We caught with Braina Laviena, model and amazing creative from Puerto Rico currently living in Los Angeles. With a BA in Advertising & Journalism and an outstanding experience in the fields of Fashion, Non-Profits, Politics and Design, this beauty and brains got so much to offer and we are super excited to let you in on our little time together.
FRUK: How did you get discovered?
BRAINA: I wouldn’t really say I was ‘discovered’ I took an interest to modeling when I was about 17 and got signed with an agency in Puerto Rico while I was in college. After college I had a great steady job but I really wanted to pursue modeling so I decided to just move to LA and try. I think it’s been a matter of being at the right place, at the right time and having the right preparation.
FRUK: Besides modeling what will you be caught doing on a regular day?
BRAINA: Playing with my cat, reading, writing, taking pictures, sketching, painting and watching lots of tv shows.
FRUK: Let’s talk Yeezy Season 1, how did that happen?
BRAINA: I was at the right place at the right time and had the right preparation 🙂 I first met Kanye last year around October and because I went to school and I had a good resume, I was incredibly lucky and got hired as his PA, obviously he knows I want to model and do my own creative projects, so he encouraged me to keep at it and not be an assistant. I did Season 1 and Season 2 and they were both such huge experiences, so much work and effort goes into it, it’s really amazing. After Season 1, I started doing fittings for his line and now I’m the in house fit model while I still get to have time to do other jobs and pursue other passions. I’m extremely grateful to have crossed paths with him and to have been given such great opportunities.
FRUK: You can pull off any hairstyle but which will be your ultimate fave?
BRAINA: I’ve always dreamed of having long wavy bombshell locks, but I don’t have that much hair and it’s very straight so when it’s long it sort of makes me look languished not bombshell haha
FRUK: Craziest thing that has ever happened to you?
BRAINA: I honestly think everyday it gets crazier and crazier, things that I would never think I’d get to do or people I’d get to work with. When that happens, it’s like whoa this is real, this is happening, that feeling is there every time.
FRUK: Tell us something most people don’t know about you?
BRAINA: I can lick my elbow.
FRUK: If you were not modeling what would you be doing?
BRAINA: Pursuing other creative careers such as acting, photography, painting, writing.
FRUK: Most memorable place?
BRAINA: Home! Puerto Rico, its beautiful rainforest!
FRUK: What is the most surreal thing you’ve experienced so far in your career?
BRAINA: Probably meeting Kanye and Kim, here you are with these powerhouses, the most influential power couple that people love and love to hate and you’re just standing in front of them trying to take it all in and they are so nice and welcoming. Getting to work with people you’ve admired your whole life, from makeup artists like Pat McGrath and Francesca Tolot to photographers like Jackie Nickerson, Charlie Engman to stylists like Christine Centenera and Joe Mackena, etc, all the people you meet on jobs I think are the most amazing thing you take away; all these years of experience, all this knowledge and the kindest personalities. And of course, the traveling! I recently got to go to Cape Town and my mind was blown!
FRUK: What is the most important thing you’ve learnt on your journey?
BRAINA: To believe in myself, always be kind, and to trust that everything works out in the end. Also, to work really hard.
FRUK: Netflix and chill or go out?
BRAINA: Netflix and chill
FRUK: If you had one wish, to work with anyone dead or alive who would it be?
BRAINA: I think being able to work with Tilda Swinton in any capacity would be the highest point in my life.
FRUK: Where do you see yourself in 5years?
BRAINA: Predominantly acting, amongst other things.
FRUK: If you could be anywhere doing anything with anyone, what, who and where would it be?
BRAINA: I would be traveling around the world in a sprinter with my boyfriend, seeing the sights, visiting and volunteering at animal sanctuaries and taking loads of pictures.
FRUK: If you could start your career over again, what would you do differently?
BRAINA: Sometimes I think I would have liked to have started sooner (not doing college and work) but if I had done that I would not be doing what I’m doing today. I prefer to not think about the ‘what ifs’.
FRUK: What advise will you give an aspiring model or creative?
BRAINA: My motto is “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” from Samuel Beckett’s Worstward Ho. I think that’s something that anyone in any industry can apply. Success comes from repeated failures what matters is to not give up.