[Interview ] Liris Crosse: The Value Of Real Curves
For someone who was told to lose weight when she first entered modeling, Liris Crosse has made incredible strides in an industry that far too often undervalue curves and darker complexions. Never one to be held back, the Baltimore-native has done everything from appear in music videos for artists like Raekwon and Jay-Z, and movies like The Best Man, Baby Boy and The Inside Man. She has also been featured in highly visible fashion campaigns for the likes of Lane Bryant and Ashley Stewart, along with countless other commercial print appearances in publications like Essence, British Cosmo, YM, Seventeen and King Magazine. Beyond the curves and the confidence lies quiet wisdom and self-awareness. To know Liris is to love her – and you can do just that by checking out our sit down with the beautiful Ms. Crosse as she discusses her humble beginnings .
The Well Versed: Your name is uncommon. Tell us more about it.
Liris Crosse: Well, I come from a West Indian heritage. My dad is from Grenada and on his side of the family they tried to keep the family name in everybody’s name. So, “Liris” was an idea that they got from the word “lyric” but they made it unique by putting my two grandmother’s names together – which [are] Lila and Iris – so they got “Liris.”
TWV: That’s very pretty!
LC: I always say that they made a name that was perfect for entertainment, so I guess I was destined for all this! (laughs)
TWV: Who did you look up to when you first started?
LC: When I first started I looked up to Tyra Banks, Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista, Cindy Crawford – because Cindy Crawford was known to have a curvier body. As I got up there…in the Plus industry, one of the people I really liked was Kate Dillon…she’s another pioneer to this day in the Plus industry. A flawless beauty.
TWV: What are your best traits (not necessarily physical)?
LC: I’m resourceful. I am driven…and that same passion carries over into my family and my friends. When I call somebody my friend, I have their back. When somebody’s my man, I love them completely with my heart and soul. Over the years I have been blessed to have a certain amount of charisma where I’ve just been able to meet all types of people from all walks of life who do so many different things. I’m the type of person who people can call and they can find/locate almost anything. I’m almost like a six degrees of separation from a lot of people…I don’t like to give up. No matter how many setbacks, I still have a goal in my head and I always will so I can win. I just try to keep going despite the setbacks that you go through or the trials and tribulations. There’s a quote…sometimes you get problems or situations in your way because God wants to see how much you want it. So, you can never say I don’t want it because I never give up.
TWV: That being said, since we just talked about your best traits, what are some things you get self-conscious about?
LC: Hmmm. I think the only thing I get self-conscious about is, even though you can be a driven person and very determined and passionate about what you do, of course once in a while things aren’t going your way and you just start to feel like “Should I still be doing this?” Sometimes you go through things that cause insecurities. But if you slow down, breathe, gather your thoughts – sometimes you have to go pray and get it together! Pull your big girl panties up and go for it again. (laughs) I mean, like I said, it’s about never, ever giving up. Or if you give up, it’s not necessarily giving up it’s just a changing of direction. I think in the modeling industry you definitely have to reinvent or refresh your brand. Pay attention to the trends that are coming in. Sometimes as you start to get a little older, it’s like “Am I doing the right thing?” But you realize that what is meant for you is meant for you, and nobody can take that away.