Australia’s Next Top Model Post-Elimination Interview: Dajana

How quickly things can change in Next Top Model-land. One minute you’re taking away Photo Of The Week, the next minute you’re taking your belongings and going home. Dajana was the latest girl to experience this cruel twist of fate on last night’s episode, and now it’s back to the cold harsh reality of HSC exams for the splashy self-described ‘wog’ from Queanbeyan. 

What was the most challenging part of ANTM? It would have to be being away from family, and not having my phone. I’m a massive social networker freak, so I love to be on my phone messaging my friends. That was the hardest part at the start, but towards the end it was not being able to see you family and go to them for support and that sort of stuff. 

What did you do to celebrate with your family when you were released back into real life? I was like, “Mum, get the family together, we’re having a massive wog feast, I’m back in town!” I actually went straight to work. I literally landed at the airport and mum told me I was going to work — we own a family business — so I landed and went straight to work, then at night we had a massive feast at my Aunty’s house with six different cakes.  

Who do you think will win the competition? That’s tough because every girl is so different in her own different kind of way. I guess it’s just up to what Australia likes the most. Duckie’s got the cool, quirky personality, she’s really outgoing, Melissa has the most unique look, and Shenali’s just a beautiful soul, inside and out. God bless her.  

What about your favourite judge? I liked all of them because they all gave different advice because they’re all kind of from different industries. Alex is a fashion designer so he’s good for runway and fashion sort of things, Jen’s a model as well as Didier, Charlotte’s just really experienced… Probably Didier and Charlotte were my two favourites.  

What about a least favourite? Oh god, they were all so nice! I don’t have a least favourite! And that’s not just because I don’t want to say someone, I actually don’t have a least favourite. 

Let’s talk about sharing a house with all the other girls. Did you all get along? Was it fun? It was really fun because you’re in a $15 million mansion with lots of other girls. You just can’t have house parties, that was the only downfall. We all got along really, really well. If someone was on someone’s nerves, you could just be really honest and tell them to leave you alone. No one ripped each others hair out so it was really good. 

What was your favourite challenge? Definitely the Nissan one. I loved getting my hair and make-up done, and going on the red carpet in front of paparazzi!  

That challenge actually looked so fun. Yeah, it was awesome. It was also my biggest disappointment though because I said the wrong car model. I said the old model, man, come on, cut me some slack! 

What was the biggest thing you learned from your time on ANTM? I’ve just grown as a person in general. I’ve become a lot more dependent on myself. Before I went into the house I was a lot more reliant on other people around me. Going into the house you learn to look out for yourself… You start to see things differently, not just in the world, but the modeling industry as well. You learn that rejection is a big thing in the industry, you have to be really mentally strong. 

I’m guessing you want to keep modeling now? 100%, totally. My HSC is in the way right now, but once I finish year 12 I’ll definitely be heading to Sydney to see agencies. Hopefully I’ll get signed and kick start my career, and when that’s going steady I can study part time because I’ve always been really big on academics and stuff. We’ll see what happens but for now I’m focusing on year 12. 

Do you feel prepared for your exams? God no! I don’t know where my head is at! You go to high school preparing for the HSC, thinking you’ve got another five years, then you wake up and you’re like, “Oh god, it’s tomorrow.” 

What subjects are you doing? I’m doing photography, I absolutely love photography, so that’s really good to have being a model. I’m also doing a major-minor in psychology. I love psychology. I’m really interested in the brain and how it works and people’s thoughts and stuff. I’m doing maths but I absolutely suck and don’t like it at all, and English. 

In terms of your dream modeling job, who would you most want to work with? Karl Lagerfeld! Actually, no, wait. Top five would have to be Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford… wait… Elie Saab… Okay, I’m just going to say top three because there’s too many! Oh, oh, and Alexander Wang! I love Alexander Wang!

Australia’s Next Top Model airs exclusively on Fox8 at 7:30pm on Tuesdays. Dajana was interviewed by Ingrid Kesa.