"Of course I was very appreciative that Ebony did decide not to stay," Williams told reporters during a Thursday conference call. "I adored my time with the girls and learning all about the [modeling] industry. I'm glad I got to stay two extra weeks. I'm just really glad and blessed that [Morgan] did do that. I plan on thanking her! I'm actually glad I went home the second time and not the first."
Top Model creator Tyra Banks had already revealed that the show's ninth-season judging panel decided Williams would be the fifth girl eliminated from the competition -- however when Morgan made it clear she was no longer interested in competing -- Banks dismissed her and allowed Williams to remain in the running.
"I didn't really dwell on that fact. I wanted to move on," said Williams. "It was more like, 'Okay, it happened. Let's see what else the competition is going to bring for me and do for me.' Because after that happened, I was just like, 'This is a second chance. There's a reason for this to happen.' I just took advantage of it."
The 19-year-old college student from Dallas, TX said once she was given another opportunity, she thought she was "improving." But as the critiques from the judging panel started to pile up, Williams said she forgot "about being myself" and "was trying to do what I was told."
"I think I needed to learn how to balance. That's why I feel like I was just going down -- as [the judges] said -- like a rollercoaster going down the hill," said Williams. "I thought that I was improving, but now I've been seeing the show and hearing what [the judges] were saying at deliberations in the panels, I know now more of what I need to work on... It looks like I wasn't really listening, but it helps to see yourself now. So now that I've seen myself, I do understand what the judges were saying."
Considering Williams already had several years of modeling experience under her belt before she even appeared as a Top Model 9 runway wannabe, Banks' comment that Williams wasn't modeling material didn't really resonate.
"Tyra's entitled to her opinion -- that's her opinion about me," said Williams. "I see myself as a model. That's really all that matters to me!"
Williams also always seemed to have problems fulfilling the wishes of Top Model art director Jay Manuel, so much so that fellow contestant Biance commented how Manuel was Williams "arch enemy."
"I think we were just joking around," said Williams about the comment. "It was a little funny because I had explained to the girls how my photo shoots had gone with Jay Manuel -- how he didn't really direct me as much, and how he'd come at me after the photo shoots... I didn't take it too personal. But I just kind of felt like he had something toward me because he expected so much from me. But nothing personal... It was on a professional level."
While she may have experienced one of her worst judging panel critiques following the high-rise photo shoot -- which was taken atop a tall building in downtown Los Angeles -- it was still a victory of sorts for Williams.
"I do struggle with that -- the height issue," said Williams of the shoot, which she characterized as her most difficult. "But I enjoyed it. I had fun. After I found out exactly what we were doing for the photo shoot, I calmed down a little bit."
Williams said she was cast for Top Model 9 after submitting a video-tape audition -- and while her experience on the show may be over -- her modeling ambitions are still strong.
"I'm excited to move forward. I'm going to stay home in Dallas for a little bit and see what this market has for me," she said. "I do plan on branching out. I want to move to L.A. first -- and then see what New York has to offer -- and eventually move on to all markets of fashion... I'll just keep working!"
Despite the fact Williams had a "wonderful" experience participating in Top Model, she was quick to add a disclaimer.
"I wouldn't do reality TV again unless I was paid to," she said.
(Photo credit The CW)
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