Check our interview with stunning Ukrainian model Valeriya Kuklishyna.
Hi Valeriya, please you tell us a little about you?
My name is Valeriya, I was born in Ukraine. Grew up in Latvia and after finishing high school I’ve been traveling around, working, learning about life and just experiencing everything life has been giving me.
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Silly. Naive. Adventurous.
Name one your strengths?
It might sound weird but I’d say a humor. Not in a way that I’m the most hilarious person (even tho sometimes my own jokes does crack me up till the pain in the stomach) but more in a way that I don’t lose the humor in any situation. Even on my hardest days or situations where I just actually want to cry, I’ll always find a reason to laugh. And then the situation doesn’t seem as bad anymore. It helps me go thru everything. I love laughing at myself also. I think when you can laugh at yourself you’d never be afraid that others could laugh at you and that’s makes everything much easier. I guess you shouldn’t take yourself too serious no matter how important you might think you are.
Do you have a role model?
I do. My role model is my mom. Since I was very young I always wished when I grow up I’ll be just like her. She is that kind of person that everyone wanted to be around, and I’m not just saying this cause she is my mother, but it’s for real. When my friends would come over, everyone just end up sitting around my mom and listening to her stories and not willing to leave the table to go actually hang out with me haha. She was always so good with people. No matter of age, she could find so much interesting things to talk to a person. She was always fun and easy to listen. She always has an advice to give if you’re willing to receive one. She’s always full of love. And also a bit silly in a good way. She is the stronger person I have met. So she still inspires me every day and I learned so much from her. I still wish one day I could be as strong as she is.
Who has been the biggest influence on your life so far?
At the beginning I’d again say it was my mom. But for many years I’d say myself. I was really thinking who can I name besides my mom and who actually did have a big influence on me. I know it sounds weird, but for many years I was the only person I could count on, in my life and my work. If there’s a person who’s been helping me the most it has to be myself. I fight everyday for my work and for my life. And most of my decisions comes not from “what would my parents or anyone else think or say” but what would I think of myself as a little girl back in a day. Would she be proud of who I am today, would she be happy of who I am becoming?.. So ,honestly, I don’t think I could name any other person. I base my life more around my own opinion then anyone else’s. I guess I don’t have a person who could influence me. Maybe just not yet. Maybe it’s wrong, but that’s how it is for today.
When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?
When I was just a kid, at that age when you don’t know anything about money and don’t even think of it, when you don’t know about what the fame is, I wanted to be in the front of camera, acting. As soon as I figured out how my dad’s phone camera worked (the very bad old phones haha) I started making “movies” and acting in them too. I’m not sure how old I was, but I was pretty young. Every time my friends come over, I’d give them something to wear, tell them who they are going to be and what movie we are making. And weirdly they would actually listened to me haha, that actually surprises me. We had so much fun. Afterwards I never thought of acting. Even people ask me nowadays why wouldn’t I try acting. I wouldn’t be interested being in Hollywood or something like that. Because when you are a kid and you love it, you know that you love it for the right reasons – actually acting, playing different characters, having fun. But when you are an adult and go try it for real, it’s not the same. Not because I’d have wrong reasons, but simply because I think the industry isn’t as pure as when it was back in childhood while making your own movies, obviously haha.
And then I really wanted to become a teacher. I’d put all my toys around my room. Give each one notes and a pen. I loved it more than anything. But of course when toys are quiet and don’t talk back it’s way easier then actually handling kids in school so I am glad I didn’t go for it :))
How and when did you start into modeling?
Honestly, I was as told as I am not (5’10) since I was 13. I was super skinny at the moment also. Had an awkward teenage face. So since I was that small people were coming to me and asking if I’d want to be a model. And for the longest time I’ve said “no thank you”. I never thought of it, neither my parents. I’m coming from very strict Christian family, so it was a big NO haha. But then another women discovered me, she was very smart cause she found a way to my mom’s trust. She became friends with her. And then explained my mom that modeling is just like any other jobs, a way to make money and nothing more. So then my mom actually thought I can become a model and actually started pushing me. But for me it wasn’t a dream at all, so we had a lot of arguments. She wanted me to go to Milan for a month or so, but I just didn’t wanted to leave. I was very “home” girl. I just wanted to go to school with my friends. Also I was in love at that point, so for me I had not intent to leave the country for moths. So it was a little challenging for us. Parents trying to convince me to go travel with modeling and me trying to convince my parents that it wasn’t my dream. At some point arguments became very bad. And I didn’t want to keep fighting. Also I was finishing high school and didn’t know what I wanted to study. So I decided why don’t I take my time, travel, see NY, and then figure it out. So that’s exactly what I did. The only thing is that I’ve been traveling and working for quite a lot and still didn’t stop till now haha.
What advice would you give to women trying to become models?
I would tell them to actually ask themselves if they sure haha. Cause I mean, so many girls want to be models and there’s nothing bad about it I guess, but also makes me a bit sad because I have a feeling some of them haven’t been told enough that they are beautiful, and they just want to prove it to themselves. Another part is that it’s not an easy job. It is mentally messing you up. You have to be a very strong individual to be modeling and don’t let things get into your skin. I’ve learned that, but it’s a long process. So if a girl actually decides that it is really what she wants and what would make her happy, I’d advice her to learn how to be strong and to love herself because really that would help a lot in this industry.
Women need to know their worth and never let anyone change their mind. Stay strong and believe in yourself, no matter what you will hear from people working in the industry.
What did you learn from your biggest failure? (if any)
I’ve learned that I shouldn’t take situations and life in general too serious. Live and enjoy TODAY, you never know if there’s tomorrow. Relax, eat chocolate!
Best advice you have followed?
Pretty much everything I said above haha. Live and enjoy today.
What is your own definition of happiness?
I think happiness is having the right people around you in life. Even in every happy birthday message I always say for at least past 10 years “I wish the right people is always around you”. The right friends, the right lover, the right teachers of your life. People (family, friends, loved ones) is what our life is all about.
Do you support any charities?
I didn’t get there just yet. But I am definitely planning to!
Can you describe a typical day in your life?
If I’m working of course the main part of my life would be a photo shoot, and then relaxed dinner and evening.
If I’m having a free day, I love to walk around. I walk at least 20km a day. Or either I’ll meet friends and we spend time together. I’m very easy going so my days are pretty easy.
What’s the advice you live by?
Live, love, never give up.
Who is your favorite Actor/Actress? And why?
Honestly my last actor crush were the Olsen sisters when I was like 11. After that I just never cared to much for actors I guess 🙂
What’s your favorite quote?
“Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.”
Honestly I just typed “quotes” in google cause I had no idea ?
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
My grandpa. Just simply because I miss him too much.
Your idea of a perfect Sunday is…
Perfect Sunday depends on my mood. Could be adventurous Sunday in a nature or intimate Sunday with close friends while watching movies. But in both cases definitely with a lot of laughs 🙂
Something people don’t know about you?
Actually I’d could say a lot of things, but the ones I can share are playing piano and writing poetry.
What would be a deal breaker on a first date?
Probably any type of immorality.
Name 3 things you can’t live without?
Music. Walking. Food.
What is the stupidest thing you’ve ever done?
Oh there’s so many.. so many sadly I can’t even share haha. Well once I was playing a role in a theatre of our church back in a day. And so after my words it was suppose to be on a serious note, because after the priest was suppose to say a word and pray. So after I finish, I had to leave the microphone and leave the stage. Which I did. And right after I went to the bathroom. And yes I definitely forgot I had a microphone taken with me inside.
What is your workout routine these days?
Of course lots of walking. Also I love boxing work out classes and just switching up different type of classes.
What is your favorite healthy food?
I loooooove salmon. And avocado. And cashews. I just love good fats:)
And your favorite cheat food?
Depends on my mood. Sometimes it’s just a bunch of good chocolate, cakes. Or if I have a “salty” cravings it’s going to be French fries, pizza, pasta. Mmm
Which project is still on your bucket list?
I’m not thinking too much of it, just taking day at time and looking forward what’s coming.
Who is your biggest beauty inspiration?
It’s a hard one. My opinions always change. I think Anna Beatriz Barros. I liked her since I was younger.
Who are some of your favorite models and designers, and why?
I know it’s going to be a boring answer, but I don’t want to make up things just to have an answer. I really haven’t been following much even tho I am a model, please forgive me 🙂
How would you describe your fashion style?
Classy and comfy.
Five years from now you will be?
A good mother. A happy women
What do you think of the Social Media?
It can be helpful for many reason. I’m trying to be smart with it so lately I’ve been taking breaks from it to not pass the real life 🙂
Where we can follow you?
I use for modeling Instagram. My name on there is @Kuklishyna
Favorite Book: Man’s search for meaning by Viktor Frankl
Restaurant/Bar: Always changing, mostly I like healthy cute places
Drink: Orange juice with ice
Song: Listening for many years and don’t get sick of Sebastien “High on You”
Travel destination: Australia
Movie: Nemo Nobody
Tv Show: The Office