Lewis Freese Is Sports activities Illustrated Swim’s First Male Mannequin

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Lewis Freese Is Sports Illustrated Swim's First Male Model


Twenty-one-year-old gender-fluid Lewis Freese has been acknowledged by Sports activities Illustrated Swim because the first-ever male finalist within the annual Swim Search for 2021, which is led by an open casting name. That is his second 12 months making use of to the competition, and he is nonetheless a full-time pupil designing a significant in enterprise advertising, gender ladies sexuality research, and retail merchandising. Lewis hails from Minnesota and takes his spot as one of many 15 finalists who might go on to be included within the problem amongst others from the LGBTQ+ neighborhood like trans lady of shade Leyna Bloom and trans mannequin Valentina Sampaio, each of whom made historical past on their very own.

“Swimwear is among the most binary types of clothes, and I imagine Sports activities Illustrated Swimsuit has redefined the true that means of what a swimsuit embodies.”

Lewis took the time to thank his followers and assist system in a video posted to Instagram, additionally increasing on the importance of this moment to SI‘s representation in an interview with Folks. “Swimwear is among the most binary types of clothes, and I imagine Sports activities Illustrated Swimsuit has redefined the true that means of what a swimsuit embodies. So Swim Search was and is one of the best avenue for me to not solely proceed this dialog, however to take again the facility {that a} swimsuit has had over me for therefore lengthy,” he stated.

Lewis understands that each particular person’s gender presents itself in a different way and can proceed to be open about his personal journey in discovering himself. “I’ve found that my gender fluidity is all the time current, and a few days I get up feeling like I fall underneath a number of gender identifications. I describe myself to others as simply Lewis as a result of figuring out with one set of pronouns or gender makes me really feel so restricted . . . I do know issues will fluctuate, and I would like those that too are struggling to know I’m, too,” he stated, explaining that the SI staff, which incorporates famend editor MJ Day, takes the time to hear to every particular person’s story and profession targets, giving them a platform to face for the inclusion that’s so past obligatory within the media house at this level.

“The modeling trade has a lot influence as a result of it is actually how the style, cosmetics, and leisure industries current themselves. If we are able to enhance the variety of occasions we see totally different gender and sexualities in ads and campaigns, these variations can grow to be extra accessible and revered,” stated Lewis, who has a dream of proudly owning his personal enterprise to advertise gender-neutral merchandise down the road, and even delving into legislative work revolving round trans, queer, and nonbinary reform to enhance accessibility to secure healthcare and a high quality training and life-style.

It’s due to the inclusion of individuals like Lewis that we proceed to have this dialog and assist manufacturers, corresponding to Sports activities Illustrated, which can be shifting in the correct course and paving the best way towards an all-embracing vogue world with none exception. Learn on to see a few of Lewis’s Instagram photographs, taken by his photographer Ella Johnson, and get to know his backstory, then click on by means of to see the opposite SI finalists.



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