Marisa Miller (born August 6, 1978) is an American model best known for her appearances in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues, and her work for lingerie retailer Victoria's Secret. After a stint shooting with photographer Mario Testino for fashion magazines like Vogue, Miller began working for both companies in 2002, and has remained with each since. As of late 2007, she is a Victoria's Secret Angel, and graced the cover of the 2008 SI Swimsuit Issue to record-setting numbers, accomplishments that have led to her being dubbed the "return of the great American supermodel."
She is also known for contracts with companies like Harley-Davidson and for taking the #1 spot on Maxim magazine's 2008 "Hot 100" list. Aside from modeling, she is an ambassador for the American Cancer Society.
Atypically, Miller was able to move from a start as an amateur magazine model to high profile mainstream work after an acquaintance showed a picture of her to famed fashion photographer Mario Testino in 2001. Testino asked to meet Miller, who was running a surf school at the time, and was invited to Manhattan Beach, California, where she would be surfing.
Noticing her, Testino snapped pictures of her and approached her for a job offer that turned out to be editorials for both the American and Italian editions of Vogue. Within six months, Miller was working for Victoria's Secret and the coveted Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, of which she has been in every issue since 2002. In particular, she was featured in the 2004, 2005, 2007, and 2008 editions' sections of body painting featuring the work of Joanne Gair. Raphael Mazzucco's handbra photograph of Miller wearing nothing but an iPod in the 2007 edition became one of the most famous photos ever published in that magazine. As part of the Sports Illustrated 40th anniversary celebration, she was selected to duplicate some of the swimsuit issues most memorable photos of models such as Christie Brinkley, Tyra Banks
, Cheryl Tiegs, and Daniela Pestova. She has also appeared in a diverse range of magazines, many of them international editions, such as GQ, Maxim, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Elle, and Vanity Fair, as well as working on campaigns/advertisements for Nordstrom, J.Crew, Guess?, Tommy Hilfiger, Pepsi, Panasonic, Bath & Body Works, and most recently, for True Religion jeans and motorcycle company Harley-Davidson. In July 2008, Miller took her first step beyond modeling when her shoe line with skateboarder/surfer-oriented company Vans launched.
Television spots of Miller's include the short-lived reality television series Manhunt: The Search for America's Most Gorgeous Male Model (2004), Puddle of Mudd's "Spin You Around" music video (2004), the pilot episode and finale of VH1's reality show The Shot (2007), and cameos in HBO's Entourage
and the CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother
(both 2007), the latter with her fellow Victoria's Secret Angels. However, it wasn't until 2007 that she filmed her first television commercial for Victoria's Secret, appearing alongside Heidi Klum
for the It bra. Miller's other commercials include a 2008 viral video on YouTube with All Star baseball player Ryan Braun for Remington's ShortCut clippers and a September 2008 commercial for the NFL Network.