For Proenza Schouler’s final pre-collection, designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez shook up the brand’s casting philosophy. To shoot the lookbook, casting director Ashley Brokaw sought out regulars like models Emm Arruda and Michelle Gutknecht, while adding a series of striking new faces: transgender models Torraine Futurum, Marcs Marcus, and the Israeli beauty Stav Strashko.
Scouted in Tel Aviv at age 16, Strashko has risen through the ranks to become one of the industry’s most wanted faces. She’s walked down the runway for Marc Jacobs Fall 2017, appeared in the pages of Teen Vogue, and shot with boundary-pushing photographers like Daniel Jackson. She is currently leading a life models dream of, but getting there wasn’t easy. From experiencing the hardship that comes with freelance jobs to dealing with ignorance behind the scenes, Strashko has had a firsthand view of fashion’s changing relationship with gender. Here, the rising star talks about putting in the work to make it big, the power of visibility, and why she has her sights set on Hollywood.
Success didn’t come overnight.
I have been modeling for eight years and trying to make it happen. It hasn’t always been easy, but I didn’t give up even when it was rough and I had nothing. I had to find a way to live somehow and save money. I never gave up. I just kept pushing, and at some point when you’re around for so many years in the industry, people start noticing you. I hope the hard work pays off. I’m surely doing my best, and I believe that I have the right people by my side.
Her friends are her best support system.
I do sometimes feel that people look at me in a way that says, ‘Oh, what is she or he doing here?’ I did get that a lot at first [from] people who didn’t understand or aren’t really accepting. I always try, though, to surround myself with people who have positive vibes and are open-minded; it’s so important to have that.
Trans visibility is making a massive impact.
I think the reasons why doors are opening for me at this moment connects with what is happening with the trans community all over the world. [Transgender people have] started to be more recognized by society, and people understand the need to fight for transgender rights. In the film industry, they are having more and more and more trans people act in trans roles. In the past, women would act in trans roles, which doesn’t make any sense. Why would a girl take on the role of a trans girl when there are enough trans actresses to do it? The increase in visibility affects my career as well, especially in the way people see me and the jobs that I get.
Nicola Formichetti was responsible for her big break.
I’m so thankful for Nicola [Formichetti] because he’s the person who stood by me from, like, the first time I came to Europe until now. I consider him one of the biggest factors behind my success because he just believed in me from the first moment he saw me. He chose me for his small shows for the buyers, then the bigger shows, and a few years later, the campaign for Diesel.
When I booked my first show for Diesel, I knew who he was, and I was so stressed to go and meet him, but I came there. He came and he hugged me. He asked me about my life, where I live and what I like to do. He was super nice and down-to-earth, and that’s the way he has always been with me. He’s more like a friend than like someone I simply work with, and he’s just a lovely person.
She has a lifelong love of performance.
Every shoot you do requires a different mood and different facial expressions, but it’s different than acting. I love getting into characters. I’ve always been expressive. As a kid I would pretend that I would be like a super badass girl all the time. I would be Lara Croft or the girl with the big guns, you know?
It’s a big dream of mine to act in serious roles. In the past, like I had some small roles in the Israeli TV series, but I’d love to do action movies, drama, or thrillers. This last year I started to discover that I also have some sense of humor. I’m sarcastic, so if I get the chance to do something that shows that, it would be awesome, too. I’m open to anything; I love experimenting and always having new experiences, especially when they’re challenging.
When she’s not modeling, she’s gaming.
I’m a hard-core gamer. I have my gaming laptop that I usually travel with everywhere because I need it when I’m at home alone between jobs and stuff. I first got into [video games] thanks to my parents. When you would get a new computer back in the day, it would come with additional random games, and I got one of the very first Lara Croft games. It had very old graphics, so everything was just pixels, but I was young and became obsessed with that first level. You start out in a cave with a hole in the top of the cave, and you see a helicopter flying. You need to find somehow a way to climb to the top of that cave and get out of it. As a kid, I spent around half a year running around that cave and just playing. I never even made it all the way to the top.Read more at:prom dress shops in london | long evening dresses