HOW DID YOU GET STARTED MODELING?
Hmmm...the "how".....I don't know if I have ever officially got "started"....I've simply enjoyed posing for a talented artist who got inspired and enthused by me/my outward appearance, so I would mug for cameras or pose for art friends while in my late teens and into my early 20's. To pin-point the first time where I was "launched"...i.e.: me being published and put out into the public eye....that would have been when I was photographed by Bill DeMichele at the Motor City Tattoo convention in Detroit back in 2002. I ended up being the cover girl chick for the September 2002 issue of International Tattoo Art....which was a bit surprising, as my left sleeve wasn't completed by any means back then.
With that, and the fact that I was a tattoo artist at the time, the tattoo periodicals became the "place" where people got their first glimpse of me.
I also ended up doing interviews over the years in mags like "Tattoo", my image was used for ads in "Skin & Ink" and cover girl along with an interview for the March 2006 issue of "Prick".
Since then, and up to the present day, I book my own sessions and pose for photographers and artists wherever I can go, and whomever is dedicated enough to work with me in order to create some exceptional end results that, I'd like to say, can be considered works of art.
WHAT EXCITES YOU ABOUT MODELING?
The entire process can be rather exciting, really. Especially if I get to travel for an assignment and meet new people!
It gets REAL exciting when coming across a unique, prolific, imaginative and dedicated photographer/artist and feeding each other concepts and ideas, figuring out how to make a session/shoot/event work and getting each other revved up for creating....that's the real "high" for me.
It's not the aspect of believing I am "hot" or the desperate need for attention/constant approval of my exterior by any observers of work I may do. It's more about provoking thoughts or displaying that ideas and beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, "lifestyle"....with the photographs or works of art I choose to participate in. "Modeling" is just another method for me to participate in an artistic process.
DO YOU COME FROM A BACKGROUND OF TRAINING IN THE ARTS?
My background in regards to my training with visual art is rather informal, and fairly feral! Haha! Granted, I had a couple of art teachers in my VERY tiny town/school (I am from Eastern Iowa. Haha!) while growing up that saw and encouraged an "early talent"....my ability translate ideas and figures visually and accurately at a very young age.
It was always encouraged by my parents, really...and I simply loved to draw.
The first time I was published with a work of writing was age five, and my first "comic/cartoon" publication happened when I was seven in a small publication through "In-Fisherman"....which is a fishing magazine!
I also recall my first full-length comic attempt being in the 6th grade, where I wrote and drew up a parody of "Twelve Angry Men." It was pretty advanced for a twelve year old...haha! I also credit being exposed to early Tom and Jerry cartoons, as well as comics such as Krazy Kat and Pogo by Walt Kelly (fans of "Calvin and Hobbes" should TOTALLY check out "Pogo.") These showed me that you could illustrate and tell stories beautifully and effectively.....I also was blown away at the attention to details that some of those artists put into things like cartoons! You just don't see that quality of work much these days...
As I got older, and music became hugely important to me (it always has been, really....thanks to a very diverse music-lovin' family) I wanted to illustrate album covers at one point. When I went to Europe for the first time at the age of 15, and went to Monet's gardens....the Louvre...seeing things that blew me away and the lasting impact Europe had....only solidified my awareness that I was, indeed an artist.
Sure, I have some college semesters under my belt...but my real learning/training came from immersing myself around other working artists.... along with taking the risk of going a more "wayward" off-the-beaten path direction for inspiration.
I did tattoo for a spell, but really didn't enjoy the continual encounters of those doing it for the love of an image or specific lifestyle...not for the love of the actual craft.
Sure, I've done a couple gallery and group showings...have had a solo exhibit in Chicago in 2008....traded a canvass work for a Volvo in 2007...
My "live art" endeavors started in St. Louis in 2005, and I found myself going on tours by 2006....on a nine state Midwest tour for a Battle of the Bands regarding a Midwest music festival called "Wakarusa" in 2006, as well as some shows with "Atmosphere" as well as "The Dresden Dolls". These allowed me to really test my imagination, improvisational skills, and speed....and I usually ended up selling each work I produced while on-stage. It was better than a business card. Haha!
I still carry the aspirations to create a graphic novel....the ideas have been tough to organize...but I feel I am getting near resolving that little issue...
In a nutshell...(if I haven't surpassed that awhile ago!) Art is a necessity for me, and I intend on eventually utilizing arts/music for therapeutic purposes as well. Art will always play an essential role in my life.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE TYPES OF OUTFITS TO MODEL IN?
Well....I guess it depends on the mood, really....haha! I enjoy super fun skivvies and bras....the whole pin-up stuff, anything with a vintage feel to it...little hats....saucy shoes....rope....*grin.....and being naykee is usually enjoyable.
WHAT ARE YOUR LEAST FAVORITES?
Anything that is uncomfortable...too constrictive....unflattering/not right for my figure....unimaginative or "run-of-the-mill."
WHAT IS IT ABOUT TATTOOS THAT INTRIGUES YOU?
Really, the most intriguing things about a tattoo....especially well-done and wildly original work, is the stories that people have behind it. Be it how they came about the idea, why they have the idea, why they chose the artist, the day they got it...when they got it....and I am talking about the exceptional works....
I could really care less as to why someone else has a nautical star or spider web on their elbow or a set of cherries wherever.
ARE THERE ANY OTHER CREATIVE MEDIUMS YOU WORK IN?
I enjoy writing/telling stories, ink/India ink drawing, watercolors, conte crayon, pastels, acrylics, spray paint (not necessarily for graffiti purposes, although I have been arrested for graffiti before!)
Sharpies in all shapes and sizes, oil painting.....and baking. Dunno if that's creative or what, but damn, I love to bake. Haha!
I'm sure I will discover new processes or different ways to approach future projects, no doubt.
I really dig graphic novels...well-thought-out graphic novels...I adore Robert Crumb, and was fairly amazed with his recent adaptation of "The Book of Genesis" in full illustrated form....
Not that I necessarily adhere to a specific religion...I thought it incredible that a man in his seventies devoted more time and devotion at illustrating every book of Genesis than most people do by merely going to church!
I hope to dedicate as much effort to wards my eventual graphic novel projects as others have...such as Marjane Satrapi ("Persepolis", "Chicken with Plums"...) French Illustrator David B ("Epileptic",) Bill Watterson, Edward Gorey, Banksy, John Kricfalusi ("Ren and Stimpy") Gilbert Hernandez ("Palomar: The Heartbreak Soup Stories") just to name a few influences/inspirational writers/illustrators...
WHAT KIND OF MUSIC DO YOU LIKE?
Oh man....we could be here for a very....long...time. Music is so vital...it's my food...medicine... the soundtrack to my life is immensely scattered. Hmmm....I'll just start typing down whatever pops into my head:
Cab Calloway, Mastadon, Edith Piaf, Radiohead, Yes, anything Nick Cave has even sneezed on or so much as even looked at... Beats Antique, Apparat, David Byrne, Bjork, Flying Lotus, NIN, Goldfrappe, Modeselektor, Billie Holiday, Lamb of God, Bryan Eno, Messhuggah, Iron Maiden, Beck, The Beta Band, Devotchka, PJ Harvey, Mark Lanegan, Aesop Rock, Antony and the Johnsons, Tricky, Portishead, Cannibal Ox, Michael Jackson, David Bowie, Bessie Smith, Dizzy G, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Clutch, DJ Shadow, 3 Inches of Blood, Z-Trip, Erykah Badu....to list just a couple...
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO FOR FUN?
Travel, try new foods, yoga, walking long distances, studying human behavior, challenging myself, camping out/visiting hot springs, spending time with my main man whenever I can (and after he returns from India! Haha!) experiencing new places, encountering new people, reading (I know, I am a NERD), enjoying a good glass of wine, sewing, discovering new music, going to live shows, museums, taking in a movie, learning something new every day, friendly debating....enjoying life to the fullest and living life authentically and passionately.
See more of Danielle Colbeck:
Pixie Spindel of 'Pixie Vision Productions." www.pixievisionproductions.com
Joseph Montesa in Bellflower, CA. Make-up artist: Vanessa Navarro.