Tagged with the dubious distinction of being the first contestant in history to not have a single client say they would book her after a “go-see” session, 21 year-old Brittany became the ninth contestant eliminated from America’s Next Top Model. Despite having a strong portfolio and taking beautiful pictures, she became yet another victim of the “no personality” rap by Tyra and Company.
Hi Brittany! How are you?
I am fantastic!
Congratulations on making it to the top five.
Thank you very much.
I really wasn’t expecting to be talking with you. I had you picked as my winner.
Really? I’ve heard that every season the girl that does consistently well is always the surprise elimination around number five.
How did you become interested in applying for America’s Next Top Model?
My friend, who has always told me since I was little that I should be a model and yells at me every time I get told that on the street, told me that if I tried out for the show she would never ever, ever, ever, ever bother me about it again. I figured getting smacked every time someone says, “Are you a model?” was getting a little old, so I figured I’d give it a shot.
Did you do it all on your own—just going through casting, or did someone contact you?
I did it all on my own. I drove out to Atlanta in Georgia with my fiancé and spent two days out there, and flew out to LA, and apparently they liked me a whole bunch.
Did you have any previous modeling experience?
No. I had never modeled before. I actually . . . my mother had tried to get me into it when I was 14, and I was absolutely determined not to do it because my mother wanted me to, and I was 14. [laughs]
Are you planning on pursing modeling as a career, and have you taken any steps toward that?
Absolutely! I plan on going to New York this summer and seeing what happens and trying to get some work. Just sort of giving the whole thing a shot outside of reality television.
What kind of modeling are you interested in?
I’m interested in every kind, really. Modeling is an art, and there are all sorts of different aspects of it, and I was only able to experience a small portion of that on the show. I would love to give sort of everything a try and see how it works out.
What was it like for you living in a house with all those girls and constantly being surrounded with drama?
We weren’t really constantly surrounded with drama. It was actually a lot of fun living in the house with all the girls and getting to know them all. There were moments of drama, but when you are given an entire week’s worth of footage, and you have 40 minutes of space to fill, it’s pretty easy to make it look like all we did was fight and whine.
Are you saying editing is deceiving? [laughs]
On reality televison? Nooooo! [laughs]
Who did you have the easiest time getting along with?
There were a few girls I got along with really well. Jael was incredibly easy to get along with because she really just is one of those people who wants everyone to be happy. Sarah was so easy to get along with. She is very intelligent, great to talk to, and completely understanding of a lot of things. Felicia . . . me and Jael and Felica used to sleep outside every single night on that little outside couch-type thing. Samantha, before she got eliminated, I’d known her since castings in Atlanta, so she was also very close to me.
Who was the most difficult one to get along with?
Geez, for me it was probably Diana because Diana didn’t really like me much. She sort of thought I was kind of annoying, which she told me, and, you know, I am kind of annoying, so it’s completely fair. I think I had the most difficult time getting along with her.
Was there any one person that was responsible for creating the most drama in the house?
Not really because it does take two people to have an argument and create a fight, so I think it was really sort of everything combined.
How tall are you?
I am 5’11”.
Our readers always like to hear another contestant’s opinion of the other girls in the house. In a one or two word description, please tell me the first thing that comes to mind when you hear these names:
Cassandra: Loving and very sweet.
Diana: Proud and stubborn.
Dionne: Quiet and reticent.
Felicia: Fun and bubbly.
Jael: Artistic and intriguing.
Jaslene: Cha-cha diva.
Natasha: Positive and confusing.
Renee: Motherly and strong.
Samantha: Sweet and silly.
Sarah: Intelligent and creative.
Whitney: Very intelligent and very strong.
Yourself (Brittany): Oh, no! A damn mess! [laughs]
Do you read Fans of Reality TV?
I have not, but I will in the future!
You were given the edit of being the emotional one and always crying on the show. Do you feel that was an accurate portrayal of you during your time on the show?
I think it was a partial portrayal of me. I think that everybody had their moments, and I think a lot of things were taken out of context that occurred with me. I do think it was somewhat accurate to an extent. You have to understand that it is reality television, and they are creating the most stressful environment they possibly can. It’s a controlled environment meant to do that, and it’s meant to break you down. You feel like when you get to the end of it, there is nothing outside of America’s Next Top Model, but that is it. If you fail, you will fail miserably, and that will be the end of your life. Then, you finish and you’re like, “Oh wait! There’s a real world.”
The crying seemed to start with your weave. What was the problem with your weave that it was causing so many problems?
They braided my . . . first off, they gave me $27.99 hair out of a package, but beyond that, they dyed my hair about seven or eight times to match the color in the weave, and it blistered. My scalp had blisters on it, and, then, they braided it up, which ripped the blisters off and my skin off. So, my scalp was actually scabbed and bleeding underneath of the weave, and it got to the point where it was so bad that I had blood running down at points.
Oh, my goodness. Now I feel sick having heard that. So, you were not being portrayed as being a whiner; you had some real problems going on there.
I’m sorry. [laughs] Yes, it was a lot worse than they let on, too.
You said you were run over by a car, and it affected your short-term memory loss? How does that affect your day-to-day living?
I lose just about everything I own on a daily basis. I think I’ve left my cell phone at the grocery store at least six or seven times this month. Usually, they just call my fiancé’s phone now they know I do it. I lose my keys, my purse, my cigarettes, my everything. My shoes—I’ve had my shoes, set them down and not known where I left them, and they’ll be right by the front door. I’ve put things on the mantle so that I know they are there when I’m walking out the door and have no idea where they are. I call my fiancé about seven or eight or nine or ten times a day just to figure out where something might be, and he just goes through the list of everywhere I leave things. It’s always the same four or five places, and for some reason I can’t remember that. I get really frustrated, and it’s real interesting.
Some of the girls were insinuating that you were using the short-term memory loss as an excuse during the Aussie CoverGirl shoot because you seemingly had no problems memorizing your lines during the acting challenge. I’d just like to hear what your response is to that.
Sure. That is a very ignorant statement because short-term memory and long-term memory are two completely different things. Long-term memory was used for the script in the acting challenge. Short-term memory is different. I made the mistake of trying to rely on the cue cards, and short-termed memory is a two to five second window in which you read something, and you can recall and regurgitate it, and then it’s gone. It’s lost. It doesn’t matter. It’s a quick recollection. In reading the cue cards, I would read it and look at the camera and have no idea what I’d just read because it wasn’t committed to my long-term. I was trying to just regurgitate this. With the lack of my short-term, it is absolutely impossible.
Thank you for explaining that.
On the last show, you blamed the taxi for not being where it was supposed to be. In fact, the episode was named after that incident. Did you tell the driver to wait for you at a specific place?
I did and they didn’t show that! Actually, last night’s episode was one of the first I’ve watched in a while. I watched it because I know what happened. I had left and then walked back and said, “Wait. Can you meet me over there?” They didn’t show that clip, but really it was more my fault because I should have allowed myself more time for any extenuating circumstances. I mean had there been traffic, it would have been the same situation. So, it was poor judgment and a poor call on my part. The temper tantrum was over-the-top and ridiculous, and I knew I was going home, and I was very upset. I felt that I had lost absolutely everything, and like I’ve said before, you feel there is nothing beyond Top Model when you are there, and that’s how they want you to feel. It’s sort of very cultish in a way.
Since you just touched on it, when you were disqualified for the challenge and Priscilla was listening to your whole melt-down, were you aware that she was hearing that, and, if not, when did you become aware that she heard everything you said?
I did not know she could hear me. She actually . . . Renee told me when we figured out Priscilla might be one of the judges. I did apologize to her, which they did not show, when I first got called up when we were in the elimination room, for my behavior and my outburst and told her I was completely out-of-line and that I owed her an apology—that that type of behavior was very un-poised and unbecoming of anyone.
You seemed very flustered finding your way around during the go-sees. What caused you problems?
Um, I got a little flustered. Actually, also with the 15-19 thing—where it was number 13, that was in the same building, and it was that same button. It was right upstairs in that building, and it was the correct place. When I went back and rung the doorbell again, they answered, so I was actually in the right place, but you know reality TV shows.
What kind of feedback did you get from the clients during the go-sees, and how did you feel you were doing at the time?
Other than my walk, which was a disaster, I actually got some pretty good feedback. I was told that I was very eloquent, that I was very clear-speaking, and that my portfolio was absolutely the best that a lot of them had seen out of the girls that had been there.
Did any of the clients mention your runway walk being a problem at the time?
Uh, one or two did. The others did not. There were two that did mention it.
Did you just sit there not speaking to the clients the whole time?
No! I actually had a conversation with Kit about her daughter and about how excited her daughter would be to have a fashion-designer for a mommy. I had a small conversation about Australia with the women with the swimsuit thing. When they were looking over my book sort of talking to each other, I didn’t really want to interrupt them. It seemed rude.
Since your runway walk seemed to cause concern, are you taught on the show how to walk by Ms. Jay, who’s the runway coach, because it’s listed enough on the name every time we see him as a judge?
About 15 minutes. We get three lessons on walking. We literally walk like three times, and he tells us what we’ve done correct or incorrectly, and then we’re sort of sent out into the world. Lots of training from Ms. Jay. [laughs]
Did you say you had about 15 minutes total or three different times with 15 minutes?
About 15 minutes total. It was literally walk up and out, and here’s what you did.
How about prepping before the "go-sees?" Are you told what to expect, how to act, what to wear, or are you just sent out there to fend for yourselves?
We are sort of told, at least in this season, we were told what not to wear by Elite, and that was sort of it. Then, we were handed our books and given a brief, you know, Priscilla did prep us a little bit. She did tell us to try and fit our personalities to the client and to keep in mind what the client was selling. If it was designer gowns, be a little more eloquent. If it was swimsuits, be a little more fun, so we were given a little bit of an explanation, but it wasn’t really like a teach. It was just sort of a heads-up.
You had arguably one of the strongest portfolios this cycle, and were consistently called out near the top, except the past two weeks, having an average call-out at number three. Did you have any thought that you might be eliminated, especially after seeing your photo shoot pictures?
I was pretty sure I was going home after I got the comment on the go-sees, but I was pretty sure I was going home weeks before that after I had done consistently well, because I had heard from other girls—I haven’t watched the show, but I had heard—that it’s usually the fifth girl around number six, five, four that get the boot. It’s the shocker eliminee.
Since we’re out of time, I’ll just say congratulations, Brittany, and best of luck to you in the future.
Thank you very much!
Many thanks to CW and Brittany for this interview opportunity!