Today’s guest is of course a beautiful and talented model, but as well as her stunning pictures, which I am honoured to display alongside her words, I’ve also been blown away by how down to earth and accommodating she is. The lady in question is the wonderful Sophia Wilde, FRONT model (Bella) and coincidentally the third participant in FRONT’s Alt Girl party special of 2012 to appear on this blog. It was one of FRONT’s greatest issues (and concepts) in my opinion, and in this interview we touch on what it was like to be a part of. As well as all that we discover Sophia’s changing approach to her modelling, exciting upcoming projects, her musical outlet, and obsession with getting pierced…
Welcome Sophia. It’s a great to have you on the Alt Girl Botherer blog today, how are you doing?
Hey! Thanks, it’s pretty exciting, I’m awesome thank you!
For many, the first introduction to your work came in issue 166 of FRONT magazine, with your involvement as the headline Alt Girl DIY. Is this where your modelling adventure begin?
Yeah pretty much. I’d never done anything like that before and was stupidly happy to be accepted into the FRONT world, everyone was so nice!
What was your initial reaction to seeing yourself on the pages of FRONT? Were you a fan of the magazine for long before appearing?
I’ve always been a fan of FRONT, I’m forever drooling over the website. It was a little cringey seeing myself on the pages, especially having friends see it! I had amazing feedback though which then gave me the confidence to do more shoots like this.
The Alt Girl section of the magazine regularly excels all others in my opinion. What are your thoughts on FRONT in general?
I think I’d have to agree with you on that, the Alt Girl section has always been my favourite and is a great place to find out about up and coming models. It’s also quite edgy and features girls with attitude such as Rebecca Crow who absolutely kills it every time! FRONT magazine is a definite must have for me every month!
You were one of the youngest contributors to FRONT when you made your debut, how does such exposure influence such a fledgling career?
I think for my first ever shoot to be published was amazing and such a confidence boost it made me want to do more and excel. Compared to a few of the other girls I am relatively young and so for FRONT to want me when I was so young and had so little experience was awesome!
As well as FRONT, you’ve also been seen in the likes of Zoo and Bizarre. Were these titles you aimed for when you started stepping in front of cameras? Did you hold any particular ambition to work specifically in glamour at the outset of your career?
Obviously Bizarre is an iconic magazine and I’d always wanted to be featured in it, so when I was, I was completely over the moon; especially considering I’m not heavily tattooed, I was honoured to still have them want me. I’d never really set myself any major aims when starting out, I just wanted to do well and have people appreciate my work and the fact that I achieved that from the very beginning was amazing. I’ve always wanted to do glamour but I feel that it’s maybe time to take another career path modelling-wise at the minute.
How have you found the modelling industry personally? Would you say it’s a welcoming world to new talent?
People say a lot about the modelling industry - especially glamour - and I have heard a lot. However I have found the modelling industry to be fun and friendly. A lot of the girls I’ve met have helped me out and it’s like we’re a little family. We’re always recommending each other and helping one another to do their best and have fun!
To those on the outside looking in, modelling can seemed like a charmed life. Have your own ideas about the business changed at all from before you started? What do you think are the most common misconceptions about the work?
Glamour modelling can be tough and unless you’re in demand then it’s pretty hard to make a living from it. I have a lot of respect for girls like Melissa Clarke and Lucy V who work hard and give modelling their all. They are both so successful and have both achieved the page 3 idol of the year, which is amazing considering Mel is alternative and Lucy has a gorgeous curvy figure that wouldn’t have been accepted previously. People who don’t know the industry tend to think it’s easy and that the girls ‘know’ people and that’s how they do well. However, the people I have met are determined and hard working ladies that deserve all the success in the world!
Modelling isn’t currently your full time occupation of course Sophia, but is it something you could see yourself devoting a proper career to? Or are you of the opinion that it’s just a hobby for now and you’re enjoying the ride?
I’ve never wanted modelling to be a full time thing, it’s simply just a hobby and I’ve loved every second!
Away from your work with FRONT etc, you also seem to enjoy fashion shoots, and have worked with some great indie clothing brands. Are these the kind of gigs that keep you going and the magazine stuff is just an awesome bonus? Do you get any perks from working fashion shoots? Many freebies floating around?
I love shooting for up and coming clothing brands such as Paris & Cuffs and Grim! I think they’re the sort of shoots that I enjoy the most, purely because I’ve met some amazing people through them and they’ve always been a good laugh! Ha-ha there’s always a few freebies which is awesome, I love helping out the clothing brands by repping their items and in return they help promote my modelling.
You’ve got a terrific look if you don’t mind me saying, petit with a rocking figure. Do you have to dedicate much time to gym work etc to stay in model trim? Or are you one of the lucky ones who can eat whatever and still maintain a fantastic physique?
That’s so kind of you, thank you! I did attempt to start going to the gym but I’m way too lazy and love food too much! I think I must be one of the lucky ones.
Another important feature of your look is your piercings. You’ve made some superbly bold choices in body furniture Sophia, can you tell us a little about your fascination with getting pierced?
I love getting pierced as it gives me such an adrenaline rush!! It’s like going on a roller coaster. I’m just a massive fan of surface piercings and think that they look super hot, so I got them all!
You’ve got piercings in places I didn’t even know could be pierced. Where do you get your inspiration from?
I honestly do not know. I got most of my piercings around 3 years ago and it was just a case of ‘Right, what can I get pierced this week?’ it became a little bit of an addiction, and any patch of skin that looked like it could be pierced had to be done!
I particularly love the bars you have at the small of your back and on your hips. Those are notorious places to get pierced; did they heal and take without any compliant? Have you had any negative experiences with your piercings?
Thank you. Yeah all of my piercings have been fine and until now I’ve had zero negative experiences which is pretty lucky considering the amount of piercings I have.
You’ve favoured the piercing gun over the tattooist’s, have you got any interest in adding more ink in the future at all Sophia?
I’ve always been a fan of tattoos and apart from the tiny one I have I’m still unsure about getting any more! I change my mind too easily which isn’t good when deciding on a tattoo!
What other artistic outlets do you have Sophia? What are some of your creative pastimes?
I’ve played the guitar since I was 11 and there’s nothing I love more than chilling out and teaching myself a new song. However I fail at singing which sucks a little ha-ha. I’d love to say that I’m a good dancer but the only dancing I can do is the cha cha slide!!
I have to take it back to FRONT now Sophia, and your involvement with one of the best issues to date in my opinion. In issue 176 FRONT dedicated an unprecedented six pages to its Alt Girl section, and christened the feature “The Alt Girl Party”. You were involved alongside Abbie Mac, Rebecca Crow, Keshia and Chelsea. What was that experience like?
I loved that day!! I got to meet some amazing girls and still speak to every single one of them now; they were all so cute and lovely! We had a laugh shooting and filming the scenes with the amazingly talented Gemma Edwards and the finished pages showed how much of an awesome day we had!
It looked like one of FRONT’s more insane shoots; could you give us some insight into what it was like running around with those girls?
I had the most fun! All of the girls were different but so much fun in their own little way. I was unfortunately late to the shoot but all I remember as soon as I got there, was Chelsea running around in her knickers wearing a Bruce Forsyth mask and instantly I thought I was in for a hilarious day. There wasn’t really an order to anything; it was the best kind of chaos ever with beer, naked ladies and Doritos!!
Featuring alongside such an incredible selection of Alt Girls must have been wicked. Which one made you laugh the most and do you keep in contact with the other girls regularly?
I’ve kept in touch with Keshia the most simply because we’ve worked at events together like the FRONT valentines party at uprawr, which was a mental night! I think I’d have to say that Chelsea made me laugh the most though. She’s so cute and funny with her little Scottish accent, that girl is crazy! However I loved every single one of the girls to bits!
You mentioned Gemma Edwards, the photographer behind The Alt Girl Party. She’s an artist whose work I really admire. What was she like to work with?
Words cannot express how amazing Gemma Edwards is! Every single one of her shoots is amazing. I did my first ever shoot with Gemma and she made me feel so relaxed and at ease! She seriously is amazing and I’d definitely class her as a good friend!
I can only imagine what your reaction was when the feature was released. Did you buy multiple copies of the issue? Have you got any of the commemorative material (posters, special covers, etc)?
I bought multiple copies for me and my Mum ha-ha, and got given funny looks by the guy serving me. I bought the special cover edition of the mag purely because me and my little Alt Girl family are on the front!
Like I mentioned, for me it was one of the best issues of FRONT in a long time and since. With Girls like Rebecca Crow and Keshia getting main features in the magazine following the Alt Girl special, do you feel proud that FRONT chose you to take part in the piece?
I felt completely honoured that they wanted me to feature with the best Alt Girls of 2012, as soon as I got the call asking me to do the shoot with the other girls there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted in!
Having mentioned others that have gone on to reappear in FRONT since the shoot, are you hoping to collaborate with the team in the future? Girls like you Abbie and Chelsea should have a standing invitation from FRONT, do you think making The Alt Girl Party a regular occurrence would be a winning idea?
I think that’s an awesome idea! I’d definitely be up for working with FRONT in the future, they’re an amazing bunch of guys and have helped me out a lot.
Away from your involvement with FRONT, what other projects have you got coming up in the future Sophia? Where might followers of your work be able to check out your imagery?
I’ve got something lined up with Suicide Girls which is all pretty hush hush at the minute, but apart from that I’m just going to be aiming towards the fashion side of modelling. I’m going for a more natural look now and have ditched the red/black hair, so hopefully this will open a few more pathways.
When thinking about your career, have you got a list of photographers or inspirations that you’d like to work with in the future someday?
I’ve always wanted to work with Rob Jamieson and Stuart Mitchell (WALNUTWAX) they both capture creative and edgy images and to shoot with them would be an honour!
Before I let you go Sophia. Would you please be so kind as to answer Bernard Pivot’s questionnaire?
What is your favourite word? Moist ha-ha!
What is your least favourite word? Snatch!!
What turns you on? Glasses all the way!
What turns you off? Cockiness.
What is your favourite curse word? Bollocks, it’s the best!
What sound or noise do you love? Birds in the morning.
What sound or noise do you hate? The bin men in the morning!!
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I would love to be a vet for a day.
What profession would you not like to do? I’d hate to be a teacher, I can’t stand screaming children!
If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? Come on in, I’ll put the kettle on ha-ha.
I had so much fun putting this piece together. Sophia is a thoroughly professional worker and so kind with her time and zesty energy. She’s someone that has achieved so much in a short space of time, and a model whom I really feel is finding her niche. I wish her every success in whatever she turns her mind to in the future.
I strongly urge you all to check out Sophia’s links below. They’re filled with beautiful things: http://sophiaewilde.tumblr.com
Instagram – sohpiaewilde
The images used in this piece were mostly provided by Sophia, with the Alt Girl party pictures sourced by me from my previous blog posts. The photographers represented include: Gemma Edwards, Ben Bell and Alan Lee.