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"I Had a Foursome Like Last Week": The Wild Life of Model-Boxer-Photographer, Charlie Himmelstein

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paper_converse_bts_charlie_04.jpgPAPER's no stranger to getting smoking hot dudes to answer personal questions: just peruse the Model-Crush Monday archives for proof. But with Charlie Himmelstein, the boxer-turned-model-turned-photographer, we went deeper than our usual TMI Questionnaire. The Friday Night Throwdown champ dished about the sweet science, sexy photo shoots, and winning over his top model girlfriend, Ashley Smith.

Vital Stats
Name: Charlie Himmelstein
Profession: Boxer/Model/Photographer
Age: 24
Hometown: Brooklyn
Years boxing: 13
Number of bouts won: 27
Years modeling: 4
Number of underwear shoots in front of the camera: "69 dude"
Number of underwear shoots from behind the camera: "69 dude"

paper_converse_bts_charlie_02.jpgHow did you start boxing?

I got into boxing because I was a bad kid. I got in a lot of fights so my parents put me into martial arts. But I switched to boxing because I didn't like the whole meditation bullshit. I just wanted to punch things in the face.

In boxing films, you always see these intense training montages -- is that what it's like to get in shape for the ring?

Yeah, I mean, if you want to be an athlete you've got to put in the work. I don't think I was naturally a good boxer. I was awkward and no one knew what to do with me, so that kind of gave me an edge. But I do work very hard. When I'm training for a fight, I train every day, and then take one day off. At this point, I don't see it as hard work. It's just kind of a routine.

Do you have a gym?

I train at a gym called Overthrow Boxing, and me and my friend Joey actually started it together. It's like New York City's home of underground boxing. We're about punk rock and keeping it underground and local and cool.

paper_converse_bts_charlie_06.jpgYou were part of Friday Night Throwdown, which were the male model fights, and boxing became your entry to modeling, right?
 
Yeah. I don't like to say it because I sound like a piece of shit, but I'm the champion of Friday Night Throwdown. I'm undefeated. They started me off fighting a model and I beat the shit out of him, so they started putting me up against fighters. A bunch of articles came out about it, and then I got a bunch of photo shoots from it.

You never worry that boxing will mess up your face?

Well, that's the question everyone asks me. And my answer is, I'm a shitty model and a good boxer. I've never had a facial injury, besides once. And when I had my black eye, everyone wanted to shoot me, so it kind of helped.

How'd you transition from being in front of the camera to behind it?

You can't really go anywhere with modeling. It's not a career with longevity, so you've got to take something out of it unless you plan on being Kate Moss. I like being the center of attention and the photographer was definitely the person with the most attention, besides the model. So I paid attention to what they were doing and how the sets work. I made everyone believe I was really good when I was really shitty. And photography has longevity. As long as I don't break all my fingers in boxing.

Now photo shoots must get crazy. What's the wildest, raciest thing that's ever happened on a shoot?

I've had all different kinds of experiences on shoots. I've been on shoots where there's so much sexual tension between me and the model I was working with, right after the shoot we'd go hook up. There was one time after a show at Milk Studios, me and this model were really hitting it off, and we literally walked off the runway and into the bathroom.

paper_converse_bts_charlie_07.jpgThat actually is a good segue into one of the usual TMI Questionnaire questions: Have you ever had a threesome?

I had a foursome like last week. I'm an open person and not jealous and I can handle that kind of stuff, so it's probably more regular than most people but I don't do it every week.

Back to photos: You must have a crew of people that you like working with now.

I have my inner circle of models that I use and that I'm loyal to. Sometimes I see a face and I'm like, "Holy shit, I need to shoot," but for the most part, I'm pretty clique-y and only shoot specific people. I like shooting people like Hailey Clauson or my girlfriend, Ashley Smith, who are both top models.

Did you meet your girlfriend on a shoot?

I was out shooting for Interview magazines -- I was shooting Polaroids. I saw Ashley, and she was like the only well-known person there and I needed to take her picture. So I was like, "Oh my god, you're like, my favorite model." And she just looked at me and was like, "Ugh, okay." Then, 20 minutes later she put her number on a napkin in my pocket with a kiss on it.

It must be pretty intense when you guys are working together.

Yeah, it's nuts. I hire her for all the good editorials I get. It's just totally wacky, fucking crazy shit happening, all comfort so we get the best photos.

Does she go to your boxing matches?

Sometimes. She likes that I'm a boxer. I try and train her sometimes, but she won't do it anymore, because I'm a tough trainer. I'm such an asshole.

paper_converse_bts_charlie_01.jpgNow that you've got the photography thing going, are you still modeling?

Yeah. I make most of my income from modeling. My face is still working. I'm going to milk it as long as I can.




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