Suite 212 with Paolo Anchisi
Interview and photography by Yu Tsai. Fashion by Dave Thomas.
Yu Tsai: It’s about time we actually have a chance to talk to each other.
Paolo Anchisi: Yeah, right? Sorry for not getting back to you yesterday. It was my birthday, so I was a bit preoccupied.
YT: Happy birthday. How old are you?
PA: I am 22 now. woohoo.
YT: That is like 50 in modeling years right?
PA: ( laughs ) Is it? Like dog years?
YT: Yeah – just like dog years. Let’s get the basic questions out of way. When did you start modeling?
PA: When I was 17, I signed with Ford Model Agency. Many people already might know that my mom was a model back in the day. She encouraged me to get into the business.
YT: Before modeling, what were your aspirations?
PA: Actually, I wanted to go the school for agriculture and horticulture.
YT: We have that in common. I was studying that in college and grew up on a farm. At the time, I wanted to extend my Future Farmers of America career. What made you interested in that subject?
PA: That is what my mom did after she took a break from modeling. Back then, I would help her out on the farm. I love it. I loved anything that didn’t require me to stay indoors or in an office.
YT: It sounds like you and your mom are pretty close.
PA: Like any mom and son, we have our arguments. But, yeah – you can say that we are very close.
YT: What about your dad? Does he have the same amount influence in your life?
PA: My dad traveled a lot when I was growing up. He didn’t really put much pressure on me. He just really supported whatever I wanted to do. When the modeling became a possibility as a career, he was very supportive. His job involves traveling to places all over the world. He wanted me to see the world as well. From time to time, we would actually meet up in different parts of the world. It is nice.
YT: Growing up, did you know you could be a model?
PA: My family and friends would tell me I should try. I was really young then. I had straight blonde hair and was a very cute baby. ( laughs )
YT: I am sure you were. ( laughs ) When did you know you could be a model?
PA: That didn’t really happen or me until after my first fashion season – when I booked all those campaigns. I was in shock. I think that is when I realized that I can be a model. Hair, make-up and stylists can do wonders you know.
YT: I don’t think you needed their help. What is your favorite campaign thus far?
PA: I love going to amazing locations so I would say that most of the H&M campaigns are my favorites. They travel around the world for the shoots. Locations like the Maldives was amazing. What was your favorite campaign I have done?
YT: I think Yves Saint Laurent. It was classic, timeless and beautiful. Have you ever thought about what you would do if your modeling career stopped?
PA: I would work with my Dad’s company. It is call ESCAPEtoSHAPE.com. It is a traveling fitness spa that offers luxury, culture and fitness at unique locations around the world. This way, I still get to travel around the world and enjoy healthy eating.
YT: I need one of those trips. Yoga and healthy food sounds perfect.
PA: Everyone should. Didn’t you just travel around the world and back recently?
YT: I just got home from Switzerland. Before that was Brazil and right before that was Belize. Oh, then there was Bali that kicked-off the whole travel schedule.
PA: That sounds amazing. Was it all for work?
YT: It was for work. But I enjoyed it anyway. Switzerland was magical. I loved it. It was my first time there. I will go back there for sure. Belize is like a second home. I love going there to work and then scuba dive afterwards.
PA: Nice. What is next for you?
YT: It is nice to be home a bit. I have a few campaigns and celebrity shoots scheduled. What about you?
PA: I got a few things coming out too, but I am not allowed to say yet.
YT: I guess we all just have to wait and see then. You have worked for so many brands already. Is there one brand you really want to work for?
PA: Yes – Polo.
YT: Polo? Really? Why?
PA: I just really love their fashion.
YT: Ok. Lastly, who is your favorite photographer?
PA: ( Without missing a beat ) Inez and Vinoodh.
YT: WRONG answer.
PA: Wait Wait, Yu Tsai of course.
YT: Too late… ( Logged off Skype ).
Yu Tsai photographed and interviewed Paolo Anchisi. Fashion by Dave Thomas, Grooming by Allan Avendano@Opusbeauty.com. Location: Suit 212 Grafton Hotel on Sunset. Los Angeles