Beautiful and smart. Successful model and archaeologist, Terry Madenholm has it all. In this exclusive interview, she talks about her modeling work and archaeology. Meet the real Lara Croft.
Current location: London
Tell us about your career as a model. How did you get started?
During my academic year in Vienna, I was approached by Next who wanted to sign me, but I was absorbed by studies. Shortly after completing the academic year, I got in touch with New Madison. We spoke on Skype and two days later I was in Paris. All went quickly from there.
When did you first sign with an agency and what was that like?
The moment I arrived in Paris I signed with New Madison. One week after I got my first cosmetic campaign.
What is one of your favorite photographs from your career so far? Who shot it?
I like the following portrait by Bojana Tatarska.
What is your best model experience ever?
After a period of studies, I flew to Corsica to film a commercial for L’Occitane. It was a beautiful place with lots of flowers. The scenery brought back childhood memories.
What are the main challenges in modeling today?
The value of a model is priced by the number of her followers on Instagram. The challenge of today is the ability to separate professional life from the private.
What do you enjoy most about your profession?
Mostly that it is an enjoyable and profitable way of spending time.
How would you describe a model life?
It combines many extremes. It can be very exciting, unpredictable and glamorous whilst at the same time, it can be dull and exhausting.
Do you think models are able to find long lasting friendships within the industry today?
I think there is a place for friendships in any profession. It depends on the individuals involved.
What is your big model dream?
It might sound strange, but I never gave it a thought.
What is your favorite thing to do when not working?
I play tennis and take long walks but my favorite activity is horse riding.
Take us through a typical day in the life of Terry Madenholm?
I don’t have a typical day. My days are quite varied.
How do you keep your body in good shape?
I avoid public transport- I walk a lot. I eat healthy-I don’t eat meat and I avoid processed food.
What’s your favorite place in the world?
I adore Paris and I’m fascinated by Rome. Jerusalem left a strong impression on me- it smells of antiquity, but I haven’t found my favorite place yet. Once I do, I’ll move there.
We know that you are also an archaeologist. How was the transition from being a model to an archaeologist?
It was the other way round. I started from archaeology.
Do you feel more like an archaeologist or a model?
Absolutely an archaeologist. It became even clearer during my archaeological work in Tel Achziv. I was the only one who arrived with hand luggage.
Are there any similarities between the two professions?
Mainly patience. In archaeology, I deal with the past. Modeling, however, is about the future.
In archaeology, one learns about how people lived and for example how they dressed. In modeling, one learns how people will dress.
Give us 4 fun facts people might not know about you yet.
1) Studying at L’École du Louvre. Spending every day at the Louvre, amongst wonderful objects was not only a huge privilege but also an aesthetic and spiritual experience.
2) When I was in Israel, I excavated jewelry pieces. Among them was an Ottoman ring, which brought out the Gollum instinct in me. What was also wonderful was the office view I had. The excavation site was located on a beach adjacent to the ruins of a bombed Club Med. I have to say that this didn’t make the place any less charming.
3) I was supposed to shoot a perfume campaign alongside Justin Bieber, but the campaign got canceled. I don’t know what is more amusing the cancellation or the fact that I was supposed to be Bieber’s girl.
4) My dad tried on many occasions to teach me to water-ski. I didn’t show much enthusiasm. A few years later I was cast for the Heineken James Bond commercial alongside Daniel Craig, but I didn’t know how to water-ski.
The moral of the story: Listen to your parents.