Sofiya Smirnova's Glamourcon Interview
Interview Questions by
Keith E. Williams
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GC: Give us some Sofiya personal history. Where, when, etc…
Sofiya: I was raised in a small town in Texas and my heritage is Chinese/Russian. I came from a very strict home. My parents loved me a lot but their ideal life for me was not what I wanted for myself. They got me into ballet, playing the cello, taught me the proper etiquette and manners; basically trained me to be a Geisha because I had an arranged marriage. I didn't really have a good teenage experience because I was teased so much and ostracized. I hated my junior high and high school years because I never experienced those homecoming games, attending the Prom and going to parties or feeling I was a part of a group. I left home early to explore my future and traveled to many cities. I guess you could say I'm a loner but I would say I'm content.
GC: In addition to your modeling, we understand you have a day job. Can you tell us a bit about that?
Sofiya: I am currently a graphic designer and artist by day. I started my own part-time art and photography business officially in 2002. I have branched out to offer advertising specialties and graphic art. At times, it may not sound like much, nevertheless it can be a lot for one person. Regardless, everything actually balances itself out to a full workweek keeping me busy with modeling, my artwork, and other various graphic works. My commercial website, www.nsansui.net (scheduled to debut mid-January 2005) highlights the graphic design work, my art studio, and my spokes modeling/promotional events.
GC: More than a model, you are also an artist and poet. Share your artistic side. What got you interested in art and poetry and what inspires your art?
Sofiya: Artistic ability runs in my family. My father and brothers are very artistic. I think I just got the left over genes. I also feel I'm mediocre although I tend to be more creative than they are. I got interested in art and poetry because it was the only thing that kept me occupied. I did not have any friends to hang out with or anywhere to be. I love the female body. I think every part of our form is seductive and sensual to somebody so a lot of my paintings focused on the female body…. Nagel was my inspiration.
GC: You know we have to ask…can you give us just a snippet of one of your poems?
Sofiya: My poems reflect who I am and have become: funny, wise, sensual and poetic. This was written for my Gallery I: Objects of Desire art with poetry collection. One piece titled, Obsession: “Self-Control” is an acrylic on paper 54” x 72”. The accompany poem reads,
GC: You came to modeling a bit later than many. What got you interested in modeling?
Sofiya: I like the challenges and confronting the fears of becoming a model. I hate the routine 9-5 job; the predictable commute to and from work, happy hour and the whole thought that life revolve around that ideal of owning a house with a white picket fence and two-car garage.
GC: Do you remember your first photo shoot? Tell us about that?
Sofiya: My first professional photo shoot was with Creations Models (now Your Eternal Desire Models). I don't really know what to say except I was insecure. When it boiled down to it, I felt I didn't have what it takes. (Ed. note: Glad she was wrong!)
GC: What was the wildest photo shoot you ever did?
Sofiya: I did my first shoot for Exposure International's Born a Babe. We shot in my old neighborhood, Little Italy. The shoot was during the day and outside in a bikini top and daisy dukes. The cops pulled over and I thought we were in trouble but they pulled out their camera phones to snap pictures.
GC: Do you view yourself as an Import Model, Asian Model, Glamour Model, Spokes Model, Artist's Model…all the above?
Sofiya: I have no clue what I wanted at first so I got my feet wet to experience them all. I find Glamour Modeling is where I want to be heading.
GC: You are currently located in the Mid West. Any chance of relocating to another part of the country for your modeling or can you do what you need to do from where you are?
Sofiya: There is a possibility of relocating. I mean, Chicago is really cold this time of the year so I don't mind a warmer state. I do feel limited as to what I can do since most of the opportunities are in California.
GC: We were intrigued that you send us an artsy newsletter periodically as so few people do that. How did you decide to do that? How is it received and do you find it helpful to your career?
Sofiya: I started the newsletter, Love, Nico now named N San Sui “Entertainment Newsletter For That Rainy Day” in January of 2004. It was my strategy to market myself and be recognized as a model available for spokesmodeling and print work to potential agencies. And, of course, if the companies that I send the newsletter to do not have a modeling gig for me, they can also hire (outsource) me for graphic design and photography work. I figure it was a win-win situation regardless. Most people make the same comment that you did; that it is so rare for a model to take the time and effort to put something like a newsletter together. I decided that I wanted to distinguish myself from being just another pretty girl and I figured what better way to highlight my creative side and talent.
GC: How do you view the Internet as it relates to you, your modeling, your art?
Sofiya: Personally, I don't want to be known just as an Internet model as it doesn't fully encompass my abilities and experiences. I use the Internet to display my creative urge to make something out of nothing, as with a painting or piece of poetry.
GC: How did you first get involved with Glamourcon?
Sofiya: Back in the Fall of 2003, I received an email from Spokesmodel.com, which I was a member of, suggesting that for aspiring models, the Glamourcon is a great avenue to meet new people and contacts in the Modeling and Fashion industry.
GC: How do you think Glamourcon benefits you?
Sofiya: I feel that the knowledge I gained with respect to the Modeling Industry, not mention the vast amount of opportunities that have resulted from the Glamourcon has truly shown me what it takes to become an established model and recognized name.
GC: You've met a lot of fans during the last few shows. Please tell us what is the most common question(s) they have for you.
Sofiya: Are you Korean? Can I get you something to eat or drink? Where can I see more of you, maybe nude?
GC: Now for a few more personal questions. What do you find sensual? What brings out your passion?
Sofiya:To me there is nothing more sensual than sitting on the floor naked and massaging my tired muscles with eucalyptus oil after a hard day's work. Unless of course, I had some help (wink-wink). (Ed. note: You betcha!) Passionate? Surprise me with a banana split and you will see more passion than you could ever have expected.
GC: Tell us about your website, http://www.nsasnsui.net/. What can a member expect?
Sofiya: Oh, my other website. It is off the beaten path just for the fans to interact with me directly. It is currently a free website as I have not yet set up my online store, etc. You can count on new sexy photos of the month, participate in a monthly giveaway, interesting stories and see my latest artwork. Not to mention, you can also experience my dedication to bringing you a new and different site that separates myself from the rest of the models.
GC: Before you go, please tell us a secret.
Sofiya: Oh boy….Well, I finished paying off a city fine for indecent exposure. At 4 in the morning one summer, I would go out to the lakefront and play my cello topless. What can I say, I never thought I would get caught but you can't enjoy the music your playing if you can't feel it!!! The cello rests on top of my chest warming me as its sound vibrates against my skin. Yeahhh…it was nice watching the sunrise, the sail boats out and about, and the warm breeze caressing my skin and the sound of sweet music in the air.
GC: Now that's a secret! Thank you for spending time with us and continued success in 2005! And we'll see you at the next Glamourcon!
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