Check out our interview with actress, model & influencer Alaska Leigh.

Over the past year Alaska’s film ‘Victoria Gotti:My Fathers Daughter’ was released on Lifetime TV and won a Leo award (Vancouver), her film The Silent Passenger is due to be released very soon with big distribution plans and she was nominated for a Gold Palm Theatre Award for her work in Carrie the Musical. As for future, Alaska has some wonderful projects in the works, and due for release when the ‘Covid-19’ pandemic is under control.

Follow Alaska at @alaskaleigh

Hi Alaska, please tell us a little about you?

Hey! Im Alaska and I’m an actress who currently lives in Vancouver, BC. As well as acting, I work as an influencer and model and have over 30k followers on Instagram. I grew up immersed in the performing arts and was a competitive dancer and singer before I started working in acting professionally. I am extremely passionate about animals and animal rights, all things performing arts and believe love is at the core of what it means to be human.

Describe yourself in 3 words?

Passionate, Honest, Empathetic -sometimes all to a fault.

How did you get started into acting?

Acting is something I have had a passion for as long as I can remember. I grew up in the competitive dance world and through that I realized what a love I have for storytelling. The rest kind of all just fell into place, I started doing independent projects and working with some of the industries top coaches and from there I got referred to my agent and never looked back.

How has this changed your life? 

Ive always been a part of the arts and an extremely creative individual. The major life change for me has been, as I got to be more successful, people have started to take me more seriously. I do not come from a very artistic family, especially not performing arts (though they are supportive), and I was always brought up to believe that acting/performing arts are a hobby not a profession. Now I’m living my truth and my dream and I am so much happier and fulfilled. I live my life for me; and in a career as demanding as this you really have to love what you do.

What is the best and worst part of being a model/influencer/actress?

The best part of what I do is simply just getting to do what I love. I love hustling for what I want, when you love what you do it doesn’t feel like work. The friendships I have made out of being in this industry are definitely one of the best parts and I feel so blessed to get the opportunity to work with such beautiful likeminded creatives. As for the worst part, I feel like the competitive nature of the industry is defiantly up there. Working as an actress/model, YOU are the product and in order to survive you need to have a very thick skin. This is defiantly something that evolves along the way. Although it’s pretty easy to seperate my worth from my work now, it has its moments. I am human after all.

How and when did you start into modeling?

I did a couple of photo shoots as a child but started getting more serious about modeling when I started high school. My best friend was an artist/photographer and we would just brainstorm ideas and be creative together. Those are the photographs that initially grew my instagram account and from there I have just kept hustling and being creative which has brought on a lot of opportunities for me.

Do you ever get nervous?

Of course! However nerves can be a very useful tool, once you learn how to work with them not against them, which of course, can be challenging at times. I feel like if you’re not at least a little nervous, you don’t care enough.

What did you learn from your biggest failure?

In a creative career path ‘’failure’’ and rejection are just a part of the job. You learn to have a very thick skin.

The most important thing to remember when you are shooting is?

You are doing what you love – ENJOY IT! Too often in life we get ‘’in our head’’ or self-conscious. The best results are always attained by being unequivocally you and having fun along the way.

What’s your advice for the newer models? 

Stay true to yourself and only do what feels right for you!

Now talking about Social Media, can you share some tips for keeping your Instagram account interesting?

First and foremost, you need to love what you are putting out. If your feed is not interesting to you, it will not be interesting to your followers. Be authentic and be original. I have found my followers respond the best when i am my weird, quirky self. Essentially, just do what works best for you and be proud of your content. My biggest tip to remember with communicating over the internet/social media; If you wouldn’t want a print out being sent to your grandma, its probably best not to post it.

What is the feeling of being a popular influencer?

Working as an influencer is a lot of fun but also comes with responsibility. My audience is very diverse but I do have a large number of young female followers and it is imperative to me to set a good example and be a good role model for them. I preach self-love, positivity and compassion on my instagram and I want to inspire my followers to be the best versions of themselves and to spread love. So it comes with responsibility, for sure.

What book should every entrepreneur read?

Not just entrepreneurs, a book I think everyone should read is ‘’How to Stop Worrying and Start Living’’ by Dale Carnegie.

Now tell us about your experience as a fashion influencer?

It’s a super fun experience being able to create content along with brands I love and feel passionately about. Every experience is unique which keeps it very exciting. It’s still weird to hear someone call me a ‘fashion influencer’ or when i see my followers modelling their outfits/style off mine but its super rewarding.

What do you think makes you different to other fashion influencers?

I feel like my page is different because it doesn’t solely revolve around fashion. It revolves around art in any respect whether that be acting, makeup, fashion etc and my style sense is quite individual. I’ve never been one to wear something just because it was in fashion. I just put outfits together that I love. That’s the biggest thing I think. When you love what you do, it radiates through you.

Now on the acting side, tell us about your work in “Victoria Gotti:My Fathers Daughter?”

‘Victoria Gotti: My Fathers daughter’ was such a fun project to be a part of. My scenes were set in the 70’s and it was a lot of fun to experience authentic 70’s wardrobe and makeup (directly) for the first time. The cast were all so lovely on set and it was amazing to witness Maurice Benard’s amazing commitment to ‘John Gotti’ first hand; and Catherine Cyran (the director) was amazing to work with and made me feel so comfortable and welcomed on set.

What kind of roles would you like to play and why?

I could go on forever with my long comprehensive list of roles I want to play or stories I want to tell.

What other projects have you been a part of?

I’ve been lucky enough to work in both stage and screen in my career so my credits span across both. My career started in musical theatre before I moved to Vancouver and some of those musicals included; Chicago, Carrie, Heathers and Les Miserables, to name a few. I have also worked on several independent films and various music videos for many artists in my career to date.

What is the most rewarding part of your work?

The most rewarding part is definitely the impact that your storytelling can have on people. Telling stories of importance or that move people, stories that influence change, stories that take people back to a certain time in their lives, just being able to make people feel something. Art is so important. I love what I do.

What is your favorite healthy food?

Pineapple!

And your favorite cheat food?

Fries!! Anything super salty!

How would you explain your fashion style?

My fashion style is forever evolving. I love to experiment with fashion, especially on my Instagram and at events. However, in day to day life you will mostly find me in black skinny jeans, a crop with an oversized jacket, a cute sneaker and bold earrings. I generally migrate to block colors, mostly consisting of red, navy blue, black and white. I have very pale skin, so I need to be wary of certain colors further washing me out.

How would your best friend describe you?

They would say I am fiercely loyal, always filled with energy and I tell it like it is.

What’s next for Alaska Leigh in 2020?

I’ve got some exciting things coming up in 2020!! At the moment i’m just trying to stay motivated through the quarantine. But keep your eyes peeled for what’s to come.

What is your own definition of happiness?

Happiness is being surrounded by the people and animals that I love and being able to be creative and authentically me without judgement. I am blessed enough for this to be my reality most days.

How is a normal day in your life?

I don’t think there is such thing as a normal day in my life. Everyday is so different which is one of the joys of working as an actress/model/influencer. If I were to write some common themes of everyday it would be; exercise (I love working out, usually my preferred method is dancing), I love to journal, a healthy mind is just as important as a healthy body, cuddling Philippe (my bunny and the true love of my life), and work, whether that be auditions, set, photoshoots or something different. Every day is a new day to be the best individual you can be and make your life one you love.

What is your idea of a perfect day off?

As long as I’m spending the day laughing with the people I love, I don’t care what I’m doing. Bonus if there is animals involved.

If you could have dinner with anyone living or dead, who would it be and why?

My mom. You never realise how much you need to have something as simple as dinner with your mom until you can’t.

Best advice ever given?

Be unapologetically and authentically you, because you are enough.

Name 3 things you can’t live without?

Philippe (my bunny), my skincare and my friends.

Where do you see yourself and your career in 5 years from now?

I will never stop acting and creating art, so I will be doing that, most likely surrounded by my million pets.

Favorite song? Why?

My favorite song changes so frequently, I’m forever adding to my ‘on repeat’ playlist on Spotify. At the moment I’m really loving ‘Never Give Up on Us’ by Connie Talbot. I just love the meaning behind the song and why she wrote it, not to mention what a beautiful voice she has…also anything from SMASH (NBC) has been permanently on repeat since 2012.

What music do you like? 

It really depends on my mood – I listen to all kinds of music whether it be musical theatre, acoustic, indie, pop etc… however I do have a huge soft spot for musical theatre and generally that is what I lean towards.

What do you think of Social Media?

I think social media is the true light and dark of the internet. Having family and friends that live all over the world, social media makes it very easy to stay in touch and stay connected. Social media can also be a powerful tool for artists and a great creative outlet; however, I think it is important to recognize that what we see on social media is tailored. There is so much editing, not just on photos but of lives. People only publish what they want us to see.

It is important to remember there are real people, just like you, behind the screen; people with faults and insecurities.

This is the reason I am strict on my page and do not stand for any hate or negativity. There is too much of it on the internet and I want my social media to be a safe place where we all respect each other and build each other up. Saying this, I have been very lucky that I have such a loyal and supportive social media community.

Where we can follow you?

Instagram: www.instagram.com/alaskaleigh (@alaskaleigh) !!!
Twitter: www.twitter.com/thealaskaleigh (@thealaskaleigh)
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thealaskaleigh
TikTok: @thealaskaleigh

Quote: We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle. – Marilyn Monroe

Favorite Singer/Artist: I love Sia!

Movie: Moulin Rouge

Travel Destination: There are so many places i would love to go – I have such a travel bug! Of the places i have already been; I have such a soft spot for SINGAPORE! I love it there…I have already been three times!! I can’t wait too go back!

Sports Team: I tend to root for the team in the city I live in, so currently the BC Lions. Football is my favourite to watch.

Tv Show: RuPaul’s Drag Race

Book: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho – such powerful life lessons! Everyone needs to read this book at least once.

 


 

Photo Credit: Exclusive Photography