Raising Indonesia Awareness
OLIVER PRASWritten and photographed by Jason T. Jaskot Make-up and grooming: Marieli DeJesus for Artist Make-up Academy
It’s cliché to say that everyone wants to be a model, but with the explosion of social media it’s a more prevalent aspiration than ever before. Oliver Pras admits it has been a dream of his as well since he was a child, but that dream took a step toward reality when he was approached on a subway ride home about a casting later that week. Up until then, Pras says “I allowed people to hinder my dreams…..I wasn’t tall enough or good looking enough was what they said.” However that fateful subway ride changed all that, and he hasn’t looked back since, working with the likes of GAP, DARA shoes, and appearing in several magazines throughout Asia.
Born in New York City but 100% Indonesian, Pras has made it his business to put that country on the map. As he says, it’s “the 4th most populous country in the world, yet it’s still very much an unknown here.” He isn’t exaggerating; Indonesia has an estimated population of 252 million people, is an important trade region, and it’s wilderness has the world’s second highest level of biodiversity, yet it’s a culture that rarely registers on the American radar. After the Bali wedding of his cousin in 2011, Pras was determined to learn more about Indonesian culture and to that end is moving there in summer 2015 to continue his modeling career.
Back stateside though, he’s had the opportunity to work with several different fashion designers on a variety of shoots and events, including Malan Breton and The Gap. He also met several Indonesian designers on his recent travels there, including Barli Asmara, Iwan Tirta, and McDraw by Rindra. This is just the beginning for Pras and his quest to bring Indonesia awareness to the USA; you can follow his adventures on Facebook at facebook.com/oliverprasofficial.com.