Today is the first day of the month and we’re starting it off right with Aunjoli!

Today is the first day of the month and we’re starting it off right with Aunjoli! Aunjoli is an amazing model, with a great story. It gets even greater when you discover how she got started with modeling. Take a look! 

How was your childhood?  

My childhood was great, I really can’t complain. My parents had me young and worked so hard to give me everything I ever needed or wanted, my parents didn’t stay together but they had a good relationship (still do) and both of them raised me. I’m an only child, like only, only, no siblings on my mom’s side and none on my dads either, So my parents and grandparents put their all into raising me. I’m so lucky to be born into a family that really had my back.  

What obstacles have prevented or tried to prevent you from getting to where you are today if any? What made you the person you are today? 

There’s always a time in a models life where you’re not getting book like you want to. You go to castings, go sees, auditions and just never get a call back. I went through that phase a couple years ago and it was a hard pill to swallow. At that point I was like “why am I still even doing this?” But I stuck to it and continued to go to those castings and eventually my phone started ringing again.  
I owe a lot to my grandparents for showing me into the person I am today. Like I said before my parents had me young, 18 and 21, so without them and their help I could of had a different fate. They really cultures me and made sure I did a little of everything when I was growing up, camp in the summer, every sport under the sun, art classes, music classes, horseback riding, travel, all that really helped me have a good understanding of myself. I was taught never be afraid to be myself.   

You’re a model, who shoots mostly sport ads. Have you ever considered doing fashion? At what age did you join Heffner (modeling agency)? How did you get the opportunity? How is it different from being a freelancer?  

I’ve been an athlete my whole life so naturally I have more of an athletic build and get booked mostly for brands like Adidas and Nike, but I LOVE fashion. Any chance I get to work with freelance photographers who just wanna create something they’ve never done before I’m always down.  It’s really art you know? Having someone’s vision come to life, it’s one of my favorite things to do.  
I signed to Heffner when I was 17, it’s kind of a funny story, it was the summer before my senior year of high school I was with a group of friend at the lake hanging out in the sun when this lady, her husband brand new baby and a dog walk up to me with her eyes and mouth wide open. I was kind of startled like “what does this lady want?!” And she goes “you’re gorgeous! Have you thought about modeling?” All of  this was all in front of my friends so I was kind of embarrassed. I told her I used to do some work when I was younger but I lost interest. She pulled out a business card and told me to come to the agency, I was like yeah okay whatever lady and put the card in my pocket and forgot about it  for a few days. I was lowkey really nervous to call because you always hear about these modeling scams. People trying to have you “model” but you have to pay them (that’s not how it works) so anyways, I let weeks pass, maybe even a month and I had one of my friends call the number pretending to be me to set up a time for me to come into the agency. I’m still thinking it’s fake at this point. So fast forward to the meeting day, the office is downtown and I’m taken back when I walk in, phones ringing off the hook, models pictures everywhere on the wall, something you’d see in movies. I ended up going during the open call time, which is basically auditions to anytime that thinks they have what it takes to get signed. One of the agents came out and told the girl before me she’s “not what  they’re looking for” I was thinking oh no they aren’t gonna take me, there’s no way. I ended up getting a 3 year contract that day, and I’ve been with them for 7 years now and the lady that walked up to me at the lake is the owner of the agency.  

Both have their ups and downs. Agency’s give you more sense of security, they also set pretty high standards for you when selecting clients you work for. You really gotta know people to get good consistent gigs when you’re freelance. Where you’re with an agency they do all the work which is nice. I’ll get a email from my agency saying “hey you free on this day I have a shoot for you” and you just show up, all the logistics are figured out.  

What positive reinforcement do you give yourself to become a better you and better at what you do?      
I was taught never be afraid to be myself.   
You know, I’m really not that good at giving myself credit. It takes one of those days where I’m flustered and down on myself for someone, like my boyfriend to be like “hey look at all you’ve done, look how far you’ve come. Cheer up” for me to really take it all in. I’m my own toughest critic so I go way too hard on myself sometimes.  

Do you plan to do more with modeling? How do you picture your future?

Yeah, I could never “not” model. A lot of people think that you can only model when you’re young but my agency has a lot of “mature” models signed to them. I plan to do it as long as I can, It’s always something fun to do no matter where you are in your life, if you still got it at an older age why not? I’ve thought about working for an agency in the future, or maybe even start my own.  

To check out Aunjoli’s work visit her amazing website ! If you would like to be featured, contact us!