Fashion Week assassin Joshua Vincent Edwards kills couture – every look, every time – curates creative – dude def knows how to dress with direction – and bodies retail runways like a dreaded hype sniper in Yeezy Season 5, Pyer Moss, Collina Strada, and collector’s edition brainwashed retros. Designer exclusives aside, Edwards’ true signature is his sincerity; kid has a bleeding heart for humans with purpose. He actually cares about people and their relationship with the world, and his ever-expanding fan base feels his caring to their core. This coupled with Edwards’ soul possession of a drop-dead-gorgeous not even a fortress could contain, a rock solid stoicism most statues would envy, and an affable aura echoing enormous potential. His natural talents were a lock to have the game on lock – locks included. D1 Modeling Agency founder Dean Cleary recognized the rising star’s planetary potential, silently loud looks, and stellar pose prowess from day one: “Josh has such a beautiful face and personality, and that for me is a winning combination,” confides Cleary. “The dreads and the build go against all the model rules, yet D1 has shown that Josh can make money and shoot fantastic editorials,” the star catcher continues. “Presently we are working on his portfolio, and building his profile and opening the doors for new clients in New York. Then I will pack him off to Europe where they will love him!”

Written by Tone Swep
Creative Direction & MUA by Eve Chen
Hair by Jenever Forbes
Images by Nikki Gomez
Styled by Justin Xavier
Shot at Image Tattoos in Brooklyn, New York
A non-conformist by nature, Edwards, 21, grew up in New Jersey – where Hip Hop music and culture, blue collar work ethics, and the high risks and rewards of engaging neighboring New York’s skyscraper fashion and finance aesthetic tease and taunt teens with the opportunity to attain stardom. Edwards, as fearless as he is focussed, knew his artistic intentions and humanitarian outlook would both stand out and fit in with NYFW’s high-powered applause. He recently introduced his very own BOŽÍ line, featuring unisex tops emblazoned with a red rose and backed by the affect inducing headline: You Are Here Because Of A Woman – a decorative escutcheon honoring hearts with heroic heraldry. We hung out with Edwards at his exclusive DOPE MAG photo shoot at Image Tattoo parlor in Brooklyn as he dished on switching hair colors, shopping at thrift shops, his Carib-Hispanic roots, and life in the fast lane from a young G’s perspective. Keep an eye on this guy. He’s the one to watch.

(Tone Swep: TS) Where are you from? What is your age?

(Joshua Vincent Edwards: JVE) I’m a Jersey kid all day every day, and I’m blessed to have made it to 21-years-old.

(TS) How would you describe your childhood, upbringing, and adolescence? 

(JVE) My younger years were tight. My parents have been split up since I was young but they were both always in my life. They always let me rock out and just do me, but with some limits of course. I’ve lived in a few places, and experienced things that made me the person I am today.

(TS) You have a unique look, share your family heritage and ethnic background with us.

(JVE) Thank you! It’s always tricky with this one… so on my mother’s end is where my Hispanic heritage comes in. Her family comes from the Dominican Republic. I know very little Spanish though, I wish she would have taught me more. She primarily speaks English at home but she also speaks fluent Spanish. My father’s side is from the West Indies. This side of my family comes from the Caribbean.

(TS) When did you start dreading your hair? You recently went from blonde to black, what statement does the color switch make?

(JVE) I literally started growing my hair when I got old enough to tell my mom I was no longer cutting my hair. She always kept me and my two brothers with cleans cuts, spending money for haircuts every two weeks or so if she wasn’t cutting our hair herself. So yeah, in 2013 I grew out a ‘fro and eventually dreaded my hair. After that I was at the salon religiously until I had met this girl who eventually became my girlfriend for some time, and she learned how to twist locks. She always had cool hair colors (Laughs!). So that led to me dying my hair blonde in the summer of 2014. I was blonde all the way up until about two weeks ago. My father actually put it in my head to go natural and stop putting chemicals in my hair. For the longest I was skeptical about it. But as you can tell based off how much I’m talking about it that I love my hair (Laughs!). Slowly my hair was falling out from the bleach. Some of my longest dreads have fallen out. I eventually told myself – ‘I can’t continue damaging my hair’ – and the natural look really didn’t sound like a bad idea despite the fact that my hair hasn’t been black in a few years. I thought hard on it and another dread fell out. That same night I purchased the black dye and the next day changed my color. I’m in love with it.

(TS) What initially attracted you to modeling? How did you get your start? 

(JVE) I’ve always been told that I’m very photogenic and that I should model, so as the times changed my photos went from selfies and mobile phone photos to me and one of my friends taking pictures on his family camera and just posting them on Instagram. That led me to venture back off into New York City after receiving an email from my now good friend Von Ford to meet with my now lovely agent Dean over at D1 Models. They’ve been helping me grow in my modeling career and have become more so like family. I love my team.

(TS) How would you describe your specific style and approach to modeling?

(JVE) My style is very simple. I could care less what the tag says, I often shop in thrift stores or just your average retail store; that or taking hand me downs from somebody. It’s never what you’re wearing but how you wear it. As far as my approach, when it comes to modeling I just try to be myself as much as possible while at the same time giving what’s needed in whatever is specifically taking place for that project.

(TS) You use your social media platform, specifically Instagram, to shed light and share knowledge and not just show off your latest power moves. Why is encouraging people to express their individuality so important to you?

(JVE) Man listen, I got so much love to give and there isn’t enough love going around. Putting a smile on somebody’s face is literally one of the best feelings I can ever experience. None of this energy is fake, I literally believe in and live by the words I preach.

(TS) The LGBTQ community has been vocal about inclusion more now than ever. Do you feel there is greater acceptance and embrace and less discrimination and prejudice in the industry?

(JVE) Of course, the judgement needs to stop. Let people live their lives, it literally isn’t doing any harm to you.

(TS) Name a couple immediate changes we can make to improve society as a whole.

(JVE) Step one, get rid of Trump. Step two, get back to reality.

(TS) Art is life, what other forms of art besides modeling do you utilize to express yourself and share your creativity?

(JVE) It sure is, art is everyday life! But honestly, I dip my hands in all the pots. I’ve been the guy taking pictures, picking up paint brushes, and making the radical decision to go buy a sewing machine and a bunch of fabric and start creating.

(TS) Your new BOŽÍ line is high fashion at its finest. What does the signature catch phrase “You Are Here Because Of A Woman” mean to you, and why did you select that message to define your brand? What does BOŽÍ stand for?

(JVE) You have a mother, right? I feel like the lack of respect needs to be eliminated. It’s deep for me, a sensitive topic on why this came about. But just know it’s here and realer than ever.

(TS) What makes Joshua Vincent Edwards so DOPE?

(JVE) The fact that I’m just myself and nobody else. One of a kind DOPE.

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