Ambrine Aamir is a name that many would remember from the days of ‘Dhoop Kinara’. Taking a stint at acting, modeling and now dabbling in art, Ambrine’s persona exudes positive vibes and a bold façade. Back in 80s, she not only modeled professionally but some of her work was considered par excellent.
In this interview with Fashion Collection, she talks about her modeling journey in Pakistan and abroad.
Fashion Collection: When and how did you start modelling?
Ambrine Aamir: I started modeling when I was 16 years old.
FC: What was your debut role?
AA: My debut role was a magazine shoot highlighting the work of a then famous make-up artist named Gauhar; I think it was called Libaas. After that, I did a Polka Ice-cream commercial, a full spread print ad in a newspaper for diet 7-up. I was sitting in a yoga pose in black leotard and leg warmers. It was controversial in the 80s. I was casted for a song with Sajjad Ali, the song was about dreams directed by Sahira Kazmi around elections seasons, I also modeled for Farah Leghari’s collection in Women’s Own magazine. Later I did a catwalk at St. Joseph’s College Annual Fashion show and also a catwalk at Iraqi Consulate Cultural Show.
FC: What about acting? How did you start that?
AA: Oh! It was by accident. My younger sister got casted for ‘Dhoop Kinarey’ and I went to drop her off at the TV station and somehow ended up getting a supporting role.
FC: Given a choice, what would you prefer acting or modeling? And why?
AA: I prefer acting because actors tell stories. Behaviours and moods of people make it so interesting, and actors understand that and comment on it in an artistic way. Modeling is about creating fantasy around a product. Acting is about connecting emotionally, and it’s more intimate.
FC: What modeling did you do abroad?
AA: I posed for couple of art studios in New Jersey in my desi clothes. I volunteered for my daughter’s school fundraiser and modeled for a fashion show, I modeled for a college student for her photography class. I was also a subject for a local photographer in New York for one of his projects and I dressed up in Pakistani outfit. I also modeled as a patient for one of their maternal health programs at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.
FC: How would you differentiate your experience of modeling in Pakistan and abroad?
AA: Abroad, female models have to follow the guidelines; they select models that are 5’10”, with exceptions down to 5’8 for special cases. However, in Pakistan, a beautiful girl who is 5’ can be quite successful.
FC: In your opinion, what are the essential qualities of being a model?
AA: Good genes, great smile, positive attitude, charming personality, and a good walk are all helpful.
FC: How important is it to have your own fashion statement?
AA: The impact of having your own fashion statement goes far beyond making a good first impression; it is also about confidence. Your style should echo and celebrate your life, your individuality, and personality. Own your style, be proud of it, and embrace fashion as a way to express who you are and who you want to be.
FC: Which model inspires you the most and why?
AA: I am inspired by models who are trying to change the world for the better. There are two that come to mind. One of them is Mari Malek. She came to the US as a child refugee. Now she uses her supermodel status to advocate for children affected by war in South Sudan. Another one is Kebede, she is a face of authenticity and uses her considerable influence into changing the lives of women.
FC: What would be your exclusive fashion statement?
AA: Vintage-heavy quirky elegance! It’s all about artistic attitude, sense of history and nostalgia.
FC: What bores you?
AA: TV “reality” shows and whatever seems repetitive and pointless.
FC: What depresses you?
AA: Violence, cruelty or tragedy
FC: How do you spend your Sundays?
AA: Sundays are spent catching-up on all of the housekeeping items and planning the upcoming week.
FC: What are you currently doing?
AA: Being the best possible version of myself!