Exclusive Interview: Jonathan Waud of Make Me A Supermodel
Exclusive Interview: Jonathan Waud of Make Me A Supermodel
Abbey Simmons
Abbey Simmons
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
Yesterday I had the pleasure of chatting with Jonathan Waud, the second runner up on Make Me A Supermodel.

From day one of the competition, Johnathan established himself as the model to beat with consistently strong photo and runway performances. Not only did the judges and male underwear designers adore Jonathan, so did the viewers. Though he didn't win the contract with New York Model Management or the $100,000, Jonathan was voted Fan Favorite and awarded $10,000.

While doing my best not to melt over his English accent and charm, Jonathan I talked about his burgeoning underwear modeling career, how winning fan favorite was sweeter than winning the show, and how he and his wife have differing views on his best photo from the show. Read the highlights of the interview after the jump, but be sure to listen to the interview in it's entirety, because it's really not the same without that lovely accent!

How are you doing today?

I'm good, I'm really good. So... It's all over and I take a huge sigh of relief and shed a little tear, but next Wednesday I won't be watching myself on TV.

How was that, watching yourself on TV?

As narcissistic as it sounds... I loved it! As long as I wasn't making an ass of myself, I didn't mind watching it.

So how did you come to be on Make Me A Supermodel, Jonathan?

You know, I was actually doing a runway show in Malibu, and it just so happened that Shahid, one of the casting guys, was there. Not for any casting purposes for the show, was just there for the runway show, and there was a little after-party. It was a poolside runway show, and he saw me walk and said, "This is completely out of left field, but you know, you have quite a presence. Would you be interested in auditioning for this show?" He said the show, and I knew the name well, and was excited to meet Tyson, so I started the process, and very rapidly ended up finding myself in that house with 15 other models.

Tell me about life in that house with 15 other models. Especially as a man who's settled down, has a family, has a child, that must have been a big change.

The funny thing is is that I have a wife and a child, but we spend so little time in our apartment. I'll be out at work, she'll be out with her friends, and then we'll meet up in the evening and we'll go out to dinner or go and see a movie, and our little boy is so well-behaved that he comes along to everything. So the biggest change for me was kind of being in this apartment for so long. I wasn't used to this kind of... I guess I had a slight hint of claustrophobia about it.

Yeah, I mean you're not allowed to move very freely during your time on a reality show, so there must be a bit of claustrophobia in it.

Yeah, they do their best to make sure you don't run off and get lost in the big city, so for me that was one of the biggest things. I felt like I had ants in my pants for the last few episodes. I just wanted to kind of run around outside with no cameras and no one telling me what to do, or how I should pose, and this and the other.

Was it more surreal for you to live or to watch it?

Watching it, to be honest. Because when you're there, you're living it and you're experiencing it as you go, and your perception of how it was is sometimes slightly different to how it's viewed on television. You know, we would have viewing parties round at my apartment with all of my friends, so when it would get to that stage, and you turn your TV on and you're like, "Oh, I had a pimple on my face! Oh, it looks so much bigger on TV!" Or, "Oh dear God, was I walking around without my shirt on again?" Or, you know, little things you don't think about, but then you're very aware when you're watching yourself.

You excelled throughout the entire season, especially in photo shoots. Did you have a favorite photo of yourself from the time you were on the show?

The favorite photo, a specific photo was... probably the mirror shot where it was that kind of double reflection and I'm sort of fist-punching the mirror. It was actually a very intriguing experience, because a lot of deep emotions were brought up to the surface for the purpose of the shoot, so we wouldn't have this blank look in our eye. You know, my memories of one of my absolute best friends who passed away were brought up to the surface. When I look back at the image, I'm very aware of the emotions I was feeling at that time, and I just... I love the image. The photographer was wonderful, and for me it was probably my favorite shoot, my favorite photograph, from the whole competition.

Does your wife have a favorite photo from your time on the show?

Yes! Her favorite is actually the cowboy one, because the funny thing is that this all-American, Marlboro-looking guy happens to be an English guy, you know, completely out of his element in another country. And the reason she loves it, she goes, "You look so natural, and you look believable." That somehow is actually you. So I was pleased that I was able to play the part and play it well.

You really excelled at the creative and over the top shoots. Was that something that you discovered about yourself while you were on Make Me A Supermodel, or was that something that was a hidden talent that you brought out?

I guess it was more the latter. It's a hidden talent. If there's a line or a limit, I'll probably step over it at some point. For me, it was fun being able to kind of be set free creatively when the photographer would say, "Right, well we've got a shot that we love... now go for it. Now try something a little crazier." To my detriment, occasionally it was that last shot that they loved the most, and then the judges would tell me off for it. They'd say, you know, "You're being a bit too crazy." And I'd want to say, "The rest of the shoot, I was doing what I was told! And then they said, go crazy, and it just so happened that they loved that one the most!" So that was always... that was a little upsetting, but what are you gonna do?

Did you have a favorite runway challenge? You did really well in the classically handsome runway challenges. You did great in the partnering one, which you did with Karen Kelly, where you did the golfing move at the end.

Yes! Well, I guess my favorite... the one I felt most confident about was, I think it might have been the first or the second one with the candy, where I was partnered up with Karen. Because it was one of those ones where, you know, everyone was expecting that cliche, where you know, he's got that twizzler stick, so I'm sure we'll see him use it as a whip or something. And I looked at my outfit in the mirror and thought, "You know, this kind of reminds of something my dad would wear to play golf in." And I thought, "Oh, that sounds interesting!" So it was one of those ones where I went for it creatively with a strong backing of Karen as my sort of caddy, and it came off well. The judges loved it, it wasn't cliche, and they were pleased with the execution. So that was probably one of my favorite runways.

I think that might have been my favorite runway walk of the entire season. Let's see... what was your favorite moment on the show that we didn't see?

I guess it probably would be just the banter with Sandhurst and Gabriel, because we all shared a room together. Come 1 o'clock in the morning, there were a lot of "your mother" jokes and all of this. Deep down inside, we were acting like a bunch of 12-year-olds when lights were out. That was probably my favorite. I found it a shame watching Gabriel on the show, because he's very dry, his sense of humor is very British, for me. Very sarcastic, and for me, I loved it. That's one of my favorite people. And I didn't feel that he had his personality... it didn't shine through as much as I hoped it would. But that was probably it, the banter, that was always fun.

Congratulations on being named the fan favorite last night. What are your thoughts on that? Is it bittersweet?

For me, fan favorite was the title that I was really going after. Winning the contest, winning the approval from the judges, don't get me wrong, would have been perfect. I wouldn't have minded having pockets heavy with $100,000 right now. But if there was no money involved, and judges or general public, it's the fans who I care about the most, and they showed their appreciation in such a fantastic way. It really touched my heart that everyone took the time to vote, and you know, I won $10,000 from that. And everyone should know that voted that's made such a massive difference to my little family. We now have got a buffer in the bank, and it's down to everyone that voted.

Well, good.  And congratulations on that. You're definitely the fan favorite on our website. Everyone was rooting so hard for you last night.

Thank you so much.

What's the biggest lesson that you learned on your time doing MMAS?

I guess on MMAS, the biggest lesson that I learned is: you've got to be on 24/7. There's no room for errors, there really isn't. And if you're tired, and you're groggy, snap out of it. You know, pull yourself together, get your clothes on, get shaved, and start making magic. It's a discipline, it's like any other industry that you're in. I think the thing that I learned was that, you know, you imagine... I think there's a negative stigma in the industry, because, you know, "Oh, models don't really do much. Show up, look pretty and smile and you get well paid." There's a lot of work involved, a lot of behind the scenes, a lot of emotional stress and strain. For me, I've been modeling before,  but never quite so intense as the show highlighted for me, so it was great experience to learn really the depth of the industry.

Wikipedia said that you were signed with New Model Management and LA Model Management. Is that true, or is that Wiki fallacy?

No, that's absolutely correct. I'm with New for my print, and LA Models for just runway. So LA sends me out on my runway shows, and New sends me out for my little underwear shoots. They set me up with two last week with Kohl's, and they're doing a wonderful job, so I'm so happy to be in the care of two great agencies. I'm also represented in Miami with Front, who are also doing a great job.

Congratulations on that! So speaking of underwear, you were the first guy who booked a go-see with the 2(x)ist underwear campaign, where you made the designers' palms sweat and everything.

You know what, I live in LA so some of my best friends are gay guys, and in my consulting company, probably 70-80% of my clients are gay, so I was so pleased to hear that I was having this effect on this guy. When I was able to watch it on the episode, hear Jason saying, "Oh he made my palms sweaty!" I burst out laughing. I went a little red, but very proud at the same time.

Did you shoot your ad for 2(x)ist, was that a one-time thing or an on-going campaign?

Actually, Jason (the designer and head of 2(x)ist) and myself, we're now great friends, and we shot a calendar, which should be coming out now fairly soon, which is super exciting, and we're talking about shoots for the future. So 2(x)ist has been a wonderful new connection that I made through the show, and yeah, I'm eager to work with them again.

Well I know the readers and the ladies and gay men all over America will be very excited for that calendar.

I know, I'll have to post where you download and buy it as soon as I find out. I hope there'll be some left, because I know my wife's going to buy a ton of them!

So you seem like you sacrificed a ton to be on the show. You worked really hard to provide for your family beforehand, and of course you had a growing baby. Considering what you sacrificed for the show, do you have any regrets?

Not at all. Not at all. I never would have gone on the show if I didn't have my wife, because things like that can ruin relationships. We have such a strong relationship that she goes, "Yeah, you know what, this is a great opportunity. This is one of your dreams, so follow it and do the best that you can." She said right before I left, she goes, "It doesn't matter, win or lose, just do the best you can." And that was a great calming all over that allowed me to go in and go, "Well, yes, there's a lot riding on this, but if you're worrying too much about everything that's at stake, then you get inside your head." And I was allowed by my wife's support to not get too caught up in things.

I know it's been a few months since the filming, but were you as shocked as the rest of America with the outcome of the show?

I have to be honest, I didn't see Branden being the one to take the crown. I thought it would have been Sandhurst, if it couldn't have been me, because again, he was so consistent, so strong on the runway, he owns that catwalk. And his pictures, there was never a bad one. Even at his worst, they were still beautiful pictures. So I was surprised it was Branden. But yeah, congrats to the kid.

--Abbey Simmons, BuddyTV Staff Writer

(Image Courtesy of Bravo)