by Amber Macpherson
NOOSA sisters Britney and Sophie Smithers both had dreams of becoming professional models since they were young, and now that dream is a step closer to reality.
The siblings have entered in the Australian Supermodel of the Year competition and will be competing in different categories at the end of the year.
While the girls have different reasons for entering, they both hope to pursue modelling as careers that could take them all over the world.
Britney, 18, said she has had to overcome great obstacles in her teen years after having to learn to walk again.
"Before having the opportunity to start my life as a model I had many struggles to overcome,” Britney said.
"Being diagnosed with functional neurological dystonia at the age of 16 and having to stop my life and completely start over was a massive shock to me and was extremely difficult to understand at the time.
"I was wheelchair-bound and I was sure of it that I wasn't getting out.
"I had intense physical therapy and put my all into being able to walk again.
"Although I will have to deal with pain every single day, doing something I love makes it bearable and this competition is worth it.”
Thanks to the encouragement of her family and friends, Britney has enjoyed modelling casually and hopes the Supermodel of the Year competition will enable her to help others.
"With out the support of my family and friends I would not be where I am today and have the opportunities that I have,” Britney said.
"For the past six months I have been doing freelance modelling and have had the most amazing experiences.
"I have worked with some brilliant people and I hope to one day be a model that can make a difference to people all over the world.”
Younger sister Sophie, 16, enjoys sport and is studying law while attending Sunshine Beach State High School as a Year 11 student.
Sophie said she believes she has what it takes to make it to the grand finals in the teen Supermodel of the Year category.
"When I was younger I competed in a (modelling) competition, and just walking down that catwalk knowing that everyone there were going to help and support your journey was such an amazing feeling,” Sophie said.
"I have now been accepted into the local auditions for the Australian teen Supermodel of the Year.
"I am entering because I've succeeded so much so far that I believe I will be able to make the grand finals. The grand finals will be held in Bali so it will be amazing to be able to travel there.
"I am currently studying to get a Certificate Four in Justice Studies, I referee soccer as well as modelling and (enjoy) hanging with my amazing family and boyfriend, who have supported me through my whole modelling journey.
"My dream is to excel in the modelling industry whilst still being able to complete my schooling years and to spend quality time with my family and boyfriend.
"This is such an amazing opportunity for me as I will be able to meet some new people and to give everything I've got into my modelling career.”
You can find Britney and Sophie on instagram at sophiesmithers_ and britney.smithers to follow their modelling journeys, or visit supermodelofthe year.com.