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  • Writer's picture5' ELEVEN''



Facetime photographed by Mathieu Puga. Words by Charlie Newman.

Please can you tell us where you're from and the best thing to do there.

I live in a small village near Frankfurt. German wine is produced in this area, it is also known as 'German Wine Street' so the best thing you can do here is drink wine! We have a lot of wine Festivals during the summertime spread around the whole area. You can spend a really nice summer here, it's a bit like Tuscany, but also Spring and Autumn are nice.

How long have you been modelling for and what has been a career highlight for you?

I started modelling when I was 18, it has been 6 years already. One of my highlights was the Turkish Vogue Cover (as my Parents are from Turkey) and to shoot with David Sims for Self Service.

What was the biggest surprise for you when you first started working in fashion?

It's a completely different world and in no way, as I would have expected. There were a lot of things that surprised me but now they are so common to me. You learn to think more 'normal' about the fashion industry. I also know many people who started to treat me like I'm very special because it's so far out of reach for them, to be on the cover of magazines or on a big poster in the City. I always try to explain I'm still a normal person and it's not such a big deal as everybody thinks-it's just my job.

And what do you wish people knew more about when it comes to the world of fashion?

There are a lot of stereotypes when it comes to this topic.I think people should see fashion as art it is. It's a business where many different and special people can show who they really are and unfold their personalities. So they should be less judging just because it's not always as predictable as they wish.

Covid 19 has undoubtedly transformed the way the world now works, the fashion industry included. How would you like to see the industry change for the better in the future?

For sure I would like to see how the fashion industry is taking more care of the environment. So I'm mainly talking about reducing travel. Nobody really needs to get a whole team to a place which looks like Paradise to shoot a good campaign. Sure, it's a bigger challenge if you are not flexible anymore but we are all creative and should learn to deal with less.

What have you discovered about yourself throughout the struggles of this year?

We all need to think bigger and pull the same rope. Even if there are a lot of idiots out there is no excuse not to do it.

Who do you look up to in the industry and why?

Actually, I don't know. I'm not really into the industry. I enjoy being part of it and I'm really thankful for every experience I can make. I would say it's more the kind of people who I look up to. Almost everyone I met is really special and reflective, that taught me a lot.

Who do you think we should be watching/admiring when it comes to up and coming talent right now?

Me for sure! Just kidding! I don't know as I said I'm not really into the industry. I just meet nice people and do the best of it.

What would your advice be to young, up and coming models now?

Sounds kind of cheesy but just be yourself!

Lastly, with the closing of 2020, what do you hope 2021 brings?

A vaccine!

Hilal appears courtesy of UNO Models.


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