The Ambition of Your Supermodel
With the looks of a Latin heartthrob - despite being English - he has conquered the top of fashion. He is considered one of the world's most handsome supermodels and also one of the best paid. His salary is comparable to that of his female peers.
Let's do a test. Think of supermodels who have excelled in recent years. Surely many women come to mind: Gisele Bündchen, Miranda Kerr, Cara Delevingne, Adriana Lima or the incombustible Kate Moss, to name a few. Think now about male models...not so simple. If we exclude the actors who succeed in advertising, it is practically impossible to remember a name.
In a clearly feminine industry, only a handful of men have reached supermodel status and recognition which is enjoyed by their fellow female counterparts. The Englishman David Gandy is one of those men. His impressive physique and professionalism have elevated him to the Olympus of top models. He came into fashion by accident, but he takes his job very seriously and aims to get as high up as his female counterparts. For now, he is one of the most sought after male models and is labelled "the most handsome".
But he did not always enjoy his success. His first steps were complicated and more than once he thought of abandoning it. He started by doing catalogs and catwalks for second-tier brands until his fairy godmother appeared: Dolce and Gabbana. His career and his life took a turn when in 2006 he starred in the Italian designers advertising campaign for Light Blue perfume. Many will remember the image: Gandy in a tiny white bathing suit lying on a boat in the blue waters of the Mediterranean. It was the beginning of his fame and the start of his career. He has also done campaigns for such brands as Carolina Herrera, Zara, Ermenegildo Zenga, Marks & Spencer and Massimo Dutti, among others.
His physical gifts are beyond a doubt:1,90 cm, black hair now styled by a slight pompadour, intense blue eyes, square jaw and a body that's been chiselled by hitting the gym. All of that wrapped up in an air of a Mediterranean gentleman that disarms women and that is far from the skinny and androgynous models who have succeeded in recent years. Although he lives in his office, Gandy says he is not a fashion victim and declares himself "old fashion" in his way of dressing. His style is very classic and tailored.
By his appearance, he could pass for Italian or Spanish, but he is a pure bred Englishman. He was born in Essex, north of London, the birthplace of another famous celebrity, Victoria Beckham. It is hard to believe but Gandy, like other supermodels, also starred in the tale of the ugly duckling. He has said he was a chubby child with speech problems, which earned him teasing by his peers. He landed in fashion because one of his friends enrolled him in a modelling contest, and he of course won.
He was 21 years old and was studying marketing at the university even though what he liked was to be a veterinarian.
In recent years he has not taken his foot off the accelerator. He has graced the covers of countless magazines and has been the object of many famous photographers camera's such as Mario Testino and Steven Klein. He starred in a picture book with over 300 pages about his career and has become an ambassador for brands like Johnnie Walker Blue Label. Recently, he stars in the third instalment of the Light Blue campaign, the fragrance that launched him to fame. This time, his new companion on the boat was model Bianca Balti.
Besides posing for the cameras, Gandy launched several smartphone applications and he writes magazine articles on the automotive world. He is a speed freak and a fan of luxury sports cars. Decorating is another of his hobbies. But if there is a moment of his career that he remembers with fondness it was his participation in the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games in London, where he marched with the dream team of fashion. He was the only man as he escorted models Kate Moss, Georgia May Jagger, Naomi Campbell and Stella Tennant. Further proof that in the universe of supermodels women still have the edge, but also that Gandy has caught up.
He wants to end the notion that the world of tops is only for women and has repeatedly criticized the gender inequalities in the industry. “It is a fact that in this industry women earn more than men, and as they fly in first or business, the boys travel in economy", he commented in an interview with the Daily Mail " I aspire to work with the best and create something iconic like the supermodels. I've never understood why men have not tried this. I intend to break this dynamic", he said on another occasion. And it seems that he is succeeding.