American Apparel shorts, Office London heels.
VANESSA LAKE IS A MAKEUP ARTIST, hairdresser, and model, when asked if it is better to dazzle someone than to be dazzling, she answered, “They are equal. I like being the one getting dolled up, but it’s also a nice feeling to give others that service.”
The tattooed girl with bee-stung lips and shocking red hair didn’t always see herself in front of the camera. “I used to think to be a model you had to be 5’11” and rail-thin,” she says. But in the egalitarian landscape of cyberspace, Lake found an audience. “I got my first computer at, like, 22 years old, became more Internet-savvy, and found my niche. I never really thought modeling could go anywhere, and then suddenly it did.”
American Apparel top; Calvin Klein underwear; Everlast hand wraps and gloves.
Vanessa exploded online, where you can find glamour shots, pinups, artistic nudes, and even an enticing image of her writhing around a bowling alley. Still, she hasn’t let all the “Likes” and “Loves” on social media affect her focus on achieving her goals. “Modeling does have a shelf life, so it’s nice knowing I’ll always have the hair and makeup once it’s time to stop modeling.”
Working out of Los Angeles, Lake has enhanced the looks of all types of clients, including celebrities. Before her own photo shoot for INKED, she had made up the women of AMC’s Small Town Security for the GLAAD Media Awards show. “They were hilarious,” Lake says. “I feel so lucky to work at a salon in a major hotel in Beverly Hills. Whenever there’s an award show I get to do hair and makeup. There are always famous people just walking by, so I’m just like, ‘Oh, hi, Mick Jagger!’”
American Apparel bodysuit; Office London heels.
The people responsible for beautifying Lake’s arms are tattoo artists Adam “Honkey Kong” Hathorn and Jime Litwalk. “They are both amazing artists,” she says. “My right arm and part of my left arm was done by Honkey Kong, who works at Guru Tattoo down in San Diego, and the rest of my left arm was done by Jime Litwalk of Hart and Huntington. The pieces all represent something to me personally, but some more than others. I mainly just like goofy, cool cartoons.”
Wildfox tank top; American Apparel shorts and socks; Converse sneakers; Oak hat.
On set, Lake gets her hair and makeup done, checks the polish on her fingers and toes, takes a shot of vodka, and is ready to charm the camera and show off her colorful work.
Is she nervous? “No… with these pictures, I’m thinking that when I’m 80 I’ll be so happy to look back at them and remember how nice my boobs used to be.”