Glamoursurf customer Sherri Snyder shares an interview with us and sent along some new images. We've shown some her gorgeous modeling shots previously on the blog here.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am primarily an actress and writer but I have a definite passion for vintage modeling as well.
It's a funny thing, as an actress, I've always tended to get pegged for the period projects due to my look. For the past couple of years, I have been honored to portray silent screen vamp, Barbara La Marr. It all began when I was cast as Barbara in the Pasadena Playhouse/Pasadena Museum of History production, "Channeling Hollywood." The project involved the life stories of five famous old Hollywood figures and each actor was responsible for writing their particular character's piece. The pieces were then melded together for the stage show.
Barbara led such an extraordinary, fascinating life and I loved every second of writing about her and performing her. After the show closed, people told me I should consider expanding my piece into a one woman show about Barbara's life, which I did. From there, I wrote a play about her life and I am now adapting it into a film. One of the most wonderful things about all of this is that I had the pleasure of meeting Barbara's son, Don Gallery, when he came to California to see my first performance. Since then, we have become very close friends (he jokes that I am his surrogate mother) and he asked me to write a book about her life. So, that is also what I am working on now.
How did you get started in modeling?
When I was 16 and living in Phoenix, I visited the two legitimate agencies that the city had. One of them told me that, although they liked my features, height, and the way I photographed, my current look was too exotic, "European," and edgy for the Arizona market. They wanted a very commercial, girl next store look and with my pale skin, form-fitted black dresses, and platinum hair, I was not it. Stubborn as I was, rather than dye my hair and tone myself down as they advised, I abandoned the idea of modeling in Arizona for the time being.
A couple of months later, I happened into a shop in the Tempe art district with the most amazing clothes I had ever seen; they were classic and elegant but daring and edgy at the same time. The designers, a husband and wife team who owned the shop, told me as soon as I turned 18, I could model for them. Meanwhile, I saved my money and kept buying those gorgeous clothes! Sadly, the designers moved away to Los Angeles about a month before my 18th birthday. A few years after I graduated college with a theatre/acting degree, I moved to Los Angeles myself. Since I had never forgotten them (or their clothes) I looked them up. The wife, Lili Forrest, has her own self-named label at this time. Shortly after finding her in Los Angeles, I began modeling for her and that's how it all started.
Do you do this full time or do you have another job that helps you pay the bills?
I am also an actress and writer so, fortunately, between the three, something is usually going on.
Do you focus solely on vintage clothing and accessories?
Vintage clothing is definitely my favorite type of modeling to do. But I've also modeled for designers specializing in high fashion, bridal gowns, and edgy/avant garde clothing.
What do you consider to be the biggest challenge about your job? And the biggest reward?
The biggest reward is, without question, the wonderful and talented people I have met along the way. I've even become good friends with a few of the designers, photographers, make-up artists I've worked with. My other favorite thing about modeling is the opportunity to create with artists who specialize in their fields. It makes it exciting when you never know exactly what each shoot will bring. The biggest challenge is that I can be hopelessly perfectionistic with myself and that takes the enjoyment out of things if I don't keep it in check.
Are there any tips or learned lessons you can give to aspiring models?
Follow your passion and pursue what truly speaks to you. Along with that, focus on what is most unique about you and what you do well, then expand upon it. Of course, if you are really new to modeling and don't have an agent booking your jobs, always check references before shooting with anyone. If anything makes you feel uneasy for any reason, don't go through with it. Be aware that any so-called "agency" that asks for money before they will represent you is not a legitimate agency and you should not get involved with them.
Which designer(s) gives you inspiration?
Lili Forrest and reVamp. Lili's designs are classically cut to flatter the female form and have a sexy, dramatic edge to them. reVamp's designs are the most beautiful, accurate vintage reproductions I have ever seen. These ladies are so talented!
What vintage model do you draw your inspiration from?
There is no particular one person I draw inspiration from per se. However, I am deeply inspired by the actresses of Hollywood's Golden Era. I also draw inspiration from dancers. Fluidity and mastery of movement is very beautiful to me.
Do you have a favorite photographer you like to work with and why?
Yes, but, as tempting as it is, I'm not going to get myself into trouble by only naming one or two of them here! They know who they are.
As a model you must get to travel to various locations, which one has been your favorite and why?
Honestly, for me, it's not so much the places I've been as the experience of the shoots themselves and the people I'm with. I've had some of my most favorite shoots while freezing to death in windy, icy weather (in a sheer gown no less) on top of a mountain or while lying across a very old and uncomfortable velvet couch. My favorite shoots are those in which the passion, ideas, and creativity of everyone involved play out in a way that none of us planned or expected.
Tell us a bit about how you prepare for a shoot.
When I've been hired for a specific purpose, I find out as much as possible beforehand (especially if it's a highly stylized shoot). Then, I search out any information I might need to best bring that concept to life. Once I've done all I can to prepare in this way, I show up and listen to the other team members' ideas, remain open to everything, and just go with whatever happens.
Do you do your own make up and hair?
When I am modeling, no. When I perform my one woman show as Barbara La Marr, I usually do my own hair and make up. My everyday style tends heavily toward the varying looks of the 1930s-1950s, so I do my own hair and make up along these lines.
What are your favorite products/brands?
Since my skin is sensitive, I love Jane Iredale as far as makeup is concerned. Right now, I also use SanRe, Devita, and The Vital Image skin care. SanRe makes a chemical free sunscreen for the face called Supple Sunshine that is the best I've used. It melts right into the skin with no white film.
In your arsenal of beauty products, what is your all time best go-to product?
Without doubt---red lipstick! I'm naked without it.
Can you give our readers a specific beauty tip?
When you take care of yourself, it really shows on the outside, especially in your skin. I personally eat foods that are as natural as possible and buy make-up and skin care products that are also as natural and chemical free as possible. Getting regular exercise and keeping your stress level low helps, too. If you can, try to get your beauty sleep (not always easy, I know). Drinking a good deal of water on a regular basis helps to keep your skin glowing. Oh, and sunscreen---every day, no matter what.
When you aren't modeling, how do you spend your time?
Working! I'm a workaholic but, fortunately, I love what I do. Right now, I'm working primarily on my film and book.
What do you collect?
I enjoy collecting clothing and accessories from the 1920s-1950s.
You'd laugh if you knew this about me.
People don't seem to believe me when I tell them I've been a vegan raw foodist for over 6 years.