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‘Project Runway’ competitor James Martinez says it’s ‘not about being the winner’

DAVID MARTINDALE
McClatchy Tribune News Service
Modified: February 1, 2013 at 5:35 pm •  Published: February 1, 2013
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/articleid/3751081/1/pictures/1942088">Photo - Martinez is one of 16 designers trying to prove he has what it takes to wow judges Heidi Klum, Zac Posen (replacing Michael Kors) and Nina Garcia and to show his wares during New York Fashion Week. Photo courtesy of Lifetime
Martinez is one of 16 designers trying to prove he has what it takes to wow judges Heidi Klum, Zac Posen (replacing Michael Kors) and Nina Garcia and to show his wares during New York Fashion Week. Photo courtesy of Lifetime

Martinez already has his own apparel line. It’s called Barron and J. (The Barron part of the name is his mother; he’s the J.) The company already has clients and items that are available in stores.

“I would characterize my style as being very classic yet edgy,” he said.

Martinez acquired his love for fashion from his mother and sister. He started out working in retail stores, then studied fashion design at the Art Institute of Dallas.

“That’s when I realized how much potential I had,” he says.

Martinez lives in Dallas, but his parents are still in Fort Worth, so he finds himself on the west side of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex often.

Martinez said he had never been on TV before doing this show.

“The whole experience, it’s very surreal,” he says. “It’s a very crazy experience, very fast-paced.”

Martinez isn’t allowed to reveal how he fared on the show. In fact, for several months, he wasn’t allowed to tell family or friends that he even appeared on the show.

“But what was actually pretty nice is that, after they announced that I’m on the show, a lot of my friends surprisingly haven’t asked for information,” he says. “All they said was that I deserve the recognition. Because I’ve been doing this for about four years now. And they were just happy for me to receive this recognition. They said, ‘I don’t really need to know what happened yet. I’m just proud that you were on there.’”

Now, the waiting to see him in action is over.

As always, there basically are three kinds of competitors on “Project Runway”: good guys who viewers root for, villains who viewers love to hate and all the others who essentially wind up as road kill.

“Viewers are going to consider me the good guy,” Martinez promises. “At least that’s how I hope I come off.”

———

“Project Runway”

Season 11

9 p.m. EST/8 p.m. central Thursdays

Lifetime


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