Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Exclusive Interview - Nouk Torsing

Dutch newcomer Nouk Torsing was one of the truly enigmatic personalities that IMA encountered during the recent Spring/Summer 2014 collections. Torsing's natural charisma combined with a wonderful fashion sensibility, and a powerful androgyny provides a stunning counterpoint to the endless stream of pretty young things currently infiltrating fashion's runways. Scouted at age 13, Torsing channelled her energies towards completion of her higher school education before committing to modelling full-time a little over year ago. Standing at 177 cm in height with pale alabaster skin offset by rich mahogany tresses and cobalt blue eyes, Torsing makes for a compelling proposition in print for  the likes of Vogue Italia, i-D, Dazed & Confused, Metal, and Interview Magazine. Torsing's strong sophisticated runway demeanour and regal bearing have also gained favour with a myriad of fashion houses including Jil Sander, Chloé, Nina Ricci, Céline, Marni, Carolina Herrera, and Oscar de la Renta.

Behind Torsing's obvious physical attributes lies a wicked sense of humour, a generosity of spirit, and an effortless cool that had IMA at hello when we met during the Spring/Summer 2014 castings for Oscar de la Renta. Torsing's innate interest in fashion, photography, design, and the collaborative effort behind the high gloss fashion images in which she inhabits show all the signs of a true model as muse in the making. With modelling powerhouse IMG Worldwide strategically guiding her career path, Torsing is already well on her way toward creating a brand name for herself with her personal blog called "The Flying Dutchess" which provides an insight into her interests, observations, and life on-the-go as a high fashion model. IMA caught up with Torsing as she decompressed from the fashion month that was; revealing her wardrobe essentials, her Fashion Week survival tips, and the model besties closest to her heart.

Nouk Torsing
Photographer - Mauro da Silva
Image courtesy of Fresh Model Management


Inoubliable Model Army (IMA): Hi Nouk, thank you for hanging out with IMA. How are you feeling in the aftermath of the Spring/Summer 2014 collections?
NT: Of course! I always have mixed feelings when Fashion Week comes to an end. I start to long for my bed, warm decent meals, and the luxury of doing nothing. But surprisingly enough, I also start to get excited for the next show season, hoping to book more amazing shows. Fashion Week is a very exciting thing even though it's exhausting. It is very weird when it ends, you suddenly don't know what to do with free time anymore, so I do feel a little sad when it's all over.

IMA: Would you mind sharing your backstory?
NT: I am 19 years old now and I was born in Amsterdam. This is also where I was scouted six years ago. It's the typical story - I was shopping when my mother agent came up to me, asking if I'd like to become a model. I didn't do anything with it initially but when it happened four more times that year I decided to give it a shot. After I finished high school, I signed with IMG and started modelling full-time. I had never considered modelling before. I remember a friend telling me I could win Holland's Next Top Model, I was like "yeah sure", thinking only my skinny legs would do the trick ;-).

IMA: Your Spring/Summer 2014 show list included appearances at Oscar de la Renta, Victoria Beckham, Carolina Herrera, Christopher Kane, Nina Ricci, and Chloé! What were you personal highlights of the season, and was there a particular collection that you fell in love with?
NT: I really enjoyed walking for the NY based designers as I had never done NYFW before. Especially Victoria Beckham. I loved her collection and Ms Beckham was really sweet! I really liked walking for Christopher Kane, Damir Doma, Nina Ricci, and Chloé again, as I worked for them before. It's always nice seeing the whole team again. Chloé has a special place in my heart, as my career started with walking their show last year.

Chloé - S/S 2014
Photographer - Marcus Tondo
Source - style.com

Carolina Herrera - S/S 2014
Photographer - Yannis Vlamos
Source - style.com

Christopher Kane - S/S 2014
Photographer - Marcus Tondo
Source - style.com


IMA: How did you cope with the challenges of your first full show season, and which of the fashion capitals did you feel the greatest affinity for?
MT: I won't deny it was hard. I got really sick in Milan as well, which didn't make it easier. I just tried to keep up by taking power naps whenever I could. Those challenges do make the good moments feel even better. I have always loved NYC. This is where I feel at home, there is nothing like it; anything is always possible.

IMA: What do you feel are the most vital factors for achieving success and longevity in the modelling field?
NT: Working hard and keeping the momentum going. Being focused but not letting it get to you too much. You definitely need to be flexible as everything is so last minute.

IMA: You have an amazing sense of style, when we met at Oscar de la Renta, you were wearing a gorgeous red COS sweater accessorised with a wicked Marni bag. How would you describe your fashion aesthetic and which three designers best embody your street style?
NT: Aww thank you so much! Someone once described my style as French chic which I agree with. I always want my outfits to be chic and elegant, but I also like some nonchalance and a little tomboyishness. Items with nice shapes always catch my eye and yes, I definitely have a thing for nice bags. Hmm... I think if you combine Céline, Chloé, and Christopher Kane, you might get something that looks like my street style.

IMA: What has surprised you most about your life as a model and what industry do you see yourself segueing into in 10 years from now?
NT: I guess how much I got used to it... Now I cannot picture myself having a 42 hour per week office job anymore, that's definitely not what I see myself doing in 10 years, hell no! Also, I would never have thought I would meet such great people. I'm afraid I might still be in the same industry in 10 years, I like the fact that you can make fashion as important as you want. Probably doing a different job though, we will see!

How to Spend It - June 2013
Photographer - Thomas Cooksey
Source - thefashionspot.com


Photographer - Unidentified
Source - thefashionspot.com

Metal - Issue 29
Photographer - Robi Rodriguez
Source - thefashionspot.com

Valentino - F/W 2013
Photographer - Inez & Vinoodh
Source - models.com


IMA: You recently collaborated with Miles Aldridge for Vogue Italia and Gregory Harris for Interview, in addition to appearances in Dazed & Confused, Metal and i-D. What do you enjoy most about the print/editorial component of modelling and what has been the most memorable shoot that you have participated in to date?
NT: I think everybody says the same but the best part about print work is that you create something that looks amazing together with other people. Especially when you give them that little bit extra that they needed to make the story magical. I love it when everybody's ideas come together perfectly. This was made really easy for me when I shot the Valentino Fall/Winter 2013 campaign with Inez & Vinoodh. They know exactly what they want and how to get it from you, it was definitely my most memorable shoot so far.

IMA: This season diversity was on the mind of many casting directors and designers. Did you notice any other discernible casting trends?
NT: I did notice the diversity. There were more models than ever, I felt like everybody was spread out all over the shows instead of a few girls doing the majority of the shows. There were also a lot of Dutchies again, love it. Go Holland!

IMA: The life of a model involves a lot of time spent solo travelling and away from family and loved ones. How do you counter this aspect of your profession and who do you count as your closest model pals?
NT: I rarely live by myself, I always have a roommate because I am not too keen on being alone. This Fashion Week, I was lucky enough to share accommodation with my model bestie Annemijn Dijs who is also with IMG. In NYC the lovely Zlata Magafic joined us. I also lived with Maggie Maurer for a while who I became really good friends with. I'm friends with a lot of great colleagues and can't possibly name them all ;-). Thank God I am never homesick, although I do miss my dog, and my sister and friends sometimes, and maybe my mum's cooking and the fact that she washes my clothes... OK stop me right there!!

She's Got Style - Nouk Torsing
Source - stockholmstreetstyle.com

Nouk Torsing & Laura Kampman
Image courtesy of flyingdutchessstreetstyle.tumblr.com

Nouk Torsing & Annemijn Dijs
Image courtesy of fashionmilk.com


IMA: Tell us a little about your interests and passions beyond modelling?
NT: I've always been passionate about photography, besides that I love Bikram yoga, horseback riding, and snow boarding. I'm also working on a blog at the moment, called The Flying Dutchess which I've wanted to do for a while but couldn't find the time for.

IMA: Imagine you're being photographed for the cover of BritishVogue with four other girls as per the original circa 90s Peter Lindbergh Famous Five portrait. If you could play casting director for a day, which other four models would you choose to appear alongside?
NT: Well definitely Annemijn Dijs because she deserves it more than anyone else in my opinion, and now that I am already speaking out of nepotism let's add Maggie Maurer as well. Or maybe it should be an all-Dutch cover with Laura Kampman and Iris Van Berne. I also love Saskia de Brauw's face but Natalia Vodianova and Daria Werbowry are models that I would really like to stand next to as well... this it too difficult!

IMA: What makes you "Inoubliable" (Unforgettable)?
NT: Well, as you didn't forget me after we met, maybe you should answer this one... or maybe you just remembered me cause if my bright red sweater?! I have really tiny ears which is very unique, haha. Or maybe it's my sense of irony that makes me "Inoubliable".

Nouk Torsing
Photographer - Djamel Boucly
Image courtesy of Fashion Gone Rogue

Vogue Italia - September 2013
Photographer - Miles Aldridge
Source - thefashionspot.com

Nouk Torsing
Image courtesy of Fresh Model Management

Stylist France - October 2013
Photographer - Phillip Gay
Source - thefashionspot.com

Special thanks to Josh Otten and IMG Model Management. For more information on IMG Models, please log onto www.imgmodels.com. Check out Nouk Torsing's musings on fashion, life and photography at www.noukynoukdiary.blogspot.com

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