Rayan Baghdadi is an Iranian fashion model who attracted all the great Western brands
I am working in modeling more than ten years. I started in Iran and moved to Italy.
– There is fashion shows or modeling in Iran?
– There is no actually modeling there. I was working with few magazines, I had cover in the magazine and the pages in magazine about me. And it was fashion week – Tehran fashion week. It was more than ten Iranian designers.
– As we know famous Iranian designers out of Iran, is not it?
– Yes is it. They made it because it was allowed. They got permission from the government to make this event. Actually it was for a man – male and female together. At that time Iranian designers had clothes for man longer.
– There is school for catwalk or modeling in Iran?
– Now its getting much better. Honestly in 2014 this Teno fashion week was first and biggest in Iran with a lot of designers. When they posted pictures they mentioned that its long dresses for man because they used to work in Milan. Now fashion industry in Iran starting to be much better because of the low and rules. Male and female they are working difference. A lot of designers make small fashion show –
5 years ago you will not find any fashion events there and now its much better.
When I started to work ten years ago as a model in that time I was thinking to be as international model. My parents did not support me.
Now people posting the pictures n social media can get money from it.
– Iranian mentality its too strict. But now you are in Dubai. What is the plans here?
– Since 2014 I am here in Dubai. First my show was in Madinat Jumaira – Michael Cinco
I came in this show just to see how its going and suddenly I heard that they need a male model.
And I started to work with him. In that fashion show I walked three times.
After this show I got a lot of pictures and magazines after the show straight away posted my pictures.
I used to work in Milan and Turkey. I knew how to walk and it was not my first time. My position in the fashion show – main position, how to stop and light on me and how to walk.
– You know all of this because you have education in fashion?
– Yes. Modeling its not only my habit. I know how to walk.
In 2008 in Iran there is no University about catwalk or fashion. But I was searching in social media about modeling, models, how to walk. I was 16 years old and walked outside and I imagined as I am walking on the podium, walking on the show. It helped me a lot. I dreamed about modeling and I imagined that I am a model and I am walking on the stage. I did not stop to search about modeling, how to walk. I know how to walk and how to wear – it was match together.
After fashion show I got best position there and I met one booker from MMG –
They called me and in that time it was fashion shows in Dubai –
It was a lot of castings in Dubai. And they invited me to come back to Dubai.
This bookers booked me for the Blooming fashion show and for biggest show in Dubai. I got exclusive offer from MMG to work with them. I got fashion shows and photo shoot, and TV show.
I made photo shoot and I worked three times for Michael Cinco , two times for Fashion Forward and one time for Arab Fashion Week.
When I came to Dubai I worked with – Bloomingdales , Ted Baker, Splash, …….
For me it was almost 9 fashion shows during the season. And of course always getting the photoshoots.
My biggest photo shoot was for D&G. It was shooting for new perfume – The One. I was face for it in photo shoot and commercial video in desert and Four Season hotel.
– D&G signed with you?
– Yes. I was working with them about this new perfume. And my pictures was everywhere even billboards in Sheikh Zayd Road. This photoshoot was in D&G website, Instagram.
I was working with Square magazine, GQ magazine, I was on the cover of ……..magazine, Friday magazine.
Now I can say I have my own experience for photo shoots and work with magazines.
I was working with Versace hotel. It was big campaign with them. They posted my pictures in their page in Instagram.
My project with D&G was much bigger, they posted my pictures not only in Middle East, in Europe, USA also.
I was working with Mac Donald as their company face, with Jumeir hotel.
As a model I was working in Turkey, in Milan with designer Mariano. He is a famous designer in Italy. Twice I made catwalk in his fashion shows and also photoshoots.
I was working with Property company – ,,,,,, as the face for the company.
I am working in Dubai not only for Middle East companies and with Europian as well. But as I have skin, hear and hair dark color so I look more as Arabic. That’s why mostly I am working with Middle East brands.
– You came from Iran and work as a model in Dubai but as we can see here a lot of competition in this field. Where you see yourself after few years?
– I love Dubai. Here a lot of opportunities. It is not depends of culture or type of skin. Honestly I feel Dubai it is my home where is very safety. I am happy here.
– In your opinion how you can develop in Dubai in your field?
– For me as a model here in Dubai a lot of brands, a lot of works and photoshoots, fashion shows, TV programs. A lot of brands which is come to Dubai they need advertising and models for them. My parents asked me to come back to Iran but there is no opportunities there as a model. Even in Europe there is no that much interest to models as here in Middle East. I can say Dubai – it is best and biggest city for fashion. A lot of designers from Europe, USA, UK, from GCC come to Dubai. From my experience I can say 75% of my career its here in Dubai. Before came to Dubai I used work in Europe and Turkey but only work in Dubai with a lot of famous brands made my portfolio stronger. I build my career here in Dubai.
– You are 27 now. Do you have any plan to open school for modeling?
– I did not think about the school. I am thinking after few years to open fashion brand under my name. I have my own vision and goal and I go for it. I want to grow in this field. I am doing my best to make my dreams true. I read every day, one hour when I wake up and one hour before to sleep.
– People don’t believe in this profession as a model. What is your opinion about that?
– When I was young I used to play basketball and I was playing in the national team in my country. When I was 16 years old I was best basketball player there. But I got leg problems and I stoped play. I trained 8 hours per day to go back in the game but doctors said I will not play as before. Basketball was my life.
– You are working now as a model. What you can say for the Iranian people how to get your dream true?
– Always believe in yourself. Before my career I was thinking that I will get this my dream job. I had height for model career and I did not stop to develop myself. If you have a vision, your dream and goals, and you work hard to get for sure you will get it. Never give up.
– What you will do after 10 years?
– During next 10 years I am planning to work as a model with brands. I have a lot of plans. One of my plan as well to try myself as an actor. I want to try it in USA. Now I am 27 and I have a lot of cover for magazines, a lot of fashion shows and photo shoots and to be honest its my first interview.
– How you started you social life in internet world?
– When I started to work in the fashion shows with designer, I did a lot of photo shoots and advertisings I started to post all my projects in Instagram and Facebook.
– You are model from Iran. You are so unique. No any model from Iran started to be famous. Do you think to make something special maybe your own blog or website?
– I am the first Iranian model as a man which started to be famous in Middle East. Surely I will do something good and all world will know me as a first Iranian man model and I am proud of it.
– Tell me your opinion about Arab Fashion Week 2019?
– I worked as a model in Arab Fashion Week. But honestly I like more Fashion Forward because there a lot of international designers. I love to work with Fashion Forward. They care about the models, backstage is good, and payments its good. I worked twice in Arab Fashion Week for Michael Cigno. I love when everything organize in the fashion shows.
– Did you work with designers from Iran?
– Yes. Few years ago I worked with Iranian designer in the fashion week.
A lot of my friends from Iran asked me about fashion field in Middle East. I am ready to help my friends in this field. I have big experience here and I can help them to make a portfolio with pictures. I am ready to share information how its going on. I have some contacts with the agency. But the best way it is go to the agency by yourself with portfolio not only send it. When I was in Milan I went to the agency by myself with portfolio. I am sure that personal contact its very important.
– Before to go to the agency you need to be ready to demonstrate your catwalk, you should know some rules, to be sure how to pose in front of the camera and English its very important for understanding. Because in the fashion show your catwalk will be in front of the audience and cameras – you don’t have chance for mistake. In this case I suggest to train a lot in front of the mirror to look at yourself. You need to be flexible when you are working with client. You should act in the shows or photo shoots as your client want. Listen and feel music very important as well. Sometimes designer wants from you to show not a catwalk but a life style, to show the mood for collection.
– Before fashion shows was much easy but now mostly fashion shows its not just catwalk. This is more like show with acts.
– Totally agree. That’s why you need to practice.
– Which advice you can give for new generation how realize their dream about modeling?
– Now its much easier to learn about it. Technology its too fast and in media and internet you can find a lot of information with pictures and video, blogging about modeling. You can find all fashion shows in the Internet. You can watch and learn from it.
I want to say that if you know the basic of modeling you will adopt to any designer and fashion show.
– Do you plan to teach the people about modeling in your social media page?
– I start to post all my projects in social media and I keep in touch with my audience and followers, if they have a questions I am ready to help them with advice. My passion – help to people. Its make me happy. Especially I am happy to help my people from Iran.
I started my career from simple portfolio, with simple pictures, I knew basic about modeling and catwalk, basic in English which helped me communicate with people. I trained catwalk few hours in front of mirror and my parents in Iran. I knew what I want and what is my aim. If you have a vision and dream – you will do everything for it. Life is choices and only you will make this choice.
– Do you have your celebrity in this field?
– Yes, my idol was Mariano Divailo. When I met him in Dubai few years ago I was too happy to speak with him. Only now I understand that I am idol for a lot of people. I have huge experience in model field. I am the best man model from Iran. If you have a dream – you will do it.