Priscilla Ray: Before the takeover of Aamito Lagum, Patricia Akello, and the entire gang of the fresh faced Ugandan models on the scene, there was Priscilla Ray. The ex-model was a part of Zipper Models that ruled the runways and the Kampala social scene. After almost 10 years off the scene, the model, now a mother of three, has made her return to Kampala. Gloria Haguma caught up with her.
1.We haven’t seen you in a while. Where have you been?
I took a break from the limelight to pursue my Master’s in International Business and Management at the University of Westminster in the UK. After school I worked for a Hedge-fund for two and a half years and then started a family. I have been busy raising my children, running my businesses — a fish farm, real estate and online forex trading.
2.What brings you back to Kampala? Are you here to stay?
Well, you know what they say, East or West, home is best. I had a job in the UK, but at the back of my mind, I wanted to be my own boss and my business ideas were best suited for home, not the UK. Plus, I wanted to be near my mother and raise my children here.
3.Should we expect to see the Priscilla Ray we knew from back in the day (party after party)?
Nooo…a lot has changed since then. I am now a mother, I do not find many things fun anymore. I have been there, done it all, a lot of that stuff does not excite me much anymore. I would rather spend time with my children. I would also rather have a cozy dinner or lunch somewhere nice with friends and family rather than go out partying late at night. I prefer being home by midnight.
4.What’s your take on the social life today compared to your days?
Smart phones and social media platforms have revolutionised social life. The digital take over has introduced a new aspect of our daily life – 24/7 availability. We are on call at virtually all times, with emails and texts blowing up our phones and friends, colleagues, and random people expecting that they can get a hold of us at any time. The idea of being unavailable has been slowly disappearing. Also, it is so easy being a celebrity now, all you have to do is create a social media presence.
5.What changes can you see in the modelling and fashion industry today?
The number of models and would-be models today would have been unimaginable to the fashion industry back then. In the earlier years, professional fashion models (especially those of colour) were a rarity, and regulation was ruled by a recognisable system of respect. Now there is an overflow of Naomi Campbells and Kate Mosses which is really a good thing since it gives many more girls an opportunity to realise their dreams. Excitingly as well, there has been an overall boost to the fashion industry with various shows. This means an increase in runway jobs, showroom gigs, print ads and advertising campaigns etc.