Model Anne de Paula isn’t afraid to show a little skin, and apparently, her parents are quite proud of it!
The Sports Illustrated model opened about her career journey in a new interview with Fox News and shared that she actually wanted to be a doctor before stumbling into a career in modeling.
“My mom was the one who was giving me high heels and going, ‘Would you like to do a photo shoot? There might be something for you there.’ I told her, ‘Mom, I’m not sure. I don’t even know how to walk in high heels!’ But then I did my first photo shoot around 12 [or] 13, and I loved it,” she told the publication. “I loved sports, but I also liked this girly version of myself. I wasn’t popular in school. I wasn’t successful with the boys. They never really looked at me like a girl, because I was always playing with them … So I just started doing more and more photos until my mom sent me to an agency at 13. So she was the one who got me into it!”
Last year, de Paula won the Sports Illustrated Model Search, which really skyrocketed her career from Instagram to full-fledged cover girl. So, what do her parents think of all those racy bikini shots?
“My parents love the photos. My mother has a big photo in the house right in the living room of me just wearing body paint. So if you go to the house, the biggest photo you’ll see is of me kneeling down in the sand wearing body paint. My grandmother and grandfather? They had loads of copies of the magazine,” she said.
De Paula credited her Brazilian heritage with helping her find the confidence to rock a bikini in Sports Illustrated.
“So I feel like I’m very lucky because nobody has ever said anything mean to me about my photos … And SI does very tasteful photos. I’m never worried about what’s going to come out because I know they’re going to take good photos,” she said, adding that she loves Sports Illustrated’s approach when it comes to female empowerment. “I love the idea that SI celebrates different body types … So it’s nice that I can pursue this dream of modeling even if I may not have the typical shape of one that you would see on the runway.”
She continued, “But the magazine, they celebrate different types of beauty. Not everyone likes the same thing. If they did, life would be boring.”