Thank Goodness #ANTMisBack
Well Hello there!
OMG, Did you see?! Vh1 has finally announced that they are casting for the newest season of America's Next Top Model! And Naturally, I applied. ✨🙆
I remember in middle school, my friend Emily and I would run home to catch the show every week and talk for hours trying to think of new ways to approach each challenge. [ Which of course was always followed by an impromptu photoshoot. ] I've always known that I would be perfect for the show. In fact, I applied for ANTM Cycle 20, and even though I didn't make the cut the first time, I was lucky enough to receive an email encouraging me to apply again the next year [ assuming everyone didn't get that email… ] though little did I know, the following year was when I realized that I had a 5 millimeter hole in my femur... 🙊
[ Oh Right, that happened... ]
Yep. Almost 2 year ago now, I started to have so much pain with standing and walking, that I wasn't able to walk very fast and had to rely on a cane to help get me around this jungle of New York City. (which btw, we have got to do something about the lack of accessibility in the subways!) It became more and more difficult to do anything like modeling or acting (let alone dancing) that when I finally did get an MRI, it became ever-so-clear that I would have to make a very big decision in my life:
Do I change my life to fit my knee?
Or do I change my knee to fit my life?
Or do I change my knee to fit my life?
I chose the second.
The whole process is hard to describe. No one can prepare you for surgery. No one can make you do your physical therapy. It is all up to you [ and whomever is helping you bathe yourself ].
This surgery completely changed my life. I went from being this insanely hyper-active person that was [am?], to literally not being able to walk. During my recovery I was unable to put any weight on my leg for 7 weeks, and let me tell you: You may think it sounds awesome to sit around and be fed and bathed by your friends and family while you binge-watch Friends on Netflix… but it gets boring real quick.
After putting myself through the most intense pain I've ever felt in my life all because I wasn't ready to give up my dreams... I knew that I needed to start to take my life in to my own hands.
But honestly, I didn't know where to start. Everything I wanted to do seemed limited by my knee, I was constantly exhausted, and I had built up a serious cause of social anxiety and depression from being cocooned up in my apartment all Winter. And so, in between icing my leg and doing my PT exercises, I began to research my favorite actors, models, dancers, you name it, and watched where they began. I even had my dad bring over my childhood collection of old Charlie Chaplin movies to study, and he shared with me one of his favorite classics: “Cinderfella.” After spending a couple of weeks [ okay, let's be honest... months ] researching all these old pieces of work that have inspired my life, I began to notice something that each of the artists had in common:
They weren’t sitting around talking about what they wanted to do.
They were doing it.
This is something that one of my good friends Michael, whom I worked with on the movie Trivia Night, reminded me of not too long ago and it has truly given me a different approach to the way I look at artists. Because frankly, it's way too easy for artists and models and actors [ oh my! ] to approach each other from a place of judgement. And simply, I'd rather just be inspired.
“It is so easy to criticize and complain about other people's work today. Everyone wants to be a critic. Everyone wants to say “Well I’d do that better if…” But the reality is, they actually did it. So until you've written a movie, or produced an album, you really don’t have an opinion.” -Michael Molina
For me, thinking back to moments like these motivates me to stop looking at life's obstacles as, well, obstacles. People always want to tell me: "If you just focus on doing one thing..." "If you were only 6'2"..." but honestly, I don't want to do just one thing with my life, and I really don't mind that I'm 5'9" [ and three quarters! 🙉]. I mean, if you look at my first performance at age 9, I was not only taught how to act, but I also learned how to set up lighting tracks, how to run the sound board, and even how to paint and build the set pieces. And I loved it all. Every show (be it a runway or a musical) has so many moving parts, and if you're only able to do one thing, then you're often just slowing down the process. We're all just trying to work together and make something beautiful. And in my opinion, modeling is exactly that: Collaboration. I love to collaborate and learn something new from each job that I'm in. I know that in the end, it really doesn't matter what your "look" is or even what sample sizes you fit in to, because your talent and attitude is always going to speak for itself.
So, I knew if I wanted to be considered for America's Next Top Model, I would have to show Vh1 just what I would do with one of these challenges. [ Because, I was inspired. #duh ] Not too long ago, I decided it would be fun to collaborate with my friend Eric to recreate one of my favorite photoshoots from ANTM Cycle 21: The one where they played with the rotation of the camera so that the ground looked as though it were the wall, all while trying to make it look natural. Ironically, the same day we shot this was the exact same day that Tyra Banks announced that it was the last season of ANTM (though little did we know at the time that it was just changing networks). You can believe my surprise when I saw that Vh1 had announced ANTM was casting for another season. I just knew, it was now or never. 😉
So without further ado,
The View from the Top.
So you see, I know that I am perfect for America's Next Top Model. Not because I feel the need to be the next reality television star, not because I feel that I am better than any other artists out there, but because I would simply love to collaborate with these amazingly talented photographers, models, stylists, and producers. And let's be real, if I can learn to walk again, I'm sure I can handle any challenge you throw my way. <3
I LOVE YOU ALL. 💙
THANKS FOR READING.
<3 - Eoin Thomas
Please click the share button below to share this with your friends [ and by friends I mean @Vh1 and @MichelleMockCasting ✨😉👍 ].
Thanks again Eric for the fun collab! <3