By Diego Valiente
Photography by Claudette Tan
The business of beauty is a difficult one, how do you manage to stay sane and healthy in such a competitive world?
The business of beauty is definitely competitive and quite a challenge but it is certainly rewarding. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in this industry because of the exposure received especially when it comes to appearances, opportunities, or meeting and greeting with the "big people" in the industry. I’m grateful that I am able to live a healthy and sane life although I must admit, I do get overwhelmed at times. When this happens, I usually take a minute to close my eyes, take a deep breath, step back, and bring myself back down to reality. I think it’s absolutely essential to incorporate one’s values, personal goals, and to remember where you came from and how you got there in your journey to fulfill your dreams.
When did you decided to have a career in entertainment?
Honestly, I was always the shy girl in the classroom in elementary school. It wasn’t until high school that I really felt comfortable in my own skin. My family and I moved around different states in the East coast at that time so that experience gave me the ability to open up those around me. Never in a million years would I have imagine myself doing what I do now. I have lived in California for almost two years now and it has definitely opened doors I never knew existed. I have met a lot of great people and have made life long friendships along the way. But most importantly, I enjoy what I’m doing. I believe that if you do what you enjoy doing, then you will never have to work a day in your life.
Miss Asia, is a big challenge, what are your expectations?
Miss Asia USA has been a wonderful experience. Going through coaching lessons, rehearsals, special events, and being exposed to the media has definitely taught me a lot about myself as a young woman as well as a young professional. I expect nothing but the best throughout this once in a lifetime experience. Always put your best foot forward and try your best in everything that you do, with that mind set nothing can go wrong.
What were your childhood dreams?
Growing up in a family of doctors has constantly inspired me to help those who need aid in some way, shape, or form. I’m a firm believer of leading by example and I know that I have such compassion for others because I have watched my mom, my uncles, my aunts, my grandmother, and grandfather who owned a hospital all my life. I truly look up to them as modern day hero’s.
You have done thousands of pictures, have you ever done nude ones, and if not would you…and why?
I have never done a photo shoot nude and frankly I don’t plan on it in the future. As a woman, I believe that our bodies should be a symbol of both mind and body. Showing more skin is easy to do and it could easily be your golden ticket to the top. However, I think the challenge is in the mind. If I am able to speak and have an audience who will listen, I will surely make my voice heard. To be able to represent and empower the women of my generation to get involved with community service to help the less fortunate and to promote and honor the status of women all over the world.
Would you like to be role model, a rebel or what for your audience?
A role model is a leader. The social influence of an individual can take many forms and perceived differently from one group of common interests to another. No matter how much sociology is involved, it takes a great deal of faith, courage, and spirit to inspire and lead groups of people, let alone a nation, to achieve a common goal.
It would be such an honor to someday be looked upon as a role model. It is certainly almost impossible to achieve this social status over night, however, with hard work, patience, faith, courage, and a fighting spirit, impossible is nothing.
How’s your romantic life, is it hard with your career?
My romantic life is great. I think that communication and support is essential to maintain a healthy relationship. It’s always better to give more and take less.
What are your latest projects?
I have dedicated all of my time and energy this Summer to thoroughly prepare myself physically, mentally, and emotionally for the Miss Asia USA Pageant this August 20, 2011 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center. I look forward to taking pride in my country of the Philippines. To showcase my presence and presentation as an individual on stage this year.
I’m currently working on starting a non profit organization for the children and families in poverty in the Philippines. To increase awareness and to remind my community that a little help goes along way.