David Gandy and photographer Arnaldo Anaya-Luca team up once again to bring us an extraordinary editorial on classic British styling for the latest GQ Style Brazil Winter 2014. Inside this edition David exudes old Hollywood style alongside British tailoring. Arnaldo captures David in suits by Richard Anderson, Gieves & Hawkes, Anderson & Sheppard a leather Belfast jacket and an impeccable suit designed by David and Fennel.
The world's most famous male model, David Gandy, honors the British tradition with his brand
By Maria Luísa Cavalcanti. Ph: Arnaldo Anaya-Lucca. Styled by Paul Mather
It's a rainy and cold spring Sunday in London. I arrive at David Gandy's house for this interview and I find the world's most famous model reviewing photos that have just been shot for this exclusive session of GQ Style. Barefoot, wearing jeans without a belt and a light blue shirt with folded cuffs, he's looking at photographer Arnaldo Anaya Lucca's laptop and giving his views on each image. With the comfort of those who have been working together for years and achieving success with magazine covers and advertising campaigns in several countries, they discuss whether the photographs were capable of capturing the aura of classic Hollywood movies that both of them wanted to convey.
"Classic", in truth, is one of Gandy's favorite words. This is how he describes the cars he drives, the looks he wears and the pieces that decorate his newly renovated home. He is also the man who models for brands he collaborates with: Dolce & Gabbana, Massimo Dutti, Lucky Brand, Jaguar and Johnnie Walker, to name a few.
"I often say that I have an old soul. My grandfather was a typical example of the British gentleman, and my father is like that. Males with a style but without ostentation, discrete but leave a footprint, generous with others but without sacrificing their principles. I was brought up that way and I am honored if someone says I'm a gentleman,"he says.
To compose his style, his wardrobe - is actually one of five sections in the new house - ranges from smooth American Apparel shirts to tailored suits from Savile Row, the street in London where his favorite shops are located. Famous for having the best tailors in the world such as Henry Poole and Richard James. Luxury brands such as Tom Ford and Paul Smith also have room in the model's style, as do other retail brands like Marks & Spencer and Hackett. Parked outside is the Jaguar F -Type V6 Gandy bought a year ago to replace a Jaguar XKR- S, which he comments that he misses. A 1960's Mercedes 190SL is being restored and will occupy a special place in his garage. The 1860's Victorian home is decorated with dark wood furniture and woven wool plaid or tweed by the Scottish brand Holland & Sherry and is dotted with antique objects, "I think I'm a man that other men can identify with. I like classic cars, classic watches, sports, beautiful women ... and I have a voice . My opinion is respected. Something that men appreciate," he says. Empathy with the male audience not only provides advertising contracts but makes Gandy one of the top paid models in the world - $ 1.4 million in 2013, according to Forbes magazine, his name appears frequently in the top of the lists of the best dressed, the most influential and the most sexy. In 2012, at the Closing Ceremony of the Olympic Games in London, he was the only man to participate in a tribute to British fashion with English top models including Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell.
He is currently an ambassador for London Collection: Men, a series of men's fashion shows preceding London Fashion Week. He has a column in the Fashion & Style section of The Daily Telegraph and a blog for British Vogue, as well as testing cars for the British edition of GQ. He's been at the wheel of objects of desire like the Mercedes SLS AMG Coupe and a Caterham Supersport. Two years ago he received his racing license and last year debuted in the legendary Mille Miglia Italian Race with a Jaguar XK120, 1950, with co-pilot the veteran model Yasmin Le Bon. "I do not know where it comes from my passion for cars, because my family never cared much," he reveals.
Quite a list, not bad for someone who came to the fashion world by accident. In 2001, at 21, Gandy studying computing and multimedia marketing when his flat mates sent his photo to a competition on the program This Morning, a morning variety show on ITV. He was chosen as a winner and awarded a contract with the agency Select, one of leading agencies in Britain which still represents the model.
Fame, however, came only after five years of modeling for a long list of catalogs, at the same time trying to book shows and ad campaigns with major brands without much success. In the early years of the new millennium the androgynous look was all the rage and the major guys were thin, light-skinned and were more effeminate. "They told me I did not have a good body to be a model, which was very muscular," he recalls. "My life was comfortable and I earned well doing the catalogs, but I knew that the great creative minds in the industry were not there, and that bored me."
I was about to give up on my career when, in 2006, there came a great opportunity at a party of a mutual friend, I was introduced to Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, who were looking for someone to launch the men's fragrance Light Blue. Gandy was immediately hired to be the "Italian" athlete in a white speedo diving into the sea of Capri to embrace his stunning love at the end, in the dazzling fragrance's advertisement. One of the images made by Mario Testino became a giant 15-meter poster in Times Square and the video exceeded 11 million views online.With this ad was born the world's first male supermodel and a new look in men's fashion. "I think we brought back the healthy, muscular man who is not afraid of being vain," he defines.
Gandy became one of the faces of Dolce & Gabbana. For the brand, he posed next to divas like Scarlett Johansson and Gisele Bündchen. With the Brazilian, however, it seems that things did not go quite right. In 2012, in an interview with The Daily Mail, the model said the two argued a lot and they did not like working together. These statements were spread across the world - including in Brazil - but today he has nothing but praise for the top. "She is at the top and deserves it," he says.
Constantly pursued, David Gandy is adamant when it comes to his personal life: "I do not talk about that." In the puzzle that is Google, you may find that his last girlfriends were singer Mollie King, with whom he spent ten months with and actress Samantha Barks, which he was with for five months. Even without going into details, he confesses that his schedule makes relationships complicated. "If I ever find a woman who understands that, I can relax and have a family," he admits. "But first I have a lot to do. I want to have enough for the family to have a comfortable life. I want to continue my charity projects. I want to travel the world more. The worst thing is for someone to regret not doing something you always wanted."
When not working, Gandy enjoys the gym, watching rugby or cricket, going to a pub with friends or just being with his parents, who live in the countyside of Essex, east of London. When he can, he visits his nephews, sons of his only sister, who lives in Spain. On his most recent vacation, he went on safari in Botswana and walked the paths of gorillas in Uganda. "While everyone is going to Ibiza for the bakalao music, I personally like to travel to more remote locations. It was something I learned to enjoy traveling with my parents during childhood,"he says. At age 34 , the model feels strongly about the survival of the profession, with the arrival of athletes and actors in the fashion world :"Some are really elegant and add value to the campaigns as Jude Law, George Clooney David Beckham. But I'd rather see big brands valuing more professional models . There's talent out there, many men are incredibly attractive .But I think some can be placed on the agents."
Gandy says he wants to spend more and more time behind the camera, with charitable projects or new business ideas - maybe a brand or collaborating with a great brand.
Recently, he has invested his own money on two smartphone applications: one with his fitness routines and one is a guide for men on how to dress. He also has two assistants to update his Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. "International models know how to take advantage of a brand that is created around their names. And it's a bit what I'm trying to do with mine too: create a brand and sell my lifestyle,"he concludes.
Source: David Gandy's Official IG / Facebook
Source: David Gandy's Official IG / Facebook