Featured in over 25 videos at 25 years old, video model Suzette James gives us an intimate glimpse at who she is, what's current, and what's next.
Video model Suzette James started a career rooted in hip hop when she appeared in her first feature “All Of My Life” by Kool G Rap at the tender age of 12 years old. From there, she went on to make feature appearances in an array videos such as Drake’s "HYFR", DJ Khaled’s "All I Do is Win" and Young Money’s "Bedrock", just to name a few. At 25, she continues to model and is currently reaching for a career in entertainment journalism.
HotNewHipHop spoke with the Connecticut native about working in the industry, who she is outside of a music video, and what’s next on her radar.
How long have you been working in the music video industry?
I have been in the music video industry since I was 12. My career ultimately jumped off when I moved to Miami in 2010.
Miami is quite a change from Stamford, Connecticut. What motivated you to relocate?
I chose Miami because I wanted different scenery from Connecticut. I never got the opportunity to travel a lot as a child so I wanted to take advantage by going far south. Work wise; Miami is a small city with lots of opportunity. My market there has grown tremendously.
What is your favorite aspect about your line of work as it is currently?
My favorite aspect about working in the music video industry would probably have to be performing and fulfilling the vision of the overall video. It's a really cool seeing a vision of the director and artist come to light. I also love networking and being able to work with different models and artists.
Is there a least favorite?
Working on a video set as a lot of down time. Waiting for your turn to perform can take up a lot of time, so I always prepare to keep myself occupied.
With the catalog of videos that you’ve been featured in, many viewers have seen you and possibly heard your name, but tell us who you are in your own terms.
I'm an innovator, entrepreneur, workaholic, entertainer and my deep passion is to perform in front of a camera. I'm half Chinese/Jamaican and was the first American born. As a child, I always took over the spotlight when my dad brought out the camera and from that point on, my mom enrolled me in modeling school at the age of 4. I was very active as a child and was fortunate enough to be apart of major company commercials, movie sets and music videos. This is when I realized I wanted to have a career in the television industry and I decided to further my education in broadcast journalism at Florida International University. I am still in pursuit of fulfilling this career path, but my ultimate dream job is to be a TV host for an entertainment news company, like E! News or a VJ for a music network. In music videos, I have been able to show my acting and dancing abilities. I wouldn't be where I am today if it weren't for videos. I've use it as a stepping-stone to get to the next level of my career and there is a goal I'm trying to reach, I use the music video industry as an outlet for more opportunities.
If there were one thing you can tell a young woman who is beginning her career through this line of work, what would you tell her?
To never give up and not be discouraged! No one is perfect, so you definitely will get rejected within this line of work, but that should be a push to work harder towards your ultimate goals.
And for all of our male readers who definitely want to know, what is your relationship status?
I'm currently single and the reason for that is probably because I'm so busy and occupied pursuing my career.
The photos featured in this article gallery are giving me urban, sexy, bodega princess vibes, tell me a little bit about this shoot.
I had the opportunity to work with photographer, Sheron Barber while I was in Los Angeles, CA and I wanted to make use of his apartment/studio because I admired the decor. I was lacking some sex appeal in my portfolio, so that was the mindset of the shoot. The team decided to make use of our surroundings in downtown LA and even shot in a little bodega down the street.
What’s next for Suzette James?
I have my hands in about just everything, so I can be seen anywhere. For updates, my website is www.SuzetteJames.com, Instagram: @Suzette_James, Twitter: @SuzetteJames and Facebook: Suzette James. I'm also nominated for "Video Vixen Of The Year" for the Urban Models Awards. I would encourage readers to vote at http://urbanmodelawards.com/vote/vote-for-the-2014-urban-model-awards/
10 Hip Hop Videos that feature Suzette:
- Dj Khaled, Drake, Lil Wayne, Rick Ross: "No New Friends"
- Rick Ross ft. Meek Millz, Wale, T-Pain: “Bag of Money"
- Drake ft. Wayne: “HYFR”
- Bei Maejor ft. Waka Flocka: “Lights Down Low”
- Birdman ft. Rick Ross: “Born Stunna”
- LiL Twist ft. Khalil: “Over Again” (Lead)
- Verse Simmons ft. Kelly Rowland: “Boo Thang” (Feature)
- Laza Morgan ft. Movado: “One by One” (Lead)
- Sean Kingston: “Fire Burning” (Graffiti girl on left)
- Ace Hood ft. Rick Ross & Jazmine Sullivan: “Champion”