Even as a new face Piers Hampton may have racked up more bookings than you can shake a stick at, but his foray into the fashion industry couldn’t have come from more humble of origins. The seed of his modeling career was planted the day a scout chanced a glimpse of him working behind the till of a chicken shop in his home town of Adelaide, Australia, and hit him with a job offer that saw his uniform change overnight from faded, greasy overalls to the finest offerings the world of high fashion had to offer. His career has blossomed ever since and has seen him working for blue chip clients including Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Salvatore Ferragamo and a whole host of up and coming Australian labels. Already signed with The Agency Models in Sydney, Kult Models in Hamburg and Urban Management in Milan, the world really is for the taking for this kid.
Did you thrust yourself upon the world of modeling or did it stumble upon you?
The industry definitely stumbled upon me – I had no idea there even was such a thing until I was initially scouted all those years ago. It all started when I was working at a chicken shop in Adelaide of all places, and we had just closed for the evening when there was a knock at the door. My boss at the time told me to inform the person that we were closed so, with a bit of sign language through the window, I made it pretty clear we were shut. Five or so minutes passed and the shop phone rang, I answered and the caller introduced himself as the man from the window then said "I don't want any chicken, I was wondering if you wanted to become a model?" I guess you can says the rest is history.
What do you think sets you apart from others amongst the crop of fresh faces of the season?
To be honest, I don't actually think it matters. I think there's definitely enough room for everyone in this industry, as long as you have drive and some passion in what you are doing.
What have been some of the highlights of your modeling career to date?
There is nothing specific in this job for me that is a highlight, it is the whole experience. I would not do it otherwise. I get to meet amazing like-minded people, I get to travel and I get to be who I want to be. That in itself is the highlight.
Tell us about some of the lows of the day to day life of a model.
You drink a lot of coffee… When I say a lot, I mean a lot. You don't know what is happening tomorrow, let alone in the next hour. People lie to you, to your face, saying they are trying to sell you the world, when in fact they are trying to sell you to the fashion industry. But I am a positive person and I try not to dwell on these things. That's just part of it all. I'm setting up my career so that eventually I won't have to be part of that sort of idealism.
If you weren't a pretty young thing, how would you see yourself earning some dollar?
I have so many things that I want to achieve in life but if I was not modeling right now and had to choose a career, it would definitely be something biology based that incorporated traveling. A particular job which I could see myself doing would be traversing the amazon rainforest and studying its rich ecosystems as well as discovering new animal species. That's always sounded like a great way to spend my time.
Would you rather be incredibly handsome but stupid or be unbelievably intelligent but unattractive?
I would chose to be incredibly handsome but stupid because I don't actually believe that anybody in this world is truly stupid. I believe that everyone has the capacity to be intelligent, they just have to realize this. Perhaps by putting some effort in, listening to their passions or by finding out what makes them tick, one of the many forms of intelligence out there will come into being.
Would you rather be fluent in every language in the world or be able to play every musical instrument with perfection?
I'm going to be cheeky here. I would chose to be fluent in every language in the world because music is also a language and in saying this I will be able to play every instrument.
Has your work as a model seen you travel much of the world and, if you could choose your next location, where would be next on your hit list?
As I'm writing this I'm sitting in Milan, not traveling but living. I've spent so much time on my own during my personal travels around the globe but due to this industry I have also been lucky enough to actually live in many different places such as Auckland, Bali, Hamburg, London and Rome. What's next on the agenda, surprise me…
Describe your sense of style in five words.
Eclectic. Simple. Elegant. Interchangeable. Personal.
Who and what are you biggest style influences?
Would you say it is better to always be overdressed or undressed?
Do you mean underdressed or actually undressed? Because I think the answer is obvious.
Hit us up with something random and unexpected about yourself.
I like frogs. I think they are great. It's true.