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The Faces of Fashfest 2015

Wendy Johnson

She was number 39 and he was number 111. They both had butterflies in their stomach. They were, after all, walking and posing on a makeshift catwalk in front of a panel of judges to see if they could step ahead of more than 300 applicants and win a place in FASHFEST.

Hannah Claire McKenzie and Ken Scruton delighted the five judges and not only made it across the line, they made it to the top and have officially become the Faces of FASHFEST 2015.

When they were told they had secured the coveted roles, Hannah and Ken went silent and still—for a second. Then there were grins all round.

This is the third year FASHFEST is rolling out the red carpet in the capital. While the first two years saw supermodels grace publicity material, Andrea Hutchinson, co-founder of FASHFEST and HAUS Models, says 2015 is designed to be different, in line with the event’s philosophy of supporting and building the creative industry in Canberra.

The Faces of FASHFEST 2015, Hannah Claire McKenzie and Ken Scruton. Photo by Samuel Broomby.

The Faces of FASHFEST 2015, Hannah Claire McKenzie and Ken Scruton. Photo by Samuel Broomby.

“The core team thought it would be great to select two Faces, and from the model casting held 1 February,’ says Andrea. “With a record number of models applying, we knew we’d find two stars.”

The five independent judges were unanimous that Hannah and Ken ‘shone on the catwalk’.

“Even though some models came from interstate, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide, in the end two Canberrans were selected,” says Andrea. “Not because they live here, but because they delighted all the judges.”

Neither Hannah nor Ken has extensive modelling experience but that’s soon to change with both of them to appear on all four nights of this year’s event—13 to 16 May.

Hannah, who is in Year 12, Dickson College, has loved performing from an early age, taking up singing, dancing and acting and performing in a number of musicals. Her first modelling experience was in 2013 when she helped out a graduating photography student, from Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT), as a favour to a friend.

hannah

She was #39. She is Hannah Claire McKenzie.

 

 

“It gave me a taste of something I had never experienced before, and I loved every second of it,” says Hannah, who has since completed two catwalk workshops with HAUS.

Ken is in his third year studying exercise physiology at University of Canberra (four-year Bachelor program). He intends to then complete a Master’s of Physiotherapy. Sport has always been a passion, but after injuring his ankle playing soccer, he needed major reconstructive surgery. Ken was impressed with the world of physio he then encountered and decided to follow it as a career.

ken

He was #111. He is Ken Scruton.

 

Ken also loves music, art and good clothes and is going to have to hold his own against his four sisters now that he’s a model for FASHFEST.

One important role the Faces of FASHFEST will play is to help this year’s fashion designers fulfil their visions and bring their designs to life on the catwalk.

Both Hannah and Ken will sign a year’s contract with HAUS Models and Sydney’s WINK Models, which is run by Taryn Williams who started her modelling career on a serious note while living in Canberra. The Faces will feature in the event’s major promotional material and television commercial, which will show on WIN TV and in Dendy Cinemas. They’ll also receive ongoing training and coaching to advance their modelling careers.

FASHFEST not only has two new Faces in 2015. It has a brand-spanking new venue, the National Convention Centre, which will have wow-factor built in by Elite Sound and Lighting, and a sparkling new website. Check out this year’s designers on www.fashfest.com.au.

Wendy Johnson

Wendy Johnson graduated with a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, a few decades ago. She’s been living in Australia since 1995, having fallen in love with eucalypt trees and kangaroos. Wendy is passionate about Canberra and all the nation’s capital has to offer. She loves to write (about everything and anything) and owns her own pr and advertising business. More about the Author