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Nikita Photoshoot Winners Blog

Laura Austin and Pia Anette Brandvik were the two lucky ladies who won the opportunity to experience a trip with Nikita. Picked from hundreds of entries in the recent Nikita Photoshoot Contest, they got to join the Nikita crew and team girls on their 10th anniversary Autumn/Winter 09/10 streetwear photoshoot in Berlin. Both had a blast, took some photos and wrote about their trip.

Here’s some highlights of what the girls had to say… Pia Anette Brandivk was the European winner of the Nikita Photoshoot contest – a day by day account and cunning plans to make it to the next photoshoot!


Berlin with Nikita…..

The day I arrived – 24.10.08
At the plane I was so excited. And I got the window seat to Oslo. I like it! On the way to Berlin I sat next to a crying baby. It cried a loooot when I think about it now. But I was too excited to think about that on the plane. I was going to meet the girls that I had on posters all over the surf/skate/snow shop I used to work at. Have to admit that I was flipping out a bit on the plane there. Haha. So when I arrived in Berlin I stood at the airport looking for the girl who was picking me up. I had no idea who it was or what she looked like, so I just walked around studying girls that might have like a Nikita beanie or something like that. Then I saw a girl with Nikita Jeans, flannel shirt and Converse shoes. And that turned out to be Rafaële. She was very sweet and cool. There are not so many surfers in Norway, so it was cool for me to meet a girl who surfs for like the coolest girl brand in the world!

We stopped by to meet Heida, Esther and Saadia. I was so nervous, but they were super nice and kind, so no problems there! Haha. So I got my time for hair and makeup for the next day, and even a pizza. I like pizza alooot! Haha. It was awesome to meet them, but it was time for me to get to my apartment and go to bed. Rafaële walked with me. It wasn’t a long walk. I shared an apartment with Laura, the North American photoshoot contest winner. Shortly after meeting her I went straight to bed, but it took a while until I fell asleep. I was too stoked!

Day two – 25.10.08
I woke up super stoked at 08.20. My time for hair and makeup was 08.50. It was so cool to get my hair and makeup done; Steinunn is so good at it. And so cute! Today I got to meet Gabby, Izzy, Ben, Helga, Charlie and Borkur. And of course the girls I met yesterday. The manager at the surf/skate/snow shop I used to work at has a little crush on Izzy, so it was funny to meet her. Haha. We actually had the photoshoot inside – in Heida’s apartment. We got some awesome clothes to wear at the shoot. Gabby turned some music on and then we went crazy. I was extremely nervous, but that funky dance music definitely left me less nervous. We took pictures, changed clothes, took pictures, changed clothes, danced, went crazy, changed clothes again and took more pictures. It was sooo much fun! Oh my god, I want to do it again. Like right now. Haha. When we were done with the photoshoot, Ben had this awesome idea for a video. Gabby, Laura and I had to run out from different rooms and into the hallway like several times and dance. I think the video is going to turn out funny. Everyone was tired after a long day, but Gabby was not. Haha, she is an energy bomb. She is so funny. So when we were done we went shopping and went eating at a Chinese restaurant. Then we went straight to bed. Early up tomorrow!

Day three – 26.10.08
I woke up at 06.30, but what I didn’t know was that we should have turned the time back one hour. So I really woke up at 05.30! Yeah, that’s early!! Gabby and I had a perfect morning eating yoghurt as breakfast and watching Family Guy. Gabby was going home right after I was going to get my hair and makeup done, so I had to say goodbye to her. It was sad that she left. It was cool to get to know her. Natasha arrived today. She’s a very nice girl. When everybody got their hair and makeup done we went to eat breakfast, and then off to the next photoshoot. It was a really cool spot for the photoshoot with these awesome, huge, colorful buildings. It was a fun shoot. We had to jump around and act silly. “If you feel stupid, the picture will be great” – Borkur. Haha, he’s a great photographer. When we were done, we had to say goodbye to Rafaële. She was going home, but we had to get going to the next photoshoot location. When we arrived I asked Borkur to check out this really cool playground. So I asked if he maybe wanted to take some pictures there. And we ended up shooting there. Yeeei! I was so stoked that he wanted to use my idea. 😀 We also had a video shoot at the playground. We were like kids! It was so fun! Gemma arrived today, she snowboards for Nikita. After the shoots we went to a Chinese restaurant again and there we met Maria, who is skating for Nikita. What a funky group of people! Everyone’s the sweetest. Laura and I hung out in our apartment before we went to bed.

Day four – 27.10.08
We had an outdoor shoot today too. We went to this really cool underground. Some girls had their photoshoot there. Maria, Gemma, Laura and I had a video shoot down there. Oh my god, it was so funny. We had to walk around like robots in the underground. The coolest thing was that there were some skateboard kids skating around down there, so we kind of took their spot, but they were ok with it. So they were like watching us and laughing a little bit. And that made it so hard to be ‘serious’ when we walked around like robots. When we were done, we took off to the next spot. It was a cool photoshoot because it was the first one Laura and I got to do together. Our clothes were awesome, so I hope we did ok. After a long day of shooting we went shopping to spend up our Euro’s. We shopped a lot! And then we went to eat at a Spanish restaurant. Good food. I think I’m in love with chicken wings! After eating, Laura and I didn’t want to go right to bed, so we went to Ben Fee’s place to hang out. Maria wanted to try out ‘snus’ which is like tobacco. About 80% of the Norwegian and Swedish boys and girls use snus instead of smoking. Like everyone I know uses it or has tried it. So it was so funny that Maria wanted to try it out. “Just put it in your lip, it’s not like chewing tobacco, just let it be there. It’s only like nicotine.” After 5 minutes she took the snus out. Hahaha, it made her like dizzy and stuff. It was funny. So the rest of the girls were OK with just the red wine, while I enjoyed my snus. It was a really fun night. But was time for Natasha, Laura and I to get to our apartment and go to bed. We said bye to Ben as well because we weren’t going to see him before we left. It’s so sad that this was the last day in Berlin. It sucks that I’m going home tomorrow…

Day five – going home
I don’t want to leave… I just got here! This sucks. Laura was leaving the same time as I was. But first we went to eat breakfast and say goodbye to the girls. It was so sad to say goodbye to everyone because all of them are so sweet and kind. And it sucks that I might not see them again. Or maybe I might, because I have a bullet-proof plan. I’m going to hide in Heida’s suitcase to the next time they are going somewhere cool to shoot! You won’t know if my plan worked until the next photoshoot! Thank you so much for an awesome experience!! Heida rocks! Nikita rocks!!


Laura Austin was the North American winner of the Nikita Photoshoot contest – it all began with a misundertanding, a camera and a victory dance.

Check out what she had to say about the experience and the cool pics she took…

Browsing online and seeing the headlines “Nikita Photoshoot Contest” immediately grabbed my attention. Nikita is one of my favorite brands and when it said “photoshoot contest” I thought they were looking for photographers, not models. After I read into it, I figured I would never have a chance at winning; I’m always behind the lens, not in front of it. But I decided to send in photos of myself knowing that it couldn’t hurt. And to be honest, after I submitted my photos and bio I kind of forgot about the contest thinking that I would never win such a thing.

About a month or so later I received an e-mail with the title “So do you want to join us on our Photoshoot????” I almost deleted it thinking it was just junk mail, but I decided to look at it just in case. I read the first line of the e-mail, saw the Nikita logo at the bottom, and immediately freaked out. I think I just started laughing, I might have done a little victory dance, and then I called a few people. After I had calmed myself down a bit I read the rest of the e-mail. I was the North American winner of the Nikita Photoshoot Contest.

I never imagined my first trip to Europe would be to do a photoshoot with Nikita. It was a 9 hour flight from Burlington, Vermont to Berlin, Germany. Meeting all the girls and the people behind the scenes on Nikita was definitely a little intimidating. But everyone was incredibly welcoming and I felt like part of the crew in no time. It was such an amazing experience being a part of a photoshoot with a group of so many rad people.

We had to get up early every morning to get makeup done and then the places we went to shoot were different every day. The first day we did a studio style shoot for t-shirts and accessories. The next day we went to a parking lot surrounded by these really interesting colorful buildings and then to a playground. And the last day I was there we shot at an amazing bus/subway station covered in bright orange tiles.

I was definitely nervous for the first shoot. But after a few times of stepping in front of the camera and acting like an idiot, I started to get into it. It became more and more fun and by the end of my trip I didn’t want to leave. It was awesome to meet all these girls that I only saw in advertisements, the people behind the scenes of Nikita, and the European winner (Pia), who all turned out to be incredibly cool. It was amazing to be surrounded by so many different languages and people from different places. There were people from the US, Iceland, Norway, Canada, France, Poland, Austria, and the UK. I have never been involved in such a diverse group of people. But even though we had people from so many different places, it was such a tight group. Everyone seemed like a family, and I’m glad I got to be apart of it for a few days. Hopefully this wasn’t the last I will see of the Nikita crew.

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