By Nithya Sunil | Opening Doorz Editorial | March 08, 2019
International Women’s Day Special
On International Women’s Day, Nithya Sunil, writes about her super model sister Nidhi Sunil and the inspiration she has been to her and her peers. Currently in the US (since 2015), Nidhi has won a slew of beauty pageant Awards in India and graced the covers of top fashion magazines besides endorsing brands like Garnier, The Gap, forever 21 and spirit, among others. Nidhi is currently based in the US, busy in the fashion scene in New York.
To write these words about Nidhi on a day as special as this gives me great joy. She is a gift to my life and as sisters, our relationship has blossomed into something beautiful over the years. Being the older one, she set the bar in following dreams and making it a success. She has been in the modelling and acting industry for over 10 years now.
Her work has been an inspiration to many and she has championed breaking barriers and stereotypes at every level. Her focus on who she is and what she aspires to be at each stage of her profession is something which comes with a lot of discipline and self awareness. I see her work on herself a lot. She never slips into the web of complacency or rests on old laurels. Fame and success have never made her a different personality. She has no airs about herself and over the years, she has developed a warm and welcoming heart to anybody who wants to be a part of her life.
As a family, we are proud of who she is in her industry and how confidently yet humbly she carries that on her. All of us at some point have ‘bumped into her’ in a newspaper, magazine, billboard or store hoarding and that feeling continues to be surreal for us, especially since it happens in different parts of the world!
Contrary to the pre-conceived notion about models dieting to look slim and trim, this one actually eats really, really well and polishes off the extra trimmings on the plate as well! I have never seen her follow a fad diet or starve herself and I think that serves as a huge inspiration to so many people who follow her on social media. She represents having an absolutely healthy and normal lifestyle and owning and loving her body, skin colour, height, weight and everything else that she is as an individual.
Initially, when Nidhi chose the glamour part, despite having a degree in Law, I didn’t think it would be a long-term or permanent stint. I didn’t know much about the industry, so I didn’t give it too much of a thought. She has always been appreciated for her beauty, so it didn’t come as a surprise. Four years ago, she decided to have a stint in modelling in the US of A. She’s always known exactly what she wanted to do and through her agencies, has had great growth and support. She loves the US to the extent where she probably wouldn’t move back here. Working in the US has had all the struggles associated with moving to a new country but it’s definitely a good path for her.
Nidhi is not only talented, she also had the right breaks at the right time and I think no matter how much gifted you are, the alignment of the right opportunities are also important. In India, she over-achieved! This is gauged from the fact that whenever she’s back for a short stay here, she’s loaded with assignments! The move to the US was for her to personally expand her own work space and market and have newer experiences.
Although her performance in the Bollywood film Gangoobai (2013) was appreciated, she has always been picky about the projects she wants to work with as far as movies are concerned. Not bagging more roles was more a matter of choice. She did get many offers and I would have loved to see more of her on screen.
To me she is a sister, but to the world outside, she is turning out to be a wonderful role model! As Elizabeth Fishel says, “A sister is both your mirror, and your opposite.”
Here is wishing her a Happy Women’s Day!
(Nithya Sunil is the proprietor of The Blackboard Bakery, a quaint space located in the heart of Bangalore city on Lavelle Road. Nithya has been in the food industry as a pastry chef for the past seven years.)