After last week’s interview mishap, we got hold of Lara to ask her some questions about the show, her life and what she thinks about modelling at a young age. Here’s how it went down.
Q: How did you first feel about the idea of a tv show about your life? How did it even come about?
LB: Well I’d been asked to do it over 2 years now, so I was very apprehensive at the start and I said no for quite some time. Eventually, we filmed a pilot about a year and a half ago. Everyone liked that and my friends and family were supportive to that so I guess we all made a massive decision together to go ahead with it.
Q: How do you decide what to keep private? IS there anything you’re able to keep private?
LB: I guess nothing. Everything is in good reason with the show, to be honest. As much as it’s not scripted, it is planned to a degree. We went skydiving yesterday and that was planned and we had to organise everything.
Things just happen and if we were really worried and, you know, aware of things that we weren’t wanting out there, then we’d get too confused. So we just live our lives and we aren’t worried about that. My boyfriend isn’t on the show and that’s something that I’d like to keep sacred.
Q: Was that his choice or yours?
LB: It was both of ours. He’s a private person in a sense, he was the founder of Ksubi and so he has his own thing going on – his own identity – in the same industry. He likes to keep his privacy.
Q: Do you feel embarrassed watching yourself on television?
LB: I guess the thing is it’s very confronting because when you hear your voice – no one likes to hear their own voice, let alone watching yourself on tv. I do watch it with my friends and family so it’s a lot easier to watch but I mean, I am more protective of my friends and family rather than how I come across. They are putting themselves out there for me.
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Lara Bingle and Sam Worthington in Paris
Q: You have received some harsh criticism from the media over the past few years, so how do you deal with it? And do you pay much attention to what’s being said about you and the show in the media?
LB: I mean, the weirdest thing is, everyone in the public and even people in the street, and my friends and family are all so supportive and they speak so highly and nice about it. It’s only really the media and newspapers and things like that that run with stories. I don’t read them, to be honest. I’m concentrating on what I’m trying to achieve and what I set out to do. Otherwise it does get to you, it’s not the easiest thing to have your own show and of course, there’s always going to be backlash and criticism but I don’t worry about it too much.
Q: You were very young when you first came into the media spotlight so do you ever feel you missed out on your chance for being young and making all those silly mistakes that all 20-something’s make when they are still figuring out their path in life?
LB: I spoke to Miranda about this and now at 24/25 – that had all passed. Even Megan Gale started when she was older. So it is much harder. Before I was 17 and had a profile in this industry, I travelled a lot – I lived in Milan for a year and went to Hong Kong, so I kind of feel like I’m living 2 or 3 lives. I guess you just learn quicker and you grow up faster and you learn by your mistakes and hopefully don’t do them again.
Q: I’m not sure if you’ve heard about the winner of the Dolly Modeling Competition, there’s a bit of controversy around the fact that she’s only 13. Do you think 13 is too young to get into modeling?
LB: I don’t think so because I started when I was really young doing tv commercials and things. Each to their own, I guess. Some 13 year olds nowadays are so much more mature than they were back in the day. I guess it really depends on the person.
Q: I know over the years you’ve gotten a lot of criticism over everything, your looks, your weight, etc. With everything you’ve been through, would you recommend modeling as a career?
LB: You do really have to have a tough skin in modeling. Even when I was going to casting in the days, one person would say I look great while another would say ‘you’re not tall enough, you’re not thin enough,’ there’s always something. It is a tough game. It’s more so now than ever. I struggled with my weight in the industry and you really have to have thick skin to set out to do it.
Q: What’s next for you? I hear you are launching a fashion brand, what are some of your plans for that?
LB: It’s not fashion, but it is apparel. It’s more kind of underwear driven. We’ve been working on it for over a year now. In the next six months it should be well underway. Getting those opportunities coming from my modeling days is probably the greatest thing in my eyes. I feel very lucky in a sense.
Q: What sort of brands do you admire? Is there any style you are looking towards?
LB: Elle McPherson definitely nails lingerie on the head. She’s one of my role models. Also that she’s Australian and she’s done very well. Aesthetic wise, I am quite basic. I love grey, black and white. I’m not too full-on in colours.
Q: What age did you first get into modeling and know you were going to be making a career of it?
LB: I never knew and even when I did the ‘Where the bloody hell are you’ campaign it was just a day job. I started television commercials when I was really young at 12.
Q: If you could do anything knowing that you wouldn’t fail, what would you do?
LB: I’d probably build an empire and have it running and not have to be there. I’d have endless success.
Being Lara Bingle – are you still watching?