I Can and I will... Mario Mankele
“In this industry, you will be overlooked or slept on and that’s okay. It’s not personal, your job is to be READY, keep studying the game...
“In this industry, you will be overlooked or slept on and that’s okay. It’s not personal, your job is to be READY, keep studying the game, keep understanding it and always make sure you’re going all out on projects that come your way.” Mario Mankele
A seasoned basketball player and model, Mario who is pursuing a degree in Cyber Security and describes himself as charismatic and cordial, and not to forget that he is a twin.
When asked if he is a creative person, this is what he had to say “By definition yes, because I’m an individual whose job involves doing creative work but personally, I still feel like I have a long way to go before I can claim the title. There have been creatives that have existed and reflected the title to the highest form, and I would l still like to earn that.”
His goals as a model lie in creating and being part of really potent content, work that inspires people, work that changes how the industry is perceived as a whole, and overall, just to put a dent in the local and international fashion industry.
Below: Mario Mankele in a DSNY.A design and Nkanda Yatu at MTC Windhoek Fashion Week by Simz
“As a person, I believe it’s always best to put uncomfortable issues on the table to address the situation in the most thoughtful and cordial way possible, but I never shy away from them simply because they make me uncomfortable.” He shared when asked about how to handle uncomfortable situations.
Mankele looks up to international Alpha Dia and Malick Bodian in the fashion industry. They are both male models and have been making waves in the industry. As a model, photoshoots are part of the daily lives especially for adverts or brands launching new collections. Mario has had challenging photoshoots and “one that was part of a concept I made, named ‘Outcast’. The photo had to be taken with me seated while reading a burning newspaper”.
He would like to grace international runways like Paris Fashion Week or Milan Fashion week but In Namibia, he has been on the MTC Windhoek Fashion Week runway since 2017. A favoured amongst designers that showcase at the MTC Windhoek Fashion Week, his tall basketball body makes him an easy pick.
Below: Mario in a Linrico Humphries design by Shy_Guys_Photography
His favourite brands are //Concept and Fendi and his favourite designers are Synedgy and Virgil Abloh.
Asked about the favourite and least favourite parts of modelling, this is what he had to say; “Everything!! From being on the runway, working with great creative minds impacts culture as a whole outside the fashion industry. I mean the world can’t really move without fashion. And on the downside, people will always misunderstand the fashion industry, and some have their personal negative agendas.”
Mario always says that those getting into the industry needs to study it well so they can see any changes from a mile away. “Also be open to experimenting without losing your core identity as a model” he shares. “Know yourself well enough, so it’s easy to go out there and be the very best version of that.” Be Confident, be ready and keep mastering the craft. This is the advice he would like to share with the upcoming models.