Anna Calypso: “Hard work is important, find something you love and do it to the best of your ability!”

She is from the United Kingdom, she is different from most Gothic models because she LOVES colour. Although the clothes she have to wear are mostly black, she do my best to incorporate my warm, earthy autumn colours using accessories, lipstick and wigs. Anna also design and make semi-precious gemstone jewellery and sell it online. She is in her middle age, suffering from severe M.E./C.F.S. She have been ill for 15 years. Her photographer is her husband Andy and she edit all the photos herself. Take a look for more about this incredible lady…

1. Welcome to our stage dear Anna! As a start of our chat tell us who is Anna Calypso? 

I am a 47 year old Gothic / alternative model and jewellery designer from the UK.

2. When did you start modeling in general? Tell us about your first steps in modeling and what inspired you to embark upon this endeavour. 

I first started modelling in 2016. I wanted some decent photos of myself before I got too old and everything started to sag! Having had to give up my former life due to M.E, I had no way to express myself and so this is a way to do that. I had no plans to model, it just developed as I spent more time in front of the camera and grew to love it.

3. You are also an owner of a jewellery store. Share with us about your artworks and how goth style inspires you to create your presence in this field.

Although I do create some Gothic designs, the majority of my jewellery is based around semi-precious gemstones. I am inspired by recently having had my colours done. This is where a consultant assesses your skin tone and advises you which colours to wear to look your best. You will be either a Summer, Spring, Autumn or Winter. I am an Autumn so I can wear all the warm earthy colours of autumn leaves (yellow ochre, orange, rust, brown and olive green. Nothing goth there at all!). I now create all my pieces to fit in to a season. I thoroughly recommend having it done. You will be astonished at how amazing you can look in your correct colours.

4. How you manage to do so many photo shoots despite your illness? How challenging is to model and make art during the moments of exhaustion?

I have to be very careful. I must rest the day before and the day after a shoot. I cannot organise any other commitments either side. Occasionally I can’t do a shoot when I would like to due to illness. That can be very frustrating. I have to use a wheelchair as I cannot walk more than a few paces. It is always just out of shot. I can only stand for a few minutes so my husband (my photographer) is very adept at taking photos quickly. Although I realise that I look perfectly healthy, photoshoots can really wipe me out. It is getting a bit easier now that I am slightly better but I need to make sure that I eat healthily and look after myself otherwise I wouldn’t be able to do it.

5. Throughout the years many new gothic sub-categories emerged above the surface. What are your thoughts about them?

I don’t really have any thoughts on this except that I think it’s great how the Gothic theme has captured the imagination of so many people. It’s fantastic to see so many versions of it.

6. Speaking of gothic stereotypes, which is the one that you mostly cling to? Which others do you like? 

When modelling I do a lot of Victorian and Romantic goth. I love those the best. This year I’ve done a lot of witchy styled shoots. I guess that’s closer to a classic goth look. I like all the Goth categories except Pastel Goth. I really don’t like those colours.

7. What were your first challenges that you had to face when you were a baby bat? How did you deal with them?

I was bullied at school for being a bit different and liking ‘odd’ music but it didn’t make me change. It wasn’t fun but it didn’t ever occur to me to fit in. 

8. What’s your favourite colour palette and the type of clothing that you love to get dressed with?

Since having had my colours done, I love to wear my warm and earthy Autumn leaf colours. I do not dress Goth on a day to day basis. I haven’t worn black (except for photoshoots) since I had my colours done in February. Although the clothes I am required to model are mostly black, I try to incorporate my Autumn colours with wigs, accessories and makeup. If you check out my Instagram, you will see that it is one of the most colourful Goth pages there. 

At home I wear a lot of maxi skirts, t-shirts and jumpers. I am always cold. I don’t wear makeup on a daily basis either but I do have a strict skin care regime as you have to if you’re 47 and still modelling!

9.  Do you have a role model? If yes, what’s the one thing that attracts you to him/her the most?

My Dad is my role model. He used to be an accountant before he retired. I have the same brain as him – logical, organised, good with money and dedicated. He has worked hard all his life and is now enjoying a fun retirement.

10.  What do you think is the single most important trait for a role model and how he/she should manifest it?

I think that hard work is important. You won’t get anywhere without it. Find something you love and do it to the best of your ability. Don’t rely on others to provide you with happiness or money. Make it yourself.

11.  What do you value the most in gothic culture? Moreover, what will keep you as an active participant of it for a good part of your life?

Everyone seems really friendly. I love how it is accepting to all body shapes and sizes. Unlike mainstream modelling, all sizes are embraced.

12. Could you point out how you perceive gothic in a general sense and how it impacts your life?

I perceive it as a way of dressing and a love of Gothic music

13. . Do you have gothic idols? If yes, how did they impress you so much and have become such a vital part of your life? 

I love Adora Bratbat. She promotes healthy living, balanced eating and lets her children be whatever they want to be; Goth or not.

14. What does your family think of your unconventional way of living? For instance, do you recall any memorable situations that you will always remember? Like some funny or uncomfortable happenings?

My parents think it’s great that I dress with originality whether it’s a Gothic outfit or not. I know my Mum was a bit bored of doing black washing when I was at school but she was happy that I chose a black and purple wedding dress and was proud that I didn’t conform to the ‘norm’ on that special day.

15. Do you have a motto that you live by? If yes, could you tell us what is it?

Work hard. Take responsibility for your actions. Don’t blame others for your own failures.

16. What kind of goth music you love to listen to? Any specific bands or musicians in general?

I love Doom Metal best. My Dying Bride, Draconian, Swallow The Sun, Opeth.

17. Say you are on a lonely island, what are the 3 gothic items that you will make sure to have in order to survive?

A penknife. Evinta by My Dying Bride. Candles.

18. What advice would you give to baby bats?

Be yourself for sure, but if it is smart to blend in and follow the rules from time to time, do it. Sometimes you have to play the game to win. Don’t alienate people and take responsibility for your actions. For my first week of sixth form collage, I dressed normally so I could get to know people without scaring them off and so I could make friends. After that, I reverted to my Goth look. By then I had made friends and they accepted me as I was. Similarly at job interviews I advise dressing appropriately. Don’t ruin your chances in life by being stubborn about your look.

19.  And in the final of our conversation share where people can find you on the social networks, your store?

WGM Team
WGM Team
WGM promotes Gothic culture and alternative self-expression. Our mission is to share the latest trends from the community and support the artists whose creative spark keeps it alive. See through our eyes the light in the darkness.