One way ticket to the catwalk, please?
"Growing up I always loved fashion, my mom was always fashion-forward and was the center of attention and she still is to this day. So I think my love for fashion grew from there..."
Being born and raised in a small mining town of Mufulira in Copperbelt Province, Zambia, what would the likely career prospects be? A career in fashion is probably not the first option. Although, when you have someone who inspires you and motivates your love for fashion - then it's inevitable.
Meet Francis. Francis realized his love of fashion at a very young age and he was determined to be a part of the industry. Upon completing college, he boldly booked a one way ticket to Johannesburg. And what was the objective? He wasn't too certain, but a career in fashionwas on the cards and he was going to make it happen.
Francis did not tell any of his family members he was set to embark on an adventure and moving to another country to do so. He was 19 years-old. Not long after he'd been in Johannesburg had he signed to Boss Models.
Dreams do come true then. Some highlights of his glamorous modelling career include: TV commercials, walking the catwalk for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week season after season, shooting magazine editorials and being featured as one of the 25 NEW Faces of Johannesburg by a well-known online publication.
There have also been moments that were less pleasant. Being a black, male model in Africa has been rather challenging and Francis says the most defining moments have been overcoming rejection (which is an integral part of any model's life). Francis has perservered and hopes to continue doing what he loves for years to come.
And the best thing about modeling? The traveling of course. Francis' favourite city? Cape Town, because of its laid back feel and the opportunity to explore. He especially likes the quaint little restaurants around the coastal city.
I was interested to find out who this fashion enthusiast's favourite designer is and interestingly enough, he spoke ofthe late Alexander McQueen. "There's no comparison. He was simply a genius. The stories he'd tell and emotion that he could evoke with his shows were unbelievable. Not only was he a pioneer in design but his actual craftsmanship was so well cultivated, and you could see it in his intricate designs. He was definitely one in a million."
Keep an eye out for Francis - you won't be sorry.
written by Thuli Nkosi
Make Up by House of Pradah
Images by Elijah Semosa of @72_photography