Q: How old are you?
A: 22 years old
Q: What is your ethnicity?
A: African-American and Caucasian
Q: What do you do?
A: Model, Brand Consulting, and DJ for fun :-)
Q: What's your real name?
A: Makayla London
A: B.A. in Communications, Public Relations @ California State University of Fullerton - Class of 2018.
Q: How did you come up with your username?
A: My name is Makayla Denae and I happen to love Mac Dre.
combined my first and middle name, paying homage to the Bay Area legend -
(plus, when I made it - A$VP Mob was very popular) = MVKDRE
Q: Where are you from?
A: Los Angeles based - my hometown is Moorpark, CA. (shout out 805!)
Q: Are you signed to an agency/have an agent?
A: Yes, I am signed to Photogenics Media LA.
Q: What are your social media accounts?
A: "mvkdre" on everything :-)
Q: How tall are you?
Q: How long have you pursued modeling as a career?
A: Since March of 2016.
Q: How did you get 'famous'?
A: Working my butt off, and being kind to others.
'How I got started modeling' and tips to get yourself in the game:
There are two separate answers for this question.
One is the inspirational story, what drove my heart to choose this career.
The following is the method to what drove growth and choice making.
I'll share both:
My Inspirational story:
I started independent modeling in March, 2016. It’s always a path I wanted to pursue - but at that specific time I was hesitant, and truthfully unsure how to get started.
Thankfully, I have an AMAZING support system who really reassured my aspirations. My parents were so encouraging, happy, and supportive of me. I couldn't take credit for anything without them. I'm really lucky. My boyfriend believed in me; he knew I had a greater purpose in this life. It took a long time for me to believe them, to believe in myself. That's the hardest part.
I was working at a restaurant, checking Instagram on my down time - one of my favorite photographers (Nailah Howze, @cloudnaiii) posted that she wanted to shoot a fresh face that day. Mind you, I was REALLY hesitant, because I thought I was unexperienced, therefore I wouldn’t be qualified. I gathered some courage, messaged her, and set up a location to meet later that day. I had one outfit, (it was a black dress with some Nikes - typical me), and came with some fierce eyeliner, and purple lip gloss.
Long story short, I was welcomed with so much encouragement from Nailah - she really believed in me after telling her about myself. It was surreal! I admired her work ethic, and vision so much… for her to feel inspired by me meant the world. Someone I had never met before, telling me similar praises that my family would tell me. It sparked something in me. Nailah is now one of my really good friends, we keep in touch all the time while she’s up in the Bay. She motivates me, and we share a bond that can’t be explained.
Since that day in March, I followed suit. Reaching out to more, and more photographers whose work I admired. Some would reject, others would accept - I began to build my portfolio. I stayed consistent with content, sent out emails daily, made sure I was respectful, and took myself seriously. I made it my job. I followed my gut. I had no choice but to believe I had the juice.
I'm obsessed with what I do; I wouldn't change my journey for anything. I've learned so much through experience, and going for it.
I’ve been so blessed by God to be where I am at this exact moment. To be taken seriously as an independent model in Los Angeles.
This work system and ethic continued for the next two years -
Fast forward to June 2018, after researching and many meetings, I finally signed with a modeling agency at Photogenics Media Los Angeles as a visionary, influencer, and model.
I am currently juggling four large global campaigns on the market within beauty, sports, and fashion.
After doing campaigns for Nike, Hurley, Dose of Colors, NYX Cosmetics, I am eager to see what else is in store for the future.
My methodical story:
There is always someone who is going to say 'no', or deny us of a job we really wanted. One of the biggest things to remember is to not fear rejection. This is a given. Yet, this is something that holds many of us back.
There's a saying, "You can be the sweetest peach in the world, but there's someone who always doesn't like peaches".
Use the reaction of rejection as motivation to open another door, to pursue another avenue. That's something I try to live by.
Without an agency, I will admit it is a bit harder path to take. Yet, a very rewarding path. Some perks I've acquired being an independent model are: full creative direction, my own hours & instilled rates, developed communication skills, and a better understanding of the industry without signing my image over.
I consider what I do, to be a lot of learning. I'm still very fresh and continuously growing. This path is perfect if you want to learn the in's and out's before making the decision to sign a contract.
How I got started:
- Made a website for my portfolio. This is your reference for jobs. I used Squarespace. Yes, I pay monthly - but, I see it as an investment.
- Eat clean. Workout weekly. Drink water. Get good sleep. This cleanses your mind, and body.
- Partying, going out < strategizing, building. Get your priorities straight. This is your job you never clock out of.
- I utilized Instagram, spending time looking at freelance photographer's profiles. I made a copy & paste message that I sent out about 10x a day to different people. Some say no, some say yes. Worry about the ones who say yes.
- You're going to do A LOT of work for free. This is also an investment. Building your portfolio, building an audience, this is the ground work stage.
- Stay CONSISTENT WITH YOUR CONTENT. Instagram is no longer just an app on your phone, it is your job as an independent model. Post at least once a day, around the same time. Make your followers associate good content with your profile.
- Don't try to be like anyone else. Your audience can smell when you're being not true to you.
- Always tag, and THANK the photographers you work with.
- Never do anything that doesn't stand for who you are personally.
- Show love to people you look up to, comment on their pictures, reach out to other people you think are wavy. Let them know they're doing a good job. It costs nothing to be a nice person.
- Practice poses in the mirror, practice how to do your own makeup, hair, and styling.
- When on a shoot, it should be your #1 goal for this person to want to work with you again. At the end of the day, there is someone always prettier, or more talented than us - but, what makes someone want to work with you again? A good attitude, professionalism, and respectfulness.
- Show up early, show up prepared, show up ready. Be gracious, be humble, and do your homework.
It all comes down to how bad you want it in your heart. Some people do this because they want to be cool, or popular. It's not a glamorous job, it's quite hard work. But it gets easier once you let go of what people think of you. Remain respectful, remain yourself.