More Than Just A Pretty Face
By Charelle Evelyn on September 23 2013
They say a picture’s worth a thousand words, but all of those words might as well be variations on ‘No’ if the subject doesn’t have anything going on upstairs.
“It’s just like an NHL hockey player. It’s work – hard work – dedication, it costs money. You have to do photo shoots, you have to learn the trade. People don’t just get discovered anymore,” said Jana Phillips. “Unless they look like Heidi Klum… but if Heidi Klum was an idiot, she wouldn’t work.” After a career in modeling and dance that began at the age of four, Phillips started up her own Prince George-based agency in 2010. By 2011 she was taking home the top agency prize at Faces West, one of the biggest industry conventions in North America.
And though she counts convention founder Charles Stuart among her mentors, Phillips isn’t looking to ride anyone’s coattails and her clients shouldn’t either.
With the Jana Phillips Agency, the former music video vixen turned mother and entrepreneur offers training in everything from walking a runway to etiquette to social media skills.
One of the biggest myths she has to dispel for any of the kids (and their parents) who walk through her door is that it’s not good enough to be able to smile for the camera.
“My tagline is ‘creating role models’ because it’s not just about being pretty and fashionable. It’s about being smart, making good decisions,” she said.
And after having opened the long-closed modeling door for exposure-starved local talent, Phillips is still looking to break ground.
When it comes to building confidence and character, modeling and acting go hand in hand, she said. With the right government incentives, B.C. could again be a prime spot for filmmakers and Phillips wants to use her entertainment- industry connections to put Prince George and the region on the movie map.
“I’m planning on bringing some actors into Prince George,” she said, and has some people in mind to lead workshops through her agency. “There are so many opportunities people didn’t even know existed.”
REPORTER FOR THE PRINCE GEORGE CITIZEN
Journalist, west coast native, music lover. Made in Canada