Leigh Buchanan Updates Reality Raver On Life After Project Runway Australia
Leigh was the perfect reality TV contestant with a great personality mixed with real design talent who kept us amused each week with his one liners and outstanding outfits.
Many people thought his amazing final collection should have won instead of the beautiful but safe designs of Juli Grbac. For another look at his fabulous collection go to http://www.myspace.com/projectrunwayau
Leigh kindly agreed to an interview where he revealed we will be hearing more from him, and what Lui’s final collection was like.
Unfortunately for Leigh there was no $10,000 fan favourite prize. But hopefully next year Arena or one of the sponsors might stump up the cash for the series to have a fan favourite as they do in the US version.
Reality Raver:What has happened to you since appearing on Project Runway Australia? Have any business or career opportunities eventuated? What would you like to do?
Leigh Buchanan: I’ve had squillions of ladies asking me for wedding dresses and formal dresses and ball gowns, and also lots of interest in my menswear, a few guys who’d like to get married in brocade kilts and my brocade skinnies. Also trialling a Sunday night gig on Nova in Brisbane with Meshel Laurie called “Camp as Tits!” and, just for now, back at Easton Pearson behind a sewing machine…
RR: Do you think the way you were portrayed on the show was an accurate reflection on who you are?
LB: I think it really has shown one side of me VERY well. It really is the fun and crazy Leigh my friends and family know all too well. I was just hoping that people would see my creativity rather than just my comedy. Being a fully fledged Gemini, I have many faces, and Project Runway didn’t really show the downside to my hi-jinks, my lack of confidence and the constant stress that puts me under, but I loved the show, I cringed occasionally, but laughed so much it hurt!!!
RR: How many weeks was Project Runway filmed over as it seem as the show progressed you all looked noticeably tired.
LB: We were all EXHAUSTED!!! It was far more grueling than any of us expected. It was filmed in 5 weeks each challenge usually taking 3 days. One day to find out the challenge, which sometimes took us all over Melbourne, finding out the task, changing locations, getting the fabric etc. One day (two if we were lucky) to make the garment and then a whole day to film the Runway (which under the stress and strong lighting, always gave me a killer headache).
We were also lucky, for the first couple of weeks, to get a day off in between, but that was in lockdown, and often included lots of interviews.
RR: To me you were the perfect reality TV contestant – producing great work plus lots of personality. Were you surprised at the amount of screen time you were given?
LB: A few of us did seem to get a lot of airtime, but it was television, and the contestants that used that did well…
It was hard to have cameras pointed us at all times, but I found by giving them what they wanted, I got more time to do what had to get done.
RR: How long did it take to adjust to the cameras?
LB: It did take few days, it was hard and frustrating having to stop all the time and shoot everything three times from different angles and still try to look interested or surprised, which led Brent and I to do lots of over-acting, but by the end we were pros!
RR: You mentioned in the show that sometimes you did not feel great about yourself. Has being on the show helped with your self esteem/self confidence?
LB: It has made me more confident publicly, but I’m still human with the same issues I’ve always had… but working on it!
RR: I am from Sydney so I know a few guys that want to know the answer to this – are you seeing anyone?
LB: Hahaha! I’m constantly single, my problem seems to be that I’m too romantic… not into randoms… want a fiance (I think they’re a better idea than husbands).
RR: What was your favourite outfit you designed on the show?
LB: Each piece of my collection – they’re my babies and each have VERY special significances, and the wedding dress of course!!!
RR:I understand at the final there were five collections shown to ensure the top 3 was kept a secret. One was Lui‘s what was his collection like?
LB: OMG Lui would have won with his collection if he’d made it to the final 3. It was half mens/half womenswear, lots of knits and leather with interesting pieces that could be worn different ways… genius!
RR: Any tips for any would be next season’s contestants?
LB: Be calm, expect it to be more full on than you could ever expect, but enjoy the ride. It is lots of fun too!!! Oh and be able to sew!!!
RR: If you could go on any other reality TV show, other then Project Runway, what would it be?
LB: Well… I auditioned for Australian Idol twice hahaha! So maybe It Takes Two???
RR: You must be miffed that there was no fan favourite in the Australian version of the show as you would have had a great chance of winning it.
LB: Oh so totally miffed!! I am actually rather poor, and the $10,000 they get on the US version would have been very handy indeed because I REALLY NEED A HOLIDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!