If you think this 23-year-old is the sort who considers surfing, snowboarding, rock climbing, and cliff diving as weekend hobbies, you might not be too far off about his inclination for living on the edge. He looks the part, no? Cheeky grin, gorgeous shoulder-length mane, and a bod that looks perfect for somersaults into the pool. Then, this Canadian model tells us he plays golf too, which essentially made our minds explode in delight and confusion. Meet fashion’s hottest surprise package.
MANIFESTO: Tell us a bit about yourself.
RYAN KEATING: My Name is Ryan Michael Keating. I’m Canadian and I live in Manhattan, New York. I just recently got back into the city (New York) from a much needed holiday in Canada with my family and friends.
M: Share with us a bit of your backstory and how you got discovered.
RK: I was born and raised into a family of welders, carpenters, and construction workers, and never imagined working in fashion let alone being a model. Shortly after graduating high school, I was scouted by Sean Penhall of Want Management in Dundas Square (the “Time Square” of Toronto).
M: What made you want to give modelling a shot?
RK: I really started modelling and gave it a go when I discovered how much opportunity there was to travel. I love to explore and continuously discover, and after graduating it was the perfect time to take advantage and see what else was out there.
M: Since you spend so much time travelling for work, what do you miss most about home?
RK: I miss my Family! I call them every couple days on FaceTime but it’s not the same. I love doing things with them, like going to our family farm, a walk on the beaches of Lake Ontario, even just running errands.
M: What is the turning point of your career and who helped you get there?
RK: I can’t credit any one event or person to my success. It has been a team effort of all my incredible agencies around the world.
M: What is your best modelling experience thus far?
RK: I’m so lucky to have had so many remarkable experiences such as shooting in Alaska then flying straight to the dessert for a night shoot. But still to this day one of my favourite experiences was walking for Gucci and Fendi on the same day in my first season. That was definitely a career high for me.
M: What is your hobby?
RK: Boxing! I’ve been training at The Dogpound NYC for a while now and I love it! They continuously take me out of my comfort zone, pushing me to the limit.
M: Your idol?
RK: My dad! My dad is the definition of a self-made man.
M: What have you learnt from this industry?
RK: A lesson that really stands out is not to take anything too seriously or personally.
M: Any major changes in your life since becoming a model?
RK: I really recognised how much more I appreciate the little things and the company of interesting people.
M: How has modelling changed your perspective of fashion, and to an extent,
RK: Before modelling, I had absolutely no idea how much time and effort went into creating a garment. And I’m still learning so much. I think that lesson has taught me that there is always so much more to what we see than we may think.
M: Do you still look at fashion in the same way?
RK: No! I have grown such a great appreciation for the creativity of the clothes, to the stylist, the photographer to the editors and everyone who create the art we call fashion.
M: You’ve been doing the fashion week circuit for a while, how would you describe the experience of running around for it?
RK: I love it! I thrive on the busyness and chaos of getting to 14 castings a day in a city where I don’t speak the native language. It’s a challenge, a fun challenge. And for a month and a half, I am continuously surrounded by friends who are all travelling to London, Milan, Paris, and New York.
M: What do you enjoy the most at this moment in your life?
RK: I’ve been taking a lot of photos using disposable cameras. I love taking photos of my friends and things happening in my life then forgetting what I have shot and developing the film.
M: Do you set any personal objectives?
RK: Absolutely! I write down goals that are big and might seem out of reach. If we don’t set big goals, we have no targets to aim for!
M: What would you be doing if weren’t modelling?
RK: I don’t know. I think I would have found myself in some sort of sales position. Maybe in construction materials, cars or homes.
M: What is it like being under the spotlight and being on the Hot List on models.com?
RK: It is sensational! To be recognised by my industry for the time and the effort I’ve put into my art. It’s a feeling of accomplishment and I’m so thankful.
M: What is on your current music playlist?
RK: Us by Movement, So Good by Davina, and Into You Remix by 3la.
M: What is on heavy rotation though?
RK: Right now I’m listening to Greatest Acoustic. I love classic rock!
M: Name three places you want to travel to.
RK: Bali, Golden in British Columbia, and Peru.
M: Any guilty pleasures?
RK: I love golf and heavy metal! Golf is such a great test of patience and if I focus, it can really fun but if I lose it, it can be very challenging. And heavy Metal just gives me an energy that no other music can.
M: Any weird habits?
RK: Snapchatting! I am a Snapchat-aholic.
M: What do you obsess about?
RK: Living in the moment and enjoying what I have.
M: Your life motto?
RK: Life is 10 per cent what happens and 90 per cent how you react to it. By Charles R. Swindoll.
[More pictures in the September 2016 issue of MANIFESTO]
Photography: Brent Chua
Fashion Director: Jonathan Yee
Styling: Jungle Lin
Hair: Mari Matsumoto
Make-up: Yelena Tsygankova
Agency Support: Soul Artist Management