America’s Next Natural Model Season 1
To be really honest, at the beginning all I had was an idea. I wanted to use my website to promote models and natural hair with the goal to add another dimension to the world of modeling. I had no idea though what the response would be or how it would turn out. Looking back, I am glad I took the risk.
Out of nearly 100 applications, I selected ten contestants with the best photos and the best motivation to become America’s Next Natural Model. To get the competition started I shipped them boxes full of stuff I gathered all summer. From accessories to scarves and hair products. There were no sponsors.
Maybe it was because I didn’t know what to expect but it was great to see the pageant come alive. Reading the model’s reasoning behind the shoots and looking at their pictures was very rewarding. What was even better was seeing the models compete.
Tiana Tamara Townsel who won the first season really fought for the title. Once she invested in a professional camera she raised the level of the competition and started to outshine every body.
In her own words:
I appreciate the opportunity of being America’s First Natural Model; Miss Nappturality 2008. It is 2008 and we are just now celebrating our natural hair like never before and I am truly blessed to be a part of it. We need to be able to empower ourselves so that we will never ever lose ourselves in this society. We should never ever forget who we are; this is the beginning of one of our segments of empowerment. We have been forced to cover up our appearance and alter it since we came to this country and hopefully we will never lose our dignity and pride in ourselves again. Read more of the interview.
This poem sums up who I am as Ms. Nappturality …
One who bears the eyes of tomorrow, yet sheds tears of the past
One who bears the soul of those lost in systems of oppression
For in her, those souls reclaim their heirs, Kings and Queens of all they survey
For she embodies the past, lives the present, and rises to the challenges of the future
For Ms. Nappturality transcends time!
~Dedicated to Tiana by Kabbie Konteh
An overview of America’s Next Natural Model 2008
Challenge 9 | Challenge 8 | Challenge 7 |
Photos of Challenge 7 | Challenge 4 | Photos of Challenge 4
Challenge 3 | Photos of Challenge 5 | Challenge 2 |
Photos of Challenge 2 | Hair stories | The Models
Photos of Challenge 10