Meet the model with cat eye syndrome

Model Caitin Stickels has a condition known as cat eye syndrome which causes her pain, but is not holding her back.

The rare disorder gives her a "cat-like" appearance, which got the attention of British fashion photographer Nick Knight.

He first spotted the 29-year-old from Seattle on Instagram and she's since starred in V Magazine.

"It's been the most beautiful whirlwind of my life," she tells Newsbeat.

Cat eye syndrome is also called Schmid-Fraccaro syndrome.

People with it can also show severe malformations in the ears, the heart and the kidneys.

In some cases, the disease affects others organs in the body too.

Caitin's looks don't conform to the "beauty" we are used to seeing in magazines, films and TV.

"I never dreamed of being a model or being a part of the fashion industry," she tells Newsbeat.

"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."

'People weren't sure how to even approach me'

"Where I struggle with my syndrome is mostly all internally," she explains.

"I suppose the other thing is [that] my eyes wont dilate on their own; hence the cat-like appearance at all times.

"This means that although I can see well at night, I can be very sensitive to the sun. I love the sun and I'm often out in it, but it just hurts my eyes, quite a bit."

Caitin also reveals that she lives with a lot of pain and nausea.

'I'm tough as a stone'

"It's a very, very sensitive body but because it's always been that way, a lot of people don't even realise there's an issue. I'm tough as a stone," she adds.

"My modelling, acting and singing is a wonderful distraction from how I'm feeling on the inside and I live for it all.

"I also only have one functioning kidney, so I'm always drinking water."

"As for how I look? Other than a curious child every once in a while, I don't have any negativity to deal with.

"My childhood was mostly the same. Kids will be kids, yes I got teased, but who didn't?"

"We're all beautifully flawed and we're all individuals," she adds.

"One thing that we all have in common is that none of us are the same nor flawless."