America’s Next Top Model, Nyle DiMarco has both a presence and a look that are quite difficult to ignore. To oversimplify, Nyle is gorgeous; and looking at the photo spread, (his first as ANTM), it is obvious that he has the character to match.
It was made abundantly clear every step of the way through Cycle 22 of ANTM that Nyle does not need the playing field leveled for him – He’s got this. Throughout the competition, he never considered his deafness to be a disadvantage. Audible communication isn’t everything; modeling is about channeling and conveying energy. Nyle’s blossoming career showcases his ability to channel these energies, and his skill set has lent itself to his remarkable level of ad-worthiness. Other than one particular challenge in which contestants were photographed in absolute darkness; with only sporadic flashes of the camera (which for him, meant working deaf and blind), it could be said that the effort required to master other degrees of communication have contributed to his rapid success.
In addition to modeling, Nyle works as a creative collaborator on the user-friendly app, “theASLapp“, which features conversational American Sign Language as taught by native deaf signers.
Embodying the spirit of millennial multi-facetedness, he is one part model, one part actor, one part humanitarian, and growing every day.
Congratulations, Nyle! We look forward to seeing what the future brings.
YELENA DEYNEKO: What are some of the most important things you learned about yourself from being a contestant on America’s Next Top Model?
NYLE DiMARCO: Well my language, American Sign Language was deprived for the majority of the time. This made me appreciate the Deaf community more and realize that the community will always be my home.
I also learned how to really bring the energy out in a picture. Modeling is not easy, but exhausting because if you really want to be the best, you will need to learn how to channel your energy in order to have people seeing and feeling it from a single picture.
YD: What was the most rewarding experience?
ND: The most rewarding experience was working with Yu Tsai. He is a well-known photographer. I’m honored to have been trained by Yu Tsai throughout the competition. He has made me a better model, and I’m ready to thrive!
YD: What was the most challenging experience?
ND: Although I was language-deprived, I think that the night shoot was the most challenging. It was only challenging because we lacked ideas of how we would make the night shoot more accessible for me as a Deaf person. We tried using a flashlight, but I could not really see and so it didn’t work out. We tried banging on my box so I could perform and pose, but the rhythm was not great. It was a disaster. I think having glow in the dark gloves would have made everything better!!
YD: How did you decide to enter modeling? How did you get on the show?
ND: ANTM found me on social media. At the time, I was starting to give modeling a chance after several encouragements from friends and photographers. I was only a few months into the industry. ANTM then found me and the rest is history.
YD: What is the most challenging aspect of modeling for you?
ND: After giving this question much thought, I cannot think of a challenging aspect. It is a given that I am Deaf, but I don’t think that this has been getting in the way of my work ethic and of my interactions with people. I would say nothing for now!
YD: *Do you ever find your deafness acting as an obstacle in your life and in your career?
ND: Never. I have always considered it to be an advantage. I grew up with a huge Deaf family in a large Deaf community. I am the fourth Deaf generation in my family, so my pride is deeply rooted and I love being Deaf. I think that with me, loving my Deafness really made me confident and able to do anything I wanted
YD: When you are at a photo-session, how do you communicate with people who don’t know sign language?
ND: During photo shoots, it does not require language in order to communicate. The photographer and I usually gesture or use our phones to communicate. It has never once been a problem.
YD: What would you like to achieve personally and professional?
ND: I would love to thrive and achieve in this industry because for me, it would prove to the world what Deaf people are capable of.
Professionally, I would love to work with Dolce & Gabbana! That would be my dream, and maybe with Gigi Hadid!
YD: What is it like to be in a relationship with Nyle?
ND: Adventurous, outgoing…I love to exercise and play sports together, and I love trying new things.
YD: What does love mean to you?
ND: Love means knowing that there is someone you can rely on. This is what makes a great team.
YD: What does success mean to you?
ND: Success would mean that I am capable of proving to the world that deaf people can do anything except…nothing!
YD: What is your greatest obsession?
ND: My greatest obsession is the gym. I never imagined myself saying that, but here I am! The gym is my best friend. Not only does it help you to stay fit, but it helps you get your mind off of things whenever you’re stressed.
YD: Complete the sentence: Nyle is….
ND: Nyle is fearless, random, and real.