When Kayleigh Van Heerde’s mother mentioned to a friend that her daughter was interested in modeling, she suggested Chan International. Her friend was also a client of Mary Chan, so it only made sense to take Kayleigh to talk to Chan International about starting her modeling career at age 17.
“Kayleigh is super sweet, humble, and she is kind to everyone. She strives to reach her dreams of becoming an international model.” – Taresa He – Chan International
In October, 2017, UK photographer, Christopher Bissell, photographer her in Edmonton. Those photos appeared in BAHM Magazine’s premiere issue. In November, Kayleigh was off attending Faces West Model and Talent Convention in Vancouver. By July, 2018, she was in Europe modeling in Paris. Kayleigh’s career has skyrocketed ever since that very first meeting at Chan International.
BAHM Magazine recently interviewed Kayleigh and asked her some questions our readers might be interested in.
When did you decide you wanted to be a model?
“I was always interested in modeling, though I was always so shy and never knew where to start modeling. Then I found Chan and I was able to break out of my shell.”
What do you like best about being with Chan International? What have they taught you and tell us about your relationship with your agency?
“My favorite thing about Chan is the wonderful people and their expertise in the business. If it was not for Mary Chan, my amazing teacher Amy-Jean and all the excellent staff, I would not be where I am today. The Team at Chan are all so professional and “real” that they wanted me to be myself and become confident in who I am. They encourage and support me to be my best ME and this has helped me to grow and be so happy with what I am doing. “
Chan International organized your model career, plus co-sponsored you in Faces West Model and Talent Convention. You met many agents from all around the World there. Tell me about this and how was this experience?
“I had no idea how much Faces West would change my life, I’ve learned and grown so much because of it. I am so grateful to Mary Chan and Charles Stuart for presenting me with the opportunity.”
Chan International also set you up with professional photo sessions with Christopher Bissell. He is well known for working with Britain’s Next Top Model TV show as well as many celebrities and even royalty. What was that experience like working with an international photographer of his caliber?
“Working with Christopher Bissell was a dream come true! I remember how excited my family and I were when I won the Look of the Year Competition and had my first photoshoot with him. He is so masterful, fun to work with and his pictures amaze me every time.”
Love this video 🖤 what an experience, thank you @irisvanherpen #Repost @irisvanherpen ・・・ ‘Syntopia’ explores the new worlds that arise within synthetic biology and the intertwining relationships between the organic and the inorganic, visualizing the fragility and power within. ~ Show credits Collaborating artist: @studio.drift Runway video: @blitzkickers Styling: @patti_wilson Casting: Maida Gregori Boina, @maximevalentini & @caromauger Make-up: @terrybarberonbeauty & the @maccosmeticsfrance PRO Team Hair: @martincullen65 | @streetersldn Manicure: @jessicascholten_ | @opinl Music: @sssalvadorrr Breed Press: @karlaotto ~ #irisvanherpen #syntopia #parisfashionweek
Those beautiful images are in a BAHM Magazine editorial, how do you feel about that?
“I absolutely love my pictures by Christopher Bissell, and for them to be in BAHM Magazine as well is simply amazing, especially for tear sheets. “
How important are tear sheets in your portfolio?
“Tear sheets are very important in the advancement of my career, in order for me to go work in New York, I need at least 50 tear sheets, so the more magazines and shows the better. “
You have been working in Paris, Milan, and London. How did all that happen?
“When I attended Faces West I participated in various modeling competitions where many great model and television scouts/agents were judging. I was able to meet and discuss with them about my future modeling career and 2 months later I was in Europe!”
What did you like the most of each of these fashion capitals?
“It’s hard to pick what I like most about each of these places, as they each have great sites, shops, and food, but I would have to say, meeting new people is my favorite part. I have been able to meet so many wonderful people in every new place I go, and made very good friends. I am so grateful for that!”
We see you modeled for Giorgio Armani. How was that? Any other designers you want to mention?
“Working with Giorgio Armani was such an amazing experience that I will never forget! I have been lucky enough to work with many amazing designers like; Hermes, Iris Van Herpen, Paul Smith, and others.
Do you prefer runway or photography modeling?
“That’s a hard question, both are very different. Runway comes with such a rush of adrenaline when you step on the runway, and usually is no more than a couple hours. Photography is more relaxed, and sometimes you can be working with a team for a couple days. The team is always so much fun and the locations can be pretty cool. So I would say I like a good mix of both runway and photography is perfect.”
Which job has been your favorite job so far?
“I would have to say my first show ever in Paris, Paul Smith. That was the moment I realized how far I had come and that hard work really pays off. That was an amazing day.”
What advice would you give to other models who want to become international models?
“Stay true to who you are and don’t let anyone bring you down. Anything can happen so keep going, hard work pays off. “
Tell us about your family? How do they feel about you modelling so far away?
“My family is so supportive of my career. I would not be able to do any of this without them. They are so important to me. We all miss each other, of course, but they support me no matter what. We also stay in touch and talk almost every day.”
Favourite Movie: The Lord of the Rings
Favourite Book: The Great Gatsby
What is your favourite meal? My Dad’s mashed potatoes.
What is your favourite dessert? A warm chocolate brownie.
Favourite things to do? “I love gardening and biking. I also play computer games with my friends, it’s a great way to stay connected across the globe.”
BAHM Magazine will surely keep our readers up to date on Kayleigh’s modeling career and you can too, by following her on Instagram at: @kayleighvanheerde