Earlier sunrises, lengthened days and crippling hay fever spell the advent of summer, and with it the promise of rooftop sundowners, beachside picnics and the playfulness of sun-kissed gods. Athlete, model and connoisseur of vintage jerseys, Keaton Taylor, presents us with an indigo sunrise to awaken the dawn.
I caught up with Keaton for a photoshoot and lunch this Halloween and he treated me to some scintillating conversation – I hope you enjoy his story as much as what I did.
1993: Born in Cape Town
2011: Matriculated from Tygerberg High School
2012: Enrolled for BCom Financial Accounting & Finance at UWC
2015: Mounted the catwalk as a fashion model
Iconography is such an important feature of our modernity. If your tattoos were the only written record of your legacy, what story would they tell of you?
Much like the Christian armor referred to in Ephesians 6:10-18, my tattoos testify to my faith in the God who is always there. My first tattoo familia is inspired by my childhood as I don’t come from a affluent background and never had it easy but pulled through because of the support I had from my family. The praying hands on my chest symbolize my turning to God who carried me through the pastured of blessing and the difficult patches in life. The tattoo on my ribcage exemplifies the first prayer I ever leant, the Our Father. The last piece of art on my left leg basically says that I can do anything through Christ (Phil 4: 13).
You recently modeled for Lloyd Josephs’ G-Thing at Odyssey Fashion Fair 2015. How did you first get into runway and what about it will keep you going back for more?
Towering at a modest 176cm I never saw myself as a runway model but because of my courageous attitude I decided to undertake it anyway because I love a challenge. As a brand ambassador for G-Thing, inspired by their style, if I am offered another chance at doing it again I definitely would.
My journey into modeling started out at 18 when I was offered a commercial role for Mentos. It was never anything I imagined myself ever doing but I grabbed the opportunity when it presented itself. The decision was made all the more easier since there were two other guys doing a set with me at Parow Athletics Track who were also drawn into the commercial. After that I was offered opportunities from a variety of modeling agencies. From a very young age I had a slight hope or ambition to achieve something to the likes of being an accountant but never aspired to modeling until now. Nevertheless, I am not interested in joining a modeling agency just yet since I am fully committed to my studies and prefer doing freelance modeling up until I have my degree. Once I qualify I am fair game!
You keep active through varsity rugby and you are a self-identified gym freak – your physique certainly bears witness. Give us a glimpse into your training regimen.
Nothing comes easy in life and through effort and determination any individual is capable of achieving success. I started my gym career at the age of 18, when encouraged by my rugby league to pack some meat. I now train five times a week for 2 hours each day as I have a stern motto that ‘slow progress is better than no progress’. I am ultra disciplined and follow a healthy diet leading to my dream physique. Outside of gym I maintain an active lifestyle, on the rugby field, pounding the hiking trails, and of course ripping up the dance floor YOLO – keeping it all in a healthy balance. You can follow me on instagram.
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Model: Keaton Taylor, Photographer: Alexis Pillay.
“There are quick fixes and there are easy wins but, in the bigger picture, there are no silver bullets. It’s more important to focus on moving the needle just a bit each day and then after some time you can look back at how far you’ve come” (Ben Sehl, entrepreneur)