Most people wouldn't dare dream of starting up a company during bad economic times, but being the risk taker that he is, Ryan Colby,founder of COLBY MODELS, did just that.
Coming up on its second year of existence, Ryan confesses that this leap into entrepreneurship could possibly be the best and worst decision he has ever made. Good because it's actually his, and bad because the industry already has so many agencies. Having been a scout for top agencies such as Ford, DNA, and Next, one shouldn't be surprised that he decided to venture out on his own. Not to mention, his experience in the field may actually help him stay afloat.
Currently representing about 140 models(100 men/40 women), Colby Models plan on remaining small. In fact, the Agency takes pride in being more exclusive. Why??? It's simple... The smaller amount of models the agency represents, the better they are able to cultivate each and every one. This makes perfect sense to me. I can't began to tell you how many models I have come across that has told me that their agency has at one point or another dropped the ball in a task. And these are models who get work on a steady basis.
It was a blistering 90(+) degrees the day I was to visit the agency. And though I rarely sweat, I knew that there would be no trying to avoid it on this day. I so wanted to cancel my appointment. What would I look like walking into a modeling agency clothes all damp I thought. Even meteorologist advised people to stay indoors unless it was necessary. Praying for the best, I decided to keep my appointment and go. Thankfully I did. Ryan had arranged models Chris Cabel and Ryan Weaver(left to right)to be there during the interview. I thought this was wonderful. I got to see them in there natural state and not all "made up."
Before breaking into the industry, Cabel worked as a business consultant. Focused on his career, Cabel was all set to move to India. That is until he was scouted, and decided to rethink things. And why not? A handsome 25 year old guy should be entitled to have fun before diving into a typical 9-5.
Three years has passed, and the "fun" has been paying off. The model with the signature scruff has a portfolio that has been coming together very nicely. So far, he has worked with numerous photographers including Zak Krevitt, and Barry Hollywood. Currently planning trips to Korea and Milan, Chris also plans on using modeling as a stepping stool, and plans to break into acting.
Luck had begun to sway in Weaver's direction. Hearing about a model call a model call held by KMM( a sister agency to Colby Models), the 21 year old Staples employee decided to give it a go. While in the lobby, the Colby Models founder saw the 27/28 inch slender blonde, and proceeded to ask him what he was doing there. I think we know what happen afterwards.
I can understand why Mr. Colby stopped after seeing Ryan. I confess, I was somewhat intrigued by him as well. Upon seeing him, the stylist in me began dressing him head to toe as if we were on set. Not that there was anything with what he had on. Dressed in part skater/b-boy, bohemian/ homeless feeling gear looking all of 12 years old and malnourished. He actually looked like he was ready for a shoot. It was perfect!!! Perhaps this is why he has already begun testing for German Vogue.
Still commuting back and forth and yes, still working at Staples, Weaver tells Fashion Forward Men he is planning to move to NYC very soon.
I can only wish the very best for these two models as well as the Colby Models agency. There is so much potential and great things happening there. Before departing, I learned some great news, unfortunately I had to promise not to reveal it because the kinks are still being worked out.on what lies ahead. But when it does, of course I will rush to my computer in order to tap away, revealing to you what it is. In the mean time, feel free to check out all the models affiliated with Colby Models here: