November 27, 2013 - 12:56 PM
"I WAS LIKE A BASKET CASE"
PENTICTON - When she was told she'd be a Bootlegger model, Amberlee Erdmann, 24, squealed with glee but was then told to keep it to herself for a little while.
"I even avoided telling my dad because he's (bad) at keeping secrets."
The clothing company called her where she works, the South Okanagan Victim Assistance Society on Martin Street, earlier this year and informed her she won their Facebook model search.
"Our office is quiet," she said, but "I was literally jumping up and down in the boardroom, squealing and waving my hands."
Erdmann didn't expect she would win. She didn't expect the pampered treatment she got when she visited Vancouver for her fall Bootlegger photo shoot nor did she expect the Bootlegger staff's relaxed attitude. The $1,000 Bootlegger gift card was appreciated though.
Erdmann said she was reluctant to submit her name into the company's online contest. She's been modelling off and on since she was 15 years old and her hair had been recently contracted for a major Okanagan styling business but Bootlegger's Facebook contest was something else entirely.
She got wind of it when surfing the social site while at work — for totally legitimate reasons she explained. She monitors the society's Facebook page among other duties. She entered the contest even though she was afraid of asking others to vote for her and that she might lose.
"It was very stressful," she said. "I constantly reminded family and friends to vote for me daily. I was like a basket case."
"I was so grateful people didn't hate me because of it," she added. "I even messaged people on their walls (so often) Facebook thought I was spam. It blocked my access."
By the time voting ended Erdmann made eighth position with 2,000 votes but she was still anxious. Bootlegger staff still had to decide who would be their number one model.
"I started having dreams about finding out (if I won). It was so out of control."
After being told she won she was flown to Vancouver to be photographed for the company's national fall and winter campaign. Her photos appeared in online Bootlegger ads, Okanagan Woman magazine and other periodicals.
Bootlegger has been the biggest modeling gig for Erdmann and she's already been contacted for other assignments because of it.
She enjoys her work with the victim's assistance society, finding funding, applying for grants and working in administration, but she still loves being in front of the camera.
"I enjoy modeling. It's natural to me."
To contact a reporter for this story, to send photos or videos, email Shannon Quesnel at email@example.com, call 250-488-3065, send tweets to @shannonquesnel1 or @InfoNewsPentict.
Amberlee Erdmann, 24, recreated the photo submitted to Bootlegger's Facebook modelling contest, wearing the same Bootlegger coat and standing in the same spot near Blenz.
(SHANNON QUESNEL /InfoTel Multimedia)
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013