Jonathan may have went in as the favorite to win Season 2 of Make Me a Supermodel, but 18-year-old Branden Rickman — whose age and inexperience made him the dark horse — was the one who went home with $100,000, a contract with New York Model Management and spread in Cosmopolitan. Find out what it was like for Branden to beat the odds, how he feels he's grown since the beginning of the competition and what this mama's boy plans to do with his cash prize.
TVGuide.com: Congrats! How did it feel to win?
Branden Rickman: I was so excited! It was just crazy. I did not think I was going to win at all. I really underestimated myself, but it all turned out great in the end.
TVGuide.com: What was the final Cosmo shoot like?
Branden: It was awesome. That was my favorite because it showed ourselves rather than just our posing and basic modeling. It was as close as the show had gotten to a real photo shoot. I loved it. That photo shoot was probably the reason I won. It just came naturally for me, I guess.
TVGuide.com: What was the hardest part of this experience?
Branden: All the critiquing the judges did was pretty hard. But now, I'm very open to things, and I don't take things to heart anymore. I was very sensitive. And now, I just don't care — it's whatever.
TVGuide.com: The judges said you grew from the beginning to the end. How would you say you changed?
Branden: I changed from being, like, a really immature teenage boy in high school when you don't care what you say, [to where] I now watch what I say and have a lot more respect for other people. I opened my eyes. I was away from my mom and it got me to feel what it was like to be away from her and live on my own.
TVGuide.com: Considering how tight you are with your mom, how does she feel about the fact that you'll be away and traveling?
Branden: She's really happy with it, actually, because she knows I'm going for what I want to go for and doing what my dreams are. I can't wait to travel everywhere. She took care of me for my whole childhood, and now it's my turn to take care of her.
TVGuide.com: What's next for you?
Branden: Next, I'm moving to New York and pursuing my supermodeling career. I'm using the prize money for the move, and I'm going to buy my mom a car.