For someone who never planned on a modelling career, Gabriel-Kane Day-Lewis has landed on his feet. Running into family friend Karl Lagerfeld on a Paris boulevard at the age of 19 spurred his shift from skater to a catwalk star. The fledgling model soon walked the runway for Chanel and appeared in campaigns for Prada. "My mum and Karl Lagerfeld go way back. I first met him as a kid alongside her – they were great friends," says Kane. "I'll always be so grateful that I got to be a part of Karl's legacy before he left us, too."
While you may not know his face, you definitely know his parents. Day-Lewis is the 23-year-old son of three-time Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis and French actress Isabelle Adjani, who holds the world record for Cesar Awards for Best Actress, with five. Over the past four years working as a high-end model, he's been propelled to the industry's cool list, making a name for himself on his own terms. Now he's set to make his first visit to Australia as a special guest of the 2019 Stella Artois Caulfield Cup Carnival in October.
Born in Paris, Day-Lewis lived with his mother until he was 14 before joining his father and stepmother in Ireland. He moved to New York eight years ago to pursue his music career, and these days you'll find him hanging in the Lower East Side and East Village frequenting music gigs. "New York is totally home," he says. "I am always drawn back there."
He's spent recent months working in a Brooklyn studio trying to finish an EP with his singles – Ink in My Veins and True – a sign of more soulful pop to come, though he admits he has a fear of writing in a recording studio. "I usually write at home or at a friend's place. The studio doesn't feel as comfortable to me just yet."
Day-Lewis was inspired to pick up the guitar after seeing French film The Chorus more than 20 times as a kid. "It's about a group of children who sing about their life experiences and hardships," he says.
It may seem like he's lived a charmed life, but he's always felt a sense of flight. His own parents never married and split before he was born. "I guess having famous parents makes you grow up a lot quicker that's for sure," he says. "I spent a lot of time travelling and moving and had to adapt my life according to my family," he says. "Having famous parents makes you grow up a lot quicker."
In 2013, Kane says he went through a period of depression, and music was his way out. "Self-care has become really important to me now more than ever," he says. "I have routines in place to keep myself mentally fit and I have learned to stop trying to make others happy – happiness begins with yourself.
"So simple things like knowing it's OK to not return phone calls … and not check emails. When you remove that pressure you slow down."
His impressive gene pool has definitely made him "ambitious for success in all aspects of my life", he says. "And though i don't know what the future holds...Ive learned to stay true to myself."
Tickets to the Stella Artois Caulfield Cup Carnival can be found here.