On left: top — Han Wen Studio, skirt — Bernhard Willhelm, shoes — vintage, earrings — Laruicci. On right: bodysuit and tights — Purple Passion DV8, dress — Homic — coat Heike NY, shoes — vintage.

These days being a model often means being able to bring more to the table than just good looks. New face Katerina Tannenbaum is an upcoming actress whose dramatic beauty has landed her campaigns for L’Oreal and Adidas Originals.


Who are you, where are you from, and what do you do?
I’m Katerina Tannenbaum, I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon and I’m an actor and model.

How did your career get started?
When I was about a year and a half old, my mom tried to get me signed with ABC Kids, which was a children’s modeling agency in my hometown. I was denied — my beautiful start to a long and fruitful journey ;)

On left: bodysuit — Purple Passion DV8, dress — Nika Tang. On right: blazer — Claudia Li, high waisted panties — Carolina Sarria, gloves — Landeros New York.

What unique quality do you think you bring to the table?

I was just asked question earlier today! My ego would love to state all the special things about myself but there are so many humans on this earth, I can’t say that I’m really remarkable in any way. What I will say is that I function at a highly passionate level most of the time, so if I want something or I love something, I will truly, wholeheartedly, fight for it.

Who was the first artist [in fashion/art/film] to make a big impression on you?
Have you ever seen the musical Rent? I was 12, I saw the movie and the show on Broadway. From that day on best believe I was a new woman. Would you light my candleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…

On left: dress — Alexandra McEachin, necklaces — model’s own. On right: top — Laurence & Chico 3NY, trousers — Han Wen Studio, shoes — vintage, earrings — Laruicci.

Who was the last artist to make a big impression on you?
The Safdie brothers. I just recently saw their new film, Good Time, in theaters and was completely blown away by the energy and heartbeat of it. I love film deeply, and acting is the craft I’m always chasing after and with those things being true, there’s nothing more rewarding than walking away from a movie that immerses you so completely and truthfully into a world that you might not otherwise have access to.

What has been the biggest surprise or learning curve in the industry so far?
In regards to modeling, the biggest surprise is that I’m doing it! There wasn’t always space for different bodies and different backgrounds in this industry. I recognize that my particular bag of bones is in a place of extreme privilege. But even in this skin I wear, my height had always seemed like it would have prevented me from a career. I’m thankful to say that because of the slow shifting of “standards” in this industry I’ve been able to live a freer life — but there is still a huge amount of work to be done!

On left: top — Han Wen Studio, high waisted panties — Carolina Sarria, tights — Purple Passion DV8, shoes — vintage. On right: top — Han Wen Studio, skirt — Bernhard Willhelm, shoes — vintage, earrings — Laruicci.

What motivates you?

My family, friends and partner. When I the see people I love and respect creating the work they believe in and pushing themselves to be more aware and more kind, it motivates me to fight for my work and press on to further the way I interact with the world around me.

What distracts you?

My over-emotional tendencies, my phone, New York.

What/who is under-appreciated?


On left: blazer — Snow Xue Wao, trousers — Han Wen Studio. On right: jumpsuit — Homic, top — 3NY, earrings — vintage.

What’s the best experience you’ve had in fashion/film?

I just love being able to step into different worlds all the time – dressing up and performing bring me to life. The best experiences I’ve had have been working with teams that have a vision that I can get behind and become an important building block

What project are you working on now/next?
The constant project which is auditioning, shooting and making sure I leave space for my brain and loved ones.

PhotographyFranco Schicke for MODELS.com
StylingJahulie Elizalde
Hair — Sonny Molina
Thanks to — The 9 Studios

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