A different perspective

• Full name – Deepthika Hasanji Jayakody
• School – Army School, Buddhist Ladies College, Royal institute
• Favourite colour – White; because it signifies purity and since it blends well with the other colours…
• Favourite Designers – Stella McCartney and Valentino and my favourite local designer is Brian Kerkoven
• Interests – Reading; I am an avid reader
• Favourite clothing – Anything comfortable, preferably shorts and T-shirt

By Lakna Paranamanna
Bold eyes, perfectly toned body shape and the right tinge of tan to complete her exotic beauty have complimented her career as a successful model. Entering the modelling industry at a young age of just 15, this young model Deepthika Jayakody now thinks of moving on from her career as a model into fashion designing. . .

Deepthika is another young girl who aspired to be a doctor as a child but years down the line entered a career quite different from what she dreamt of. “I never wanted to become a designer or a model. We were brought up in a much organised family background and we were always encouraged to pursue our studies. So with those influences my ambition was to become a doctor,” says Deepthika.

However, her strong ambition had changed course after she received several invitations for photo shoots for cover pages. “These were my very first steps into the fashion industry but they did not influence me to enter the field at that point.” Her first professional entrance to the fashion field had been when she was 15. “My sisters encouraged me to apply for the Miss Sri Lanka pageant and surprisingly I was chosen!” recalled Deepthika. This was Deepthika’s very first experience on ramp and she says that she was really nervous. “But it was fun and enjoyable after I got used to the flashes and the excitement.” Showing promise at her first attempt, she bagged the 2nd runners up award in the Miss International category.

“This is where I met Brian Kerkoven, since he did the choreography of the pageant. I should specially mention the assistance I received from him since then for my modelling career. I am a model because of him,” said this young beauty gratefully. Since then Deepthika has been appearing on various ramp shows and she said that these shows were wonderful learning experiences for her since with each show she learnt something new everyday. Deepthika pointed out that modelling is not at all an easy career to pursue and for one to become a good model looks and maintenance although are key points; those alone are not enough. “One has to be able to work with others and should be very patient. Whatever the outfit is, the model’s job is to make it look good. There is intense training and rehearsals before the shows and sometimes thing can get hectic,” she continued.

She also said that sometime things can get unpleasant because people form various opinions and impressions on people who work in this industry. “I do not think it is proper to judge people when you hardly know anything about them. However, I am glad that I entered this field because I met some wonderful people and it was very enjoyable,” she said smiling. Deepthika has been to various beauty pageants abroad; the World Miss Universe Pageant in Korea and Top Model of the World in China. “They are wonderful memories and were good learning opportunities for my career.”

This young model is now aspiring to become a fashion designer and has already completed her diploma in designing. “Soon after my A/Ls my parents and my sisters told me that I have to do my higher studies. By this time, I had moved far apart from my childhood ambition, so I thought why not take up a career where I can do my own business and still be engaged in the fashion industry.” She was studying fashion designing in the Academy of Design and in May she would be going abroad to complete her degree and further enhance her knowledge on designing.

When she started she says she had serious doubts whether she would be able to be successful in what she was about to do. “I was not at all good in drawing. So I often thought whether I would be able to progress,” she confessed. But with the guidance of the lecturers she says that she was able to catch up and gain confidence. “Designing includes a lot of hard work. You have to be constantly in touch with what is new in the fashion field and also have a rich knowledge of the texture of materials, colour combinations and most importantly an eye for what looks good on an individual is vital,” she remarked.

“It was very interesting to look at a design or a model through a designer’s perspective. All this time I was only experiencing modelling as a model but now I can understand what a designer expects from a model now that I am engaged in it,” remarked Deepthika. She sincerely thanks her family, especially her two sisters, Purni and Sarangi, for being with her and supporting her and very specially Brian Kerkoven for his guidance and support. “My hope is to become a successful designer one day and I hope I will be able to succeed and make my wish come true,” she added.