I want to say a HUGE thank you to Daria Shapovalova who took an interest in my blog & contacted me to let me know about the TV interview with Snejana. Not only that, she took the time to translate the interview to English so that I could share it here. Thank you Dasha!
What’s next: the most famous Ukrainian model – Snejana Onopka.
The most successful Ukrainian model now is for sure Snejana Onopka. The girl from Severodonetsk started her career at 14. Now she is 22 and she managed to do the campaigns for Dolce&Gabbana, Lanvin, Yves Saint Laurent, Prada and Gucci. She does not want to stop gaining this level.
Snejana Onopko, model
00:29:25 ….. I don’t know. I hope I can realize myself, gain certain success and respect. I will fall asleep and wake up with the feeling of respect to myself.
You do not feel respect for you now?
00:29:51 No, of course, I do respect myself but everytime I want to do my job better and better.
Models are to embody others images and play difficult roles as often as actresses. Once Snejana had to live a day as Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue US. She was absolutely brilliant in this role.
00:27:07 It was actually very easy for me to do that. It was really interesting. When the shooting was printed, there were a lot of questions and a lot of attention to me. It was really a pleasure for me that I could become Anna Wintour for a while.
Weren’t you afraid that she will have strong reaction when she see it?
00:27:53 By all means I was worrying but everything went fine.
Nowadays Snejana is the only Ukrainian model having her own fan club in the Internet. 500 people from all over the world read the news from a 22-year old girl on a daily basis. 5 years ago nobody knew this girl from the Eastern Ukraine.
00:31:40 Everything happened so quickly. Oleg came to New York. I was doing test shootings for two months. Then I went to a casting of Steven Meisel assistant and then directly to Steven Meisel. I was a frightened child, I did not understand how everything works. Therefore, I came there, I was smiling, some people were asking me something and I was answering to them. When I was working with Steven Meisel for the first time, it was a shoot for Dolce&Gabbana. In the end everything worked out fine.
But you still were a little bit afraid?
00:32:21 Of course I was afraid. You come to a new city, everything is so unusual and strange. Of course, everything was strange and frightening.
How do you feel about it now?
00532:32 Now I’ve got used to it. I know everybody. Therefore everything goes smoothly. We are having fun.
What did you feel when you first stepped on the catwalk?
00:33:12 First of all I was hesitating a lot. I was afraid to fall down. As usual. Those were complicated emotions which I can not even express now. Music, people, light – everything was very interesting. It is difficult to express with words. Everything at that time was a little bit unreal.
Snejana Onopka started her career in the Kiev agency Vo models. Nowadays other unexperienced models live here – the space is redesigned into an apartment. Nevertheless there still is the so called «board of fame» of Snejana –her pictures are carefully gathered and glued to the wall. The collection of the photographs is constantly updated. For example, here you can see a cover of Vogue Russia for the year 2009.
In spite of the fact that Snejana gets tens of thousands of dollars for one show and she can live wherever she wants to, most of her time she spends in Ukraine with her family – mother and younger brother.
00:37:10 I often come to my native city. My mother and my little brother live there. My friends live there. It is difficult for me to live in New York alone. Now my mother goes to New York with me. Of course, it is much more comfortable for me to stay in Ukraine.
Snejana looks very calm and reserved. She looks completely different when she works.
Have it ever happened that you refused to go to a shoot?
00:43:42 No, it never happens like that. I’m a professional. I can not say: I’m tired and and I can not come. If I feel myself bad I will take the pills and go to work. If you booked a shoot, you knew that you are to be responsible. Therefore, you can not let people down. I think that it is a matter of success since the very beginning.
At most of the photos Snejana does not smile. Is this a style or a direction from the photographers?
00:35:00 You know photographers usually set the tone of the shoot and they say what you need to do and how do they want you to look. Therefore, it appears there there are few shots where I smile.