This week we sat down for the chats with the stunning Devon Baur, to talk all about working in the Irish modelling industry and balancing academics with the world of fashion.
How did you first get into the industry?
It's kind of a crazy story. I had moved to Dublin not knowing anyone and only had a few nights booked in an AirBnb, but by sheer coincidence my host was the amazing make-up artist Emma Farrell. She took a few test shots of me and I loved the whole work environment. A week later I was volunteering at an art festival to meet people in the city, which took place in the same building as Distinct Model Management. Anne (my agent) scouted me and asked if I had any photos I could show her, and I had just gotten my photos back from Emma. It was pure serendipity.
Can you describe a typical work day?
Usually an early start, and often in a location I've never been to; it's led me to see parts of the country I may have never seen before. The first few hours are usually relaxing for me because I just get to sit back and have my hair and make-up done while having a laugh with the team. Once we start shooting I really have the chance to be creative as I work with the clothes, location, photographer, and my body to create interesting shapes and images. We continue changing "looks" (clothes/hair/make-up/location) throughout the day, and finally wrap when the team is satisfied and confident that we have everything we need.
What motivates you?
I am motivated by all of the talented and creative people I get to work with, and especially by my rockstar agency. The ethos of Distinct Model Management is cutting-edge, supportive and refreshing and I am proud to be a part of it. The founder Anne, as a strong, young, female entrepreneur with a clear vision, is an inspiration for not just her models, but young women everywhere. Being surrounded by this energy encourages me to represent the agency in the best way I can.
How do you integrate social media into your role career as a fashion stylist/creative?
Social Media is an amazing way to connect with other creatives and draw inspiration. I love working with mood boards on Pintrest for example, which pools together a collage of great images that can influence my work and push me out of a "comfort zone".
What has been your biggest career achievement to date?
My Dunnes Campaign for Carolyn Donnelly was pretty amazing, and there were larger than life photos of me around the city. I also loved shooting for Thread because I have always admired their aesthetic and message, and was delighted to be the cover of that.
Have you any advice for people thinking of entering the industry?
It's important to remember the nature of castings. They are usually looking for something very specific, so every rejection is not a reflection of you. With that in mind, hard work, a positive attitude and a thick skin can lead to excellent opportunities.
Where do you hope to see yourself / your business in 5 years?
I actually have dreams of becoming an academic. I recently completed my MPhil at Trinity and modeling was a great parallel to have in my life. The schedules usually worked so that I could balance shoots in the morning and lectures in the afternoon, which was helpful as a student. But it also gave me balance because the two contrasting worlds gave my daily life diversity. Hopefully in 5 years I can continue both, working on a PhD and modeling, or at least working with the same creative people.
What is your pet peeve about working in the industry?
The cold can be brutal. Shooting a spring/summer collection outside, in Ireland, in February, would be tough for anyone I'm sure, but I grew up in LA so I am particularly spoiled when it comes to weather.
What do you do to relax and unwind after a long days work?
I always come home to a hot bath, perhaps a little yoga to recalibrate, and of course a good pint of craft beer never hurts!
You can book Devon for a shoot over at Distinct and follow some of her modelling adventures over on her Instagram page. YM