Sunday, 27 October 2013


While there is a need to professionalize the modelling and design industry in any emerging city like Iloilo as it prepares for its cosmopolitan debut in 2015, I have thought of organizing an umbrella organization with models, designers in fashion and industrial design, show directors, models' agents, production experts, fashion photographers, stylists, fashion journalists, media and auxilliary professionals in the fashion and design industry.

This will give rise to the concept of an organization much like the Philippine Models Association of the Philippines ( PMAP) but this time I combine it with more power with the involvement of designers and its support systems. It is called i-RAMP for Iloilo International Runway Association of Models and Design Professionals. i-RAMP has been conceived three years back and now it is ripe enough to be launched formally in Iloilo City.
I-ramp conception, please click for link
As a founding member and three-time terms secretary of the Fashion and Design Council of the Philippines ( FDCP) with Josie Natori, Inno Sotto, Lulu Tan Gan and among others, I feel returning home to Iloilo and reset my businesses here, I will be able to pull something to help the industry with FDCP as my  core inspiration.  I-ramp is one of them. Its future home will be at the fashion and design school i-fashion school, another pioneering project I started,  is now on construction in the city.All of which is to build the fashion and design industry apart from my works on creating manufacturing of design-led goods all over Panay Island and Negros.

So much like PMAP and FDCP, the two models of these organizations can help trigger development in the fashion and design business in the city. In one of our conversations over coffee with Iloilo's fashion show director Bombette Marin, this has been my dream since 10 years back. Now that I am settled in the city, I can work on it full time.

I have always shared the idea that New York City was built by fashion with its smallest streets busy manufacturing garments, jewelry and accessories which ripple off to fashion shoots, retailing, product activations,  launchings, publications and runway shows. Iloilo City is much like this today because of its huge market for people who need to dress up for work and attend occasions. It has an affluent and mass market that the fashion and design industry can serve it not as entertainers but as businessmen.

Models and the design professionals in the city are working on conditions that may need so much improvements including their talent fees. There must be some parameters that these very few talents may be protected to avoid the darker precedence which is we may be losing our best talents to migrate elsewhere. As well, the harmony of an industry is on the standardization of professional practices and its rates based on transparency and fairness.

i-RAMP will be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission as a non-profit and non-stock organization making it legitimate. It will be able to help those in the design and business community sustain itself through shared resources, collaborations, cooperation and interventions. Much more as an organization, it will be able to pull funds for projects to benefit the members and even the design society on a larger scope. The highest goal is to give work to those who needed them most like the far-flung creative economies in the design-led craft sectors.

Registered businesses of creative people like designers or fashion photographers as well as in tandem with national or global businesses who will promote their brands need models to image their points of view. This is how crucial models are--bringing the brand name into life. Yet, many may struggle as it is a business like no other that requires acceptable parameters and directions. 

I-ramp will gather the industry into a single movement. It is my hope that, ego-aside, the city can build a cohesive platform to create design that means business. Glamour in our work is lean, the hard work galvanizes realities into true meaning of fashion and design in our everyday life.

I-ramp will create projects to help its members create more business. It is not a social organization. It is meant to help build an industry towards a single movement....because no one can do it alone. 

I-ramp will convene its first core membership drive to models, designers  and members of the design community on December 2013. Those who are interested, you can message me in my facebook account for details. 

Carles Iloilo Shellcrafts through the Northern Iloilo Local Economic Development. PJ Aranador trainor


O Models: Revelation Anew

I founded O Models First Faces in Manila and  Iloilo ten years ago. It was a humble move for me to help models from Iloilo City, my hometown, be able to manage themselves in the modelling industry while my head studio  was in Makati with my huge modelling market in Boracay. While doing my professional works around the world, O Models took its hiatus for years. 

 The infinity of an "O", "O: from Iloilo, "O" from Boracay, "Oh" whatever......
The logo I designed for Runway Productions-the forerunner of Philippine Fashion Week. Director Joey Espino with then staff ( now famous directors too ) Ariel Lozada and  Raymond Villanueva were my colleques.
O Models who made it to the top. Both became the first Nautilus image models.Afterwhich followed by Ilonggo model Rey Gambol and currently by supermodel Ria Bolivar and Kim Lumampao.

Ria and Kim
Model Rey climb to the top includes billboard in Boracay
Model Evan in Boracay shoot

But it is time for me to revive it this year as  the demand for models suddenly surge up amongst clients and network specially in Boracay.  I thought many promising models in my town Iloilo,   being  home to some of the most gorgeous people in my country, need a point of take off with becoming professional models. But anybody from other parts of the country will be taken in as well.
( Link to O Models set cards charter beginnings in you tube . PLEASE CLICK FOR THE LINK @ )

Two of the Philippne models who are my townmates. Ria Bolivar, who started to model for me as a start-up, and always my bride on the ramp, became Best Model of the World Philippines winner and Elite Model Philippines and now the Philippines Top Super Model. I introduce Filipino Italian Joe Ozbot to the realm of modelling and put him in his first editorial shoot for Metro Magazine---a cool 6 page feature for a first timer.

Connecting my design with models at the Fashion and Design Council of the Philippines which I co-founded, here at the FDCP for Bench with model American Persian Charles Gareh
Eja. One of the leading models of O Models re-launching. Eja is the image model of Project Zero under Smart Communications. She graced the runways in Manila and Boracay for this purpose.

The idea of O Models Management is much like the Professional Models Association of the Philippines (PMAP) where models manage themselves well in the tricky fashion and design business. They are mentored first and go on their own only after they are able to get the ropes correctly--confident enough to get projects and paid properly. 

Super model Ria Bolivar, a native of Iloilo,  appearing in our regular shows in Boracay during summertime. At O  Models talents must know how to market themselves after they have been coached with the tools of  the modelling industry—not only how they look and present themselves but managing their bookings and connections. Working with many PMAP models for more than 15 years, I must say, I will be able to share amongst them the great treasure of talents I see around them so our fashion industry moves further upwards.
Actors Filipino- British Andrew Wolff, current Mr. World First runner-up, Fiilipino Italian Nancy Castellione,Ffilipino Marco Alcaraz on my runway— for Neatea Beach Boracay.

O Models means perfect circle. The letter “O” is a full circle, too. It goes around. Models have to sustain themselves in  professional manner to make it work for them. 

The infinity of an “O” demands that models have to go around through extreme training, discipline and professional ethics the whole time in a never ending circle before they can be called, after all, professional models. But of course, the first requirement is models will have the models’ physical attributes and passion to be become one. It is not easy but it can be done through professional help.
Fashion editorials

rolling the camera for a stunning model named Barbie  beyond the runway in Boracay

O Models launched the beginnings of some aspiring models from Iloilo, Manila, Davao,  Cebu, Boracay and internationally such as countries like Germany, South Korea and USA. Some of the talents made their names in the limelight including TV celebrity Boracay girl Filipino-American Max Collins, porcelain beauty Sandra Larsson who graced the many print ads and eventually did her luck on TV,  American raised Iloilo statuesque model John Tanchuan who garnered top modelling awards in Manila, head turner Quito Treñas whose prolific modelling career today came a long was like I was able to give him TV commercials and Metrowear shows in Manila. Ditto for Iloilo manikin Dimples de Asis and many others who travelled to Manila to try their luck in the competitive world of ramp and commercial modelling. 

Quito debut at the MetroWear show
John the Metro wear show in Nautilus PJ Aranador

One of the best O Models talents emerged a big winner,  Iloilo stunner commercial, print, ramp and TV talent Filipino-Italian Cosmopolitan hunk Joe Ozbot whose career O Models launched in six full pages of glossy fashion feature in the prestigious Metro Magazine.  O Models gave him his big Manila break with his first runway show with the Professional Models Association of the Philippines. It was a great duo for him with runaway kitten Wilma Doesnt. It also launched his career in Cebu earning him five figures while I was the Creative Director of Bijoux Cebu where many of the most drop dead models from Cebu, Manila and abroad made Shangrila Resorts and Spa in Mactan their home for series of international shows.
Joe ( middle) at Bijoux Cebu

Bijoux Cebu with Ilonggo model Joe Ozbot. Celebrity models Richard Gutierrez, Isabelle Daza and Miss Earth Karla Paula Henry

O Models will be re-launched in Iloilo by December 2013 to give a good head start for 2014...mostly for the heat of shows in Boracay. It will reveal its prime first face  models who will be launched in fashion shows and print ads. These talents will be gracing the first green and social design resort fashion week in Boracay in summer 2014 which I am organizing. This advocacy-loaded fashion & industry scene will gather the most gorgeous models in the country and abroad to converge into the world’s best beach for a purpose---to restore and conserve the environment and our own culture.O models are also exposed people, to make them aware of society, by immersing them in social projects like volunteers in the Ati liveliood project in Boracay.

Models at volunteer work in Boracay. Moulding  a sense of service on the other side of their glamorous life. 
Launch of Project Zero in a fashion show and revelations.Promoting hablon through visuals and expressings them in words.  Here with Korean model Vince.

O Models will have its prime headquarters in Boracay as well where by 2014 I will be needing huge pool of talents to supply the surge of shows, events and modelling requirements needed in the island while it copes up with its whopping 1.5 million annual tourist arrivals. On the pipeline is to grab the modelling requirements of Nestea Beach, Smart events and other major ones where modelling is within professional organizations and  are impeccable to the clients and less headaches to the  organizers which I thought I have delivered for the past great shows in Boracay for years.  But beyond Boracay, there are projects which are waiting for Manila, Cebu, Bacolod, Davao and resorts in Palawan and as far as forthcoming shows in USA and Asia.

International shows

all male runway events
beyond the ramp, models as show hosts at a beauty contest 

O Models will gather its new set of talents through its first official meeting in first week of December while some of its talent will already hit the runway in Manila this November. Three major shows are coming up for me: Las Obras for the prestigious Festival of Trees at The Jaquar Room at the Fort in Makati and the Caritas Manila shows in Trinoma and eventually at the Ayala Malls. Three great models from Iloilo will grab their world premiere runway in these shows. They are the lucky ones with the X factors of modelling and I am sure they will create a stir.  They will rub elbows with Manila models.   

While there is a need to organize our local models now, this is only the beginning. Its main headquarters will be housed at the I-fashion school once it is opened. Models will be coached in personality development, public speaking, hosting, time management, acting and image building. (see link at

Filipino German Model Simon

 O Models is open to those interested. Just message me your intention in my facebook until O models will launch its own official fb account during the launching. We will schedule a goo see and we will screen you before the start of December. Its first official meeting of talents for a qualifying round will be on December 7, 2013 at Wawa Heritage Restaurant in Jaro, Iloilo City. Food will be served free. Come as you are and we will decide whether or not we can make you a big star.  

Be ready. You could be next.