Teresa got her first tattoo at 19 for a guy that she really liked, which turned out to be a big mistake! That experience wasn’t enough to stop her though, she has more including a very special butterfly tattoo on her hip. “My brother was just starting out tattooing and I gave him that piece of me to practice. It’s not the best but it’s so special because it was his first. I’ll never cover it up-I won’t even let him touch it up!”
She also has a beautiful Russian doll tattoo on her abdomen as she has collected them since she was a small girl, done by Emily Shoichet at Empire Tattoo in Victoria. Another meaningful piece is a heart locket on her forearm, to which her daughter has the key tattooed in the same location. Just like most tattooed people, she doesn’t plan on stopping and is looking into starting on a sleeve!
Teresa got into the world of modelling later than most in life. An accountant by day, she was initially approached by a photographer to shoot for their website. Though nervous at first, she found a rush that (as many would also say about getting tattoos) left her wanting more! Now that she feels very comfortable in front of the camera, her modelling career is helping allow her to pursue her passion of travel and meeting new people.
When asked to compare being an accountant to modelling, she says, “I think I like both because they are so completely different. They challenge me in very different ways.” Being so busy with a full time job and a modelling career leaves little time for much of a personal life, but she has remained friends with many of the photographers and make-up artists that she has collaborated with.
Some of her advice to those new in the industry is that there are many very talented photographers but also many who are a little shady, so don’t be too trusting. “It is important to follow your gut instincts and be selective with who you will work with. I had to learn to understand my value in the industry and not sell myself short. Don’t take on projects you don’t feel passion for and don’t work with people who don’t inspire you.”
One of Teresa’s goals is to inspire more mature women to get in front of the camera and explore the world of modelling if they are interested but nervous (as she was at first!) She considers it a strength to explore different concepts, locations and wardrobe. “Some of my favourite images are those that really pushed my boundaries!”
Words: Jordan Pringle