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So he is Ralph, he is heavily freckled, and although he is Hatian and not African, we felt his story was one that could inspire people on this platform. Born in Haiti, Souffrant moved to Brooklyn when he was nine to live with his family. “Haiti is a hard place to get by,” he recalled. “You wake up, and you don’t know what you’re going to eat. It’s your parents’ job to go out there and find basic needs. My last name fits my life pretty well.” (Souffrant means “to suffer” in French.)

 

Souffrant has a skin condition similar to vitiligo that left him covered in freckles, and he poses with an intense seriousness.




Some odd 2/3 years ago, a colleague of his suggested that he stop going to college, where he was studying dermatology, to pursue modeling. He helped him make an Instagram account; almost immediately, people started following him. In less than a few months he landed a modeling contract with Re:Quest and a spot in the Yeezy Season 3 show.

Today, the disses have turned into compliments: “Modeling is your calling,” “You’re beautiful,” and “I’ve never seen anyone who looks like you,” read the comments on Instagram. In the fashion world, his nonconformity is celebrated. Designers devote extra time finding the right look for him, and makeup artists opt to not interfere at all. “It’s awesome that there are people out there who find me attractive,” he said. It seems like no more struggling for the struggler now his success continues.

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