Sundai Love the tenth girl eliminated from 'America's Next Top Model'
By Christopher Rocchio, 11/05/2009
Sundai Love's excuses during an underwater photo shoot sunk her in the competition.
The 18-year-old 5'3" student from Bakersfield, CA became the tenth finalist eliminated from America's Next Top Model's thirteenth season during last night's broadcast of The CW reality series.
"I definitely underestimated myself coming into this competition so that's one thing that I've gained here is confidence," said Sundai after her ouster.
"I got a lot from this, so I'm glad I had the chance to be here. Life does go on and it's going to have to go on -- I'm going to have to keep doing well as I go through the rest of my life. I can't just give up here."
America's Next Top Model's ninth thirteenth-season episode began following the elimination of Brittany Markert instead of Erin Wagner -- who found herself in the bottom for the second consecutive panel.
"I was so sure that I was going home," said Erin. "Panel wants to see me succeed, so I don't want to let them down. It's just a lot of pressure. I'm 18. This is the biggest thing I've ever done with my life. I definitely need to prove myself at the next photo shoot."
Sundai said the other remaining girls were also unsure why Erin was still in the competition.
"She's just hanging by this little thread and some how she just manages to swing back every single time," she said. "We're just trying to flick her off."
That night, Sundai explained that she had a "rough" childhood -- growing up in a foster home.
"It definitely made me a better person than I am today," she said in a confessional. "If this were to end tomorrow, I can't lie, I'd pretty much just feel like my life just ended. Modeling is like my only hope to be successful. There's nothing else here for me."
The next day -- Laura Kirkpatrick's birthday -- the five remaining girls traveled to a deserted beach, where they were met by supermodel Marisa Miller, who is only 5'8". She explained she would teach them "how to be hot and not over the top," basically showing them how to model in bikinis. The girls then took photos as they showered sand off of them.
The girls then met photographer Nigel Barker, who explained their next photo shoot challenge would involve them jumping off of a cliff. The girl who managed to strike a pose that was both sexy and graceful in the extreme situation would win. The catch was they each only had one chance at it.
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Nicole Fox was revealed as the winner and received a chocolate pearl necklace and extra frames at the upcoming photo shoot. In addition, she would pick somebody else to receive extra frames, who would choose somebody else and so on -- until only one girl received no extra frames.
Nicole chose Sundai to receive extra frames, who chose Laura, who picked Jen -- meaning Erin had no extra frames.
"I'm kind of pissed, but I'm kind of like okay. Whatever," said Erin. "If I do a great job with the amount of frames I get then it's cool because I'd of shown that I don't need all those extra things."
That night the girls celebrated Laura's birthday and the next day they arrived at a pier, where they were met by Top Model photo director Jay Manuel. He explained that for their next shoot, they'd be taken out to sea and photographed underwater. In addition, Jay explained all of the girls would receive feedback except for Erin.
Sundai said due to her asthma she didn't want to go too deep into the water and tried to stay close to the surface.
"Sundai came out with every excuse in the book," said photographer Russell James. "What she needed to do was say, 'I am going to do this,' and do it."
Jay explained to her that there are people with asthma who scuba dive so she should be able to do it.
"I think what's happening right now is you're psyching yourself out," he added. "I would hate to see you go home because of this, because I think a lot of it is mental."
Sundai took the advice and went for her second round, which appeared to go better. Erin was the last girl to go and she knew she needed to impress. However like Sundai before her, Erin would not go deep into the water -- which Russell described as a "disappointment."
"I feel quite honestly that she blew an opportunity," he said.
Erin opined the fact she only had one round.
"If I get judged as harsh as the other girls, that sucks," she said.
With the shoot in the books, the girls returned back to the house.
"I want this so bad and I'm really proud of myself for making it this far," said Erin. "But it would still suck to not win."
Sundai said she "couldn't imagine" going home.
The next day the girls arrived for the thirteenth season's eighth elimination ceremony -- where they were met by Top Model creator and lead judge Tyra Banks, Nigel and runway expert J. Alexander. This week's guest judge was Marisa.
Sundai went first and was complimented for looking taller than she is. However Nigel thought she also "lost her face."
"What I think could be better is if you were lower," said Tyra. "And I know that you struggled, you had all these complications -- which made your photo limiting. You can tell you were at the surface."
Erin went last and explained it "would have been helpful" to have the extra frames but still thought she did "pretty good considering." However Nigel disagreed, likening her photo to a "test shot."
"It doesn't look strong," he added. "I don't really understand it."
Tyra said she thought Erin looked "beautiful" in the photo but couldn't tell it was her -- which would hurt her if it was a real modeling gig.
"It's not important to just get a beautiful photo, but to be recognizable," said Tyra. "Do less. Less is more with you."
The other three girls also received feedback before the judges began to deliberate -- and it quickly became apparent that Sundai and Erin were in trouble.
J. said he "loved" Sundai's body but added "the face doesn't blend."
"From far away it looks like a beautiful butterfly," said Tyra. "Or fairy."
"Well if it's a fairy it looks like a swatted fairy," quipped Nigel. "Is it a bad pose? No. It's a bit obvious."
Nigel said while Erin's photo might not have been the best, he added she was also "beaming" and "smiling" at panel but could not take a critique.
"Most of those girls end up being extremely rebellious," said Nigel.
"If you're going to have that attitude you've got to back it up," added Marisa.
Tyra then revealed Jennifer, Nicole and Laura and were all safe -- meaning Erin and Sundai were in the bottom two.
"Sundai you had twice the amount of photos that Erin had -- and probably 10-times the mount of excuses. You said that you have asthma, but many divers have asthma, and also athletes and models. We don't want our photos to be the product of our excuses," said Tyra.
"Then we have Erin, a girl who was at the top of this pack when this competition started. But from week to week, it's getting weaker and weaker and weaker. Erin you had half the amount of photos, and it showed."
Tyra then said Sundai was eliminated "just by a hair."
America's Next Top Model's penultimate thirteenth-season episode -- in which two girls will be eliminated -- will air Wednesday, November 11 at 8PM ET/PT on The CW.