UNB Model Profile featuring Braeden Wright
Our good friends over at the PnV network hooked us up with another great recommendation for our profile series. In comes Braeden Wright! Braeden shares an intense passion for the arts which adds so much value to his creative side. He sits down to share his passion through his heart and puts everything out there for us in his words and portfolio. Definitely one to remember!
UNB Kyle: Thanks for taking your time to talk to me today. I love your portfolio. How did it all start?
Braeden: My first big modeling gig was walking Calvin Klein S/S 15 exclusive in Milan this past summer. My New York agency (Soul Artist Management) got them to fly me in for a casting a couple of months before the show. There are always so many guys competing for only a handful of spots, so it was really exciting to book as my first fashion week show. They actually ended up confirming me on my birthday. That phone call from my agent was probably the best birthday present I have ever gotten. Actually, calling my family to tell them the news was maybe the only thing better. It was all pretty surreal.
Kyle: Wow what a great way to spend a birthday and a great memory to always have. Fashion week is huge too so that is an amazing first chance. What made you want to pursue modeling as a career?
Braeden: After I graduated from University back home in Canada, I knew that I wanted to spend some time pursuing music. I’ve always felt that music and fashion owe a lot to each other, so in many ways fashion has always been a big part of who I am as well. I’ve always had a love for the arts– music, poetry, photography, film. The fashion world is full of a lot of brilliant creative minds and that was something that attracted me as well. After spending one winter working on demos, I was scouted by Mode Models and eventually decided to go in and meet them. The rest is history.
Kyle: A love for the arts definitely enables you to showcase that creative side. I love how someone can have such a passion and vision for something and be able to pursue it with such love. Do you feel that you have had your breakthrough moment yet?
Braeden: Well I just shot with Bruce Weber for VMAN 33, my first major editorial. It was only just released this week. But I do have a couple of other surprises on their way out this month, and I think the collection of work all coming out at once is going to be very fun to see. You’re just gonna have to stay tuned.
Braeden: As far as what’s been released, I would definitely have to say shooting with Bruce for VMAN in Miami. It was an incredible experience. Shooting with Bruce is like stepping inside his world for a moment, and he just captures you within it. It was unlike anything I had ever experienced before; such an authentic, relaxing, and creative atmosphere, with a crew that feels like a family. It was also my first time in Miami– and after having a winter blast here in New York and being back in Canada for the holidays, I was pretty excited to spend a day in the sun surrounded by palm trees and jellyfish. An experience I will definitely never forget.
Kyle: Yes I can imagine the warmth and sun was a welcomed place to be after that cold winter. Sounds like a special photographer who can transform a model and shoot into such an internal world. Which shoot has been your most challenging? Why?
Braeden: Actually, I would also have to say the VMAN shoot with Bruce. This is only because I actually had a family member extremely important to me pass away only a week before having to fly to Miami for the shoot. It was all a bit of a whirlwind for me, and having to get my bearings in order to be prepared was actually really difficult. But once I was there, shooting with Bruce, feeling the amazing energy, that stress faded away pretty quickly. I actually remember having a moment to myself on set, lying in this hammock on the beach, with the sun looking down on me through the palm trees. In that moment I felt her looking down on me, and I really felt her presence. She was one of my biggest supporters in pursuing this career– and I knew she was smiling down at me.
Kyle: I can imagine that was a difficult time and how hard it is to have to throw yourself into your work. Those moments sound pretty personal and something that you will always keep in your heart. And it’s kind of nice how you will be able to see these pictures and remember your family member and know she is smiling down on you. Now no one wants to admit it but they can be funny. Have you had any embarrassing photo shoot moments?
Braeden: I’m a pretty open and easygoing guy, so most photo situations that would maybe seem embarrassing for other people usually are the ones I find most interesting or exciting. There really isn’t anything I can think of. Yet.
Kyle: That is a good attitude to have though. Makes them more exciting as you said. But yes, yet, is the keyword there haha! Are there any brands or photographers you would like to work with that you have not worked with yet?
Braeden: There are definitely too many to list. There is such an array of bold and creative minds out there in this industry. It’s really incredible. I remember sitting down and going through some books by Mario Testino—“Alive” is one that comes to mind. It was totally captivating. I sat there and stared at the pages over and over for maybe two hours. It just completely blew my mind. I’ve also always loved seeing what Mert and Marcus are up to. Their work is always so surreal and otherworldly, yet always so incredibly fucking perfectly beautiful. It’s like this perfect dream world where only the most badass get to live. Same goes with Steven Klein. They are all really great. I also really love Hedi Slimane. He’s seemingly capable of anything. He takes some of the coolest photos, designs these amazing pieces of clothing—and he draws so much from rock n roll and injects even more right back in. I remember when I first realized that the same person who took the photos for the album artwork of Phoenix’s ‘Alphabetical’ (one of my favorite bands) was the same person who was, at the time, creative director at Dior Homme. And now he is making such amazing things for Saint Laurent. Just incredible, man.
Kyle: This is what I love, the passion. This will probably please so many brands, photographers and other arts outlets as you continue to excel in your career. Your portfolio ranges from fully clothed to artistically nude. What goes through your mind right before you have to do these revealing shoots?
Braeden: “…This is gonna be fun.”
Kyle: Haha! That may be the best answer! Your body is very nicely defined. What kind of diet and exercise do you do to keep up this physique?
Braeden: I am always exercising. My routine is very constant. I work out five times a week, full body split, with heavy weights and a little trick that I learned from my good friend Nic Palladino—“the burnout.” I also learned a lot of ab tricks from the late, great Greg Plitt. He was one of my heroes. He’s the reason people stare at me like I’m slightly insane, as I’m hanging upside down from a chin up bar doing crunches. That never gets old ha.
Kyle: Yes insane but clearly pays off. I am sure you have a weakness here and there for something fun to eat. Do you have a favorite cheat meal?
Braeden: Panago (Canadian pizza chain) Tropical Hawaiian pizza. Hot wings with blue cheese sauce. Salsa Verde Doritos (special flavor I’ve only found in Las Vegas). Chocolate raspberry cheesecake. If there was a dream cheat meal for me, this would be it. Add a mojito and call it a day haha.
Kyle: All good choices. I hope you don’t hate yourself after eating all of that. We have seen you in some underwear shots and we are an underwear blog so we all want to know your personal tastes. Looking at your underwear drawer, what is it made up of? % boxer briefs, % briefs, % jocks, % thongs.
Braeden: 10% boxer briefs, 90% briefs. Calvin Klein and Emporio Armani.
Kyle: Nice, good quality brands. Outside of your drawer, what is the craziest pair of underwear you have ever worn?
Braeden: Definitely my white Calvin Klein thong, they give you one to wear under your clothes at the show. Tiniest piece of underwear I’ve ever worn. No lines under the clothes though—big points for functionality ha!
Kyle: I am guess that did not make it into your favorite underwear pile! But as you said, it serves a purpose in those fashion shows. We have really enjoyed seeing the man in the pictures and getting to you know your model side. What is something that your fans don’t know about you that you want them to know?
Braeden: That I can sing. I promise. And that I really like to play guitar, drums, and program strange and dirty little synth sounds. Guitar effects pedals are one of my obsessions. And that I’m not always a good boy.
Kyle: Hmmm not a good boy? I will have to get the private exclusive answer on that one! What are your goals for your career?
Braeden: Honestly, I really don’t want to say. I have many lofty goals for my career, some you could probably guess but many you wouldn’t expect. And it’s just so much more fun when it’s all a surprise.
Kyle: We look forward to following your journey of surprises! Finally, there are a lot of up and coming models out there who enjoy getting all of the advice they can. What is the best advice anyone gave you when you started your modeling career?
Braeden: I think the best advice I’ve ever gotten is to know yourself for yourself and just be that person. In this industry it’s very easy to get lost trying to match everyone’s expectations for you– one market telling you to be one way, and another telling you the opposite. Sometimes it’s enough to make your head spin. At the end of the day, you do need to keep yourself very open to growth and wisdom from all avenues, and even though who you are and want to be can grow and evolve over time, the bottom line is being able to know exactly where you fit and who you are and need to be. You just need to be the best version of yourself possible. You need to stay true to your vision, and work your ass off. There is power in authenticity– and when you are your best and authentic self, that is exactly when good things start to happen.
Check out more of Braeden Wright below.
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