At 60, police officer Annabel Davis retired and thought this was high time for a new career. So she became an actress and a model. Eventually, even a very popular one. How has she managed it at 60, without either experience or connections? It is all very doable and realistic, she says.
It certainly required some hard work, though.
Now she changes her outfits and images almost every day, as her line of work suggests. Before, she had been wearing a uniform for nearly forty years. First, she was a flying attendant. Then she got bored of airplanes and found a job at a police station at Heathrow Airport.
When Annabel turned 60, she had to retire: those were the rules. She decided to find a job that she could do from time to time and where she could interact with people as much as possible. One of her former colleagues suggested she could make some money working as a film extra. Annabel thought it an excellent idea and decided to try herself not only as an actress, but also as a model.
“Starting a new line of work is never easy, at the beginning I even worked for free, just to add something to my portfolio,” she recalls. “I acted in films shot by student directors; it is the only opportunity for a beginner actress to get a role with a dialogue. I collaborated with photographers who needed an elderly model for their projects. Gradually I broadened my network.”
During her first year of acting Annabel took part in a few dozen commercial videos and TV series (mostly these were small silent parts) and posed for several commercial photo shoots. The more extensive her portfolio and the wider her network became, the more often she was offered work. It turned out that the advertisement business badly needed models her age. Now, after three years of her career, Annabel Davis works almost every day. She can be seen at advertising posters, in clothing catalogues, in fashion magazines, at teleshopping channels, etc. Although her schedule is tight, Annabel considers it, most of all, fun.
To stay in shape, she tries to walk as much as possible. If she needs to use public transport, she always leaves the bus or tram one or two stops before hers and walks the remaining distance. Every day she walks about 5 miles. Besides, she is also into weight training.
“Genetically my bones are fragile, I need to strengthen them,” she says.
She does not stick to any particular diet, but twice a week she only eats vegetables and drinks water.
“Of course it was scary to change everything in my life after sixty,” she admits. “However, I enjoy it so much now that it was totally worth it.”
What can you do now that you couldn’t do at 35?
I am much better with people now, and it is crucial for my current job. Thanks to my network of friends and connections I was able to arrange a good portfolio and make a new career.
Would you like to become young again?
No, I wouldn’t. I really enjoy my age. What I love about my current lifestyle is that it is hard to predict. At any given moment, somebody can phone me and request a photo shoot, and it is something new every time — something I couldn’t even imagine when I was young.