Meet the New Guy: Francisco Lachowski Was Shot by Karl Lagerfeld Wearing Nothing But Undies

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Francisco Lachowski (FORD). Photo: Courtesy of FORD

With the face of a baby, body of an athlete, and voice of a much younger (and sexier) Barry White, Brazilian model Francisco Lachowski is well-suited for stardom. The 19-year-old got his start when he won the Ford Men's Supermodel of the World contest in 2008. Shortly thereafter, he debuted as an exclusive at the fall 2009 Dior Homme show in Paris; he later appeared in nothing but undies for a Karl Lagerfeld–shot ad for the brand. This year alone he's walked for Gucci, rag & bone, Dolce & Gabbana, and John Galliano; worked with photographer Walter Pfeiffer for a spread in the spring issue of Vogue Hommes International; and appeared as the "It" boy in DKNY's new fall prints. Click ahead to read a brief Q&A with Lachowski, and then visit his new model profile to see loads of on- and off-the-runway pics.

You won the Ford Men's Supermodel of the World contest in 2008. What was the competition like?
There were many, many guys in the competition. I felt confident, [but] there were also three or four other finalists that felt confident too. I was very surprised to win. My first thought was, This is just the beginning; the hard work is coming.

You're successful both on the runway and in print. Do you prefer one over the other?
When I first started, I preferred the runway work over the print. It was more exciting [because] it was live and there was energy from the audience. Now I prefer print; I have more fun with it. Runway is very fast and over quickly. With print, you work all day. It is more challenging and you have to work much harder. I also enjoy the freedom I feel with print shoots. I get to give something to the camera and create a great picture that lasts forever.

You were 17 when you shot Dior Homme's fall 2009 campaign with Karl Lagerfeld, in which you were photographed in nothing but skivvies. Were you uncomfortable at all?
No, I was very comfortable on set shooting Dior Homme. Karl Lagerfeld was amazing to work with. The crew was so respectful about my comfort level. I was very excited: It was my first campaign and I wanted to do a good job. The only thing I am uncomfortable with was my legs.

Speaking of, how do you maintain that physique?
Luckily, the lifestyle of my country, Brazil, is very healthy. Growing up, I was always doing sports: surfing, skateboarding, tennis, soccer, diving with my father ... I love water sports. When I was 16, I was so skinny. I went to the gym all day for three months and did weight machines. My entire body changed. My mother told me to stop because I became too strong. Now, with modeling, I don’t really get to work out. I continue to play sports and do mostly cardio. I am lucky: My body has good muscle memory.

What's your diet like? Do male models diet as often as female models?
Again, the Brazilian diet is extremely healthy. Before modeling, I ate a lot of beans, rice, fish, and meat. Not a lot of vegetables, though. My parents told me to eat more salads and fruit to get the vitamins. When I started modeling, I was on the road and ate mostly McDonald’s and frozen foods. Now I can cook and eat healthy. I make a great Stroganoff. Female models diet more than men. If anything, men watch their carbs.

Tell us something about modeling most people don't know.
If you want to be a good model, you have to work hard. It takes time to learn how to model, feel confident, and make good pictures.

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