Sheila Marquez is a Spanish model and burgeoning stylist. Christian Brylle is a photographer (who assisted Mario Testino) and model. They fell in love — shock of all shockers — on the job, and have crossed continents in hot pursuit of one another ever since... We’re talking nearly five years of language barriers, months apart, and intense bursts of time together. In honor of Gucci’s latest his-and-hers fragrances, Guilty Black (a heady oriental eau grounded in patchouli), we had the Brooklyn-based couple turn ten disposable cameras on each other during an intimate Saturday morning to document how they really see their better half.
Age: “Twenty-one forever!”
On meeting Christian: “When we first met, I was with someone else, so we didn’t really talk much. But then six months after, we went back—same place, same fashion show, in Germany—and I was single, so. Anyway, it was a big party, really. Many couples came out from those parties. [Laughs]
Was it love at first sight? “At first, he really attracted me because, obviously, I love clothes. [Laughs] He was wearing little boots with a little bit of heel—like, Beatles boots. He was very stylish, with long blond hair. I like an androgynous look. I didn’t look at him in a way like, ‘Wow, I want this guy to be my boyfriend,’ but I thought he was very stylish. Like, I could wear his clothes.”
Was it a texting or a calling courtship? “Texting, constantly. I was really nervous to call him on the phone. I would call him to hear his voice, and then pass it to my friends. [Laughs]”
On their first date: “He came and picked me up at the airport waiting with two coffees, and I was so nervous I dropped them on the floor in the middle of the airport.”
On cohabitation: “We live in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. My favorite thing about living together is that when you come back home, you know that there’s someone there. Like, someone that you want to see, someone who you miss. Someone with you want to be, someone you want to hug.”
Favorite thing about Christian: “He’s very patient; he takes good care of me. Sometimes I need that mellow part because I’m totally the opposite—Latin. He balances me really well.”
Pet peeve: “Christian can be very stubborn. Maybe that’s the Scandinavian part.”
On sharing: “We share beauty products sometimes. He always asks me, ‘What can I put in my hair for this?’ or, ‘Do you have something for my face?’ I borrow his sweatshirts and sweaters…and anything new.”
Christian’s best look: “I like him in his leather jacket and his black skinny pants. He had this time where he used to try to be a little more like, ‘70s-ish—like rock and roll ‘70s—and I really liked that on him. And he wore handbands.”
Christian is sexiest when…: “When he comes back from playing soccer, or any time we’re in a restaurant with candlelight. I’m always like, ‘Oh, you look so handsome tonight.’ He always says, ‘Candlelight. That’s always what happens to me in candlelight.’ So I always find him very sexy and very attractive under candlelight.”
On ‘his’ and ‘hers’ scents: “Coordinating perfume is sexy because it feels like sharing like a connection, like borrowing your boyfriend's t-shirt; like you are both wearing something of each other. I find it sexy the way a person applies perfume—rubbing skin and stimulating the scent.... Or meeting someone for first time and remembering that person for their scent.”
On Gucci Guilty Black: “ Gucci Guilty Black is an intense but sweet scent, a perfect combination for day and night... Sexy but playful. In a way, a perfume can be playful.”
Guilty pleasure: “A weekend at home with Christian: waking up late, watching a movie in bed, go for a walk, cooking…it’s not so often we are both in the same city and not working. Oh, and sweets. I steal all of his sweets. He tries to hide them, but I always find them.”
Sheila Marquez photographed by Christian Brylle for ITG in Brooklyn, New York on Saturday March 9th, 2013. Part 1 of a collaboration with Gucci Guilty Black.