Interview: Model Sophia Germaine Dunn-Walker (Los Angeles and Paris)
Can you tell us a little about you?
I’m a published writer and model, an actor, and a filmmaker living between Los Angeles and Paris. I grew up in Minnesota where the winters were very snowy and cold. As a child some winters, I would layer on all of my warmest clothes and I would bury myself under two feet of snow, leaving only my face exposed. I would lie there, insulated in warmth and silence, and I would close my eyes until I couldn’t feel my body anymore. After a while of doing this I couldn’t tell up from down or left from right anymore. That feeling of weightlessness was exhilarating to me. I feel that, in a variety of ways, I’ve dedicated my adult life so far to capturing magic and exploring other realms. I long to find that feeling again that I accessed so easily as a child.
My undergraduate thesis was a dance piece about death and transcendence. My most recent role as an actor was as the personification of death, and I’m currently co-writing and starting in a feature film about demonic possession. I’m so happy I’m finally beginning to meet people who “get” me.
If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be?
I love the person I’m becoming, but I wish I had less anxiety when the future feels uncertain. I also sometimes feel I meet the right people at the wrong times, but I’m learning to trust the universe more.
How did you start modeling?
When I lost my baby fat and my bone structure emerged, it’s something that a lot of people encouraged me to do. I wanted to make some extra money my senior year at Reed College in Portland Oregon and I got signed to a big agency there. Most of the biggest jobs I booked as a freelance model while I was living in Paris. I’ve been in two different issues of British VOGUE.
What do you think of the work as a model?
It’s adjacent to the work that I’m most passionate about: visual storytelling. It feels good to be confident in my body and to be familiar with working with cameras. I’d like to see more gender balance in the industry. I’d love to see more female photographers out there.
What is your beauty regimen?
I’m more aware of the mind body connection than I used to be. As cliche as it sounds, moving to California has made me a lot healthier. I eat a lot of vegan food, and do yoga almost every morning. I take good care of my skin and always try and stay hydrated.
I’m still moody and existential most days, but I’ve noticed a significant improvement in my mood since making these changes.
What are your personal qualities which distinguish you from others?
I vibe really well with creative storytellers. All of the film directors I’ve worked with have requested to work with me again. I’m able to understand a person’s vision and help execute it in a multitude of ways. I’ve been told I’m deeply sensitive and expressive, and that I have unique and striking bone structure.
I’ve also been told my personality is different from what people expect when they see photos of me, which I actually think is an advantage.
What are your plans for the future?
My goal is to write and direct a feature film within the next year or two, and I want it to be successful. I recently got hired as an associate producer on a feature film, and I have many friends and colleagues who are TV and film directors. I think these experiences and connections will enlighten me when it’s time to make my own. I hope to have a rich and lucrative career as the multi-faceted artist that I am.
What are some of your favorite experiences so far?
Modeling gave me the financial flexibility to live in Paris for three years. In Paris, I studied acting and playwrighting in French at Cours Florent. I became fluent in French and won several international awards for playwrighting. My modeling agency also connected me with opportunities to act in experimental art films, which was an amazing experience.
Do you have any advice for those who want to start modeling?
I think it’s really important to establish long term goals with it early on. It’s not something that you should just fall into, but something you should do for specific reasons. You’ll have more fun with it if you have an appreciation for photography and fashion. I also recommend investing your money so it grows. And be proactive!
What do you think of the magazine?
It’s great! It’s an honor to be featured among international artists. I like that it gives both models and photographers to expressive themselves. I’ve discovered some very talented people from regularly following the magazine