Camara "Yaya" DaCosta Johnson was born the 1 of January in 1982 in Harlem, New York. Born in a very educated family, Yaya pursued her modeling until the modelling oportunity presented itself.
Yaya stayed strong throughout the whole cycle 3 of America's Next Top Model. She was a…more
Yaya was criticized to have looked lifeless while walking, but it did not do much to downplay her performance.
In 2006, she was nominated for "Choice Breakout" for Take the Lead in the Teen Choice Awards Movies.
Yaya is the third one to appear in the opening credits of Cycle 3 of America's Next Top Model.
Yaya has worked with world wide recognized photographers such as Susan Shacter and Andrew Dosunmu.
Yaya practices the catholic religion.
In 2005, Yaya appeared in te TV show Eve in the "Prom Night" episode.
Her makeover in America's Next Top Model was that they took her braids away and she got an acne treatment.
Her measurements are 32-23-35, her dress size is 2 and her shoe size in 9.5.
She is from African-American, Irish, Brazilian and Native American descent.
In an article in the Seven Magazine, Yaya said she was offered a place in the UN, but she didn't accept it because her French wasn't good enough.
In 2006, Yaya stated that she was learning the Swahili language and that she plans on teaching it then.
Yaya participated in the Marc Bouwer Fall 2005 Runway Show.
Yaya has modeled for Target.
Yaya speaks Portuguese, Spanish, and French and Japanese.
Yaya graduated from Brown University in 2004. She majored in International Relations and Africana Studies.
Yaya is 5'8 feet tall and weighs 118 lbs.
Yaya was runner up of America's Next Top Model Cycle 3. She lost to Eva Pigford.
Yaya won 5 consecutive challenges during America's Next Top Model Cycle 3. She holds the record of most consecutive challenge wins in all Cycles.
Yaya signed on with Models 1 London, which is Europe's top modeling agency
Johnson was educated at the Northfield Mount Hermon School and Brown University, where she majored in International Relations and African Studies.
Yaya appeared in commercials for RadioShack, Garnier Fructis, and Lincoln Townhouse Commercial.
Yaya starred along ide of Lauren Collins and Antonio Banderas in the 2006 movie Take The Lead, playing the part of LaRhette. Then, in 2006, she appeared in The Shangai Hotel as Kendra. Her latest role is in the 2007 film production Honeydripper as China Doll.
Her favorite food is sweet plantains, her favourite magazine is Trace and her favourite movie is The Fifth Element.
Yaya appears in Kanye West's "Goldigger" music video. She also appears in the music video "Pulling Me Back," by Chingy and Tyrese.
Yaya Da Costa Johnson is signed to Ford Models. Ford signed YaYa directly after the show, even though she didn't win.
Yaya Da Costa Johnson attended The 2005 MuchMusic Video Awards in Toronto, Canada. Although she only appeared in the Red Carpet Show, it was her first Awards show.
(on who her favourite designer is)
Yaya: : I'm not really big on brand names. But if a designer wants to give me something I'll take it! My sister actually just started her own line, it's called DJA, so I'll say her.
Yaya: It was after Take the Lead that I got an agent, and they've been sending me out on even more auditions, and nothing is really concrete right now, but we'll see. I'm just continuing to work to get better and better at auditioning and see what happens.
Yaya: Modeling is a certain kind of acting but It's not at all as challenging in that way. It's definitely challenging physically, and you have to be disciplined. It might be really challenging and really exhilarating and satisfying, for some people but for me it wasn't but it was a great experience.
Yaya: The thing about my upbringing is that my parents, like I said, are educators and so it was always very important for us to be great in school, but at the same time, they always sent us to after school programs, and always made sure we played an instrument or took dance class, and did acting, and so it was up to us to figure out what we wanted to do. They just wanted to be sure that we had options. And then when I went away to college it was clearly my choice but they were hoping that I would major in something outside of the arts. They knew I wanted to be an actor, but they wanted to make sure that I had something to fall back on just in case, or that I could do in addition to, so I'm still not doing this at the expense of other stuff. I still love to write, I did what you are doing for a while. Actually I love journalism.
(what type of girl she was at school)
Yaya: I was quite the nerd actually. I went to a junior high school that was quite similar to the school in the movie but I was not in detention. I was a good student. My parents were educators, they made it very clear that you have to get good grades and you have to go to a good high school and you have to go to a good college, and I had a great, great family life, both my parents are wonderful, but I did come from a similar neighborhood, so all I had to do really to do the research was remember, go back home to the block and look at my old friends and see where they came from. But, personally, my experience was very different than hers.
(about Janice Dickinson)
Yaya: Hardcore, I want to say something nice. She's nice because she understood it was a TV show and she had fun with it. She's Hardcore.
Yaya: I have many names, and Yaya is my second name. My first name is Camara and it's the name you hear a lot in Capoeira songs. I have a double last name but I am using the first one as my artistic name, which is Da Costa.
Yaya: I was extremely happy for Eva when she won. Because she wanted it, she needed it, and she's going to work it. It was not so much an elimination as it was a graduation. Standing there looking at the pictures, [the competition] felt longer than a couple of months and more like years.
Yaya: The word confident was used a lot when talking about me, and that's funny because on the show I never felt confident. I felt confident within myself but not as a model. Even when I was doing well, there was always a question mark in my head. On one hand I thought, I have the illest pictures, and yeah it was about that but it was about so many other things too.
(when asked if she was properly portrayed in "America's Next Top Model")
Yaya: The answer is yes. I can't deny that what you saw was me, but it was definitely a lot of things taken out of context and dubbed over. Sometimes I would be standing, then sitting, and then standing again. So there was definitely a difference from what I saw and what I remembered.
(about "America's Next Top Model")
Yaya: It was a really, really fast but organic process.
Yaya: I've been blessed by Antonio Banderas.
(on how she was casted for "Take the Lead")
Yaya: You read two scenes, they pressed 'play' on a boom box and said, 'Dance.' And I was like, 'Okay,' I knew it was a dance movie, but no instructions, just go. So it was some hip-hop song and I did what came naturally, some hip-hop moves, and then at the call back it was the same thing but instead I did modern and slow movements and did everything that contradicted the song, and then I got called back again, and the last time talked to Liz Friedlander, the director and then learned within fifteen minutes a bunch of different dance moves from Pierre Dulaine [the real dance teacher that Antonio plays in the film] in his studio, and showed Liz, and then the next day I got a call that I got it, then the next day I flew out to Toronto to shoot. It was so fast.
(on what were her favourite photoshoots in "America's Next Top Model")
Yaya: The shoot in Jamaica and the beauty shoot later on were my favorites. Just because it was very new and fresh, and it felt pretty natural, instead of thinking too much about the critiques from the judges.
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