Since we last saw Lia Pavlova, she’s quickly elevated her model-status to major – graduating from novice newcomer to a name everyone knows. This past F/W season the willowy Russian put on some serious runway miles down every catwalk from Chanel to Saint Laurent to Gucci. You’d think she’d be battle-weary, but turns out she’s just getting started.
You did 71 shows this season, would you want to do 72 ever?
Yeah even more. It was not too hard for me because every day it’s something different and you can meet so many people. This fashion week was so fast. I think I could do like five shows per day and if you can do the math…Sometimes I did 5, sometimes I did 3. I liked Gucci, Alexander Wang–because the show was in a church–and, I don’t know, maybe Givenchy because it was difficult to walk, It was so hot. It was interesting because I was like, “Ah I can’t walk, I can’t walk!” I like a challenge. When I started, if my agency gave me 15 castings for a day, I was like, “Okay I can do it.” I mean if I can, maybe not 15, maybe 10 to 11. It depends on the city. London is difficult. Some models are like, “Oh, I’m so tired.” Okay. I can just go home, that’s okay, but if you want to work you should do it. Otherwise you can sit at home in Russia.
How did you get discovered? At the time, did you think you should be a model?
It was in my town near St. Petersburg. Some agent just scouted me and she said, “I can send some picture of you to different agencies.” For me, I was like, “Are you sure?” I was thinking I’m not so beautiful, I’m not like a model. But she said, “Oh, you’re tall and skinny, you can try!” So she sent them to St. Petersburg in Moscow to some mother agencies and I signed a contract. When I started I had short hair, brown color and fringe bangs…It was kind of Freja Beha style.
Have you grown more comfortable with yourself since you have started? What do you think people find interesting about you?
Yeah, I was so quiet, I was different [laughs]. Now I’m feeling so good. I’m happy that I’m here. For what they find interesting, I hope it’s just not beauty, but rather something from inside. I’m not sure what it is exactly. I know some people can think I’m not a beautiful girl, but all models they’re beautiful, but not like ordinary beautiful, something weird I think.
What is a quality that you like your friends to have?
They’re weird, mainly. Not all people understand them so it’s something I can’t even explain. But they are kind people, introverted a little bit. Usually it’s people who do creative things, not only models or photographers, but usually they love psychology and things like that.
Is there a direction that photographers give you that you hate?
I don’t like when photographers just tell me, “You should just stand.” And that’s it. If I try to move, they say, “No you should only move your face and, for example, one hand.” Sometimes I’m thinking that I’m doing something wrong, because if I’m trying to move and they’re always like, “No!” So sometimes that makes me self-conscious. But it’s okay, I like shows more than shoots. There’s more energy, so many models and other people, plus the music.
See more from our Quick Questions series here.