It has been 15 years since Jeneil Williams was first discovered during the model search organised by local agency Pulse, and she continues to blaze a trail for herself. The ebony-skinned, Kingstonian-born Williams has secured another notch in her impressive body of work with the cover of the coffee table book Supreme Models: Iconic Black Women Who Revolutionized Fashion by entertainment journalist, TV host, and wardrobe stylist Marcellas Reynolds. The book is being described as the most comprehensive study to date on the impact and importance of black models in fashion and society.
The book, which features Williams in a cover shot by Spanish photographer Txema Yeste, is set to hit book stores on October 8.
The Jamaica Observer caught up with Williams and during an interview from her New York base she noted that she was pleased to be associated with the latest project, having been contacted via Instagram by the author.
She shared what she thinks are her secrets to longevity in the often-fleeting fashion industry.
“I would say be patient; your time will come. Everyone has their day and so one year you will be doing great and one year you won’t, so just stay the course. Having been in the industry for as long as I have been it gets a little easier for me to reach out to clients via my agency or even Instagram or other social media platforms. I make goals everyday so there are always some project or something that I haven’t accomplished yet, so there is always something to be done in the future.
Among the things to be done in the future is to become an actor, and Williams is already putting in the work to reach this goal.
“I am enrolled in a two- year acting course and I am super, super excited for this journey. It has been amazing and I am so looking forward to what the future holds for this venture.”
This Vogue cover girl has a truly has the stats to back up her local supermodel status. She received her big break courtesy of a Benetton campaign, photographed by David Sims with whom she worked again for a series of Sephora promotions. Her athletic build has made her a favourite with sportwear brand Nike, which collaborated with i-D magazine to produce a fitness-inspired video promotion featuring Williams.
She has been the face of advertising campaigns for Jimmy Choo, Edun and Balenciaga. Mert & Marcus photographed her for the cover of LOVE magazine, and she has also graced the covers of Vogue Turkey, and i-D magazine twice. Select editorial features include the international editions of Vogue , and W magazines by Mario Testino and Alasdair McLellan, and Ellen Von Unwerth, respectively. She has also walked the runway for Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga, Diane Von Furstenberg, Kenzo, Viktor & Rolf, Tome, and Opening Ceremony.
Despite her longevity, the walking away from the fashion industry is not something Williams is considering any time soon.
“Retirement is not on my mind but I am working on evolving, not just as a model but to be an actor. and I always want more and work to get more, so for me retirement is far off,” she shared.
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