Q: Could you tell us a little bit about yourself?
A: Of course, I attend the University of Washington Honors College with my younger brother Cedric where I major in Aerospace Engineering. I have a loving mother, a southern blonde girl from the outskirts of New Orleans, and my dad, who immigrated from Tokyo. I was born and raised in Seattle, where I spent all of my life but recently moved to Los Angeles to take advantage of the virtual learning environment and pursue my passions.
Q: How did you start modeling and what made you do it?
A: An agent scouted me walking down the street in Seattle, and it really took me by surprise because growing up, I was always the nerdy Asian kid who got perfect grades. However, I was on the basketball team as well, so I could never really be labeled as a stereotype and never looked at myself through the lens of a label. So with modeling, my experience so far has just been using it as an outlet to express myself and feel confident in who I am.
Q: You mentioned your studies. How are you trying to combine Aerospace Engineering with modeling and how can you manage doing both?
A: As far as intertwining the two, I currently work for Futuremood Studios as their In-House Model & Ambassador. The company was founded on the opportunity to bring the material science and tech-forward strategies that sneaker companies have developed to a sunglasses industry that hasn’t seen any real technical revolutions in decades. So being able to see both sides of modeling the product that I wholeheartedly stand behind and believe in both aesthetically and technically is something that brings me joy. We have other lines of glasses in the works –even utilizing titanium alloy metals that are more commonly seen in aerospace than eyewear.
Q: What is the thing you love the most about Aerospace Engineering?
A: I have always loved math for its purity and the ability to come to a logical conclusion. So, engineering seemed like the perfect choice for me growing up since it allowed me to use my passion for math and my interest in physics to create things that can come to life—discovering 3D modeling software in high school allowed this passion to burn brighter. Studying engineering in college has shaped my ability to perceive my environment with a more multifaceted awareness that has grown my appreciation for the phenomenon of flight.
Q: Have you achieved anything else in this field or modeling?
A: As far as my engineering career is involved, I’m a three-time intern for The Boeing Company, where I was able to work on proprietary aircraft development programs and appreciate a wide variety of everything the aerospace industry has to offer in general at a leading global company. During the school year, however, I am also a lead on my University’s rocketry team that just won the Spaceport America Cup, the most expansive college rocketry competition in the world. As far as modeling, I’m a very new face and just moved out to Los Angeles a few weeks ago. Since taking advantage of the virtual learning environment for school, I’ve been able to work with amazing photographers such as Holly Parker and Jorden Keith with a campaign for Futuremood Studios and multiple major music video cameos coming out shortly.
Q: Besides your professional life, what else do you enjoy doing?
A: In my free time, I’m an avid basketball player and played throughout high school but just enjoy working out and sports in general whether that’s playing or watching. I also volunteer as a mentor for my high school’s FIRST robotics team that consistently qualifies for Internationals.
Q: How do you see yourself in the near future?
A: I see myself combining my technical prowess with a highly successful career in modeling. I hope to eventually launch my own brand with my experience in 3-D computer-aided-design software as a building block to delve into all realms of entertainment with a diversified background.
Q: Which piece of advice would you give to young models who want to combine their professional career with modeling?
A: Throughout my time as a student, combined with the taste of professional experience I have, the best advice I could give is time management. If you have something to do, do it now. Google Calendar and a flexible daily routine have been the foundations of my efficiency. That said, it’s also important to be spontaneous and keep yourself open to opportunities. Nurture the ability to reassess and rearrange your priorities. This way, things get done in order of importance. Of course, with school, I have deadlines, and this is what I have to work around, but managing my time outside of these set blocks allows me to remain flexible so I can go to a shoot or a casting.