Amanda Murphy may be one of the most down-to-earth models in the industry — she works part-time as a radiology tech and keeps three horses on her five-acre property in suburban Chicago — but the 27-year-old has racked up a serious résumé. She’s nabbed magazine covers from W Korea, Japan and Italian Vogue to T Magazine; worked with the biggest names in photography — from Mario Testino to Patrick Demarchelier to Steven Meisel; walked runways for Chanel, Marc Jacobs and Dior, among a slew of others; and, as the go-to girl for Prada, has starred in four campaigns. After a recent skiing trip to Colorado—“It was my first vacation in two-and-a-half years!” she says—WWD caught up with Beauty Inc’s April cover model to chat motorcycles, media and marriage.
WWD: What was it like growing up in Chicago?
Amanda Murphy: I grew up in the south suburbs and went to public school. I’m the oldest of four siblings. Both my parents worked full-time so I did lots of babysitting growing up.
WWD: Why did you decide to study radiology while modeling?
A.M.: I wanted to have a plan B so I had something else going for me. I took most of my classes online in 2009 while I was modeling. In 2011, I quit modeling for a while to do my residency. I had to do two years of in-hospital program work. Now, whenever I’m home, I pick up shifts at the clinic.
WWD: When you aren’t modeling or working in the radiology clinic, what do you do for fun?
A.M.: My fiancé has a Harley and we enjoy meeting up with friends and going for rides. I’m kind of attracted to that bad-boy persona. I also enjoy jumping horses, although I don’t have as much time as I’d like to do that right now.
WWD: What is your beauty philosophy?
A.M.: Beauty is being yourself. Growing up, I was always that girl trying to fit in. It’s good to finally find that place where you feel comfortable being yourself and you’re able to surround yourself with people who care about who you are.
WWD: How do you feel about social media?
A.M.: Social media has become quite important but I’m not really the social guru. I’m the type of person who wants to be outside doing stuff. I have jumped on the Instagram thing because everyone else did. Although, people have started figuring out where my house is so I’m being more careful. People have shown up looking for me. I wasn’t home, but my fiancé, Tony, was.
WWD: Speaking of your fiancé, have you started planning your wedding day look?
A.M.: I haven’t thought much about it but I want to get very dolled up, for sure. I want an outdoor wedding with a tent and a band. We have some really cool botanical gardens in Chicago—something with flowers everywhere would be amazing.
WWD: What is your dream dress?
A.M.: Elie Saab, for sure. Whether or not that will happen…