'America's Next Top Model' all-stars eliminates Shannon Stewart
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 11/10/2011
America's Next Top Model's all-stars edition eliminated Shannon Stewart, a 27-year-old who previously appeared on Top Model's first season, during Wednesday night's broadcast on The CW.
"I have no regrets with anything that I've done. I think I handled myself with pride and dignity and I kept true to who I am. I'm actually glad that I got the chance to come to Greece. I'm in sixth place. I'm going home to my family and husband who I know will be completely proud with the way I've handled myself. You haven't seen the last of me yet," Shannon said following her ouster.
Shannon was eliminated from the ninth episode of America's Next Top Model's seventeenth season after Top Model judges reviewed the photos the season's six remaining finalists had taken abroad in Greece for their ninth photo shoot challenge, which required them to pose in a giant Greek salad while modeling underwear for fashion photographer Nikos Papadopoulos.
Shannon ended up in the bottom two alongside Laura Kirkpatrick, a 22-year-old who previously appeared on Top Model's thirteenth season.
Laura -- who was feeling very ill at the time -- failed to impress Top Model photo shoot director Jay Manuel and Nikos during the photo shoot, while Shannon refused to do the shoot entirely because she believed it was against her morals and branding image of trustworthy and modesty to wear underwear for the camera.
Shannon told Jay she was fine with posing in a bathing suit, but that she promised herself and her fans she'd never model in underwear.
"It's like one week you're wearing a swimsuit that looks like a panty, this week, I've got a panty that looks like a swimsuit. It's like I'm playing this word game with Shannon," Jay said.
"I love when people are themselves, but I would just love to understand the message," Jay told Shannon afterwards.
"It just comes down to underwear, it's just kind of different," Shannon replied without any further elaboration.
Jay felt that Laura's lovable brand wasn't coming across during her photo shoot, as she was attempting to be too sexy and it wasn't really working for her.
"Laura dove into the salad. The problem was overall, she looked like a sexy little girl and not enough model. When you're trying to create a brand, you have to know what you deliver," Jay said.
The next day, the girls arrived for the seventeenth season's ninth elimination panel where they were met by Top Model judges Tyra Banks, Nigel Barker, and Andre Leon Talley, as well as guest judge Nikos.
The judges first discussed Shannon's decision to forego the photo shoot and how that might impact her progress in the competition.
"You see, that's one of those moments there where I'm kind of confused just because I feel it's semantics. I feel it's a word versus how much of your actual body you're showing," Nigel told her.
"What I've seen mostly is girls saying, 'I'm not comfortable showing that much of my body.' So it does get a little confusing to your audience the lingerie versus swimsuit," Tyra said.
"For me, it's like I don't want to book a girl who has so many limitations," Nikos added.
"I think it's important to stand for what you believe in. I think that's a good thing, but because you didn't do the photo shoot, your whole portfolio and performances will be considered," Tyra told her.
The judges then criticized Laura's photo.
"It's an interesting shot, but it's not very glamorous for me. It's not really fashion for me either. You surprise me. You're such a sweetheart and then this face of yours in this picture is so erotic. It's just so kind of wrong," Nigel told her.
"It looks like you're pouring oil on your hairdo. It's just not my favorite moment of you," Andre Leon added.
Earlier in the episode, the girls flew to Greece and during their flight, they were required to prepare a one-minute speech to present at a press conference in front of the mayor and the press upon exiting the plane. They had to include some of their knowledge about Greece and then add a few words of the Greek language into their speech.
Allison Harvard, a 23-year-old who previously appeared on Top Model's twelfth season, ended up winning the challenge because she had the best overall speech. As her reward, she received a piece of jewelry from Fanourakis Jewelry.
In addition, the models learned they would be collaborating with a designer to create their final runway gowns. Michael Cinco worked with them to create their looks around an "immortal goddess" theme. However, only two of the girls would be able to compete in the final runway show where they would wear the dresses they had co-designed.
After panel critiques and the judges had time to deliberate on the contestants, Tyra revealed the girls in order of the best photo to the worst of the week. Dominique Reighard, a 27-year-old who previously appeared on Top Model's tenth season, received the first call-out.
Following Dominique, Tyra then revealed Allison, Angelea Preston, and Lisa D'Amato had also advanced in the competition -- leaving Shannon and Laura in the bottom two.
Tyra then recapped both girls' issues before revealing which one would get to continue competing on America's Next Top Model's all-stars edition.
"Laura, what is your brand that is your essence?" Tyra asked her.
"Lovable," Laura replied.
"Lovable. Lovable, sweet -- but your photos are consistently not in alignment with lovable. Do you remember your music video? Sweet, kicking, writing in your diary -- and this week, your photo is the opposite of lovable," Tyra explained.
"Shannon, a girl that is pure to her brand. I find that noble. The judges find it confusing."
Tyra then revealed Laura's photo, resulting in Shannon's elimination.
"Shannon, you're not just going home because you didn't do the photo shoot. The judges actually looked at all of your photos. But what they realized, is not only did you not do the photo shoot, but you're the only girl in this bunch that has never had best photo or won a challenge. You're a great model, but when you came to all-stars, you just became a good model. Go back to the great that you were because it's in you," Tyra said.