Walk the Walk

Senior Ali Lollas has become used to being put in the spotlight

Cadence Elder

Senior Ali Lollas did not find modeling — modeling found her. When she began at age four, she did not realize that, eventually, she would be posing for posters in stores like Buckle.

“It gives me confidence,” Lollas said. “When I was younger, I felt like the really awkward tall kid. I was nervous and shy. When I started modeling it gave me power in my height.”

An agent approached Lollas’s mother 13 years ago while on a cruise and said Lollas’s older sister should model. Even though Ali wasn’t born yet, her future already had plans.

Lollas began posing for Hallmark at the age of four. Although she enjoyed it, Lollas did not pick modelling back up until her freshman year of high school, but this time for a agency called Hoffman. There, Lollas took classes where she learned how to pose, how to model walk and how to take care of her body. Her favorite runway show was one held by the American Red Cross.

“You wake up super early in the morning,” Lollas said. “There is probably like 20 girls for one show. You go in with no makeup and you sit there until they get to your hair and makeup. That takes all day because there is so many girls. Right before the show you get all dressed and everyone is running around naked. That sounds weird, but literally everyone is.”

Minutes before the show, thoughts flood Lollas’s mind as the ache from wearing heels all day finally sets in.

“ was just throwing items at us,” Lollas said. “I thought it was so fun because it was so hectic. Once you tried on an outfit and walked for her she was like ‘Oh yeah, perfect.’”

By her side the entire time, through classes, photo shoots and trips to runway events is her sister, Dani.

“We get mistaken for twins all the time and we love that,” Dani said. “It’s nice to have someone there who will give honest advice on what I can do better as far as walking, posing or smiling.”

The whirlwind of runway shows is hectic, to say the least, and Lollas has since participated in her fair share of them, earning over $2,000 to put towards college. The summer before her sophomore year, she participated in a runway show through Actors, Models and Talents for Christ (AMTC). There, she was trained to talk confidently in front of large crowds and walk down the runway. Participants were ranked and, out of 5,000 models, Lollas was awarded fifth best on the runway. Even with the success from runway, Lollas says her favorite part of modeling is photo shoots.

“I like wearing weird things or different things,” Lollas said. “Whenever I put on an outfit, my friends are like ‘Only Ali could wear that.’”