h2. NAME: Kate Swain
YEARS MODELING: 3
HOW SHE GOT HER START: Most 16-year-old girls go to Clackamas Town Center for leggings and tops, but Swain instead scored a career there when she was scouted, as Willis was, by Darren Dyck. Rave reviews from New York agencies and photographers immediately thereafter inspired her to graduate from Clackamas High School a year early. At 17, Swain said ciao to family and friends and headed to Italy.
BIG BREAK: A Vera Wang show in Shanghai that was televised throughout China.
BEST THING ABOUT THE JOB: “I love traveling and meeting new people,” says Swain, though she admits to homesickness. “I was lonely at first, basically living out of a suitcase for months at a time, but I adapted.”
THE PART THAT BITES: The transient nature of the modeling world is tough. “You get close to people very quickly and then you leave,” says Swain. “I hate saying goodbye.”
IT IS A REAL JOB, DUDE: “The job can be really hard—it’s not like America’s Next Top Model,” says Swain. “You’re actually sharing a two-bedroom apartment with 10 other people. And no one drives you places. The agency gives you a map, an address and you’re on your own.”
‘MODELS ARE DIFFERENT FROM YOU AND ME’ QUOTE: “Sure, men hit on me all the time, but I brush it off. It’s life—nothing new.”