Photography Sophia Carmine. 

six faces of tijuana that represent the new era of modelling in mexico

How these fresh faces are fighting stereotypes and diversifying the industry.

by i-D Mexico
|
16 October 2018, 10:06pm

Photography Sophia Carmine. 

"I have seen and am familiar with a lot of models; a wide range of stories, roots, skin colour, and body types. That's why I came to the conclusion that Tijuana has a diversity of beauty that is more extensive than it may seem,” Gerardo Carrillo tells i-D. Carrillo is head booker of the modelling agency New Icon, based in Tijuana and, for this article he introduced us to the faces in the north of Mexico that are diversifying the industry. To find out how they started, why they do it, and how far they want to go, we chatted to these six models whose worst nightmare is to be stereotyped.

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Denisse Alor, 25 years old, chef

Where are you from?
Tijuana, BC.
How long have you been modelling?
Four years.
In your opinion, which model should we be following these days?
Anyone who inspires you to be a better person and encourages personal growth, someone who positively influences your life.
Why do you think it’s important for there to be a stronger Latino representation in the modelling industry?
Because we need to put aside the idea of malinchismo [an attraction to western ideals] that pervades the industry, so that we can show that in our country too, there are talented people looking for opportunities, with aspirations and desire to grow.
Why is Mexican youth more active than ever?
Because we now have access to information and we desire to make ourselves known and assert our opinions.

@denissealor

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Kayela Pierre-Lys, 17 years old, high school student, Matthew Pierre-Lys, 18 years old, photographer

Where are you from?
M: From San Diego, California and raised in Tijuana, Baja California.
What personal experience inspired you to start modeling?
M: The fact that I didn’t even know that I was good at it and so I decided to try it out because my friends dared me to take some photographs.
K: I realised that people had a very narrow-minded stereotype of what constitutes a woman, and what specific shape and size she should be.
Why do you think it’s important for there to be a stronger Latino representation in the modelling industry?
M: Because there are thousands of Latino kids who grow up thinking that they can’t do the same things as the people they see on TV or in magazines, because they aren’t represented the same way they are. I'm glad that the beauty standard is changing a bit nowadays and has stopped being exclusively for people with fair skin and blonde hair. It was about time.
K: Latinos are an explosive and cultural mix; they all have a certain uniqueness and the modelling industry can take advantage and exploit that.

@matthew_pierrelys @kayela.pierrelys
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Kevin Velarde, 18 years old

Where are you from?
Mazatlan, Sinaloa, but I've been living in Tijuana for 12 years.
How long have you been modelling?
I haven’t been doing it for long at all, only about 10 months.
What personal experience inspired you to start modelling?
I have always wanted to do something great in my life. My body is tall and thin, and I always wanted to model and I had my family’s support.
In your opinion, which model should we be following these days?
Right now, the Mexican model Mariana Zaragoza - she’s a great example of perseverance and humility, she’s taking Mexico to new levels on the big catwalks. Also the models of the Tomorrow Is Another Day agency, who defy the conventions of masculinity.
How far do you want to go with modelling?
I want to have experience in haute couture as part of my CV, but I will always have more goals, I want to inspire young people to fulfil their dreams and not give up on them.

@velarde_kevin

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Sara Armenta, 19 years old, architecture student

Where are you from?
Tijuana, Baja California. I was born here and it’s home for me.
Why do you think it’s important for there to be a stronger Latino representation in the modelling industry?
It’s important because it’s diversity, and that makes our day-to-day more real and natural.
Why do you think Mexican youth are more active than ever?
It’s young Mexican’s motivation to excel and grow that is opening doors.
What have you learned living in Tijuana that you don’t think you would have experienced in another city...
To be chilled out, always open to changes and new people.
How far do you want to go with modelling?
Catwalks in Paris and Milan.

@sarisarmenta

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Andrés Silva, 20 years old, manager of four shops

Where are you from?
Tijuana.
How long have you been modelling?
About four to six months.
What inspired you to start modelling?
Myself, taking casual photos.
In your opinion, which model should we be following these days?
Nobody really. I believe that everyone must advance at their own pace and follow their own path.
Why do you think it’s important for there to be a stronger Latino representation in the modelling industry?
So that there can be a little more work and growth.

@yungred4

Credits


Photography Sophia Carmine
Casting and costume coordination Gerardo Carrillo
Models New Icon Tijuana

This article originally appeared on i-D ES.

Tagged:
mexico
Tijuana
models
diversity
model agencies