Stay in school, kids, and you may find yourselves sitting pretty one day. Through a thesis grant from her university, Tini Dahl was visiting the Philippines to research the country’s economic development when the Fil-Norwegian stunner started turning heads and setting off camera flashes. Two years later, Dahl has struck a pose for some choice publications and struck a great friendship with top photographer BJ Pascual.
Besides modeling, Dahl works as the local community manager for app-driven car service, Uber. Over the phone, B/BLOG discovers the über-model is about to fly out to San Francisco for training at the company’s headquarters. The girl is literally going places.
B: Hi Tini! Where are you flying off to?
T: I’m off to San Francisco now to attend Uberversity, which every new Uber employee goes to for weeklong training.
What is Uber anyway?
Short and easy, Uber is an on-demand transportation service. An app will pinpoint your exact location and it will also tell you how far the nearest car is from you. You request the car and within minutes, it will come to your location—a nice black car with a private driver. He’ll even open the door for you. We’re now in 65 cities all over the world and we’re the hottest tech company right now.
Have you worked any odd jobs in the past?
I waited tables at this really fancy restaurant in Oslo. I just wanted to save up money because I wanted to go traveling. I would take double shifts several times a week. So I’d start at 10 in the morning and end at three in the morning. And oh yes, modeling—that’s something I never thought I would do. I really do feel like everything I never expected to happen happened in the Philippines.
Or maybe you’re just the sort of person who does things on a whim?
Well, people always tell me that but I don’t do things on a whim, I just grab opportunities when they come. I love going outside of my comfort zone. Being a model, I had to move way out of my comfort zone. I’m shy, I’m awkward, I don’t really know how to do anything in front of a camera, I cannot walk in heels. But you know, the opportunity came up and there’s no way that this is going to happen again. When I’m 65 and my boobs are hanging to my knees, I’ll say I’m glad I did that.
Any New Year’s resolutions?
I’ve never been a resolutions kind of girl because I’m not good at following them through. It’s kind of like, the first week of January, I’ll be this super healthy person and do the whole juicing thing and go to the gym, and by January 15, I’m back to eating chips in bed and watching American Idol (laughs). No, but I’ve thought a lot about it and this year, as much as I can, I’m going to give myself a time limit of how long I can be angry, or sad, or upset about something. Life is too short.
What cool modeling gigs have you done lately?
I recently did a shoot in Baler where I had to surf. It was so cold because we thought it would be sunny but it was raining. Call time was at 4 a.m. and in the picture, it looks like I’m very comfortable. BJ (Pascual) was in waist-high water with his camera.
You’ve become a sort of muse to BJ. How did you two get close?
From the bottom of my heart, I really do feel that BJ is the best person. He got this level of success and he just never shows it. He’s so humble to everyone. For us, how we kind of started working together is that he saw something that was fresh with me. There was a clean slate that he can work with. I think a lot of other models have had so much training or have been models for such a long time that they had their own comfort zone. With me, I had no comfort zone. I had no walls. It allowed for this creative outlet that was without hesitation or strings attached. For me, I hadn’t done anything like that before and it was comforting to have a person that I actually liked off the bat.