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Leah Jung

Leah Jung

Let's start with your name, or the name you work under, where you're from, and an approximate time of when you made an appearance on this planet.
My name is Leah (Lee-uh). The jury is still out on the pronunciation of my last name. My dad was born in Austria, and his family says 'yung' but for some reason we were encouraged to say 'jung' while I grew up. I could care less either way, all looks the same in print. Anyway, I live in New York state right now...I'm glad you went with the phrasing "on this planet," because there have been some doubts lately as to whether earth was my original one. I mean, I can't get a brain freeze no matter how hard I try, mosquitoes never bite me, and once, my doctor HESITATED before saying "no" when I asked him if I was an alien.  

When did you first start modeling? Are you represented by an agency or are you an independent free-lancer?
Hmm...after high school I did a commercial for Sundazed music, I posed for fantasy painter Rowena Morrill.... I guess I can pinpoint a starting point back to some runway shows I did in 2004. Not creditable runway, just a few different hair salon promoted gigs in Arizona. But it was a full day of makeup and wardrobe and everything so it was definitely my first look into the industry. I wasn't looking to be a model. I just knew some hairstylists who thought I was pretty. I had some tattoos, maybe six hours worth, but nothing good yet. I'm all freelance, all the way. Until I become too busy to be my own manager.

Why do you model, other than the final remuneration, of course!?
I model because I like to do it. Well, as long as I'm working with the right people. Its a proud moment when you realize that you might be good at something. There's a lot more to it than just getting your picture taken. 

What are your long term career goals, ambitions and aspirations?
I have a pretty specific plan in motion right now, but if I talk about it too much, I waste time actually doing it. In the long run, I am mostly concerned with my music and my education. Plan b (haha) is to be a princess of power, like She-ra.

Do you remember the first time you saw a tattoo? What was your initial reaction? 
Probably on an MTV video when I was five, who knows? No one that I knew had any tattoos, ever. I do remember the first tongue piercing I ever saw in person! It was around 1994. She was my older sister's friend, and she seemed like a lot of fun to hang out with, haha. I remember she had big boobs.

When did you get your tattoos, starting with the first? Why the particular tattoo designs you have? Who was the tattoo artist?
My first tattoo was on my 18th birthday. Nothing special, a little sun. Its since been hit with a tattoo removal laser twice. I plan on getting a back piece down the line and its in the way. Some other little things here and there, most of my stuff is from artists at the Dead President's Lounge in Albany, NY. My pirate chest piece was in 2005 by Tony Massoli, my hourglass by the painfully handsome Ian Dana. Lots of hidden gems...mostly my ideas custom drawn by the artists.

What does your body art reveal about you? Style or Statement?

I don't know how to answer this I guess. I'm curious to hear someone's perception of me; maybe it could give me a better understanding of myself. Usually what tattoos supposedly "reveal" isn't very indicative of my day-to-day life. I'm not a rock star or anything. I work in an office. I drop food on myself a lot. Hmm...if you find a pretty tattoo that makes you think "oh, that chick is a stereotypical cancer/leo cusp with an affection for Scandinavian power metal," then I should get that.

When you got the tattoo(s), did you think about the possible effect of having body art on your ability to get work, or model?
Nah. My second and third tattoo, both of the tattoo artists tried to convince me to "tone it down" (one the location, one the size) because they thought I was just another dumb girl, rightfully so, a lot of us are. But, if I say something, it means my mind is made up.

What is the usual reaction of photographers to your body art? Others in the fashion business? Significant others? Strangers on the street!?
"Did that hurt?" "I need more tattoos!" "You're hot, what does your pussy look like?" Those are the usual ones. There are lots of unusual ones too...sometimes rude. I tend to forget the rude ones though unless they're funny.

Has having body art prevented you from doing any specific modeling work?
I don't know. I've never had someone tell me that they won't shoot me because I have tattoos. But I'm sure I've been overlooked before because of them. I don't mind.

Have you considered getting more body art? A design you are dying to get or a specific tattoo artist whose work you would like to have?
Yeah, definitely. Haha, I have a few things I've been thinking about that I haven't had the time for. I hope my travels include some tattoo conventions where I'll be able to meet the artists I really admire. There are a lot really. Whoever ends up being rad I guess.

Any hints for aspiring models thinking about getting body art?
Not really. I've never quite been an 'aspiring model,' I'm just a girl who loves tattoos. Ladies need figure out who they are, and go with it. If a model comes to me with a thoughtful question though, I'd be happy to give her my take on it.

Do you have a favorite photographer?
Dale May

A photographic or artistic project that you would love to be associated with?
Stay tuned to my facebook page, I'm happily involved in every project I want to involve myself with so far:

When you think of celebrity tattoos, who do you think of first?
Angelina, cause she does whatever the hell she wants. Good for her. After that, Margaret Cho because she is goin' all out!

Have you ever searched online for information about tattoos?
Hahah, I think "body modification" was one of the first things I ever searched on the internet in the 90s.

Have you ever heard of the Vanishing Tattoo website, or visited the site ?
Definitely! Thats why I'm so glad you contacted me. You seem to be so dedicated, and so busy! Its great to see like-minded people spending so much time to make a resource for the whole world to use.

What do you think when you hear about someone who's lost a job opportunity because of their body art?
Its always unfortunate. I mean, if its because they had an anarchy sign tattooed on their neck when they were 17, its unfortunate for totally different reasons. But if its a legitimate adornment, I have a lot to say actually. I wrote an article on it recently.

What do you think about the current popularity of tattoos within mainstream popular culture?
Whatever, the fluctuations in trends have never affected me much, but I'm sure other people will regret their tattoos someday. I think people should be very careful. I don't watch the tv shows, but I've heard about them. I read magazines and blogs...I don't relate to a lot of what I see...but its also a great opportunity for the real talent to take advantage of. With all the half-ass tattoo shops popping up, some will go out of business sooner or later. The truth will endure.

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Want to find out what some of LEAH JUNG's tattoo designs & symbols mean?
Check out: Gun Tattoos, Skull Tattoos, Leaf Tattoos, Flower Tattoos, Snake Tattoos, Mask Tattoos, Grape Tattoos.