Junior Sierra Vakili’s journey through modeling

Not only does this student participate in speech and debate, play multiple instruments and practically live at Peet’s Coffee, junior Sierra Vakili also models in her free time. She looks back to 2015 to when it all started.

“My mom was a photographer for fashion week back in 2015,” Vakili said. “We went to most of the events together, and all the designers would always ask me if I was a model and I’d say no, and they always encouraged me to. So after that, I decided to audition.”

Modeling has always been a popular hobby dating way back to the late 1880s, but the amount of high schoolers who are able to make it in the industry is slim. The modeling industry is highly competitive also, making it harder to be a part of.  

“I’ve always been really interested in fashion and trends, so it seemed like a really cool experience to get to help local up-and-coming designers get their name out there while getting to wear sick clothes in the process,” Vakili said.

Sierra began this hobby younger than most, by eight-years-old she was already participating in runway shows. Even though it was very new to her at that age, she found a love for this new hobby.

“My first runway show was actually at Nordstrom when I was eight,” Vakili said. “I had no idea what I was doing and I was so nervous that I just walked really fast up and down the runway to get it over with.”

Modeling can definitely be stressful at times, especially on top of school and other extracurriculars. With the help and long lasting support from her mom, Vakili makes it through.

“The most influential person throughout everything would probably have to be my mom,” Vakili said. “She’s been so encouraging of all the times I’ve had to miss school and make sacrifices, not to mention that she helped me put together a portfolio of photos 3 days before I needed to audition for fashion week.”

It all started during Fashion Week in San Diego. Fashion Week is a year long string of events and runway shows with designers based in San Diego. They have been doing this for over 10 years, showcasing over 100 designers from around the world. Vakili participated in these events last year and it set her up for what is next to come.

“I’m also a part of the model representative team of Modern Day Mona Photography, which is a group of girls from all over Carlsbad, Vista, and Oceanside to represent her photography brand and promote her senior picture services.” Vakili said.

Now that modeling is becoming a big part of her life, Vakili hopes to keep it going. With plans to continue through senior year and after graduation, she is determined to keep this hobby alive.

“I’m hoping to make it onto the team for fashion week 208 after the audition in June as well as carry on with the model rep team with Modern Day Mona,” Vakili said. “I’ll probably keep modeling as a side job in college because let’s face it, student debt is deadly. I’m overall just really excited to see what comes next on this path.”