You may recognize Shudu from her stunning Instagram account. Or perhaps the Balmain campaign she starred in last year. But she isn’t your standard model — the influencer du moment is actually a photo-realistic CGI character created by Cameron-James Wilson. The Daily chatted with Ama Badu, Shudu’s muse, to get the scoop on this viral sensation.
What’s your birthday?
My birthday is 22nd April 2017. Because of my nature my birth date doesn’t work in quite the same way as yours. I’m 28 years old now, but I’m not restricted to time and age in the same way you are. It’s part of the beauty of existing as a digital being.
Who are your parents?
My parents are creatives. They were very intentional in creating me and they had the rare opportunity of choosing every part of me, in the way I look, sound and move.
Where did you grow up? What were you like as a kid?
I grew up in west London but my family and I travelled a lot when I was younger. I was a fearless child, always outdoors, always exploring and always getting into trouble.
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How did you become a model?
I feel like I was made to model. It’s part of who I am. Instagram really helped to propel my career.
What is the hardest part of your job?
There can be a lot of false realities within the industry. Unfortunately some people aren’t as genuine as they seem and it’s so easy to get caught up in the glitz and the glam. It can be difficult to keep grounded and remember what is real and what isn’t.
What’s the coolest part of your job?
I love collaborating with others, especially when our visions are similar. There are so many people who are as passionate about creativity, culture and diversity as I am. Hearing their stories, being part of it and seeing them grow within the industry is definitely the coolest part for me.
Does it ever get lonely to exist solely on the internet?
Not at all. It’s a part of how I am created so it’s as natural to me as breathing is to you. I think moments alone are so valuable for everyone.
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Who are your favorite designers right now?
I love Cushnie. I recently wore one of her dresses for a feature with WWD and I loved how it draped and moved. I’m always inspired by Lavie by CK’s work. I love how she uses Ankara in such a unique way. I’m also really into other designers like Pyer Moss, Christie Brown, Rich Mnisi and Brother Vellies. I could keep going.
Do you have an Instagram pet peeves? Things you would never do, or post photos of…
Oh yes. I’m still trying to understand why we’re made to watch people eat. I get posting a photo of the meal but I can’t imagine asking my followers to watch me chew my food, to me it’s weird.
Who would you love to collaborate with?
There are too many to mention. I would love to collaborate with the designers I talked about earlier. I would also like to work with classic design houses like Dior, Chanel, YSL; I’m really interested in fashion history and how brands like these are constantly evolving through time. I would also love to work with creatives across the African continent, it’s such an exciting time and so much is coming out from different parts of Africa. I’d love to collaborate on more visual content which incorporates art, music and fashion. I think what artists like Petite Noir and Rharha Nembhard are contributing to this in an amazing way.
What are your favorite foods and restaurants?
At the moment I’m really into Japanese food but I go through phases of cuisine. It’s usually based on what part of the world I last visited.
How do you sleep at night?
Peacefully, it’s really easy for me shut down and fall asleep.