FROM Australia to England, Larissa Camilleri has overcome adversity to turn heads on the Pinup Doll scene.
The 2016 Pinup Doll Australia winner finished runner-up at the recent Miss Pinup International finals in London.
The Canning Vale resident suffers from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a genetic heart disease that claimed the lives of her grandparents and her mother.
Ms Camilleri, who is fitted with pacemaker defibrillator, said she began modelling to help cope with her illness.
“Pinup modelling is so empowering to me, it began as a way to get through my grief from losing my mother to heart disease,” she said.
“Battling heart disease myself, pinup modelling was a way to feel more confident about my heart surgery scars, whilst embracing my love of the vintage pinup look.”
She admitted she was surprised she faired so well in London, but was ultimately overjoyed.
“I was so surprised when they called out my name as runner-up, I had to take an extra heart pill that day,” she said.
“When I started this pinup journey, I did not know it would take me to London to represent Australia and then to be second in the world, I was overwhelmed with emotion. I’m sure my mum would have been very proud.”
Ms Camilleri said she wanted to set an example for others who had suffered loss and help them move past the grieving process.
“I want to inspire others to show that even if you have an illness and felt loss, you can always find positives in life and embrace them,” she said.