Where were you born and raised?
I was born in Westlake, Ohio a suburb of Cleveland. I was raised in a Avon, Ohio, not far from Lake Erie. At the time it was a quiet farming town, but it has changed a lot since I graduated and joined the Army. There aren’t that many farms left.
Growing up were there any people that influenced your decision on getting a tattoo?
My biggest influence that made me decide I wanted a tattoo was my Aunty Gail. She has the coolest wolf howling at the moon on her calf, and I thought it was absolutely amazing.
What made you decide to get your first one?
The day I turned eighteen, Aunty Gail took me to her tattoo shop. I couldn’t decide on one design to get, so instead of getting one tattoo, I got two.
Do you have a favorite tattoo, and does it have a meaning behind it?
I have to say, I don’t really have a favorite tattoo. I love them all! All of my tattoos have a special meanings for me. They all mark specific points in my life and some of my loves. They all tell a different story. Most of them have been designed and done by my husband who has been one of my biggest supporters of my career both in modeling and in the military. Others I have gotten done by some of the top tattoo artist in the world, whom I have admired their work and traveled to get their art on my body.
Since I can’t really pick a favorite, I’ll give you my top three: The bat on my neck was done by international tattoo artist James Tattoo Art from Budapest, Hungary. My chest piece, which symbolizes a near death experience was done by my husband, Kenn Ellis and my wolf sleeve, which is still in progress, is being done by Sullen artist James Strickland.
How did you get into modeling?
I got into modeling right after I serving nine years in the United States Army. It was something I had always had an interest in, but never really knew how to get into it. I just took a leap of faith with a great support base to push me through the hard times and keep me level during the highs.
What or who are your inspirations?
I would say my husband was my biggest influence. He has always been my cheerleader. He pushed me to try it and hear I am 4 1/2 years later. My inspirations would be all of the photographers, models and designers I have worked with or will hopefully work with in the future who have the same drive that I do.
What projects are you currently working on?
My current project that I’m currently working on is the 3rd annual Miss Inked 216 event held in Cleveland, Ohio. I’m the creator and founder of this tattoo contest. I created this event because there was nothing like it on the east coast. I think it is important to give back to the tattoo community that has helped me throughout the years. It has helped and launched a few girls careers who had the same dreams I did 4 1/2 years ago.