Meet the Model: Shaheem | Zappos Adaptive


Meet the Model: Shaheem on Being Superfly

Vibrant. Fun. SUPERFLY.

“Shaheem is in the house!” exclaimed Shaheem, one of the energetic models who participated in a Zappos Adaptive photo shoot. Disability fashion styling expert Stephanie Thomas of Cur8able worked with Shaheem and other models to identify functional and fashionable designs that fit their personalities and styles. Shaheem’s experience as a dance teacher made him an ideal fit for this photo shoot.



How did you learn about the Zappos Adaptive casting call?
A friend of mine, Marissa, leads a dance company called Infinite Flow. I teach all kinds of people in those classes, people with various kinds of disabilities: Down syndrome, people in wheelchairs, people who are deaf like me. Stephanie [Thomas] contacted Marissa, and now I’m here via Marissa. And to show what it looks like to include deaf people.

Describe what it’s like being a model.
I would say it’s definitely different. It is like dance, but it requires more standing than dance. Dancing is more movement, but why not take advantage of that? I've never really been a model before, so I do like it. It’s definitely a good experience. And now I’m here, showing you what it looks like to be a good model. Haha.

What are some of your hobbies?
My hobbies include basketball, skiing, dancing of course, I love teaching sign language to people, and creative choreography.

Describe yourself in one word.
Oh man, describe myself in one word. Superfly. Superfly, there you go (makes bird flying away sign).



If you could create a piece of clothing, what would it be? Or shoes.
If I could create clothing or shoes, I think I would probably choose clothes. I would really want to use the clothing to promote deaf awareness. Like for example, feeling the music…everyone can relate to that. Hearing as well as deaf. It’s a more inclusive approach. I mean everybody loves music, right?

What is one thing you would want the world to know about you?
Never give up. And deaf can. Those are the two big mottos that I live by.

What do you think of the mission to help people get dressed easier?
I think that, especially with the clothing line that’s provided with Zappos Adaptive, the ability for people to dress themselves or just to have the ability to find flexibility in their clothing styles and their clothing choices is definitely better. People are able to choose what they want, dress how they want, and feel comfortable.

How has your experience been on set at the photo shoot with Zappos Adaptive?
Wow. This photo shoot was a really good experience. They tried different backgrounds, different clothing, different people, different setups, so I really liked it. I had a lot of fun. It was a long process, but of course, I love working, keeping busy, making things and producing things is important. So, it’s a big part of life. That’s what’s important at the end of the day. [dabs]