At the young age of fourteen, Liliane was instantly catapulted to fame in her native Brazil when she won (over 350,000 other contestants) her country’s round of the Ford Supermodel of the World contest in a televised event that aired on MTV. A position as the second runner up, out of 45 finalists, in the world’s final in Punta Cana followed, as well as an immediate contract with Ford Models worldwide. Talk about starting off with a bang.
In the Big Apple, Liliane’s career rocketed to the top. Campaigns for Hermes, Calvin Klein, Burberry, Miu Miu and Michael Kors, among others followed; along with covers and editorials for some of the world’s most celebrated magazines like Vogue, W, L’Officiel, Allure, Elle, I-D and V - all shot by the industry’s top photographers. Liliane reached a top position in models.com’s coveted top 50 - place in which she stayed for more than three years in a row.
Now married and back to the arms of her native Brazil, Liliane only comes out of her beach front home in Florianópolis for very special bookings. Macy’s was the most recent, in which she is the leading lady in an all things Brazil commercial that is an homage to the beauty of her native country. For this one, she didn’t have to go too far; the location was an iconic house designed by Brazil’s most renowned architect, Oscar Niemeyer, in Rio de Janeiro.
Here Liliane picks one among so many memorable images from her career and tells us why this one is particularly important to her.
Why do you love this picture?
This was one of my first bookings, I had to make different faces and poses and that was all new and challenging at the same time. I didn’t know how to model and I was surrounded by so many influential people in the fashion industry.
Who took it?
It was David Sims, he always asks us to make so many different poses and faces. (laughs)
What was it for?
Was this a long shoot given your level of experience?
I’m not sure how long, but it was a long, long shoot. I didn’t know how to model properly and having to pose in so many different ways was a little complicated at the time
Was anyone else with you?
My mom; I was so embarrassed to shoot in front of her! (laughs) But she was always with me in the beginning, she gave me so much support in my career, and I was so young.
Was modeling always a dream of yours?
I wanted to be a model, but I wasn’t desperate about it.
What was your most remarkable experience as a model?
Winning the Supermodel of the World contest in Brazil, because in my head I never thought I would win, it really was a surprise!
What are some of the most valuable lessons you learned from being a model?
Giving value to my family, my country and learning different cultures from different countries are some important ones. I also learned to be more patient, because one of the qualities we have to exercise the most in this profession is patience
What about this profession makes you happy?
Getting to know different people from different parts of the world. It made me grow up really fast, faster than all the other girls my age.
What’s your biggest challenge as a model?
I really wish a could live in Brazil full time and still get to work in the US and in Europe as much as I always did. This is my current challenge. I suppose this is what makes life fun and interesting, always having new challenges to conquer; I am sure pretty soon I will have a brand new one!
Can you give an advice to the young girls out there who dream of becoming models?
Trust your dream and pursue it. Never think it will be easy, because it really isn’t, but don’t give up, because it’s all worth it.