David Gandy is featured in next months spanish magazine 'Marie Claire'. For this intimate interview, the spanish photographer Pablo Zamora captures him in Dolce & Gabbana, through a series of pictures that shows us both his celebrity and personal side. To complete he talks to Marta Falli about his rise to the top, his shyness and how he doesn't talk about his private life.
DAVID GANDY: BLESSED YOU ARE
He is the highest God of a sparsely populated Olympus of male models. The British model took five years to become famous, but things are not easy or quick when your ambition is to change the game. Gandy talks about his very masculine passions while revealing a point of shyness, an old boy of the bunch and some other lovely weakness.
David Gandy is the number one of the male models, but his name has not always opened doors for him. When things were beginning to go well, he was no more than the guy in the white pants in the Light Blue fragrance campaign by Dolce & Gabbana. Clients who called his agency used that information to identify him. Despite this, three years ago he reached a certain celebrity status. Among other things, David demonstrated expertise in how to do a dramatic entrance when he drove a vintage Triumph through the center of Milan to get to the boutique where Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana were launching the book they had dedicated to him. The latter is an honor that few women, professional colleagues - significantly better paid than men in their sector - have enjoyed. The volume in question is already in the second hand market with stratospheric prices. "It is extraordinary that a fashion shop show so much respect for a model - Gandy said today - the feeling is mutual."
He agrees to talk on the sunny terrace of the headquarters of Dolce & Gabbana, he's perfectly tanned, hair combed back, wearing a light gray suit with a pocket square and a few buttons of his shirt are unbuttoned. David is himself a brand worth half a million pounds a year; it shows that he is conscience of it, he’s had to work hard to get it. "In castings they always told me the same thing: 'You're too fat'. I remember the noise of the seams ripping when I pulled up the pants. " David Gandy was the classic type for catalogs, which translates into a decent apartment, a nice car and, in general, an affluent lifestyle. But ambition did not let him sleep. "It was tough. When you become famous overnight, you do not have time to learn. It took me five years, but I knew where I wanted to go." He speaks his words with confidence and lengthening the vowels to add some drama. What did he want to achieve? "I wanted to change the game," he replies. While they all told him to loose weight, David went to the gym to grow his biceps and pecs. "I did not have the same physical structure of these androgynous, rock star looking guys which was the standard at the time." Until one day he received a phone call from his agent: he had been selected, but didn't know for what. "There was a casting, Domenico and Stefano wanted the guy wearing sunglasses in the photos of their campaign. It was the fall / winter 2006 campaign, photographed by Steven Meisel, in which David Gandy is dressed like a gentleman and had a guitar in his hands. Shortly after I was in Capri with Mario Testino. "Each of us - Mario, Domenico, Stefano and I - we knew what we were doing was going to be relevant," he recalls.
Born 34 years ago in Billericay, Essex, the son of working class parents who he says he learned a lot from. "I've never seen anyone work as hard as my parents." Now living in London (while his sister Claire lives in Spain): there Gandy just finished renovating a Victorian house in Fulham. Go in search of antique furniture is a passion for him, mentions design as one of his main interests, next being watches & cars - many have compared him to James Bond for this - and the suits he has tailored on Savile Row. "My style reflects the English tradition." It is not uncommon to find him on best dressed lits.
In any case, we discovered his most consistent trait is his shyness and that is not exactly the first word that comes to mind seeing him writhe half-naked on a bed in the photos of Mario Vivanco. The second revelation is that he reveals little of himself beyond what he has decided to be his public image: the classic male. Do you not fear falling into a stereotype?. "I like to have my private life be private, reserved only for the people who are close to me." When he speaks, he sometimes smirks, like if he's thinking of something funny. Listening to him he seems to have suffered bullying when small; he also maintains that it has never considered himself handsome, "it's not that girls would show great interest in me. The first person who made a comment in this regard was my grandfather when I was almost 18. Talking to my mother he said, 'David is becoming a very handsome man. "Indeed, it was not his idea, but a roommate enrolled him in a contest which led him to start working in the fashion world. "I had just finished college and he told me that maybe I could work as a model for a while before finding a real job."
Today, David's activities have multiplied: last September he launched a fitness app for mobile, has a fixed column in GQ, addresses four charities, one of them is Blue Steel Appeal, which refers to movie Zoolander, which precisely parodies the world of male models. "At last, after working with brands, not for brands, so I think I've entered the best phase of my career."
The tabloids go crazy to know the names of the women in his heart (Mollie King, Sarah Ann Macklin or Samantha Barks are some of the ones mentioned). He replies without hesitation: "I do not talk about my private life." But there is a love which does not spare compliments: "when I drive in my car, I love speeding," he whispers without revealing what cars and, above all, how many he has. He adds, "you find yourself working in the public eye and this sometimes means sacrificing privacy."