The Inspirational Introvert:
The Jordan Woods Interview, Part II
by Tom Peaks @MrPeaksNValleys
And now the continuing story of actor/model Jordan Woods from small-town Indiana. His images, exclusive to PnV/Fashionably Male by Chicago photographer Joem Bayawa, are breath-taking and display his huge potential. In addition, Jordan has emerged as an actor as well with parts in various shows including Fox’s “Empire.” Jordan is soon embarking upon some extended international work. This is Jordan…in his words.
Many of the stylish garments photographed below are courtesy of Jax & Debb’s Fashion store, 1849 W. North Ave, Chicago, IL.
Tell us about your own personal fitness and grooming style?
Fitness isn’t just a hobby to me, it’s a lifestyle. Being active is one of the best things you can do to your body. Obviously being a model requires you to be fit, but I’m not only concerned about what my body looks like on the outside. Our looks won’t last forever, so it is so important to care about what is going on inside your body. I go to the gym about 6 days a week, but I always make sure I take a day off to recover. I eat a very healthy diet because we truly are what we eat. Our bodies rely so much on what we eat, so it is crucial to supply your body with high quality nutrients. As far as my grooming goes, I don’t have to do much. I used to get break outs when I was a kid, but I honestly don’t have trouble with my skin because of the lifestyle I live. I actually just became the face of the amazing spa in Chicago called, Transformation Beauty Spa. I go in there occasionally to get a hydrafacial because it keeps my skin clean and clear. I would highly recommend getting a facial because proper skin care can go a long way. If you’re ever in the Chicago area, go to Transformation Beauty Spa, and Mareia Opulentisima will get you skin looking as good as ever. Aside from that, I do go to the dermatologist a few times a year just to get check-ups. Also, always make sure that you shower after working out because that’s when you’re most prone to getting acne. Proper hygiene is always a priority to me because models have to have amazing skin. Now as far as grooming my hair, there isn’t much to it. I don’t grow facial hair, and my body hair is very minimal. I shave my face a few times every week just to make sure it’s smooth. I am currently in the process of growing my hair out, so I haven’t been to the barber in almost 3 months. I used to go to the barber to get my haircut about once every 3 weeks, but now I just trim it up around the ears and let the rest of it grow.
Where do you see yourself career-wise in 5 years?
Honestly, I have so many things happening this year that I can only imagine what it will be like in 5 years. The first ever casting and audition I went to was for a principal role on Empire, and I got it. That was definitely a boost to my confidence about my career. The fall of 2015, I was dreaming of being on Empire, and then the winter of 2015 I landed a principal role on the show. It is just proof that hard work and determination will always pay off. In 5 years, I see myself leaving TV and heading for the big screen. I wouldn’t be saying any of this if I didn’t think it would happen. I already have some opportunities being worked on right now as far as the film side is concerned. Now for the modeling side of things, that is definitely moving quickly. I haven’t just limited myself to the states, but I am an internationally signed model. In 5 years, I hope to of traveled the world and have met some amazing people. Life is way too short to spend it in one place your whole life. We aren’t trees, and we are meant to move around. So please, go experience the world because there is so much out there that is unknown.
You were in college at Purdue and left to pursue your dream full time. Tell us about college and when and why you decided to move on.
I actually started my college career at Eastern Illinois University. The only reason I attended EIU was because I was told that I needed this specific program for my chiropractic degree, and they were the only ones near me that offered that program. Come to find out, I didn’t need that program to pursue the chiropractic degree. After a year, I transferred to nearby Purdue. I met a lot of great people there and had an amazing time. I never did get the full college experience because I never did drink or party. I think the only reason people miss college is because of the parties, so I got lucky that I was never into that because I don’t miss the college life at all! After 2 years of college, I realized that it wasn’t the path for me. I absolutely loved all of my classes and learning about the human body, but I didn’t think I would be happy waking up every morning and doing the same job every day. That is when I decided to take my modeling and acting career to the next level. So, I have really only been taking modeling and acting seriously since August, 2015, and I am extremely happy with my accomplishments thus far — despite all of the calls I make to my agent because I am very impatient. Let me tell you, he absolutely loves me for being so annoying ;). There isn’t a second that goes by that I regret leaving school. Initially, my parents weren’t sold on the idea of me dropping out, but I didn’t expect them to understand at first. I had a vision and a dream in my head, so I knew exactly what I was doing. Don’t ever do something if you don’t already have a plan in place because you’re just setting yourself up for failure.
Your postings on Instagram are so full of inspiration and motivation, where do you find all your prose and writing inspiration?
My posts on my social media are all my own thoughts. With every post I make, they are all a small part of my life and who I am as a person. When you read my posts, just know that it is something that is going on in my life at the time or something that’s on my mind. I have gotten amazing feedback from just expressing my thoughts, and that is what inspires me the most. People from all over the world will message me and tell me how I have inspired them and got them through a tough time in their life. That is the main reason I keep doing it because I know I am helping people all over the world. Absolutely love helping people, and it just makes me feel so good. I want people to see that I am just an average kid from a small town with big dreams. The only thing different about me is that I took action to pursue my dreams. So many people take the lazy route and just become satisfied with mediocre, and they are the ones that end up hating their life and chosen career. I want everyone to know that no dream is too big if you’re determined to succeed. Most importantly, I want to be a positive role model to the younger generation. I don’t get caught up in all the things people do in their late teens and early 20’s, and that has done a lot for my life and career. So, when you choose the path you want to take in life, make sure it’s one that will give you an enjoyable life.
Jordan, there is such a sweetness to your personality! n this industry, how does that work in your favor as well as against you?
I am a very sweet guy, and I’ll always be that way. It has helped me in the industry because it makes me very easy to work with. Clients love working with me because I’m so enthusiastic, take directions well, and I’m always very polite and respectful. The most common compliment I have received is how professional and prompt I am, and those are two very important characteristics to have in this industry. With that being said, it does work against me. I am a very kind hearted person, and people tend to take advantage of that. I always expect people to have my best interest at hand, but that has not been the case. People feel like they can push me around and control me because they know I’m a people pleaser. I always expect people to do for me as I do for them, but sometimes it’s all one-sided. My sweetness forgives them way too easily, but I always try to put myself in other people’s shoes to get a different perspective on things. That’s one of the best things you can do because we all have our own perspective, so you never know how it is for someone else until you’ve experienced it first-hand.
Your body is perfection. Tell us how you approach your workout routine? You put a lot of focus on your legs and butt, how do you achieve such amazing results?
My life revolves around fitness and health, so having a nice body is very important to me. I got serious about working out before I even came into the industry. I have always been fascinated with the human body and how you can sculpt it like a piece of clay. I follow a 4 day on 1 day off split. So, my first workout consists of chest, shoulders, and triceps. The next day I hit my back and biceps. Then, day 3 is my leg day. My legs are by far my most powerful body part. Genetically speaking, my legs are the easiest for me to build and add muscle. I always start my leg workout with heavy squats. I used to do back squats, but I have suffered back issues my whole life. I have a few avulsion tears in the discs of my back. Now I do front squats and absolutely love them. Front squats have definitely given me amazing quad development, but I get so many compliments on my butt. I do plenty of lunges and hamstring work, but I think my legs and glutes are my easiest body parts to grow. So, whenever you see pictures of my butt or legs, just know how much hard work goes into sculpting them. Now, on my fourth day, my workout consists of the body parts that i’m trying to focus on or bring up. At the moment, that is my chest, shoulders, and arms. I don’t have to hit my legs more than once a week because I like where my legs are at, so all i need to do is maintain them.
You may be from rural Indiana, but I notice you seem very comfortable in your own skin when wearing little to no clothing. As you have gotten older and more experienced, are you hoping to do more edgy and sexual material?
As I have gotten older, I am open to doing edgier work. My work will always remain very tasteful, but I will always do sexy shots because this industry is built on the expression “sex sells.” I am okay with doing implied nudes because it’s such a beautiful art, and nothing is being exposed. Plus, I don’t work out every single day just to have it all covered in clothes. When I post underwear shots, it’s not just to show off my body or be arrogant. There is a story behind every picture. It’s like watching a movie except it’s a still image. You have to look deep and see the picture for what it’s worth. Having an open mind is such a big part in this industry because it requires you to have a creative mind.
What has been the response in your small hometown of family and friends regarding your blossoming career?
Honestly, I don’t keep in touch with many of my high school friends. I really just don’t have time because I am constantly working and on the move. I don’t even have the time to reply to texts or phone calls because so many people contact me on a daily basis. It would be a full time job if I even attempted to keep up. So, when I do get the rare free time, it goes to replying to business related concerns. However, I do have a couple of friends that I’ll always stay in touch with because they have been my friends forever. (Derek!!) Only they will understand that reference in parenthesis. I know they’d do anything for me, and they are happy that I’m chasing my dreams . As far as family goes, they are all thrilled to see me doing what I am doing. I don’t live very close to any of them, so we always stay in touch via social media. I post my work almost every day, so they get to see me plenty like the rest of the world!
Tell us something people would be stunned to know about Jordan Woods?
I am an introvert… despite how photogenic and comfortable I am in front of the camera or on set, I have always been an introvert my whole life. I am really trying to control that because I meet new people on a daily basis. Anyone who has known me for a while knows this. However, if you were to just see my work, you’d never imagine I’d be an extrovert. One reason why I am this way is because I think way too much about what other people are thinking about me. It all has to do with my anxiety and my brain being on overload. Thoughts are constantly running through my head at full speed, but I’ve been able to tame it down over the years. As I have matured in life, I am definitely more comfortable being around and meeting new people. That’s another reason why I love working with Joem because he introduces me to so many people in the industry, which helps me get my name out there so the right people know me. In this industry, communication skills are imperative because people could mistake my introverted personality as being arrogant or rude, which everyone knows is far from the truth. With all of this being said, I have been able to find a positive side to this negative personality trait. With being an introvert, I am a very good listener. I feel that if I were to be the one always talking, then I would just be repeating everything I already know. So, I always listen to what other people have to say, and I am able to learn so much from their experiences and what is on their mind. It just allows me to get a much deeper insight on life in general. Always pay attention to what others have to say because you might just learn something useful.
Now the Flash Bulb Round…..quick responses:
–Favorite all-time movies: a) comedy — Step-Brothers b) drama — Never Back Down c) tearjerker — Pursuit of Happiness d) action — all Fast & Furious
–What do you typically wear to bed: Nothing 😉
–Favorite fashion designer brand: H&M
–Favorite underwear brand & style: Boxers for comfort/Calvin Klein for shooting
–Favorite sin food: I never cheat… Chicken and rice all day!
— Favorite actor and actress: Brad Pitt & Jennifer Aniston
–What political issue could make you become an activist: Illegal immigration
–Your biggest vice? Working out (I’m unhealthily addicted)
–What TWO physical feature(s) do people compliment you on the most: My teeth and legs/booty
— Name a quirky thing about your personality: I think too much about what other people are thinking about me.
What is the best way on social media for people to reach out to you?
Twitter is probably the best way to reach me. It is so much easier and quicker. I get way too many DM’s on Facebook and Instagram that it would be a full time job to keep up with it all. Also, snapchat is blowing up at the moment, but I’m only able to get back to a select few because I get way too many snaps. Twitter is the best one, but you can try any of them. I’ll do my best to get back because I love all my supporters! I don’t consider any of you fans because you all mean so much to me. I appreciate all the love and support I get, so keep it all coming. I’ll do my best to get back to you all. Just know that none of your support goes unnoticed!! I love you all 🙂
You can find Jordan Woods on Social Media at:
Talented freelance photographer Joem Bayawa is a man beloved by his models, who found his true passion in taking photos of people. Currently based in the Chicago; his expertise is in portraiture, fashion, glamour, fitness and male physique. He is adept at helping young models prepare for the industry and produces striking images.
You can find photographer Joem Bayawa on Social Media at:
Many images featuring clothing from Jax & Debb’s: