Culture Fashion Interviews

ToD Feature: Diyasha Smith

At only 21 years old, Diyasha Smith, is rapidly and surely taking over the modeling industry. She has taken Charlotte, NC by storm with her talents and the QC is only the beginning for her. She is not only a model but has other ventures under her belt that is giving her leverage to help others in their own life. In this feature you can get to know about the lady in front of the lens that is Diyasha Smith. Afterwards, you will find footage of her slaying the runway at the Annual For Sisters Only held at the Convention Center in Charlotte.

1. When did you start modeling?

I started modeling when I was about 14 on and off for a few years, but I started really taking it serious and being consistent starting January 2014.

 

2. What sparked your interest to start modeling?

I was always a child that was to myself, but one thing that I knew I was meant to do was walk runways and grace covers and spreads of magazines. Once ANTM (Americas Next Top Model) aired I got up and started practicing my runway walk and it was on from there.

3. Do you lookup to any supermodels and why?

I wouldn’t say I “look up” to them because at any point in time I could be on their level, but I respect Tyra Banks and Naomi Campbell because of the impact they made on the fashion industry being African American legends in a “European” market. I’ve learned so much from them and will continue to do so and not to mention they are remarkable business women! Being that they’ve built their brands up to be so large and attach many things other than “model” to their name really sticks out in my eyes.
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4. What has been your favorite experience thus far with modeling?

My favorite experience thus far with modeling has been the blessing of meeting so many different and talented individuals who have such a love and respect for the industry, traveling and finally making the decision to move in my purpose to use my voice and platform for a greater good. Also, being able to be on the same accord creatively with the make-up artist, hair stylist and photographer to watch an idea come to life! I do so much studying and learning that it truly just keeps me inspired and pumped for my next photoshoot or fashion show.

 

5. Is there anyone you are looking forward to working with in the near future? 

Yes! I am looking forward to working with the very talented actor/photographer Lance Gross! (Putting it into the universe that we work together in the next year!)

6. How would you describe the market for modeling in Charlotte?

The market in Charlotte for models is “growing”. We are pretty much playing catch up with Atlanta where there are more people and most importantly more paid opportunities but I know in the next few years Charlotte will be on the rise.

7. What are your other ventures besides modeling?

Other than modeling I am a runway coach, photographer, singer (on the lowest of keys), seamstress and health/wellness business owner- helping people build up mentally, physically and financially.

8. Has there ever been a time you wanted to give up? If so, what kept you going?

There has been plenty of times where I wanted to give up, being in such a saturated market you really just have to focus on the path that you were blessed with because it’s easy to get upset with yourself because you feel you should be much further than you currently are. I keep myself going by taking “spiritual retreats”, where I take time off of modeling to focus on keeping myself balanced in mind, body and spirit which ironically gives me inspiration when I jump back into modeling. Over the past year and a half that I have been modeling I’ve noted that my purpose is bigger than me and this is my platform to change a lot of lives and that is exactly what I will do.

9. What is your take on the modeling industry giving way to plus sized models? 

I think that it’s absolutely beautiful that modeling has expanded to different shapes and sizes and that’s because people came in and made their mark on the industry as I stated in the other question. I love the fact that you can come into this industry and still feel beautiful without having to be a size 0.

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10. They say that models do not eat, but how do you get away from this stereotype of models? What are your favorite foods to indulge in?

Being that people are so used to seeing anorexic fashion models that’s the first thing that is associated with modeling which is not cool. One thing I can say is, there have been numerous shows that I’ve done and they didn’t provide us with food but a lot of the models do in fact eat so we bring our own food. I myself loveeeeeee to eat, I’m also a vegetarian so I typically snack on sushi, mangoes, strawberries, peaches, pasta and fruit smoothies. I do my best to stay away from junk food to make sure my physical is a direct reflection of my internal health.

11. What city do you see yourself in next when it comes to taking over the market and why?

I see myself taking over Atlanta next only because I’ve only done one modeling event out there and I feel there will be more opportunities for me to really reach a large audience how I want, then I will make my way to NYC and LA.

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12. What advice would you give to other models on the rise?

The advice I would give to models is to not jump into modeling if you don’t have thick skin. Being that this is the “beauty” industry a lot of girls get discouraged when they don’t get chosen for certain gigs because they didn’t fit the “look” when that is the opportunity to create your own lane and ideal of what beauty truly is. DO YOUR RESEARCH, know your look and what category of modeling you best fit in (fashion, beauty, commercial, editorial, runway, promo, etc) to make it easier on yourself and your pockets. Modeling is a BUSINESS, you will have to invest time and money but at some point you want to make sure that you are being paid for your services. Focus on building your brand so that people don’t see you as just a model, but much, much more. Also, modeling teaches you certain things about yourself so it’s best to be well rounded in the industry because you may not end up modeling 5-10 years from now but it can be a vehicle to take you where you are destined to be.

 

Diyasha wants to leave everyone with these last words: For any artist out there who feels like giving up because instant gratification hasn’t made it’s way around or doubt is creeping up, don’t let those things distract you and block you from your blessings. We all have a specific purpose and a mission to make this world and the people in it a better place so whatever you are good at spread it because you never know who needs it! Continue to do what you love and the universe will make sure you are well taken care of, don’t listen to the naysayers just because they don’t understand your vision, it isn’t meant for them to. MOST importantly, don’t be afraid to charge your worth.

Follow Diyasha on Twitter and Tumblr.

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