This week's decisive photo shoot for the finale of Cycle Eight of America's Next Top Model was for the Cover Girl print ad that this Cycle’s winner will be featured in. Those shots are not yet available, so unfortunately, we can’t use those for our regular review of the best and the worst photos of the week.
So instead, let's take a look back at the portfolios of the final two to find the best and worst of their work through this past Cycle.
For the winner, Jaslene, her strongest work certainly seemed to come in the early part of the season. With the below two photos...
SHE BROUGHT IT!
In the first two shoots, both Jaslene's Death Penalty shot and her High School Cliches "Weird" shot wowed the judges and fashionista viewers alike. America's Next Top Model might ostensibly be about the fashion industry, but when it comes to editorial high fashion, it doesn't exactly reflect the reality of what's truly happening.
These two shots with Jaslene, then, were especially impressive as they represented a level of edgy high fashion we haven't necessarily seen in general on the show. While she seemed to falter in future weeks, one wonders if that might have been just because she set the bar for herself so high so early.
And when Jaslene faltered, she really faltered, as in the below where...
OH NO SHE DIDN'T
As was commented on several times on the show, Jaslene has extremely striking bone structure, and if she's not careful, her strong jaw and chin can overpower the shot. In every single one of the pictures on her "Personalities" card, her jawline is distracting rather than harmonious with her other features. This card also showed that while she is a natural at the editorial shots, she might struggle with her softer commercial side. Her Cover Girl shoot in the finale showed she can definitely find a way to be fun and friendly - not just fierce - but it's clearly not where she is most comfortable.
And what about our Russian runner-up Natasha? She took almost the opposite trajectory from Jaslene. She started out incredibly weak but wound up taking some truly amazing shots where...
SHE BROUGHT IT
While Natasha's dragged out shot as a dude might not be her most glamorous shot, it's so successful that it ranks among her best work. From her inventiveness in fashioning a gum-packet-foil grill, to her genius body language, this one shot shows both her attentiveness and ability to absorb information from the world around her and a chameleon-like nature which would serve her well as a model.
The second shot is just straight out foxy - exactly what was needed for the men's magazine focus of the shoot. It's almost hard to believe the beautiful woman on the right is the same person as the mini-b-boy on the left.
But she wasn't always so on point and there were times when...
OH NO SHE DIDN'T
Part of why this shot is so bad is somewhat beyond Natasha's control - I don't know what the stylist for this shot was thinking. But even in a better outfit, she looks blank and reflects how clueless she was during this shoot, which Jay Manuel called one of the most painful one he's ever had to do.
To her credit, Natasha was able to pick up quickly and improve after this. While she wasn't selected as the winner on America's Next Top Model, surely good things will come her way as well.
- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Images courtesy of CW)