Nick Lagerburg “I don’t care to be ugly in front of a camera if it can lead to funny results”

17 jan, 2015

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I am from a small town called Edam near Amsterdam. For 7 years now I have been living in Amsterdam. I grew up in a family with a brother and a little sister. During my childhood I did a lot of sports, mainly athletics. Now I live with my girlfriend in Amsterdam when I am not away for work.

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Modeling: how did all begin

Before I started modeling I was already working for a year as a teacher in a primary school in Amsterdam. It was a school for chronically diseased children. It was a pretty intensive job right after graduating as a teacher, but most of all a very rewarding job.

To be able to give ill children a place where they can feel like they belong and they get the same treatment as all the other kids at school, without focusing on why they are different, gave me a lot of motivation and energy to get the best out of the children and give the best of myself.

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While this job gave me a lot it also made me realize that there were a lot of hidden problems these kids were struggling with. Even though I was doing well as a teacher, these problems that I couldn’t quite figure out, made me want to know more about the problems these kids were struggling with, and after a first year as a teacher I started studying again in order to become a child psychologist.

I had to juggle the new study and my job as a teacher, while I was also in my 3rd year of a part-time music-theater school. At this school the focus was on singing/acting, and by the end of the year we had to prepare a big play. I loved doing this because it gave me a way to be disconnected from the study and job related obligations, and it gave me renewed energy.

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However, one weekend while I was out with my friends in Amsterdam, a guy was looking at me and he approached me telling me he was from a modelling agency. He quickly showed me the website of his agency and made a quick snapshot of my face. He asked me if he could send me an email the next day to make an appointment. At first I didn’t really think it was serious and I never really thought about being a model or anything like that.

But the next day I got the email and within a week I was doing my first test shoot. At first it all felt very awkward and I had no idea what I was doing, but with some instructions from the photographer it all became more natural quite quickly and my theater background definitely helped with that.

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In the next few weeks I did a few more test shoots and when the first pictures got back to my agency and were spread to some agencies in Paris, London and Milan, things went really fast. Two months later I was walking for Louis Vuitton during the Paris fashion week and I did several shows in Milan.

After the first fashion week I got to a point where I had to make a decision. It was not possible to keep doing all the things I was doing. I found that doing two things well would be worth more than doing four things with half the input. So I decided to focus on my study and give modeling a chance.

At first I had a few doubts about my decision, but it quickly all worked out as it was supposed to. More and more modeling jobs came and in the meanwhile I still kept passing my exams. I traveled around Europe a lot and jobs were coming up more frequently.

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The next fashion week I walked exclusive for Calvin Klein and walked for Tom Ford in London. From this point on the jobs kept coming and I was traveling frequently which leads to today. I am finishing my studies in a few weeks and will be available full time for modeling. My plan is to travel around more and be able to stay for longer periods of time now that I don’t have any exams or obligations anymore.

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So I am looking forward to all the new adventures and travels ahead. I think I will keep modeling as long as it keeps giving me new challenges and after I will return to be a child psychologist. I think that is a pretty cool combination of career paths.

Posing to photographers: a good connection with the team

After working with quite a few photographers I think I like it most when we look for new exciting angles to work from. To go for a new look or a new atmosphere in the pictures, or anything that is challenging, things that create something new that will interest people. I feel that if there is a good connection with the team I work with, the result is always better.

This is probably because you are then more comfortable and willing to try new things and get into a role – which will eventually end up in original and cool pictures.

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 I am very comfortable in front of a camera and I think that’s mostly because of my history with acting. I like to play any role, the crazier the better. I don’t care to be ugly in front of a camera if it can lead to funny results. So also being naked in front of the camera wouldn’t be a problem if I think the result is worth it. But of course that is always something I would discuss with my booker to make sure it fits my image and is used in the right way for my career.

The runway shows

Backstage can be a lot of fun or very boring. It all depends on the company. If you hang out with some nice guys and have fun while everybody and everything is getting ready for the show, you really can have a good time and enjoy the good food that’s usually around during jobs. But sometimes it just means reading a book/studying or playing a game on your phone.

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I don’t really know what thoughts go on during the shows while I am on the stage. I don’t think anything special. Can be what I will be doing next, or walk straight and turn and walk back.. no just kidding. I’m not sure, but doing a catwalk is the easiest job there is.

Once I was doing a shoot and the girl I worked with told me she had to go to another job the next day. When she asked me what I had to do the next day I said I had to take an exam. She responded with an ‘’awwhh’’ sound and looked at me with pity.  Hahaha I guess I thought that was quite sad, in the sense of there IS a world besides modeling, and I did meet a few models who did not seem to see that… But mostly I meet a lot of different and interesting people so it’s not that bad.

John Varvatos, Menswear, Spring Summer, 2015, Fashion Show in Milan

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Male x Female; who rules this industry?

I am sure that it is still the female models who rule the business, but I guess that’s only fair, since there are a lot of fields in which men rule the business. I don’t really have favorite male or female models to be honest.

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Fav booking so far and why

 
I really don’t know what booking was my favorite. I have had so many bookings, where I met nice people, stayed in amazing hotels and have seen great locations.. Sorry can’t answer this one.

Nick, a fashionista?

I don’t think I have a very distinguished style. I know when I like something and buy the things I like. I do have more interest in wearing suits lately. I think it’s a very masculine way to dress. But I have to say around the house I just love to wear my jogging pants and lazy clothes.

Imagine u a famous model surrounded by a huge crowd!

I would probably stay calm, laugh and go with the flow. I like to stay with both my feet on the ground. I think it’s most important what the people close to me think about me and not what a crowd of people who don’t know me thinks about me. But of course it’s nice if people appreciate what you do.

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Superpowers and Super heroes

Instant transportation would be nice and it would make traveling so much easier.

I would have to go with wolverine of course.

Atracting someone´s attention

Eye contact

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Having fun, enjoying life

I guess the place is not that important. As long as you are with your friends or loved ones you can have fun anywhere. But of course a tropical destination wouldn’t be bad with all those people around!

Craziest (nastiest?) thing you´ve ever done in a summer time season

When I lived for half a year in Surinam (South America) I lost a bet and I had to eat a ‘Madam jeanette’ (one of the spiciest peppers in the world. I ate it whole and I can promise you that until today that I was the most intense burning pain I have ever felt. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.

Fav body part and why

Pff.. I always have a problem with this question. I honestly don’t know. At the jobs they mostly talk about my classic Greek nose and my lips. So I guess I would go with that.

Fav underwear for daily activities and for those coooool sexy moments (lol!)

What underwear? :)

Earliest childhood memory

Fav food: Surinam food

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Nickname in school : Nicky

My grandpa always used to make the sound of a barking dog and softly bite my ear. So one day (I was probably 3/4 years old) I thought I could do the same and bit him back. Not realizing that he of course never really bit me. So my grandpa was bleeding and my whole family and especially my grandma could not stop laughing. Haha. Priceless.

Yourself in 10 years

Ten years… That’s a good question. I think I will be modeling for a while but then maybe take a job as a psychologist and try to help kids with difficulties where I can. I think I will be a dad and have a family with my awesome girlfriend.

Music  Ray la Montagne / Paolo Nutini

 Guilty pleasure: Dessert – every kind

If you weren´t a model you´d be…  a child psychologist

An unforgettable moment: Meeting a beautiful girl in her green dress on a magical and tropical island called Gilli Trawangan  (she is now my girlfriend)

Motto Be positive and good things will come your way.

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Next chapters

I am shooting an editorial in Antwerp in Belgium and afterwards I have a few things coming up, but I will get more news about the planning when all agencies open up again after New Year’s.

And when you´ll come to my world buddy?

I would love to come during the Carnaval, is this an invitation? :)

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Mother Agency: I am Elk Amsterdam http://www.i-am-elk.nl/ 

Interview by Ed, the brazilian editor

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