Trey Pressley is eye candy no doubt. Pressley is a seasoned model who is very comfortable in his own skin. Don’t get it twisted; he never compromises his integrity for a check. Here, he discusses how he navigates the “complicated” entertainment industry, why he uses caution and offers tips to stand above the competition.
What has the journey been like for you in the entertainment industry?
My journey into the entertainment industry has been complicated, yet exciting. I realized at a young age that I wanted to be in the entertainment industry. However, I grew up being told you go to school, college and then get a real job. Where I grew up people didn’t dream big. I attended Florida A & M University and this is where I started to realize there was so much more out there for me and I could do whatever I wanted to do. I started doing talent shows. I used to think I could sing. Then, I started seeing flyers about modeling auditions. I was like, “yes, that’s me.” I started modeling. I started working out even more. I have always been very comfortable in my skin. I see the body as a piece of art. So, I started doing a lot of underwear and swimwear modeling. I loved it … still do. I started getting featured in magazines, landed an underwear campaign, and doing more shows. I was happy, however, I knew I wanted to do more so I started looking into acting. I started meeting people in the industry that could possibly help me get to the next level but it was always a stipulation. They wanted something in return. This always made me feel horrible on the inside and I would shut down because I feel like I have what it takes and shouldn’t have to do that. Over time, my body has become my brand. People say I’m a sex symbol. I’m actually OK with that but I know there is so much more to me. So, this journey is so exciting but it’s complicated because you have to be careful with whom you associate with, whom you trust, whom you take advice from. You have to be ready and know who you are.
While the entertainment industry is competitive, what keeps you motivated?
The entertainment industry is very competitive. There are a few things that keep me motivated. One is my drive to be successful. I know I have so much to offer to this industry and I want to be an example for someone, a positive role model. I want to be that guy someone looks up to and says if he can do it I know I can. Two, is the people who believe in me: my family, friends and fans. I have fallen off track a few times and people would hit me up and ask what’s wrong or what happened because they haven’t been seeing me doing much. They actually say please don’t give up Trey, you are such an inspiration. When I get those types of messages I’m like, “I gotta keep going.”
What was your experience like serving in the military?
My experience in the military was unimaginable. Like no one could believe I had joined. I told no one until after I did it. The military changed my life. It made me grow up. When I went to basic training in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, those drill sergeants broke me down till I shredded tears. It was like prison. Nothing you did was right; you only spoke when spoken to. You had to eat at a certain time with no talking. If you were caught talking then that meant you weren’t hungry so your food was thrown out. I was like OMG what have I done? Once that initial shock was over and you got use to the military way, I just started prospering. I was promoted to be the platoon sergeant. This meant I was over like 50 or 55 soldiers and I had to answer to my drill sergeant. I even ended up graduating as the Distinguished Honor Graduate. I was on a fast track with promotions. I made E-5 in less than three years. Then everything stopped. I was up for promotion to E-6 but they decided to change the promotion system so I was being affected by this. I also submitted my Officers Packet but it got kicked back as well because the promotion system was changing for that as well. I was like, “oh no, it’s time to go.” So I sat down and wrote out my pros and cons. I joined to get my degree. I had grown up a lot and had my degree in psychology. I was like, “I’m ready to get out and pursue my dream now.” I got out in August 2012.
What are some of your rituals before you have a photo shoot?
Getting ready for a photo shoot is a process. Not only do I always have to stay on top of my game by staying in shape by working out and eating right, but depending on the concept of the shoot I have to decide how and when to cut my hair, whether or not I should shave my body hair, what clothes and shoes I should bring, and make sure I get plenty of rest. Even though I always keep my hands and feet well groomed, I always get a fresh mani and pedi before a new shoot. I always stay well hydrated but before a fitness or artistic nude shoot I may take some Diurex to help relieve bloat, puffiness and/or water weight. Doing this helps muscle definition show more.
What advice would you give someone who desires to be in the entertainment industry?
I would first ask them what exactly did they want to do. You have to have a clear vision of what you want to accomplish in the industry. Do you want to model, sing, dance, act, etc. Once we identified the goal I would tell them not to let anything in the world stop them from accomplishing just that. Not family, friends, other artists, producers, booking agents, nobody. It’s going to be hard and you may get a lot of no’s before that door finally opens but it will happen when the time is right. You have to continue to believe in yourself and continue to pray for guidance. Being in the industry and even the process of getting there can eat you alive if you allow it too. Know who you are and stay true to that.
What has been the most challenging component of working in the entertainment industry?
The most challenging part for me has been the people. What I mean is that there are a lot of scam artists out there who claim they can help you get to the next level or they can provide great exposure for you and in reality they can’t do anything. I have ran into some who actually can help but lots of them have crossed the line of doing business together to trying me in an inappropriate way. This has happened on so many different occasions. It leaves you feeling like, “Is that the only way to make it?” “Is that all you see in me?” It makes you feel really bad. Like, I am very comfortable with my body. It’s a temple to me but when people try you like that it makes you question yourself like you did something to attract that type of activity. I honestly feel that if I accepted that along the way I would be so much more accomplished in the industry. Sad but true.
How has modeling enhanced your life?
Modeling for me has taught me so much. It has made me more aware of my body. I knew I had to make sure I watch what I eat at all times, at least 90 percent of the time. I knew I had to stay in the gym because I have what I call “fat genes.” The good thing about all this is I had a natural love for working out and being active. The eating part continues to be a challenge because I love me some bread. Modeling has made me more confident being on stage and in front of huge crowds of people. I am naturally a shy guy, however, being on stage I have to be confident and be able to perform and entertain. I’m not sure if you remember Beyoncé talking about her alto ego, Sasha Fierce, but that’s how I feel with Tremayne and Trey. Trey is the more outgoing one; he loves the stage. Tremayne is the home body, the shy guy. Modeling has also opened the door to acting also.
Where do you see your career in the next five years?
In the next five years, I want to be on the big screen. I would love to star or even co-star in a national movie. I want to continue to strive to be the best that I can be in modeling and acting. I want to be one of the major models booked for fashion week and would love to grace the cover of some major magazines — GQ, Men’s Fitness, Men’s Physique, etc. I plan to continue to build my brand and inspire and help as many people I can along the way.