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Monday, June 13, 2011

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Long Beach Queen Mary Import Models at Wekfest



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I’ve been keeping tabs on all the events coming out in the Southern California area for about a year now, determined to develop a more complete perspective of the modeling industry.  I do my best.  It isn’t much.  I posted an inconspicuous little notes section on my Facebook page earlier this year that I jot down dates on, mostly to remind myself that whatever terrors the week provided me, the weekend would be all the more sweeter and exciting.  My editor here at Model Vanity told me that not that many people look at it.  I didn’t expect it to.  I didn’t think much of it.  It could even use a little color like something in beige…and hieroglyphics…whatever.  I just never thought it would get any significant attention.  

Then, one night, after a dismal attempt at invigorating a stagnant hope of being a rookie professional tennis player in my later twenties, I flopped down in front of my computer exhausted and saw that someone had commented on my events list.  It was from my friend Lyna who inquired, Are you planning on going to Wekfest in LA, Nate? Saw that you didn't have any events in June and Wekfest is June 5th. Just keeping you informed =)”  

She was right.  June looked dismal.  There was nothing in it.  And then I thought of Wekfest.  If you’re familiar with automotive events, you’d be quick to associate Wekfest with the San Francisco area.  I suddenly sighed about the commute and thought of filling up my trunk with NOS energy bottles.  Maybe I could take a plane…Then, I continued to read and saw her mention Los Angeles in the same message.  Asking her for more information about the event, I was given the assurance that when she found more news about the event, she would tell me.  She was true to her word.

The 2011 Wekfest Tour stop in Long Beach, California was held on June 5th at the majestic Queen Mary Events Park.  I have so many fond memories of this city at events such as Formula Drift, the Long Beach Grand Prix, and Spocom.  However, all of those events were held in the downtown area around the massive Long Beach Convention Center.  I had never had a reason to go to the docks of the Queen Mary before until now.  As I drove down the final stretch of the I-710, I was treated to a scenic drive along the harbor as the grass of the park emerged with excited spectators and stylish show cars.  Of course, I was hit by a fifteen minute delay because of traffic.  The line was huge!  Little did I know that once I got in, I was to be spit right back out because of the lack of parking.  Settling for a space downtown for my ride and worn by my impatience, the trip along the harbor via bus did boost my enthusiasm once again, as I gathered in the fresh Long Beach atmosphere.  It’s pretty nice there.  You can’t go wrong with Long Beach.

Meeting up with the Model Vanity crew on site, we were in full force to cover the event in fine fashion.  Right at the entrance we found the gorgeous Elissa Alva flashing a smile at us in her Weksos shirt.  Now, guys, that’s one hell of a start to the day.  If you’ve never met her in person, she has a sort of measured style and grace that binds your senses, a regality about her gaze that urges your eyes into the habit of looking on and admiring.  These elements make her an intriguing subject of photography and just a pleasant and interesting person to meet in general.  

(Elissa Alva photo)

Beside Elissa, Nadine Arambula was busy helping out with the photo booth at their area.  Finding a few seconds lull in the influx of excited event-goers, the Model Vanity crew and I took a few shots of this sparkling beauty when we had the chance and got our cameras pounded by her radiance.

(Nadine Arambula photo)

I don’t know why our space boys called that huge plain on the moon the Sea of Tranquility, but I bet you there was some kind of time portal thingy that projected an image of Amy V.  Hey, it could have happened.  It’s the final frontier out there.  You don’t know what goes on.  Anyway, Amy V. can get you into a peaceful euphoria if you look into her smile long enough, causing you to wake up from your trance into a stint of goofy laughter.  Yeah, it’s that “aww…shucks…” moment in which you find out you aren’t as smooth as you thought you were.  Hey, it’s okay.  I don’t blame you.  The Amy V. cuteness just breaks you down like that.

Of course with our luck, we found Amy V. at the exact time she was chatting it up with the beautiful Gynn Ly.  We’re opportunistic like that.  Gynn Ly is an awesome talent that embodies the atmosphere of the park itself.  Expressive and fresh with that aura of coastal girl glamour, she just makes you want to get out there and have some fun in your convertible blasting tunes down the PCH.  This outright positivity and spirit is most intriguing to capture.

(Amy V. and Gynn Ly photo)

Backtracking, we met up with the alluring Genevieve Chanelle who was previously preoccupied with some fandom.  It’s really quite elementary.  If you have one of the hottest SpoCom and XDC models on the grounds, guys, are you going to pass up meeting her?  No, I don’t think so…Genevieve’s success and recognition stems from her alluring femininity and her ability to express power in minimal changes to her stance and expression.  This capacity to convey an emotional response to her audience in both print and in person through her gracious and genuine nature makes her one of the more memorable faces on the scene.

(Genevieve Chanelle photo)

Now, if you have a big ship docked near your show, it would just seem so fitting to have a few sailors hanging out somewhere.  I wasn’t thinking Gilligan here, guys, or the Skipper either.  Don’t worry.  I didn’t detect the distinct aroma of canned spinach, which would prompt me to look out for Popeye.  No, all I was thinking of was this…


(Europrojektz sailor girls) –

This just seems even better than that anime show Sailor Moon.  Doesn’t it?  I wouldn’t know.  That show was too girly…but, I guess, when we get older, we all start to like the “girly” things in life.  Am I right?

Now, remember when I told you about my friend Lyna? (Second talent from left in above photos)  I never told you she was a gorgeous model, did I?  I’m tricky like that.  This event was like coming full circle for me.  I think I met Lyna Ly Sparks in Irvine for the first RPM events series event working for Europrojektz, the same company she was representing at this show, around the same time last year.  What made it more of a déjà vu moment was that both events were partly on grass and were very unique in that aspect.  But through that one year, I was happy to get to know Lyna whether it was talking about awesome new milestones or bad sushi.  She’s probably one of those personalities that you can really interact with at an event and feel right at home.  I’m talking personality, but that’s not to underestimate her obvious genuine, down-to-earth charm.  She relates with her audience, and that’s what makes for a great model in my book.

Working with Lyna that day was cutie Jaylee Vee (Left First talent above photo).  I say cutie because the girl was probably one of the most lively girls at the show.  I think I have a few funny face pictures of her somewhere, but she probably wouldn’t appreciate that.  You just feel brisk and refreshed like a canned Lipton Ice Tea after meeting her.  I loved that drink in high school.  Oh, my gosh, I’m actually thinking about high school!  It’s this contagious youthful vibrancy that made for an entertaining shoot.

Now, about Amy Fay (Above photo, far right)
What can I say?  
In every day,
She finds a way,
To make dismay,
All go away


The girl is like sweet poetry on a rainy day.  There’s just this congruency and order to her elegance that makes every expression and position seem purposed and significant.  It’s like a masterpiece unfolding before your eyes within every shot.  Her artistry makes her a jewel to behold in person and on camera.  

Moving on to the Auto Fashion USA booth, the Model Vanity crew and I met the mesmerizing Julie Mai.  Julie has that coastal girl magnetism that gets you thinking of the shoreline getting a blue crush just after sunrise, and your crush is her.  Though you’re taken by her unabashed brightness, it’s her subtle gentleness that gets you in the end when she allows it to the surface in full effect.  
(Julie Mai photo)

The JDM Sport girls were also in attendance to infatuate the crowds.  Tracy Linh shined all through May and continued the streak on this first event of June displaying her trademark sophistication and class.  We were also pleased to see Soniya Lei in attendance as we were informed via Twitter of her plans to appear at this event.  It would be safe to say that we were completely enamored by her amicable professionalism and infectious passion in front of the camera.  Honey Jo is just how her name sounds.  She’s as sweet as honey and as inspiring as a morning cup of Jo.  She displayed an acute awareness of her craft, as proven in a great set of photography.  In other words, JDM was stylin’ at Wekfest…

(Tracy Linh photo)


(Soniya Lei photo)


(Honey Jo photo)

No other girl can make me think of so many Usher songs than Alexia Cortez because no other girl can make me say, “Oh, my gosh,” repetitively the way she does.  Lately though, she’s been so all over the place, I’ve barely seen her.  She’s always in Vegas for events like SEMA and King of the Cage or doing shoots for numerous companies like Import Tuner.  The last time I saw her was probably during her win at the Women of Perfection beauty contest this past February in Torrance, California.  That’s a lot of months.  But as always with her, she offers me an ever-ready and wholehearted greeting every time.  She’s exactly the same way with her fans.  No matter what successes or tribulations she encounters, she always understands the importance of her fans, and the relationship she builds with them is a very sweet sight indeed.  While shooting, you discover why she’s so marketable with her smooth confidence and effortless charisma.  Her tireless pursuit to make a great product and achieve makes photography all the more easier.  You just have to sit back and enjoy what gets created.

(Alexia Cortez photo)

With Alexia that day was Vanessa Reyna.  This was my first encounter with her at an event, but I was pleased by how well she could interpret the scene with her own brand of attitude and create awe-inspiring drama in front of the camera.  Model Vanity and I had a great time shooting with her.


(Vanessa Rayna photo)

Dianna Lushus had told me she’d be with “Crooks & Castles” during the Wekfest event, but for the first few hours I was there, I had no idea where she was.  Soon enough, I saw that familiar glint of blond hair at the corner of the park.  She turned around to flash her gorgeous smile at me once again with her glasses and Air Jordans on.  She mentioned a few of her friends were wondering if she was even working that day considering she was all casual for the event.  Really, guys, you can put Dianna in a jumpsuit and she’d still look beyond belief attractive.  But perhaps she was going for the “Where’s Waldo” look because I hear he makes some appearances at E3…was it a coincidence that Dianna was going to be at E3 the following week?  Foreshadowing, maybe?  I don’t know.  Either way, nerds, you might like this episode of work’n Lushus.

(Dianna Lushus photo)

The Model Vanity crew is also happy to showcase a few new faces to the scene.  The sexy TWC girls made an impact at the event, along with Wheelflip.com and their gorgeous model.
( TWC girls group photo)

(Wheelflip.com model photo)

Finally, we couldn’t end things non-climactic and not visit the amazing Layla Lu.  Now, could we?  Layla is probably one of the best events models I’ve seen and interacted with.  Her consistency of spirit and enthusiasm is probably second to none.  I mean, this girl went all over Bimmerfest obliging fans and media for photo ops well into the closing hour.  I think we were running away from departing show cars at that time too, while she was still going at it.  This steadiness might be attributed to this inherently controlled power she displays on camera.  Every expressional and positional combination bombards an image with a single unified theme of dynamic sensuality.  Sometimes you have to shake your head and wipe out any confusion that what you’re seeing might be a mirage.  You aren’t.  She’s live and in living color.

(Layla Lu photo)

The Long Beach Queen Mary Events Park has long been a vibrant and jolly meeting place, where the beautiful waters of the Pacific converged with one of the most gorgeous cities in California.  It was only natural that some of the hottest people would also make the trip to celebrate what makes us, the human race, look so darn good.  Yeah, it’s a car show, of course, but what’s a car show without amazing women?  It was your day too, girls.  Model Vanity is glad to celebrate you, the models who make these events all worth while.  Thank you.

So MODELS, if you ever see Model Vanity roaming around your event, don’t be shy.  We’re only trying to boost your modeling FICO with some free cred…let us and your fans know who you are.  Because in this industry, it’s all about the Vanity…Model Vanity…

photos and writeup By

Nate Long

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