Interview with Model/ Actor – Zachary Gray.
Matthew: What was your first ever modelling gig? What was it for? How did you feel?
Zachary: My very first taste of modeling was during my sophomore year of college. I was asked to be a model for a senior class project for Columbia College in Chicago. That same year I participated in my very first runway show for an Aids Awareness Benefit. I absolutely loved being photographed and being in “a work of art.” Trying to convey a message or a feeling to an audience through a picture was, and is, always a fun challenge to face and overcome. Being part of a runway show was exhilarating. The rush is intense and amazing. I cannot wait to do another runway show.

Zachary Gray (12)
Matthew: When did you first sign with an agent? And what was the process like in finding an agent?
Zachary: I signed with MSA LA in November of 2015. It was an emotional process, to say the least. Being towards the end of the age range for agencies, I felt I was already at a disadvantage. I spent time and money developing a good portfolio, taking pictures with different photographers for some variety, and went to open calls for almost all the agencies in LA. Finally, I got a call back from MSA and I felt like I conquered a major obstacle in my life. It is not easy to be looked at and to be accepted or rejected into a career based on that first glance and 5 pictures. Like many industries, its cut throat. There are hundreds of guys who look like me and they have seen them all. You have to find out what features and qualities make you unique and run with them!

Zachary Gray (11)
Matthew: What is the most enjoyable part of modeling?
Zachary: I enjoy the challenge. I am someone who loves change and accepts that I cannot be in control all the time. I am a very happy person who smiles most of the day and when a photographer wants me to look angry, it’s a challenge. But I practice with every shoot and with any spare time in developing the looks for emotions. It is very fulfilling to look at a picture and say “I did it!”

Zachary Gray (8)
Matthew: What has been the most unusual thing you have experienced while modeling?
Zachary: Since I haven’t been modeling for too long, I haven’t come across many unusual things. I try to be prepared and do my research before I start something. But I would have to say, shooting in a park during the day in underwear/swimsuit is a feeling you have to get used to. Not that everyone is gawking or actually looking at you…but you are basically on display in front of everyone passing. Similarly, shooting where there is high foot traffic. You have to block everyone out that is walking by or the tourist stopping and taking pictures because…this only happens in LA.

Zachary Gray (13)
Matthew: If you were to plan your ideal photo shoot, where would it be? Would it have a theme? What would you be wearing?
Zachary: A high fashion shoot would be an ideal photo shoot for me. I would be in clothing that is not worn on an everyday basis and paired up with a fierce woman. We would be shooting for a brand but we would be somewhere out of the US; perhaps Paris, London, or even Greece. It probably would have some theme to it but I’m not picky on what it is.

Zachary Gray (9)
Matthew: You have a strong connection with Chicago and Los Angeles. What do you love and dislike about Los Angeles? And Love and dislike about Chicago ?
Zachary: One of the best things about Los Angeles is the weather. Coming from the midwest, I am used to having four seasons but here, I get two and a winter that is 50 degrees! Los Angeles also has that Hollywood feel. You see people out and about at all times of the day and you wonder if anyone actually works. One of the things I dislike about LA is there is a high population of “flakes and fakes.” Those that will make tentative plans until something better comes up, or those who only want to be a friend if you can get them further in their field. It happens everywhere but I feel it is pretty prominent here.
I love Chicago. I know that most people say that about their hometown/city, but I do. It is a beautiful city with plenty to do and such great people. I have great friends that live there, family nearby, and the feeling of “home” in Chicago. Of course there is always good and bad to a city but besides the terribly cold winters, I would be living there now.

Zachary Gray (15)

Matthew: If you were to be stranded on a desert island with one celebrity, who would it be and why?
Zachary: If I was stranded on a desert island with a celebrity, I would pick Celine Dion. She is a fantastic artist and a wonderful performer. I personally do not know her, but I imagine she is a wonderful and lovely woman to be around. I have been caught on numerous occasions (by family and friends) just singing and dancing away to her music. One of the greatest days of my life was when I was surprised with tickets to see her concert in Las Vegas in 2104. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time and probably cried a few times (yes. I cried. And I won’t apologize for that). Hopefully one day I will get to meet her! And, I am terribly sorry for her most recent loss of her husband.

Interview by Matthew John

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