Todd Sanfield is a model and underwear designer, and if that weren’t enough, he’s half way through pharmacy school, too. You wouldn’t know all that just by looking at him, though (or would you?) Heck, the guy can hardly piece his own story together, and therein lies the beauty of his nature: he’s taking life one step at time and doing just about everything he loves without an inkling of an idea of where he’ll land. We spoke with Todd, who’s in New York on summer vacation from his four-year pharmacy program, about how all his pieces fit together, and what we can expect next. Find out about his underwear line, his interest in medicine, what else he’s up to and where he could land in our exclusive interview below. We have a few other personal tidbits, too, like what underwear he prefers to wear and whether or not he thinks he’s good looking (no-brainer?)
When you’re done, we have a sampling of photos from his recent shoot at The Bowery Hotel with Rick Day for DNA Magazine.
Underwear Expert: So, you’re in medical school, right?
Todd Sanfield: It’s pharmacy school–I’m a drug specialist. It’s like medical school, just as intense.
UE: Where did you get the inspiration for that field of study?
TS: I enjoy studying medication, the human body. My undergrad major was zoology so I was always really interested in animals, but as I evolved, I realized I was more interested in the human body. I love to exercise and that really brought me to study pharmacy, too–learning, down to the cell, how the body works.
UE: Does your interest in the human body have anything to do with your designing underwear?
TS: Probably! I’m intrigued with the body in general–boy, girl it doesn’t matter–it’s just interesting to me how people can change their body around.
UE: How do you stay in such good shape?
TS: It’s an evolving process. When I was young I started lifting weights. You lift and lift, and then as an adult you start eating healthy and then start lifting more for form and shape. Now, I work out six times a week for an hour and a half to two hours each time. And I eat really healthy. I subconsciously pay attention to what I do, too. Even walking up stairs–I try to feel each muscle as I walk up. When I walk in NY–I like NY a lot–I’ll load my backpack up and use that as an excuse to do cardio. That’s why I like New York, you can walk around everywhere. And once a week I’ll eat some pizza or something like that..
UE: How did you get started modeling?
TS: My mom talked me into doing a photo shoot when I was 21 and then it kind of just happened.
UE: Did you always know you were good-looking?
TS: I didn’t really know what I looked like behind the camera–I was always an athlete, and strong, and I lifted weights and ran and stuff–then I took these pictures and they turned out pretty good.
UE: So you’re in New York for the summer? What’s the plan?
TS: Dude, it’s a loaded question. I have no idea. Right now I’m on the fly. I’ve got three months to figure out what the next move is–what the next step is. I really just came out here because I’m trying to build my underwear line and I figured now is a better time than ever–because if anything can happen, it’s now. I have a three-month window. I have a plan of action, but I do have a lot of different things happening.
UE: How do you balance it all?
TS: It’s tough. I mean, you do what you gotta do. It’s better I have this going on than nothing going on and being left wondering what I’m going to do next.
UE: And what’s your priority?
TS: If I wasn’t in school I’d have the underwear line–there’d be a lot going on–I’d be living in New York 24/7, 365 days a year, but that’s not the case. I have grad school–it’s priority-so everything else is going kinda slowly. The reality is there’s always that chance you won’t be a movie star or a famous designer–even though I may not think like that.
UE: So priority is pharmacy school and medicine? Any specialization?
TS: Yes. I’m probably going to get involved with HIV / AIDS, that’s most likely where I’m headed. I’m very interested in that topic and there’s a lot going on with it–it’s something that’s very, very interesting in me. That’s the direction I would hope to go–now, things could change–but if right now I had to tell you what I wanted to do that would be it.
UE: And with modeling?
TS: I’m a wild card, you know. Who knows what’s going to happen!
UE: And what’s the goal right now with your underwear line?
TS: The goal is to continue to improve and take it one step at a time. You want it to be as big as possible, high quality.. but I’m gotta take it one step at a time. It’s a generic answer, but the hard part is getting there. I’m just kind of starting, really, and learning what and who’s out there.
UE: What’s your underwear design philosophy?
TS: I always played football, baseball, basketball and get a lot of my inspiration from that. It’s my vision. And nature.. that’s where it’s going to evolve from.
UE: And perhaps off topic.. what underwear do you prefer to wear?
TS: The two styles I have, that I sell, are my underwear choice. They look the best on me, fit me the best, and are the most comfortable for me.
UE: When you’re not figuring it all out this summer, do you have any favorite New York spots?
TS: I like the West Village, everything about the West Village.
UE: Do you ever get recognized there or elsewhere?
TS: I guess when I’m walking around the village I’ve had people say stuff to me, but you know what I mean, I’m not some big famous guy.. I’m not that noticeable.. I’m just some dude! I see celebrities all the time, but I don’t say anything!
UE: Thanks for taking the time to talk with us. In closing, what are five words that describe you? Perseverance, Energy, Ambition, Intelligence, Genuine…. Artist… Creative…
For more information on this brand: The Todd Sanfield Collection