The ladies of #SISwimSearch and heating up the pages of this year's Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. The final six women of the model search competition traveled down to Paradise Island, The Bahamas, to shoot with photographer Yu Tsai, and the results are going to blow you away.
Say hello to Jessica Aidi. This Parisian beauty has been a part of our model search the past two years, and is living proof that you should never give up on your dreams! When things didn't go as planned the first year, Jessica came back to try again...and we're so glad that she did! We caught up with her to chat about everything from her shoot in Nassau to where she sees herself in two or three years!
Sports Illustrated:How has becoming an #SISwimSearch finalist impacted your life?
Jessica Aidi: Becoming a #SISwimSearch has tremendously impacted my life from fun moments like watching seals dance to the humbling moments of being a part of a meaningful charity that bought awareness to significant issues. Since the competition began I’ve met so many beautiful , intelligent and powerful woman who have truly inspired me to unapologetically be myself. I have had the privilege to work with a great team and with the best photographers that know exactly how to capture “Woman Power” in a picture. Since the #SISwimSearch I have developed more ambition inside of me that makes my dedication to succeed in my modeling career stronger than ever. The motivation and inspiration that the entire #SISwimSearch experience has planted inside of me is one that is truly life changing and will stay with me forever.
SI:How does it feel to be to the final stage of #SISwimSearch after having to drop out last year?
JA: It feel more than an accomplishment, it’s a life’s lesson, because I never give up, as European people it’s not easy for us to get a chance to have a visa especially with the US Political situation, I knocked at all the agencies doors to be able to be sponsored and do my visa application, it took me 8 month to get it, and the craziest thing it’s that I got it on my passport 1 week before the Miami casting call !
SI is a dream since I started modeling and I fight for being able to touch it closer and closer. During all my career I get rejected so many times, the fashion industry is a tough and challenging world, and I am proud to say I kept standing up because I have a dream and a passion and no one will take it away from me.
SI: What does your family think of your sexy photos?
JA: My family is so supportive of my experience with SI. Every time I show my family a new picture from my SI shoots they are always so excited for me, even my dad who at the beginning didn’t understand why I was always in a bathing suit ! But they are proud, especially my 3 sisters who always believe in me. They are as excited as I am not only because this is my dream come true but mainly because I have the honor to say I worked with the respected , successful , legendary SI family.
SI: Where do you see yourself in two or three years?
JA: In two years I definitely see myself known in this industry for breaking barriers. I see myself being the face of large respectable brands such as Sports Illustrated. I see myself more involved in charity’s , fund raisers and projects that involve helping others. In two to three years i see the world knowing who I am and understanding that anytime me and my big curly hair show up it will be a completely empowering and unforgettable moment !
SI: What was it like shooting in Nassau with Yu Tsai?
Shooting in Nassau was a dream. Nassau in general from the food, the hospitality and the scenery is a beauty, then you add the talented Yu Tsai and it is a dream come true. It’s like listening to a song from your favorite singer for so long, and the next day you are dancing on stage with one of your idols! I am so humbled, honored and thankful to have had that experience .
SI: What photo are you most looking forward to seeing in the issue?
The photos I am most looking forward to see is of the new faces joining the SI family because we will see through theirs eyes the incredible feeling to being a part of such an historical magazine like that. With the #SISwimSearch experience I was a witness to some of the shoots and am eager to seeing the final outcome of my SI’s sisters because we all grew up together through this experience and we lived it together, but I also cannot wait to see my picture and be able to show it to everyone. Honestly, I am excited for ALL the woman who will appear in the magazine and am more excited to see all of there beauty come to life in these photos I can’t wait!
SI: Would you ever move away from Paris full-time?
JA: I am living in New York now. I am originally from South of France. Paris was my home for some time so it will always be special to me and I keep spending some time there. Home is where the heart is so I am comfortable with relocating at anytime as long as I am pursuing my dreams, and now there is no other place than NY I rather be!
See all of Jessica's gorgeous photos from SI Swimsuit 2019: