Pia Cattapan: “Instagram is like my second modelling agency”

It’s never a dull moment for Pia Cattapan. With a palpable love for art, a firm patent-leather-clad foot in the door of the modelling world, and a stack of university books to trawl through, you could say this Melbourne-born influencer has a knack for multi-tasking.

Growing her Instagram following to a cool 30k, Pia has enticed both clients and other like-minded fashionistas with her charming film photography and keen eye for the eclectic. In 2017, we saw Pia trade trams for double-decker buses, with the model swiftly becoming a fully-fledged Londoner – breaking into the influencer scene in what seems like a whole new arena.

With one glance at Pia’s grid, London feels tangible – think cherry-red telephone boxes and dinky front porches forming the backdrop to her outfit diaries. She collates a dreamy mix of portrait shots that flaunt her street-style and effortless beauty, as well as stills of hidden corners amidst her traveling sagas and the things in life that encompass her own aesthetic agenda.

We couldn’t help but get in touch to see how Pia Cattapan’s movements as a burgeoning big-shot have been unfolding…

How do you edit your Instagram photos?
Using VSCO cam for filters, always.

Is there a favourite filter that you use?
G3 & F2 on VSCO, I never use the Instagram filters.

We’ve noticed you’ve jet-setted off to London Town. How has the move impacted your career and approach to influencing?
London has been awesome. It’s such a cool city and I’m very happy to be living with my boyfriend as we were doing long distance for so long. It’s a big change career-wise from Melbourne as it is a lot bigger and much more difficult to get out there, but I am slowly making connections and trying my best to network myself into the influencer world of London.

What are the biggest adjustments you’ve had to make in transitioning from Melbourne to London life?
So many! In Melbourne, I drive everywhere and am really used to having my independence and just jumping in my car to get me from A to B, but in London – it’s public transport all the way, so it takes a lot longer and can sometimes be very tiring… especially as the tube is about 100 degrees. I also miss my friends a lot – it’s so hard not being able to call them whenever I want as the time difference is crazy. And of course the weather… I woke up to snow the other day and it was the first time I have ever seen snow in my life! The weather is a huge change. I’ll look at my weather app and see 6 degrees and I’m like ‘oh it’s going to be hot today.’ Lol, very different to Melbourne.

You’re a model, a growing social media force and now an expat – is there ever a typical ‘day in the life’ for you? If so, talk us through one…
Typical day would be wake up, go to the gym, probably speak to a friend from Melbourne and post an Instagram before everyone goes to sleep. Then I’ll get ready for the day, generally go to a few castings around town, might catch up with a friend for coffee, and then go home via the organic store and make dinner for me and my boyfriend. If I’m working, I’ll generally have to get up super early and it will usually be a full day of shooting, so there isn’t much time for anything else!

Do you adhere to a particular aesthetic with your Instagram?
Not really. I like to post film photos and art stuff because that’s what I am interested in, although I do need to keep in mind that I have clients following me who don’t really care about that stuff and really just want to see me so that they can book me for jobs, haha. Also, I’ve found people generally get bored with my love for art, so I balance it out a bit.

How has social media assisted you in your modelling career? What do you think are the do’s and don’ts of promoting your personal brand on a platform like Instagram?
Instagram is like my second modelling agency! It has honestly helped so so much. I don’t know if there are any do’s or don’ts, but I would try to post lots of pictures of me so clients are able to see what I look like in different ways, including videos. Although Instagram is a HUGE help, I do think it is super important to be real on it – no one wants to scroll through a model portfolio because that’s just boring.

Do you ever plan out your Instagram and social media uploads, or do you post at whim
Ugh, sometimes… but it gets really difficult because then I do fun things and just want to post about that instead. So, generally not, but I am really careful not to post too many similar photos at the same time. For example, I probably wouldn’t post three food photos in a row.

You’re rushing out the door for a long-haul shooting day – what are your handbag essentials?
Food, food, food, chewing gum (cool mint flavour Extra), water bottle and headphones. I always make sure I have food with me wherever I go as I have turned into such a fussy eater and have intolerances, so I need to make sure I bring food with me to ensure my energy levels are up. If I’m shooting far away (e.g in Manchester which is a 2 hour train), I’ll also bring my laptop and do my uni work.

Where do you hope to be and what can we expect you to be doing in a 5-year time jump?
Oh gawd… I don’t even know. Stressful question!! I feel like people would think I have a master plan to my life, but moving to London has made me really live in the moment. To be honest, I am not really sure!

All images via: @piacattapan | Interview by: Genevieve Phelan

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