FASH­ION

Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Contents -

Ac­tor Maia Mitchell plays dress ups with Stel­lar in Los An­ge­les.

For ac­tor Maia Mitchell, the bright lights of LA are a long way from her home­town of Lis­more, NSW. The high-end fash­ion she mod­els for Stel­lar is equally at odds with the lo­cal flea mar­kets she used to visit. And yet, the 23-year-old has made the tran­si­tion from lo­cal star­let to Tin­sel­town up-and-comer look pos­i­tively ef­fort­less.

Hav­ing made a name for her­self on Aus­tralian chil­dren’s shows Mor­ti­fied and Trapped, Mitchell was scouted as a teenager by a US man­ager who urged her to put au­di­tions on tape. From there, she booked a Disney Chan­nel pi­lot as well as an­other project for the net­work – Teen Beach Movie – which al­lowed her to show off her mu­si­cal tal­ent.

At 18, just as Mitchell was set to re­turn home, an­other job was picked up. She is now known for her role in The Fos­ters, which re­cently started its fifth sea­son and airs lo­cally on Fox­tel. The show features a bi-racial les­bian cou­ple who have opened their home to mul­ti­cul­tural fos­ter chil­dren, and Jen­nifer Lopez serves as an ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer.

It has pro­vided some much-needed sta­bil­ity for a young ac­tor try­ing to es­tab­lish her­self in a cut­throat town. “It’s been great… to have some kind of con­sis­tency and fam­ily com­mu­nity as I do get home­sick,” she tells Stel­lar.

Still, she is en­joy­ing the glam­orous side to her job. Mitchell was re­cently shot as part of the Bonds Home­grown Tees cam­paign – her first col­lab­o­ra­tion with an Aus­tralian fash­ion la­bel – join­ing singer Cody Simp­son and model Charlee Fraser as brand am­bas­sadors. She also works with a stylist for red car­pet events. “When I dress my­self and go out at night I tend to stay re­ally ca­sual,” she says. “But when you’re do­ing an event, I feel like it gives me a li­cence to be cre­ative.”

Mitchell in­sists she is still get­ting used to fame, es­pe­cially when her fans in­clude fel­low celebri­ties. In 2013 she was stopped by Dave Grohl from the Foo Fight­ers at the Amer­i­can Mu­sic Awards. “He was like, ‘Hey, I just wanted to let you know my fam­ily are huge fans,’” she says. “It was this crazy, sur­real mo­ment where Dave Grohl was thank­ing me for in­spir­ing his kids to play mu­sic!”

Although she’s now based in LA, life back home is never far from Mitchell’s mind. “Even­tu­ally I’d like to set­tle down in By­ron Bay and have a fam­ily,” she says. “But un­til then I just want to work re­ally hard, and try to do as many films as I can and just ex­pand my­self as an ac­tor.”

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