The Evergreen Woodsman: Jordie Caskey | PnV Network Exclusive Interview
by Tom Peaks @MrPeaksNValleys
Model Jordie Caskey and I have been twitter friends for over 3 years now. He is a very kind, quiet, and caring man…as sweet as southern tea with a twist of lemon. Growing up in small-town Louisiana, he hung out at the lake for recreation, ran track, and was inspired by art while getting degreed in business. Today, he lives in fast-paced Los Angeles with his celebrity boyfriend, Simon Curtis, but as you will see Jordie still finds plenty of time to re-connect with nature as if he were back home in the rural South. In fact, Jordie the entrepreneur recently created his own natural cologne/fragrance called The Evergreen Woodsman (yes, yours truly now starts out every day smelling like the refreshing evergreens) and is available for sale at: https://www.etsy.com/listing/262671110/the-evergreen-woodsman-fragrance .
Meet Jordie Caskey in our exclusive PnV/Fashionably Male interview with brand new images by LA-based photographer Josh Williams.
So, Jordie, let’s start with the basics. What is your weight and height? Hair/eye color? Birthday? What is your hometown and current residence?
150 lbs; 5’10; brown hair & blue eyes; ; September 8, 1989; Jonesboro, LA; Los Angeles, CA.
I usually start my questions in chronological order, but let’s go reverse today. So, you have just launched your fragrance, The Evergreen Woodsman. This project has been a long time in development. I know you’re thrilled to see it finally come to fruition. First, paint us a picture of what the scent is like. What inspired it?
The fragrance has been so much fun to work on. I’ve always been very creative and skilled at making things. My parents encouraged my creativity by putting me in art camps as a child, which I’m very thankful for. I got to explore many forms of creative outlets and figure out my strengths and weaknesses. I was initially inspired for the fragrance by seeing local artists and craftsmen at flea markets and fairs here in town. LA is a city of artists, and being surrounded by that is contagious. The idea for the fragrance originally began as a candle. I researched candle making in depth, and it eventually evolved into the idea for The Evergreen Woodsman, the unisex fragrance. The scent is very woodsy, of course, but there are other notes that enhance the overall smell. As I was experimenting with smells, I fantasized about a situation where I was lost somewhere in the forest with just a good book. I wanted it to transport people in the same way an amazing book can, and I feel like I accomplished that.
Tell us about product development…the scent itself as well as the challenges of bringing it to market.
I wanted to develop a product that I would be passionate about, and being a Virgo (Earth sign), I find lots of inspiration in forests and nature in general. I also wanted the product to be health-conscious, so I
spent a year and a half experimenting and perfecting the recipe. I’m very happy with what I have created. Every ingredient in the fragrance is all-natural, and I’m very proud of that. It’s always intimidating when you present a new creation to the world; especially one that is a first-time endeavor. I’m lucky that modeling allowed me to build a following on social media prior to releasing The Evergreen Woodsman. Having that audience already established took some of the anxiety away, and I’m very happy with the response!
What are your long-term business goals with The Evergreen Woodsman? I understand you will have additional products, too. Tell us about that.
Right now I’m taking it one step at a time, but I would like to get the fragrance and future products into more stores. There are a handful of stores here in LA that are interested in it, and one already has it on their shelves. Mag Pi in Studio City is a really cool shop that supports local artists, and if you live locally, you can pick up a bottle from them! The dream is obviously to open an Evergreen Woodsman store, but that is very, very far into the future. In the coming weeks, I will be finalizing some new products such as a roll-on fragrance, lip balm and incense cones, and they will be available for sale online.
And part of the proceeds from the purchase of your fragrance goes to planting trees in U.S. National Forest. How does that work, Jordie?
It was very important for me to incorporate a charity/cause aspect into the launch of The Evergreen Woodsman because I want to give back to the world where I can. Having a product inspired totally by nature gives lots of room for that. I researched organizations until I found one that I felt I’d want to contribute to. The National Forest Foundation (NFF) accepts donations, and for every dollar donated, they plant one new tree in our national forests. I feel like that’s a pretty cool thing. I donate a dollar for every bottle sold, so essentially, every time someone buys a bottle, they are planting one new tree somewhere in the national forests.
The Evergreen Woodsman has been in development for over a year. What have you learned during this process?
The entire process has been a learning experience. I have a journal full of notes starting on day one filled with trial and error scenarios. The art of mixing fragrances is one that I was not an expert in, and the fragrance originally smelled totally different than it does now. On the business side of things, I’ve learned and still am learning a lot, but I’m lucky to have people in my close circle that have experience in that area that I can ask for advice.
You spend a lot of time recreationally in nature such as the beach, forest, mountains and canyons. Clearly, this provides some time of therapeutic value for you. And I know you have a love for the metaphysical…crystal, rocks, etc. Explain to our readers the impact all of this has on your well-being.
This is a topic that I’m very passionate about. It’s a topic that is responsible for my health: mental, physical and spiritual. There is so much I could say, and I really don’t even know where to begin. At the beginning of 2015, I was in this place of longing for something more, and I was so receptive to trying new things. Eventually, my boyfriend and I discovered the healing properties of crystals. The difference in our overall well-being is undeniable. Energetically speaking, everything in this world is held together by…energy. Our bodies and minds are no exception to this and as a result our energy fields can be penetrated by outside sources. This is why our moods change when we walk in certain places. If we walk into a busy restaurant where things are stressful, we begin to feel anxious even though we were calm just a few minutes ago. Or if we are depressed or angry, we seek peace by going somewhere quiet such as a temple or sanctuary of some sort. Our energy changes as the energy surrounding us changes, and our mental states can manifest physically in our bodies. This is why stress causes muscle tension and pain. Crystals are made of the elements of the earth, and the energies that they emit are so beneficial to the human psyche. The chemical composition of a crystal determines its healing properties. For instance, a lithium-bearing mineral is soothing and calming to the energy field which is great for curing depression and anxiety. Crystal energies also correspond to the various Chakras—seven energy centers in our bodies according to Ayurveda. This is why I spend so much time outdoors in nature. It’s important to reconnect with naturally occurring energies and to isolate yourself from other people so that your own energy field can clear itself. When they say that an incident of road rage sticks to you all day, there’s a reason that it does.
Amazing story on how your spiritual journey progressed!
So, let’s backtrack now! Late in 2012, you left small-town Louisiana for Los Angeles. Jordie, most of your fans are aware that you and recording artist/author Simon Curtis are boyfriends. You met him almost immediately after you came to LA. Tell us about that. Why do you two click so well together?
We actually met before I made the move, and I flew out to visit him a month before I left Louisiana. We have a few mutual friends, and we knew each other online for a while. After we met in person, there was an immediate connection. It seemed pretty much effortless, and we both felt like we’d been looking for each other for a long time. When you know, you know. So I moved, and this year will be our four-year anniversary. There were times when communication was a challenge, but ultimately, I feel like we flourish together because we talk about everything and balance each other out.
Let us not forget that you’re not just a businessman, you are such a fantastic model!! When you moved to LA, what was your initial rationale for the move? Was modeling the primary goal?
Thank you! You’ve always been so supportive of me, and I’m very grateful for that. Modeling was definitely the goal when I moved. I attempted modeling in NYC in early 2012, but it didn’t work out. I’m so happy about that now because I love LA so much.
The first images I saw of you were stunning. They were shot by Scott Hoover. Tell us about the shoot and working with him.
Scott is such an amazing photographer. He knows how to make men look good on camera, and I couldn’t believe the images he shot of me. It was one of my first shoots here in LA, and working with him really accelerated my career. They are still some of my favorites. He’s such a nice guy, too.
You also appeared in Fractured, the photo book by Jeremy Kost.What were your impressions of the final product?
We shot several times for Fractured and built a collection of images over time. I’m really proud of the images that we got and how they look in the book.
You have shot with so many other photographers. Tell us about one or two shoots that were your favorites.
There are so many that I loved. One that’s memorable was shooting the cover for Type/Face magazine. It was my first time to shoot with Gabe Ayala, and we spent all day in the studio shooting with tons of trunks from Charlie by MZ. We had so many props, and it was one of the few times that I worked with other models. I shot for Jon Magazine with Brian Kaminski in a pay-by-the-hour motel. That was super fun, and those images are more of my favorites.
I know you have done a lot of beautiful nude work and enjoy that immensely. I think you once described it to me as “liberating.” How so?
In that situation, you’re kind of like, “Alright, here I am. There’s nothing to hide.” It’s a great exercise for overcoming fear-based insecurities.
What are some of the biggest hurdles and frustrations that you have found with modeling and the industry itself?
My height has always been the biggest issue with agencies in LA. 5’10 is just short enough that it gives them an easy excuse to pass on me, but I feel like I’ve done well regardless.
What is your favorite thing about modeling?
Getting into character and channeling an inspiration is always fun. People have told me that I look different in person than I do in my pictures, and that’s because I play a character on set. My true nature isn’t seductive or overly confident, but when I’m shooting it’s an opportunity to become another person.
Fitness has always been important to you. As I recollect, in 2015, you added some new elements in that you picked up on yoga and very much limited alcohol and caffeine intake. How do all the healthy lifestyle strategies seem to be working?
Health is so important. My consciousness was given a body with which to experience life. It’s only fair to treat that body and mind kindly and to appreciate it as long as possible. Yoga is so healing. It’s a 5,000 year old science that has so much power behind it. I gave up alcohol and a little bit of my social life with it! I gave up coffee because I was dependent on it, and couldn’t start my day until I had a few cups every morning. It’s been nice waking up without relying on coffee to get my going.
Your degree is in business management from the University of Louisiana in Monroe. You once told me studying business felt “too strict and stuffy.” I imagine you are now incorporating much of your education. What would you do differently if you had a collegiate ‘re-do’?
I’m definitely using some of my degree now. I’m able to apply what I learned in those four years to my business. Combining it with something creative that I’m passionate about makes it much more fun. I definitely don’t want to go back to college, and I’m very happy those days are behind me. But if I could go back and tell myself one thing to help lighten the load, I would say that everything I’m experiencing is a necessary step in my growth and that it won’t always be that way.
What were you like as a high school kid, Jordie?
I was sort of the same as I am now– reserved and polite. I was athletic. I wanted what I considered then to be a happy future for myself. I didn’t want to cause any trouble, but I wanted to be proud of my accomplishments. I have a much more secure, clear vision of who I am now versus then. I was so unsure of myself, but I knew I’d overcome that eventually.
How often do you get back home to the Pelican State?
I go back home two or three times a year. Usually around holidays and birthdays.
Now, the Flash Bulb Round…quick, simple responses:
–Favorite all time: a) action film b) comedy c) tearjerker?
Does The Little Mermaid fall under all three categories?
–The 2 exercises most beneficial to your physical appearance?
Bicep curls and squats
–Favorite underwear brand and style?
–Favorite vacation spot?
I want to do more traveling, and I’m dreaming of somewhere tropical right now.
–What do you wear to bed?
–Who gets recognized in public the most…you or Simon?
–What physical features do people compliment you on the most?
My eyes and my hair
–Favorite place to hike?
Angeles National Forest
SO MANY, but if I have to narrow it down: Emerald, Sphene, Kunzite and Phenakite
–Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Somewhere with my family. I see a little Jordie Jr in my future, but if that’s within 10 years or not, I have no idea.
What are the best ways for people to reach out to you on social media?
Twitter is usually the best, but I check instagram frequently as well. Both are @jordiecaskey (links provided):
To purchase or learn more about Jordie’s fragrance and other products from Evergreen Woodsman, go to:
Photographer Josh Williams says growing up in the South, near New Orleans, was a big inspiration in his life and still when visiting home. He says he grew up in a “very fun and crazy family who taught me never to judge and to find the beauty in everything.” The culture around the Crescent City impacted him greatly. He pursued his dream in photography at Ringling College of Art & Design in Sarasota, FL. From there, he moved to Los Angeles, where he has been for nearly ten years. He continues to travel the world with camera in hand.
Josh Williams on Social Media:
the knot | josh williams / jbw photography
website | joshwilliamsphotography.com
instagram 1 | @joshwphoto
instagram 2 | @jbwphotography