As a counterpart to our MCM series, our new WCW column sees us shooting and interviewing our favorite female (and female-identifying) models of the moment. This week? Arselajda Buraku from Muse.
Name? Age? Hometown? Sign of the zodiac?
Arselajda Buraku, 22 years old, Rubik, Albania, Virgo.
Did you always want to be a model growing up?
I always knew I wanted to find freedom, love my body and express my feelings. Modeling is a perfect way for me to do this.
How did you get discovered?
I came all the way from Albania to NYC with one suitcase. I met with Muse and spoke with them about my journey. They loved my energy and thought I had a really cool look and that's how it all started.
Do you remember the first casting or go-see you ever went on? What was it like? Were you nervous?
Yes. My first casting was in NYC I was very excited and felt happy and confident. It was a great start.
Are there any models you really look up to or whose careers you'd like to have?
One of my biggest inspirations is Tilda Swinton and her art of performance. She has such strength, elegance and an ethereal beauty.
What has been the most fun job you've booked in 2016?
Hood by Air.
Tell us about where you're from. What's a fact about your hometown / home country no one knows? Is there a modeling industry in your hometown?
I'm from Albania. The country has such a long, rich history and the people are kind and inspiring. Not a lot of people know that Albania has its own unique language called Shqip. It's a beautiful language of romance, pathos and pride.
Do you have any routines before castings or shows that you always follow? (For instance, do you always wear the same kind of outfit, wear the same makeup or skincare, do your hair the same way? Eat the same breakfast?)
I don't really have a set routine but I try to relax as much as possible. In the mornings I'll usually have hot tea or read poems from my favorite writers Rilke or Gjergj Fishta. For the castings, I always wear simple clothes, natural hair and clean skin.
What do you like to do during your free time?
I love exploring art exhibitions everywhere in the city. I love seeking out shows for up and coming artists and interpreting their art .
Do you have any hidden talents?
I was part of the ensemble who performed traditional songs and dances from the region I come from. (Valle Popullore.)
What's something no one knows about you?
I perform with my band -- it's dream pop/surf rock.
What are your favorite beauty/skincare/hair products?
I use mainly organic all natural products for hair and skincare. I love to use coconut oil for my hair and aloe vera for my skin.
Hair: Yuhi Kim at Bridge Artists
Make-up: Laura Stiassni at The Wall Group
Manicurist: Yukie Miyakawa @ Kate Ryan Inc.
Retouching: Silhouette Studio
Splash Photo: Arselajda wears a top by Ji Oh and Anndra Neen earrings