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'America's Next Top Model' runner-up Samantha Potter has no regrets


By John Bracchitta, 11/24/2008 

After finishing as America's Next Top Model's runner-up, it would be easy to have sour grapes and focus on thinking about what could have been. But not if you're Samantha Potter apparently.

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"It [was] amazing," Potter told Reality TV World about her America's Next Top Model experience during a media conference call that followed Wednesday night's broadcast of the show's eleventh-season finale.  "To tell you the truth I had no idea I was going to make it this far. I was like 'Hey, let's try out for the show, let's do this!' And [then] I actually got on, and that was a shock to me. Then I kept on having these photo shoots and... I don't know everything just happened so fast all the time and I loved every part of it."
"The fact that I made it this far... I have no modeling experience, no model background. It really just put me out there and I'm ready to start my career now," she added to Reality TV World.

Potter was very complimentary of her fellow Final 2 contestant and eventual winner Brittany "McKey" Sullivan, calling her "golden."

"She's always shining," she told Reality TV World.

As she prepared for the final judging panel, Potter told Reality TV World that she did not have any particular feeling as to whether or not she was going to emerge victorious because the decision was ultimately out of her hands.

"You really can't just say 'I thought I was gonna win' or 'I thought McKey was gonna win because it all depends on what [America's Next Top Model host Tyra Banks] thinks and [what] the judges think. But I think McKey and I both put ourselves out there and really worked hard," Potter told Reality TV World. "I think the judges probably had a pretty hard time trying to figure out who they thought America's Next Top Model was gonna be and... they made their decision."

However, despite losing to Sullivan, Potter said that the competition had still been very good for her self-image and confidence. She also elaborated on finale comments in which she had said that the show had made her feel like a "pretty girl" for the first time in her life.

"If you ask anybody who knows me -- my family or anybody at my high school -- if you ask them 'Who is Samantha Potter? What's Sam like?' They'll all tell you 'She's the athlete. Yeah I know that girl she won the city championships in '07.,'" Potter told Reality TV World about the jock reputation she had developed during her high school years.  "Nobody [would] look at me and go 'Oh, she's a model, she's so pretty.'"

"After the show, [and having] all this makeup thrown on my face and being put in front of a camera, and people judging and critiquing you all the time and characterizing me, telling me that I'm pretty? It's amazing!" she added. "After the show when we looked at all the pictures and I just remembered everything that happened and I realized 'Hey, I am a pretty girl! I am a model! I can do this!'"

Potter did admit that her athletic background had come in handy during the competition -- particularly during the final runway walk, which she said could only be described as "a magical candyland fantasy pulled straight from a fairy tale."

"It was so cool and, you know, it was very nerve racking because I used to run cross country for my high school and I know how to run up hills," Potter told reporters. "But this hill... running up a hill in five-inch-heels is not the easiest thing to do. So yeah it was pretty stressful, pretty scary, very hectic. But I got through it and it was really fun and I have no regrets."

Potter also said that the repeated lambasting the show's judges had given about the outfits she'd worn during judging panel has had an impact and greatly improved her style.

"I know that on the show I was always getting reamed for not dressing appropriately, not hootchie or anything, but just not in the right styles," she told reporters. "But after the show and now, I go shopping I have all the right outfits and cute little vests that go with everything and go with my look. That has really helped me and I think that has helped me become a better model."

As for her future goals. Potter told Reality TV World that she was thankful for how the show had developed her into someone who could have a successful career in modeling, but didn't limit herself to only pursuing that avenue.

"I'm hoping that now the agencies will look at me and see me and they'll say 'We want her!' and they'll pick me up and hopefully I'm successful in my [modeling career]," Potter told Reality TV World. "I think actings great too and I'd like to get in either of the industries and really just put myself out there."



(Photo credit The CW)


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