beautiful?
PHSHHHHHHHHH!!NO! I would say I wasn't considered attractive until my senior year of high school. In middle school I was teased for having glasses and braces and then in high-school I was a big tomboy so I wasn't really considered attractive. It's funny to me how things change. You should see all the tweets I get now (laughing).
Have you ever been rejected from a modeling job?
Yes, of course I have not gotten every job for which I’ve gone to castings, but you just move on to the next one and the next opportunity presents itself.
What projects are you currently working on and which designer would you want to work with if you could choose one?
I am currently working with ULTA Beauty and I have some big projects coming up very soon. I am so excited to start my career and share myself with the world. As my career evolves it would be an honor to work for Chanel, Betsey Johnson, Tracy Reese, Erin Barr, and Thomas Tait.
What is your diet like and do you exercise?
It's funny because I don't have a diet at all. I am very blessed with my genetics. Being a mother and working on my career I barely have any time to work out or go to the gym but, I do get exercise. I get exercise from running around after my crazy daughter (laughing). Being mother is exercise within it self.
What would you say to girls that want to model or would want to be in the next season of 'The Face'?
Recognizing that you found your talent or something that you love is a miracle. It took me becoming a mother to recognize that. There are so many people out there that don't find what they love and wind up settling in life. Your life can change in a flash before your eyes. But it takes YOU to take the chance of taking the first step. So no matter what it is put your best foot forward and never step back because life is short and you only live once!
Devyn's life definitely changed since 'The Face' and I am sure we will continue to watch her grow as her career progresses. Oxygen TV picked up season two of the show so if you believe you are a good candidate simply apply!