SHE COMES WITH A CERTAIN ENERGY THAT CATCHES THE CAMERA AND DOESN’T LET GO. OFTEN MAKEUP-LESS, THE SELF-PROFESSED TOMBOY WOULD CHOOSE A SNOWBOARD OR A SAILBOAT OVER THE CATWALK ANY DAY.
These days, that’s exactly the drift that Daria Werbowy follows in her second home on the rocky coast of Cork, Ireland. Her short but expansive career has loaded up a string of strong campaigns beginning with Prada in 2003 through to Céline in 2015. Despite her decision to partially duck out of the industry a few years ago, she works selective back-to-back jobs while in New York during two months of the year. Still prominent as a global ambassador for Lancôme Cosmetics since 2005, she has scaled back modeling full time for a more laid-back rhythm and she’s worked out the formula to keep her balance in check.
Born in Krakow, Poland, she immigrated at the age of three with her Ukrainian parents to a suburb of Toronto, Canada. It was during her elementary school days that her best friend’s mother started an agency named Susan J. Model and Talent Management and signed Daria to her first modeling jobs when she was 14. At 18, she signed to IMG Models and moved to New York where things began to take off and she was launched into her first major campaign for Prada in 2003.
Daria was picked up by industry in a flash. With Prada as her first big exposure, 2003 topped her catwalks with over 55 runway shows. Lancôme Cosmetics signed her for a major deal in 2005 and she still holds tenure as global brand ambassador alongside Penelope Cruz and Julia Roberts. Her involvement as the face of Lancôme’s fragrance, ‘Hypnôse’ has paralleled a capsule makeup collection that she designed in collaboration with the brand titled ‘Brazilian Earth Colors’ and the sales were donated to an arts centre for young adults in Rio de Janeiro. The million dollar a year deal solidified Daria’s name among the new crop of supermodels. Roberto Cavalli, Isabel Marant, Loewe, Dsquared2, Balmain and YSL followed Daria for the cover of major advertising campaigns among countless editorials. Though full-faced high glam has seen her unequivocal transformative caliber, it has always been Daria’s natural and makeup free striking features that have intrigued the camera most. Bare-faced in Céline campaigns caught under the mastery of Juergen Teller’s photographic spell since 2011, Daria’s close relationship with Phoebe Philo from the designer’s Chloé days has augmented their working relationship. Akin to an easy going hang out, Daria has expressed the great vibe between them when they work together amid joking around and giving each other a hard time.
In 2009, Daria stepped away from her maximum capacity modeling schedule to regroup and travel with her family. An avid sailor since a young age, her anchor finger tattoo merits meaning after sailing trips across the Atlantic Ocean and throughout Central America. Being out in the open ocean is the one thing that she can do to really relax and her easy-going-cool parlays a love for nature. Getting caught in situations like sleeping in a cave after being swept out on her surfboard in the night, she hovers between the mountains and the beach with the same devout as her modeling jobs.
ROLLING HILLS FORWARD
After a comeback to the fashion industry a year later, she opted to ease up on her full-time modeling work in favour of a low-key life with her boyfriend in Cork, Ireland. She still rocks a full on schedule while in New York for two months of the year and keeps up with her contracts which continue to be in full demand. This year she has appeared in campaigns for AG Adriano Goldschmied, H&M, Equipment and Alexander Wang’s Do Something campaign. Artistically she’s tested the waters with her photography skills for the French brand, Equipment, for which she modeled, styled and photographed a series of Joan Jett inspired self portraits for the brand’s fall 2014 campaign. Her personal passions and art school days run prominent in her work and she travels to Peru to assist local families and school children in setting up community schools alongside her month-long treks through India and Iceland. She’s crafted her own creativity from what modeling began and continues to be, but in a new context. She says she feels restless when she’s in one place too long, which keeps her moving between the homes that could, in fact, be anywhere that grant her breathing space. Best case scenario – sailing or anchored out at sea.
Her makeup less, off-shoot look is a Daria Werbowy trademark true to her nature-loving and down-to-earth personality.
She has maintained an openly honest view about her view of the fashion industry throughout the press; often feeling unsettled about the superficial nature of the business. She realised that at the top of her career game, she could not keep working under the mental and physical pressure for the sake of being financially better off and decided to scale back her schedule in favour of a more balanced life.
Her finger tattoo anchor merits its symbol and she’s sailed across the Atlantic Ocean as well as a three-month sailing expedition from Guatemala around Central America and Costa Rica.
At the age of three, Daria and her parents move to the outskirts of Toronto, Canada.
Daria begins to get her foot into modeling. At the age of 14, she first signs with Toronto-based agency Susan J. Model and Talent Management.
She lands a campaign as the face of Prada. Shot by Steven Meisel, the campaign was a big breakthrough. In the same year she walks over 55 catwalk shows.
Daria covers an issue of Vogue shot by the iconic photographer, Helmut Newton. Sadly, this was the celebrated photographer’s last shoot before he passes away in a car crash in Los Angeles.
Daria becomes Lancôme Cosmetics’ global brand ambassador and signs a multi-year deal, included as the face for Lancôme’s fragrance, ‘Hypnôse’.
Daria relocates to Cork, Ireland. In the same year she appears in the Pirelli Calendar shot by Karl Lagerfeld.
Celebrated photographers Inez & Vindooh shoot a film with Daria for Vogue Paris.
She is the spring/summer 2014 cover face for Isabelle Marant and Balenciaga campaigns.
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