INTERVIEW WITH AMERICAN TELEVISION PERSONALITY AND MODEL CHEYENNE PARKER
Born in California, Cheyenne Parker is an American television personality, a fitness model, a creative designer, an entrepreneur, and the founder of the brand Maison Parker. He is best known as a cast member of the logo reality show “Fire Island” and MTV’s “Ex on the Beach.” Cheyenne is good looking, smart, and hard-working. HUF Magazine had the opportunity to interview with Cheyenne to find out more about him and his brand.
Where do you live and work? What’s it like living and working there?
I have worked and lived between Los Angeles and New York for the past 12 years and travel a lot between Miami, New York, and Europe on business. Outside of modeling, and my own company (Parker Design Group), I am also an associate producer at a marketing agency for major alcohol brands on the west coast. Traveling for work is a great privilege but I’ve only been home a few days per month recently which can be exhausting.
You are a model and an actor. Can you tell us about your career as a model and an actor?
People tend to think that my only career is modeling and or acting but the truth is I like to keep my hands in as many pots as I can. I got my start modeling for a local magazine in Palm Springs as a teenager and from there moved on to get signed by the Osbrink Agency after a Pro-scout modeling open call. Since, I have moved through several lines of work including fashion styling and design, interior design, and events production. Modeling has always been a passion and dream of mine, to make a career of hard work and dedication to fitness and would be extremely rewarding but it’s a tough market out there and having a backup plan is always important.
What was your very first modeling job? Do you remember how it felt standing in front of the camera for the first time?
My mother got me involved in pageants as a toddler and from there it was all over. I wanted to model and act ever since then. I had a video camera that I ran around with making home movies dancing around the house and recording my own auditions. My imagination was wild then and still is now! I recall my first actual job posing as a baseball player with three other kids for the local magazine. I didn’t play baseball and have zero hand-eye coordination so going pro was never on the cards, but the fact I could play a baseball player for money had me hooked!
You have appeared on TV shows such as Logo’s “Fire Island” and MTV’s “Ex on the Beach”. Has your life changed since you’ve been on TV?
Since making my way over to reality TV from modeling my life changed overnight. I recall seeing my face on a giant digital billboard in Times Square for the launch of “Fire Island” and the reality of the level of exposure I had subjected myself sank in. There was no going back and since then, I get recognized and stopped for photos almost everywhere I go. The lower level of privacy has its impact on social situations and relationships but it’s what I signed up for so it’s completely manageable, I’m no Brad Pitt!
Can you tell us about your fashion brand “Maison Parker”. How did it start? What is the inspiration behind the brand?
Maison Parker is a clothing brand I developed in my Los Angeles apartment in 2016. I started by making all my own custom furniture and recording the process on Instagram. Having exposed the behindthe- scenes of this process I was asked to feature my personal collection of furniture in a pop-up event at “Rejuvenation” in Culver City. From there I decided to make more accessible products, like T-shirts, and loungewear. The brand has evolved and changed, and this year will feature one-of-a-kind vintage revival pieces as well as custom painted and embroidered vintage denim jackets. Modeling, acting, and fashion design can be the subject of criticism.
Have you ever felt criticized, and how did you deal with it?
The world is full of criticism these days, whether it be modeling, acting, or fashion design, people are going to talk. It’s never going to be a solid positive ride when it comes to the opinion of others in regard to my work. I keep my head held high and out of the comments and blogs. The only thing I’m interested in is the opinions of loved ones and producing work that is suited to my needs and extremely high standards… not everyone has to like it, and they don’t have to. I will never let any negative level of scrutiny impact my business or seep into my everyday life.
The LGBT community seems more acceptable now than ever before. However, there is still a long way to go. What do you feel that can be done more?
As a member of the LGBT community, I feel like we as a whole need to respect each other, there is a lot of adversity within our own community. Waking people up to the fact that we are ALL HUMAN from the start and not any one of us more important than the other… it may sound repetitive, but the equality is key, and it needs to start with US.
How do you stay fit?
I work out any chance I get. As a person who has struggled with mental health issues in the past, I find physical activity to be the best medicine for my mind. I dedicate at least 5 days a week to fitness, a couple hours per day – sometimes twice a day. The true key ingredient to a great body is coupling fitness with a great diet, I limit dairy, gluten, and sugar, anywhere I can.
When you are not modeling, acting or fashion designing, what do you do to relax and keep yourself inspired?
When I get the rare chance to relax and get away from traveling on business – snowboarding is my ultimate escape from work and life stress. That and horseback riding. I don’t always have access to these things so… the gym is my Shangri-La.
What is your ultimate goal in life?
To bring all of my business to a level of success that allows for me to give back and make large impact in the world’s impoverished and marginalized communities.