Alice Zhou started modelling at age 18 – little over a year ago.

"A lot of people were saying that I should try to be a model," Zhou explained. "I thought it was a great idea. By that time I had been offered an opportunity by Bintang Models, so boom, I became a model!”

While there is no history of fashion in her family (her mother is a university professor and her father works in IT), her family is right behind her modelling career. Zhou is currently with Bintang Models, but has trained with the New Silk Road modelling agency in China. “During this time, I had opportunities to work with Chinese photographers and designers. It was an interesting experience.”

Zhou has met some success in China – she is a popular fashion blogger on video sharing site bilibili and has been on Chinese television to share her thoughts.

“I haven’t been modelling in too many places but I definitely like the fashion industry in New Zealand,” she said. “I’m always feeling respected in New Zealand industry, all the designers, makeup artists and photographers are always polite and I feel respected.”

In the future, Zhou hopes to model in New York and China. “I would like to try to get on all those cool fashion weeks and my goal for recently is New Zealand Fashion Week.”

Zhou is currently working towards a Commerce degree at the University of Auckland and is aiming to one day get her Masters. While it is a challenge balancing study, modelling and her passion for art and design, she is taking it in her stride.

“I love fashion,” she said. “I love basically everything about fashion and art and I’m also working hard on art myself. Modelling inspires me as an artist and it also makes me more confident. I love modelling, not only because modelling itself is awesome but also it improves me in many different ways.”