André Clarke the model is an enigma. He’s quick to tell you that.
A stereotyped fashion industry that is often quick to label male models wasn’t exactly his preferred professional setting.
It is ironic then that it was at a fashion show at the University of the West Indies where his modeling career got a kick start. And it almost didn’t happen; his friend had to plead with him—three times, in fact—to get him to agree to be in the show.
When a local menswear designer discovered him there and booked him on the spot, however, it was clear he had made the right decision.
From that obscure college catwalk, in the months that followed, he was cast for runway shows at Barbados Fashion Week, and was soon jetting away to exotic destinations for gigs.
And the journey got better. He became the face of Harl Taylor’s print campaign, landed the “Caribbean Male Photo Model of the Year” title in 2010 and walked for Indashio of “Glam God” fame.
So after almost turning down the opportunity that led to his discovery, what does André make of his modeling career?
There are crazy moments, like being asked to walk in a runway show, while wearing a loincloth and firing business cards from a slingshot into the audience, he says. But of course there are way better, impressive ones, which eclipse some of modeling’s wacky scenarios by a long shot.
Strange as it seems, André the model who almost never was, has also got a few more tricks under his sleeve. He’s begun throwing around words like “actor” and “TV show host,” which admittedly match perfectly with his fast-track music career.
A great deal of work for one man to take on, some may say. But with the luck, opportunity and success he’s had so far, it’s not hard to believe that it might all be possible.