Hey Renee, what have you been up to since we last saw you in MAXIM in July 2015?
I have still been modelling full time, travelling whenever I get the chance and building my new swimwear company, Somerfield Swim. It has been an exceptionally fun, challenging and rewarding year.
Yes, you’re wearing your recently launched swimwear in this shoot. Why did you decide to release it?
I’ve had a long modelling career built largely around swimwear and I literally own more bikinis than I do clothes. Designing my own swimwear line has always been a dream of mine since as long as I can remember and I feel as though it has come naturally to me. Not only do I own a ridiculous amount of bikinis but I’ve tried on and modelled thousands, so I really understand what makes up a great cut and design for comfort and style. I’m literally obsessed with every piece in my collection because I only create bikinis I totally love and would wear myself.
What did you love most about this shoot?
I loved that it was completely spontaneous. We were in the Maldives shooting my first Somerfield Swim campaign and one morning it was overcast and raining so we took a little adventure to the other side of the island and just decided to play around and take some cool shots. It was completely random and the concept was raw — I knew from that instant the images had to be used for something special and what better way than for MAXIM’s fifth birthday issue.
We couldn’t agree more. What’s been your best birthday?
I always spend my birthday in Bali. My best birthday so far was last year when I spent the day at Padang Padang Beach then onto Potato Head Beach Club in the evening. It was really intimate, with only my closest friends, just the way I like it. Lots of fun and memories made with people I will always cherish.
What’s the craziest birthday you’ve ever had?
When I was 17 with a fake I.D. Everything is more fun when you’re underage, right?
Describe your ideal birthday.
It’s only fitting I spend my birthday by the water, in a bikini, with my favourite people, of course. It starts to get a little cold by May in Sydney so I like to go away somewhere. Although, everyone who knows me will know that I really don’t like to make a huge fuss over my birthday.
Then how will you celebrate your birthday next May?
Well, as Bali is my birthday ritual I’d say Bali, but I can never plan that far ahead. I’m more of a last-minute kind of girl.
What is a typical day in your life like?
Most days start with an early wake up, drive to a Sydney job or to the airport for an interstate shoot. If I’m lucky and only booked for one job that day I can fly home. Although, no two days are ever really the same, which I love.
What do you love and hate about your job?
I really can’t complain about my job, but there are a few small things I don’t love. Waking up super early on cold mornings in winter has to be right up there. Most people don’t realise that a lot of summer fashion is shot in winter and vice versa. Also, I often get homesick when I have to go away. There are so many things I love about my job but I’d have to say meeting so many different people each day is a true blessing. I have met so many creative, successful, inspiring people throughout my career. Oh, and I love having the opportunity to travel to tropical locations, of course!
If you weren’t modelling and travelling the world what would you be doing?
I’ve always been a creative type and have always wanted to be my own boss. I have no idea what I’d be doing right now if I wasn’t modelling and designing swimwear but I assume it would be working for myself in a creative aspect one way or another.
Tell us about your involvement with PETA.
It’s been a true honour working with PETA. I’m a devoted and passionate animal advocate and having the opportunity to raise awareness about how damaging consuming animal products is to animals and the environment is something I take very seriously and it’s extremely close to my heart. I appreciate anybody who stands up and has a voice for the voiceless.
You’ve done some acting along the way, too. What have you most enjoyed about it?
Acting is so fun. I feel like I can model with my eyes closed these days, so acting is a bit more of a challenge. I’m not the greatest at remembering lines but I love to improvise. Any acting gig where I can improvise on the spot is my favourite kind and I’m open to trying new things and having new experiences whenever I can.
When do you feel sexy?
I feel sexiest when I’m in my natural habitat — at the beach, with no make-up, sand between my toes and sun and salt on my skin.
A few years ago you went on a date with a MAXIM reader as part of a promotion we ran. How’d it go?
I can be really shy before I get to know somebody, so the date started off awkward to say the least, but he turned out to be a really sweet guy and we got along and had a lot of fun.
What do you look for in a guy?
It has to be somebody who is authentic and kind, with a great sense of humour.
What’s your ideal date?
Something low-key, like dinner and a walk along the beach.
What would it take for you to say ‘yes’ to dating one of your 1.4 million (and rising) Instagram followers?
They would definitely have to be one in a million.
If you had to take MAXIM on a date what would we do?
The MAXIM guys are a bunch of smelly, hairy men who I’d take for a back, sack and crack wax.
Thank you! You’ve been a MAXIM girl since we launched five years ago. What are your fondest memories?
I love being part of the MAXIM family, the team are amazing to work with. My fondest memory will probably be this cover as it will take the record place for my fourth cover which is exciting! And how could I forget the red jumpsuit days — camel, cough, toe alert!
Finally, where would you like to be in five years?
I’d like to be running a highly successful company, travelling often and most of all being happy. Love and happiness trumps all things.
HOMETOWN: Sydney, NSW
BORN: May 16
HOBBIES: “Eating, beaching and travelling.”
HIDDEN TALENT: “Being able to change clothing really quickly in any circumstance.”
GIRL CRUSH: “Adriana Lima.”
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