Riza Oliva: Reach For The Stars

Portrait of Riza Oliva for tony ward erotica homepage November 2021
Riza Oliva. Photo: Tony Ward, Copyright 2021

Text by Riza Oliva, Copyright 2021


Reach For The Stars


One day, you wake up on top of the world and to think it all started from a bucket list one summer. My modeling career did not begin as a dream but as an item on my list that I wanted to check off. I always loved photography and taking professional photos was always something I wanted to try. Right before my birthday, I created a bucket list which included skydiving, traveling more and doing my first photoshoot. Little did I know, that shoot would bring more opportunities to my door. I never expected to be a model because of my height, I am 4’1. Growing up, I admired those girls in magazines and on the runway who were 5’11 or 6’0 in their beautiful clothes and high heels. Who would of thought that decades later, I would be one of those girls walking New York Fashion Week. I did not get here solely because of my looks, there are a billion girls out there who are beautiful and confident. I started modeling with zero confidence and social anxiety. You don’t know how many times I deactivated my Instagram after posting a photo from my shoot because I was so afraid of what my family or people around me would think. You really have to have a “I don’t give a fuck” mentality in this industry. I worked really hard, did a lot of research, and took a lot of opportunities that came even when I was afraid. I think my biggest motivation was proving all of my doubters wrong. People had made fun of me for wanting to model, I almost lost my family and probably lost some friends along the way. They say it gets lonely at the top but I think you just learn who will support you through all of the changes in your life and that’s not many.


About The Author: Riza Oliva is a professional photographer, actress, model, business owner and mom based in Philadelphia. To read contributing writer Katie Kerl’s interview with Riza Oliva, click here: https://tonyward.com/interview-riza-oliva/

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