Today we’d like to introduce you to Chanel Li’Mena.
Hi Chanel, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today.
I would say my story is all about the universe conspiring. My journey began in 2010. I was about 10 years old and I attended modeling school at Millie Lewis Agency in Charleston. From that moment, I knew this was the correct career path for me. I didn’t have the support to nurture my career at the time so I kind of gave up.
I went to college at Clemson University to study pre-law and I buckled down and focused on my potential law career. I landed an internship with a Charleston law firm and that’s when I realized, this is not for me. I didn’t like any part of the internship except for my outfit. Lol, I always thought I would make a cute lawyer! Anyway, during all this time, random people would always say “you should model” and “are you a model”.
I heard it so much that it started clicking in my mind like “huh, I really should model”. I think it was December 2018, I walked into my job at Chipotle and my manager was like “omg I didn’t know you were this gorgeous, you need to model”. I went home that day and I told my best friend “so many people tell me I need to model. That might be my calling. I think I’m going to try it.”
Between Eventbrite and Instagram within a matter of minutes, I found a casting call for Greenville Fashion Week 2019. I submitted and was cast in 4 shows. I networked with designers and photographers and got scouted by an agency. During that show I found myself, and modeling went from a dream to a passion and calling.
Ever since then, I’ve signed with Marilyns Agency in North Carolina and The Block Agency in Tennessee.
I’ve had billboards and ads online and in-store. I’ve been able to travel and meet some amazing people! My journey is nowhere near complete because the world will know my name but I could not be more proud of myself at this moment!
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Yes and no. Modeling is filled with a lot of rejection and it can be tough to deal with.
You never get a specific reason as to why you’ve been rejected so that causes you to create your own reason why. You really have to build a strong mindset. It’s not easy but I wouldn’t stop for a million bucks!
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am a working model. I am experienced in all categories and I genuinely love it all. I’ve shot fine art, print, fashion, commercial, runway, editorial, beauty, swim, lingerie, and implied.
My goal is to be a powerhouse and that’s what sets me apart from others! I’m ambitious and I want it all. I’m mainly known for my Afro!
I’m your favorite fro model I’m most proud of my ability to succeed in different areas of modeling, not all models can do that.
Any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general?
My best advice would be to just ask! The worst anyone can say is No!
Micheal Mulligan, Rashad of Selective Focus, Casey Williams, and Tuck Chaylor