Caitin Stickels, 29, is a Seattle-based model/actress/singer who was born with Schmid-Fraccaro, or Cat Eye Syndrome–a rare chromosomal disorder which can cause facial disfigurements such as a cleft palate and an absence of tissue from the colored part of the eyes which gives them a "cat-like" appearance.
While Stickels may not conform to the fashion industry's "traditional" beauty standards, she's currently featured in an absolutely stunning editorial for V magazine, having been discovered on Instagram and then shot by much-famed photographer Nick Knight.
"Working with Nick Knight at SHOWstudio for V Magazine was something I couldn't have even dreamed of, to be perfectly honest," Stickels wrote in a profile for the magazine. "I never dreamed of being a model or being a part of the fashion industry. I always admired from afar and meanwhile tried to recreate my own expressions through fashion, photography, and art... This collaboration has been the most beautiful whirlwind of my life."
"I did expect to see something epic—and they went far and beyond what I could have imagined," Stickels added of the shoot. "I don't want to say that this was MY dream come true, because I think working with Nick Knight is anyone's dream that I never dared to actually have myself... [he and V magazine have] opened eyes, they opened minds, and they gave this world a chance. They both have done the same with me and I'm still processing that it's now my reality, too. "
See more of the stunning photos at Vmagazine.com.