One of the most frequently heard comments by judges Cindy Bishop and Yu Tsai about Asia’s Next Top Model Cycle 6 contestant Dana Slosar was that she was a slow burner. The 24-year-old half-Thai, half-American, however, wasn’t sure she was burning at all because she’s been having second thoughts of being a model. “I felt modelling was a little bit unstable,” Slosar tells 8 DAYS. “You never know what’s going to happen in this line. It’s kind of like playing Russian roulette.” But Slosar's outlook on her catwalk career changed when she won her first best photo in Ep 5’s Estetica-sponsored challenge, followed by another in Ep 7. These victories were the confidence boosters she needed to see her through to the finale last week (Oct 24) where she went on to beat out Philippines’ Adela-Mae Marshall and Taiwan’s Mia Sabathy. Here, the newly-anointed Asia’s Next Top Model lets on her Plan B should  her modelling career not pan out. 

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Ohhh lord help me ... my head still cannot process. What an unforgettable moment I will treasure forever. Going into this competition, I already felt so proud to be able to represent Thailand; to represent my country and win is the most indescribably incredible moment in my life thus far. I am so grateful to have met the other contestants of AsNTM Cycle 6 - you all inspired me in some way and I’m sure your countries and fans feel the same and are very proud of you too. To my loud girls - To find such amazing friends during a COMPETITION ... wow. Thank you for surrounding me with love always and for making me believe in myself when I needed a boost. The most important lesson I’ve learnt from this experience is that, whatever challenges life brings you, concentrate on the reasons why you could succeed, rather than the reasons why you might fail. I would like to thank my family, friends, and fans for supporting me - Winning is an amazing destination, but you all made the journey there unforgettable ❤️ #ASNTM6 #BEYONDLIMITS #TEAMDANA #TEAMTHAILAND #CANYOUBELIEVEIT

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8 DAYS: Congratulations on winning Asia’s Next Top Model! This season took place in Thailand. Did you feel that you had home advantage?  

DANA SLOSAR: Going into the competition, I thought I had the home advantage because I didn’t need to travel anywhere, but once the competition started, it was anyone’s game really. All the challenges were nothing I had ever done before and I don’t think any of the girls had ever done them before either. So, not too much of a home-based advantage.

The judges said your sleepy eyes are your unique selling point. Have you always known about that?

I had heard it from a friend before but more in a joking way. I never thought that my eyes were that sleepy or that they would be an asset, so it was really interesting to hear Cindy and Yu Tsai talk about my eyes and how I need to learn to work with them because that will become like my really big selling point.

Besides your eyes, what’s your other unique selling point?

After the competition, I am pretty fond of my eyes at this point. But, I always feel like…that I look ethically ambiguous. So, wherever I go around the world, when people look at me, they can’t guess where I’m from, and I really like that. I think that’s a really strong selling point in fashion.

On the show, you said you thought about quitting modelling. Do you have a Plan B? You said you wanted to try anything creative.  

Well, I did like a four-year degree [at Colgate University], and I interned at CNN because wanted to be a journalist, and then I worked with a PR company. At university, I did Theatre. I also did Studio Arts, so I actually had a photography exhibition. I also love writing; I studied English Literature. I’m happiest when I’m doing something creative, so I would like to think I would always pursue something creative someday.

What are your favourite and least favourite photo challenges? 

The weeks that I won best photo are definitely up there. But I also loved [Ep 8’s] Subaru video shot. I just loved the styling, the concept and the harness; I have never done anything like that before. And, the wild things shoot at the beginning. My mum still doesn’t believe I did a photo shoot with a snake [in Ep 1]. I had a really good time doing that. My least favorite was probably the one where I had to pose with a dog in front of villa because that was bad in general. But I had fun in most of the challenges.

If you were to return to the show as a mentor, what pearls of wisdom would you give the contestants?

Don’t act like you don’t want this or, like, this does not mean something to you. Because I think at the beginning of the competition, a lot of the girls were too afraid to try too hard and admit that they cared about what they were doing because everyone was worried that they would get eliminated. So everyone tried to play it cool, even me. I did not want to admit that I wanted to go far because I was always worried I would get eliminated. But once I kind of got over that fear, I wanted to do my best whatever happens — I felt more confident. So yeah, give it your all.

What’s next for you?

I’m working on some exciting projects with some of the girls; we’re starting our own YouTube channel. [I’m also] excited to work with Storm Model Management, and Subaru. I have been e-mailing Subaru about [appearing on some of their road] shows.

Good tips: Creative director and judge Yu Tsai in one his ‘Models, Models, Models’ T-shirt. Which of the judges' or mentors' comments taught Solsar the most about modelling? “I feel like you’re going to get me in trouble if I just say one person,” says Solsar. “Obviously, Cindy [Bishop] and Yu Tsai helped a lot with the technical stuff, but, in terms of attitude, it was my mentor [Cycle 3 runner-up] Monica [Santa Maria]. You know, she said to me one day, no matter what happens, just walk in feeling like you have already [won], because that’s when the confidence really comes out. That really changed my mindset when I went into each challenge.”

Last question: Yu Tsai wore these ‘Models, Models, Models’ T-shirts. Did you know how many he has? And did he give them to the contestants?

I did actually ask him in my final interview if I could have a couple of those shirts because there were definitely some nice ones. [He must have had] at least nine of those shirts, a different one for every episode. I was hoping I get one. 

This interview has been edited and condensed.

Catch Cycle 6 of Asia’s Next Top Model on Fox+.

Photos: FoxLife/Fox International Channels  


 

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