CBB Exclusive: America’s Next Top Model’s Tatiana Dante’s (Modeling) Inferno

03/06/2008 at 08:00 AM ET

Tatiana_5_cbbAs one of the contestants on America’s Next Top Model, Cycle 4, Tatiana Dante, 21, has posed in the rain with gale-force winds, with a pack of unruly dogs, and was even lowered into an actual grave for one shoot! All in a model’s daily work. Due with her first child on March 19th, Tatiana sat down with CBB for an exclusive interview and photo shoot.

Photography: Gabbeli Photography

Hair and Makeup: Douglas Martucci

Airbrush Artist: Hans Haveron


Growing up in Maui, Hawaii must have been beautiful.

My childhood was wonderful. I lived near a jungle and we had horses, too. Every day, I had to walk 2 ½ miles to the school bus…each way. That wasn’t so much fun!

People might not know this, but you were a competitive salsa dancer.

When I was 14, my mom’s friend taught me how to salsa and I just loved it. I became his salsa partner, and we traveled a lot doing tours and shows. Salsa was (and still is) something I am very passionate about.


When did you start modeling?

I started modeling in my early teens. I started by doing bathing suit runway shows in Oahu. Modeling in Hawaii is much different than in the States, though. For one thing, it’s a very easy-going, relaxed atmosphere. You’re in the sun, on the beach, and it’s great. Also, depending on where you shoot, you often have to hike to your locations!

How did you get into America’s Next Top Model, Cycle 4?

I didn’t really know what ANTM was; I had heard of it, but I hadn’t watched it on TV. One day, I heard on the radio that they were having ANTM auditions in Hawaii. I went (and got to visit my big brother, Dionisio, who goes to college there!), and I made it on the show.


What was the experience like?

It was a great experience, and I wouldn’t change a thing about it. However, it was complete culture shock for me when I was there. The girls I grew up with back home were more like tomboys; we grew up surrounded by nature. We weren’t girly girls. The girls in the competition were from bigger cities, which was something different for me. I was also the youngest girl there.

I was really quiet on the show. People who knew me from back home said, “What happened to you?” Some of the girls had very strong personalities, and would try to find your weaknesses to bring you down. After all, it’s a competition. Plus, always having the cameras in front of you made it a very stressful environment. So, I chose to read my book quietly.

What were your favorite and least favorite parts of ANTM?

I loved doing the challenges! They were so much fun. A lot of times, the concepts were so out-there. I loved doing the Zodiac challenge, where I got to dress up as my sign, Gemini.

The one I liked least was the one where we had to represent the seven deadly sins, and we were lowered into a grave! That was scary.


After you were sent home from ANTM, what was life like?

I went to the beach a lot and just relaxed! When they were going to have the premiere of ANTM Cycle 4, I went to New York. And I wound up staying there for six months! I loved it, but again, it was a huge culture shock, and I knew that I couldn’t support myself in that environment.

Then, I came out to California, which has been a perfect balance between island and city life.

How did you meet your fiancé, Robert?

I met Robert at a post production house I was working at in February 2007. I’ve been pregnant most of the time we’ve known each other!! We’ve done it a little backwards!!!


And you’re having a little girl, who’s due very soon!

Yes. At first, they told us that it was a boy. I was so excited; we had already picked out a boy’s name. When we found out we were having a girl, I had to change the baby shower invites from “It’s a Boy!” to “It’s a Girl!”

What are your plans for after the baby is born?

After the baby is born, I plan to take my time and enjoy the baby. My mom is coming to help me, so I can get some sleep! I also want to get my body back in shape. I’ll always pursue modeling, but I want a concrete and stable career. I love modeling, and it’s fun, but it’s exactly that, something fun. I want a career and something to fall back on. After all, I’m going to be a mom!

I know that now is the time to figure out what I want to do with my life. I’m still deciding, but it’s exciting to think about the possibilities. The best part is that I have someone who loves me and we’re going to do it together.


Photos and interview for exclusive use on CBB and are not to be reproduced elsewhere.

FILED UNDER: Exclusive , Maternity , News , Reality TV

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Showing 40 comments

Erin on

Wow, I find that airbrushed baby a bit freaky. Tatiana looks gorgeous, though.

dlock on

I’m confused, was she pregnant before she met her fiance’ or was she pregnant shortly after they met? Please let me know, thanks.

By the way, those are some nice pictures, she looks very happy.

Sarah’s note: Shortly after they met.

dlock on

Thanks sarah, I must have read it too fast!

me myself and i on

Oh I love ANTM!

This may be a stupid question but was that paint put on her stomacn (using an air brush) or was it put in after the pictures were taken (airbrushed on the computer?)

Sarah’s note: Using an airbrush at the photoshoot.

me:) on

The Baby is Due in March and they met in February, So they were together about 3 or 4 mos when they got pregnant!
The same thing ( And time frame of 4 mos) happened to me and My Now husband of almost 6 years… she has nothing to be ashamed of having a baby very early in their relationship, as long as they are happy thats all that matters!

Loralee on

I agree with Erin about the baby. It’s not like we don’t know what’s in there. What if the baby is breech or transverse. She looks so beautiful and happy.

Jaisa on

Is it normal in the US to have a baby at the in my opinion serious-young age of 20? I’m from the Netherlands and the mean age here is 29 to 30. Maybe that is a bit late to start a family. But like in this case 20?
It is like I see those girls (most of the time they represent more girly than womanly characteristics) more and more. Often in magazines or on the internet are very young woman presented with a bump. To me it seems way too young to do, since the forming of an identity is still in the making. And with an eye on the behalf of the child: those relationships (at least the ones we can witness) almost never last longer than five years. Meaning they probably were not as stable to begin with. Which brings many issues and problems into a (young) childs life and maybe even the ones that will come in the future..
Just wondering what the opinion and experience is on the other side of the world, since it is a huge difference from where I come from. Notice that I try not to judge (that is not my place), but just to compare facts🙂.

Jenny on

Anyone know where that beautiful floral dress is from? I’m sure it’s WAY out of my price range, but I’m in love with it and have to know.

ETA 3/9/08 Sarah’s note: Forever 21, $24.

anonymous on

What a cool picture!!!

Hea on

Loralee – Why does the baby’s position matter? It’s art! I think it’s cool.

stanley on

I’m glad other people arent psyched about that air brushed thing. When I scrolled down and saw it I said “EWW!” kind of loudly. Someone at work heard me and came over to see what I was looking at and said the same thing.

Then before I got to the comments I was like, if people have written in to say that they liked that, it might be time for me to stop visiting this site.


Sarah F. on

I think the airbrush is cool because that’s the estimated size her baby is right now.

Why on Earth would someone’s opinion of that make you stop visiting this site?

Elizabeth on

Well, I love the airbrushed baby! I think it’s beautiful. Frankly, I’m surprised that anyone is freaked out by it. You wouldn’t think that people visiting a Celebrity Baby site would find pregnancy freaky. A “baby bump” isn’t just a fashion statement, you know – there’s an actual person in there! Awesome!

me:) on

Jaisa…. Yes it is Very Common for young women to have babies in these parts! I have found many in their late teens and early 20’s are getting pregnant…. Many women want to be young moms, so that they are still semi-young when their children are grown.

Lisa on

I married at 18, had my first son just before my 21st bday and then twins when I was 26. Love being a “young” mom and been happily married for almost 15 years now.
I like the airbrushed baby, very cool.

elizabeth on

i like the airbrushed baby thing…it’s just a baby not an alien..lol. but she’s very beautiful and i hope they have a wonderful life together. baby dust to them!!

Shannon on

Like Jaisa, I am a bit disturbed by the late teen/young 20s moms myself. ESPECIALLY the ones who are not yet married.

I don’t think this trend of getting pregnant before marriage is a good one, and for some reason that is what celebrities are doing these days. Get pregnant, then get engaged and MAYBE get married after baby is born.

I am in no way putting down people who do this and it has worked out great for them. BUT, I think you are the exception and not the rule, and the statistics would certainly back me up on this.

The average age of a first-time mom these days in the US is either 27 or 28. I just worry about the current trend in Hollywood influencing young people to just go ahead and have kids young, without giving time to build a stable relationship and hopefully a marriage – Hollywood folks don’t have to worry about clothing, feeding and housing this baby!

I’m not a prude, but just having a baby with someone doesn’t instantly equal “happy family”…add in youth and lack of a lifelong commitment to that equation and I think you have a recipe for disaster in many cases.

All that said, I do hope everything works out for the best for them.

PSB on

The average maternal age to have a baby in the US is 26 – the averge paternal age is 28.

In some parts of the country it’s younger, in some parts (like NYC, where I live) it’s WAY older. Most people I’ve met in Manhattan don’t have kids until their mid-30’s, but where I grew up down South, it was more like mid-20’s.

kaylee on

Hey Shannon and Jaisa, stay “disturbed” it happens and it’s none of your business. I am sure there are a lot of young moms that read this blog who have become pregnant in there late teen/ early twenties who where not married, would be offended by your post. Back to the original topic, the pictures are beautiful! Good luck to them whether, they get married or not, as long as they love their child, that is all that matters.

Nicole on

To Jaisa and Shannon,
I was two months shy of my 21st birthday when my son was born. He will be 4 in two weeks and my fiancee and I weren’t MARRIED or even engaged when I had my son… But unlike people who get married JUST because they are having a child my fiancee and I are still very happy together after 7 years and we are getting married this August. My parents were very supportive of my decision to wait to get married and they never tried to force me to get married when I got pregnant like some parents do.
It is very disrespectful Shannon, to assume because a mother is young and not married that she will have a harder time in life, I am 24 years old, I have a great job, I’m in college and I own my own home. And I think there are plenty of other young, unmarried mothers who read this blog that have similar stories.
With that being said, if your way works for you great! To each their own, but stereotypes like this really bother me, come on its 2008!

Nicole on

Also- Kaylee, Thank you! Well said!

Britt on

I am a 20 year-old mother of a 14 month old baby girl. I had her when I was 18, and I agree with Jaisa and Shannon 110%.
I love my daughter to death, but I am fully aware of the things I have given up and am missing out on, having had her so young.
As much as you love your baby and your baby’s father, you are not mature enough in your late teens and very early 20s to have a baby. Period.
Get an education first (beyond high school), travel a little bit, have some freedom, do things you’ve always dreamed of doing, THEN have babies. You only have one life, why not experience as much as possible?

carmen on

anyone figure out the make of the dress yet?

Sarah’s note: Don’t know, but the tan and white striped jacket is Forever 21 from 6 months ago!😉

Nicole on

The difference between 18 and almost 21 is huge! At least it was for me…I wouldn’t have been ready at 18, and agree if people decide to wait to have children till 30’s or older, but my issue is with the HUGE stereotype and judging of young mothers…
I was in my early 20’s and totally MATURE enough to have a child and I also have a college education so its wrong to place everyone in one category.

laura on

I’m pretty surprised to see the amount of squeamishness towards pregnancy issues here. You’re reading a pregnancy blog, people, why are you freaked out by a painting of a child in the womb? Maybe the portrayal of an unborn human is too much to handle?

As for the young pregnancy issue – I got married at 20 and my husband and I had our first child when I was 22 and a half. She is now almost two and we are looking forward to trying for our second in a couple months. I have no problem with young pregnancies (you know, like 19 or older). What troubles me more is girls having kids in unstable relationships. What children need more than anything is love and nurturing and affection from their parents. The kind of security that comes from a safe, stable parental relationship is better than anything travel, money, financial security can give. Sure – those other things make life nicer, but love is the most important.

By today’s standards (especially in the urban area where I live), I had a child very young, but 50 or 60 years ago, women my age many times had several children. I personally think they were on to something.

If you can’t be unselfish enough to devote your life to your kids, then it’s probably a good idea to consider birth control, but a woman, regardless of age, who is in a stable, loving relationship and willing to basically lay down her life for her kids – that’s the recipe for a good mommy.

I think young women who do find themselves faced with an unexpected pregnancy would be a lot better off if society stopped focusing on all the potential negatives of that circumstance and would simply remember that children are a blessing and a gift and above all, they need love.

kaylee on

“As much as you love your baby and your baby’s father, you are not mature enough in your late teens and very early 20s to have a baby. Period.”

Britt, that’s your opinion honey and I respect it, but that is how you feel about your situation. A married woman in her 30’s could feel the same way, so I have reserve about that comment. Anyway, I can’t relate to you or Tatiana because, I am 25 yrs old, married with children, but to each its own I guess. I am not a judgemental person, a baby to me, should be loved, no matter if the parent is married or not. And if you are not mature, get mature for the child you decided to create. And if you can’t get mature, give that child to a family that is mature.

MommyX1 on

First off, how humorous about the airbrushed baby and it actually making people not want to visit the site. Overdramatic much? How strange. As for the age issue, I was 18 when I had my daughter, who is now 2 and a half. I got pregnant about 2 months after meeting my husband, and it was completely unplanned and very scary. We however, decided to try our hardest to make it work, and unlike many others in such a situation, it has. We actually just got married in October, and I am due with our second child in 10 days. I certainly do not agree that age is the deciding factor over whether someone is ready to be a mom. I am very proud of the way I have embraced the role and I can say with confidence that I am a great mom, much better than so many others that are older than me. However, I do agree that many women in the same situations are not ready, and even less of them will end up having everything work out like they hope and plan. It is really rare for a relationship to actually work in the long term, and for a solid family unit to be maintained.

T on

I am a young mama and a very very good one!!! I am very attuned to my toddler and love staying home with him!
Every person is different I have seen older moms at the parks and classes that are not very attuned moms and seem really bitter that they had to work so hard to get pregnant!
Can’t we all just get along and love our little ones??

Boston on

If there is an age that is ‘too young’, for whatever reason you may think, then it is incredibly important that all of us support these young women without judgement. If being a young mother truly is that hard, it can’t make it any easier or better for them or their babies if they know the person sitting next to them on the subway is judging them.
There was post here the other day where someone mentioned that women are very critical of one another. And I believe it’s true, we want ourselves and others to achieve perfection. Sure, you change a lot in your teens and early 20s; your brain is not fully developed until your mid 20s! And I remember meeting every new year with a new set of ideas to pull into my identity. But you also continue to change until you’re old and a grandmommy many times over.
I believe a mommy can be fabulous at any age.

Bethany on

why is it that so many people are so quick to judge and go on about “too young, too young, TOO YOUNG” and we hardly hear any critcisms that certain celebrities are “too old”…no, hardly anyone would ever dream of saying a celebrity is “too old” to have a baby because that would cause such an uproar!

so really GET OVER IT because THERE IS NO ‘TOO YOUNG’ or ‘TOO OLD’. i think as women we should all be smart enough to realise that raising children is about dedication, effort and, most importantly, loving your babies….NOT ABOUT AGE.

Aysha on

I had my first child at 21 and my second at 23. I am 30 now with a college education, good job and am still with the father of my children. Motherhood is not for everyone and I know of good mothers who are young and good mothers who are older.

From my point of view I’m glad I had my children young because the generation gap is smaller and I understand and can relate to the cultural references they make. Also, children need lots of energy and I get tired enough at this age!

Also, instead of being so negative about young mothers (the majority of whom try their best in spite of being judged) what about the culture shock older mothers must have when they are so set in their ways and used to ‘me time’ and then suddenly the world doesn’t revolve around them anymore?

Luckily I was very able to put the needs of my child first and not lament the loss of my free time when I had them. It must be so hard and take a lot of getting used to when a baby comes along and you have established routines with work, leisure and spare time.

I think whatever age you have children, there are pros and cons. Each to their own and well done all the young mums out there who work hard and maybe harder because of the stereotypes! x

Jessica on

To Jaisa and Shannon, i find your statements very rude! i myself hate being stereotyped and i can imagine how furious others might be. I just turned 20 back in November and i am expecting. Me and my boyfriend are not engaged nor married, but we are so so happy! We have an excellent relationship and get compliments everyday on what a “BEAUTIFUL” couple we are! He plays and talks to my belly just about everyday! He makes sure to kiss it about 20 times a day!🙂 We dont plan on getting married anytime soon. We dont think having a baby is a good enough reason to get married! Yes, we would love to get married, but we wanna do so because we love each other, not because we’re bringing a miracle into this world. That all on its own is alot to handle. You say getting married first is better for the child. You wanna talk about statistics, what about the statistics of divorce? Couples who get married just because they are having a baby usually dont love each other or get along too well. So the relationship between them affects the child! Seeing verbal or even physical abuse is nothing a child should be seeing. And by you saying getting married first brings just that to mind. Divorce usually follows which i would think is worse for a child to experience!

I am 20, with a good job, i have an associates degree with more than 80 college hours, i own my own vehicle, i have my own place, and am continuing to further my education. My boyfriend has a great job too and fully supports me so that i can continue my education. He is going to help me with the baby so that i dont have to stop going to school. This baby will not slow me down in that area because i am driven to do better for me and my new family.🙂

With all that said, I hope you are more careful with your words!🙂 Those statements were very unnecessary and I found them extremely rude!

Erin Axtell on

tati is one of my best friends.. She is such an amazing person and will make an outstanding mother. Im so proud of her.. I love you tati..

merrymum on

I agree that you can be a great and responsible mother at any age be it early 20’s or late 30’s. The only position I have on the age debate is that you only experience your 20’s once and never again, and surely isn’t that the time to be selfish, have lots of fun without being tied down, see the world and further your career without anything holding you back. I have friends that have had kids young and said ‘yeah but I can do those things when the kids have grown up’. In their 40’s? Are you kidding me? If given the choice, enjoy your own youth first!

Jaisa on

If I have offended anyone, I would like to apologize. I am not here (on the blog or in the world) to judge, that is not my place. I would like to explain my message. I really question the decision on ‘young’ motherhood, from my psychological background. There are many statistics that back up my idea that most woman of the age of 18 to let’s say 24 are not fully developed in a mental way and therefore can and most likely will face many difficulties along the way of parenthood (your identity will be stable around the age of 21, your forebrain grows until you are about 24 years old and therefore still makes new connections- one of the reasons scientists want young people in colleges, they are the most ‘vulnerable’ for information). Other challenges than every parent faces. I have to add that this counts for Western woman with an individualistic upbringing (as most of us receiving since the beginning of the eighties). They are more selfish and have all the luxury to be that way(again: no judgement). Adolescence takes about ten years anno 2008, where in 1958 it took a year or two. That brings our generation an enormous amount of different developmental consequences.
Finally I would like to add that marriage to me is not necessary to be around for the birth and upbringing of a child. I personally do not believe that the word or license of a marriage can give any foundation whatsoever. Also there statistics back me up, with a 50% divorce rate in the US. After divorce of course your world and that of your children will not end, but of course it brings a lot of instability in the child’s life.
Anyone who is happy with marriage and/or a child in whatever age: I sincerely hope you will continue to be! Please make sure that you as a parent (whether married, single, divorced or something else) always act in the best interest of your child(ren).
It is indeed about the combination heart, mind and spirit. I hope and think that as a woman you will be loving mom (no particular need to be great, since that is a subjective judgement because ‘great’ is different for everyone) at any age if you’ve got the love and social support!

Barbara on

I met my husband at the age of 17 (he was 20) and we married 6 months later. I got pregnant a month into our marriage and had our son in our 10th month of marriage. This coming June we will be happily married 26 years. 🙂

Mary on

Making the decision to lay down and make a baby, to me, is a grownup decision. You have kids these days making this grownup decision, and not being able to handle the consequences. You can be young, old, whatever and have your baby. Sure it’s no one’s business. My only problem is that it becomes other people’s business when said persons cannot financially sustain themselves and their child, and therefore turn to governmental support, which is essentially coming from the tax payer’s pocket. Like it or not, that is when it becomes our business. It’s not a bad thing to have children at a young age, just as long as you can take care of them. It’s also not a bad thing to have kids at an older age. You know why no one is griping about having kids at an older age? Because in all likelyhood, the older parents will be more financially stable and better equipped and prepared to handle a child. I agree with Jaisa and Shannon, however rude their comments may come across. People don’t always like to hear the facts that are staring them right in the face. Teenage pregnancy (meaning young girls still in high school who can’t even afford a piece of gum, let alone to raise a child) is on the rise. It’s those situations that I think they’re referring to. Kudos to the young parents who are making it work. But from what I’ve seen, the opposite is happening more often than not.

tn_mamato4 on

What is wrong with being a YOUNG mom? I am happily married with my 4th child, and I am only 24 yrs old. Age is not as important as LOVE and dedication. There is nothing wrong with choosing marriage and children over college and career. My husband and I own a beautiful house, have plenty of money, and are children have flourished. I constantly have older mom ask for advice on MY PARENTING style.

Why the judgements?

Ericka on

I think these are great photos…at first I was like “what is that” because I didn’t see the larger photo. I think it’s pretty interesting…something I’ve never seen before.

People need to stop judging and get on with it. Age doesn’t matter…people mature at different ages. You can’t say she’d be a bad mother because of her age you don’t know her.

Ericka on

I do however think it would have looked better if it wasn’t such a dark brown background…maybe a tan or skin color background.

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